First Look | The 2023 Canyon Lux World Cup is claimed to be one of the lightest XC bikes going

Having been spotted earlier this year at the Cape Epic and then the opening World Cup round in Brazil, the 2023 Canyon Lux is finally ready to break cover. It’s been a while coming too, as the current Lux has basically been unchanged since it arrived back in 2018. That bike introduced the current shape that we know today, with its top tube-mounted shock, dual bottle capability and incredibly thin carbon flex stays. While it has proven to be a very light, sharp and well-priced XC race bike, the Lux hasn’t exactly pushed any boundaries geometry-wise. Of course it hasn’t slowed down the likes of Mathieu van der Poel, but given the significant changes to modern XC bikes we’ve seen over the past two years, it was clear that the Lux was due for an update.

2023 canyon lux world cup cfr team
Loana Lecomte pinning it on the new Lux World Cup in plain sight.

Replacing both the Lux CF and Lux CF SLX models, Canyon’s flagship full suspension XC race bike is now known as the ‘Lux World Cup’, with its new name hammering home its intended purpose. It features a new carbon frame that is lighter and stronger, with updated kinematics and significant changes to its geometry. Along with a smattering of new frame features, including some curious bearing technology, the Lux World Cup is claimed to be the lightest and highest performing XC bike that Canyon has ever produced.

Let’s dive in to see why.

2023 canyon lux world cup cfr team
And here it is; the Canyon Lux World Cup!

An overview of the 2023 Canyon Lux World Cup

Built to thrive at the very highest level of the sport, the Canyon Lux World Cup features 29in wheels and 100mm of travel at both ends. It’s a full-bore race machine that’s designed to duke it out with the very best XC bikes on the market like the Specialized Epic, Orbea Oiz and Cannondale Scalpel.

The new Lux retains a similar silhouette to the old bike, including a single pivot flex-stay suspension design with a super-compact linkage. A closer look however, reveals a suite of refinements throughout its sleek carbon chassis.

2023 canyon lux world cup cfr team
The frame features a similar head tube profile to the Exceed CFR, routing the cables and rear brake hose through the upper headset.

Drawing inspiration from the latest Exceed hardtail, the new Lux gets a bigger and more streamlined head tube that sees the cables and rear brake hose routed through the upper headset. The IPU steering limiter is now discreetly hidden underneath the top cap, providing an emergency bump stop to prevent the shifter and brake levers from smacking into the top tube during a crash.

The boxy chainstays have also adopted a more symmetrical profile, and the tiny seat tube-mounted rocker link is no longer a one-piece alloy structure. Instead you’ll find two compression-moulded carbon link arms that clamp onto a central thru-axle, which is claimed to deliver higher torsional stiffness at a lower weight. An injection-moulded carbon yoke still drives the shock, but changes to the pivots and kinematics are claimed to have improved the Lux’s pedalling performance.

2023 canyon lux world cup cfr team
The flex-stay suspension design remains, but the linkage has been refined and kinematics have been udpated.

Canyon Lux World Cup weight

Thanks to material improvements and updates to both the layup and tube profiles, claimed weight for the new Canyon Lux World Cup CFR frame is just 1,535g. That’s a healthy 127g reduction over the old Lux CF SLX. However, it’s worth noting that this headline-grabbing figure doesn’t include the rear shock. Once you add in a RockShox SIDLuxe Ultimate shock, the claimed frame weight grows to 1,894g.

This is no doubt an impressive weight, especially given that the new Lux is purportedly stronger and stiffer than the old model. It’s also claimed to be tested to the same in-house Category 3 standards as the Neuron trail bike.

2023 canyon lux world cup cfr team
Canyon states the new Lux World Cup is actually stronger and stiffer than its predecessor. It’s also longer and slacker, but has somehow gotten lighter.

Still, it doesn’t quite live up to Canyon’s statement of being “probably the lightest full-suspension frame in the world”. For those wondering, here’s how the new Lux stacks up against the claimed frame weights (including shock) of some of its competitors;

Because those are the published frame weights from the manufacturers, we’ll have to take those numbers with a grain of salt. That said, we have had the chance to weigh the latest Giant Anthem frame, which came in at a confirmed 1,800g with a Fox Float DPS shock.

In addition to the flagship CFR frame, the Lux World Cup will also be available in a cheaper CF variant. Both frames feature identical moulds with the same geometry and suspension design, and they’re claimed to hit the same stiffness and strength values. The CF frame is simply heavier, with a 390g weight penalty over the CFR frame.

2023 canyon lux world cup cfr team
The new Canyon Lux features a longer and slacker front end, which is a direct response to the gnarlier terrain being ridden at the World Cup level.

Geometry & sizing

While the weight reduction on the new Canyon Lux World Cup is impressive, it’s really the changes to its geometry that we’re most excited about.

Firstly, Canyon has added an Extra Small frame size to the range, meaning there are now five sizes to choose from. Impressively, all frame sizes (including the XS) will fit two water bottles inside the front triangle.

2023 canyon lux world cup cfr team
Two bottles fit on all frame sizes, including the brand new Extra Small.

The new Lux gets a 68.5° head angle, which is a full 1.5° slacker than the old bike. Reach measurements have also grown by 15mm across the board. Canyon has compensated for the longer top tube by spec’ing a shorter stem on complete bikes, and the effective seat tube angle has also steepened slightly to 75°.

To keep the wheelbase from getting too long, the chainstay length has been snipped by 5mm, with the rear centre coming in at a very short 430mm on all frame sizes. Seat tube lengths have also been shortened slightly to better accommodate dropper posts, though they’re still on the long side compared to some of Canyon’s competitors.

2023 canyon lux world cup size chart geometry
2023 Canyon Lux World Cup Size Chart

CeramicSpeed bearings

Something you won’t easily spot on the new Canyon Lux World Cup frame is its special CeramicSpeed SLT bearings.

Found at all the suspension pivot points and up at the headset, the innovative SLT bearings don’t rely on traditional grease, but instead feature an oil-encapsulated solid plastic polymer that the stainless steel balls are embedded within. They’re claimed to be self-lubricating, corrosion-resistant and maintenance-free, and they come with a lifetime guarantee. That’s appealing for a mountain bike, and especially when you factor in the Lux’s headset cable routing.

2023 canyon lux world cup cfr team
Special CeramicSpeed SLT bearings are used for the suspension pivots and up at the headset. These are claimed to be self-lubricating, corrosion-resistant and maintenance-free, and they’re covered by a lifetime guarantee. Sounds pretty appealing right?

It’s worth pointing out that these bearings are an extremely high-end item, with a quick look around the internet having revealed a price of around €100 for a single headset bearing. Helping to protect those expensive bearings from contamination in the first place, Canyon employs additional seals for both the rocker link and main pivot.

CeramicSpeed also supplies the bottom bracket for the PF92 shell. The BB doesn’t use the same SLT bearings as the suspension pivots and headset, but we’re told it features high-end coated bearings and are packed with a long-life grease. The BB is also covered by the same lifetime guarantee.

2023 canyon lux world cup cfr team
CeramicSpeed also provides the PF92 bottom bracket for the new Lux World Cup, and it’s covered by the same lifetime guarantee as the pivot and headset bearings.

Another nice update over the old frame is the implementation of guided internal cable routing. Poke a new cable through the port along the chainstay, and Canyon says it’ll pop out up at the headset. We’ll see if that’s the case in the real world.

That aside, we’re glad to see the excellent Quixle carry over along with the tiny chain guide that integrates into the main pivot. The frame still uses a flat mount rear brake calliper, which may be off-putting for heavier riders and those who prefer maximum braking power. However, the flat mount does mean brake forces are concentrated into the beefier chainstay tube, allowing the thin seatstay tube to flex closer to the dropout.

2023 canyon lux world cup cfr team
The lithe rear end sees a flat-mount brake calliper and the excellent Quixle.

Canyon Lux World Cup price & specs

There will be four models available in the 2023 Canyon Lux World Cup lineup; two based around the CF frame, and two featuring the CFR frame.

Prices start at $5,049 AUD for the Lux World Cup CF 6, and go up to $12,049 AUD for the Lux World Cup CFR LTD model. As always for Canyon, you’ll need to add on the necessary shipping costs to the purchase price, since the bikes are air-freighted directly from the company’s main warehouse in Germany.

All Lux World Cup models will come spec’d with a dual remote lockout and a 100mm travel fork, though Canyon states the frame will safely accommodate 110mm of travel up front. And while complete bikes feature 2.35in Maxxis Ikon tyres, the back end will swallow up to 2.5in wide rubber.

2023 canyon lux world cup cfr team
Complete bikes come with a 100mm travel fork, though the frame is rated for use with up to a 110mm fork.

Curiously, no models are spec’d with a dropper post. With the vast majority of elite XCO racers choosing to run a dropper these days, it seems strange that a new XC bike with ‘World Cup’ in its name would be sold with a rigid seatpost. It’s especially strange given how much fanfare there was around the short travel dropper that Canyon and DT Swiss codeveloped only two years ago. That DT Swiss dropper is nowhere to be seen in the new Lux range.

Our guess is that Canyon is trying to differentiate the Lux World Cup from the existing Lux Trail, which does come with a dropper post, along with a slacker and longer front end, and more travel (120/110mm). If you’re looking for more of an all-round XC bike rather than a pure race machine, that’s still likely to be the better option. Check out our Canyon Lux Trail review for more.

We’ll be receiving a new Lux World Cup shortly to put to the test on our home trails and see how all the changes translate to the dirt. How does the Lux World Cup compare to its competitors and the Lux Trail? We’re eager to find out! In the meantime, read on below for all the specs and prices on the 2023 Lux World Cup lineup.

2023 canyon lux world cup cfr ltd
The top-end Canyon Lux World Cup CFR LTD features RockShox SID Ultimate suspension and a SRAM XX1 Eagle AXS groupset.

2023 Canyon Lux World Cup CFR LTD

2023 canyon lux world cup cfr team
The Canyon Lux CFR Team switches to Shimano XTR and Fox Factory Series suspension.

2023 Canyon Lux World Cup CFR Team

2023 canyon lux world cup cf 7
Featuring the cheaper and heavier CF carbon frame, the Lux World Cup CF 7 brings the price down significantly, while still featuring carbon wheels and a Shimano XT groupset.

2023 Canyon Lux World Cup CF 7

2023 canyon lux world cup cf 6
For a bit over five grand, the Lux World Cup CF 6 looks like a solid package for the money, featuring a Shimano SLX groupset and Fox Performance Series suspension.

2023 Canyon Lux World Cup CF 6

2023 canyon lux world cup cfr team
The new Canyon Lux World Cup has already been proven at the highest level of the sport, but how does it compare to other XC bikes we’ve tested? Stay tuned for an in-depth review coming soon!

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