Gear Reviews Mountain Biking

Magura MT Trail Sport – Long-Term Review

Magura MT Trail Sport – Long-Term Review
9.1
Our Rating
Magura MT Trail Sport – Long-Term Review
Cut to the Chase
MAGURA’s proven trail concept is a price/performance miracle compared to other brake packages on the market. It has the braking power of an MT5 and the modulation of an MT8 – all at a very competitive price point. Pound for pound, the MT Trail Sport is a winner and a braking system you'd be hard pushed to look past.
Pros
The mixed piston combination provides a powerful braking system.
Price point is exceptional.
High quality materials.
Ergonomic lever blade with smaller hand options.
Excellent modulation and raw stopping power.
Cons
Lever style may not suit all riders tastes.

The Magura MT Trail Sport, pound for pound, one of the best performing brake setups.


The MT Trail Sport brakes are akin to Frankenstein’s monster, with a mixed piston set up for front and rear and similar levels of strength in terms of stopping power, but that’s where the similarities end. Frankenstein was a story (sorry, folks)… but this is reality!

Born out of experimentation, the Magura riders and employees often mixed and matched Magura’s four- and two-piston options to suit their riding style and intended use, so the German brand decided to bring a mismatched setup to market. The MT Trail Sport is intended to serve the demands of today’s riders while taking aim at value and performance in one shot.

For the braking power of an MT5 and the modulation of an MT8, the MT Sport has the best of both worlds. The MT Trail Sport set utilizes the same 4×2 piston setup at a sliver of the price.

magura_mt_trail

The Magura MT Trail Sport uses 4 pistons up front and 2 at the back for a powerful braking system.
Photo: Jason Lorch

magura_mt_trail_sport

The levers are super-light and ergonomically designed with lever reach adjustment screws.
Photo: ©Jason Lorch


Features

The front brake is the true controller of our braking system. It may seem crazy but pulling on the rear brake often causes you to skid out of control, and control is what you need when it comes to braking. About 60-80% of the control and stopping power comes from our front brake.

This is the very reason Magura created the MT Trail Sport with its 4 front and 2 rear piston setup. The MT Trail setup we tested came with a pair of Magura Storm HC rotors. 203mm up front and a 180mm at the rear.

magura_mt_trail

The Magura MT Sport uses the HC Storm rotors. The 203mm front and 180mm rear provide plenty of stopping power.
Photo:©Jason Lorch


The MT Trail Performance line pads are easily removed via the mounting screw and sliding the pads out through either the top or bottom of the brake. Installing new pads is a breeze due to the magnetic design that snap the pads into place. It’s the little things like this that we really appreciate about Magura.

magura_mt_trail_sportThe rear uses a 2 piston setup with 4 pistons up front. Photo: Jason Lorch
magura_mt_trail_sportThe brake pads are super-easy to replace with the magnetic snap-in system. A small but nice touch. Photo: Jason Lorch
magura_mt_trail_sportThe Magura MT Trail Sport are easy on the eye. Photo: Jason Lorch


Pulling all this together are Magura’s single finger aluminium blade levers. The 1-finger HC aluminium lever blade has been ergonomically optimised and is now also suitable for riders with somewhat smaller hands. Thanks to a modified geometry they can be ridden closer to the handlebars, resulting in increased control and more comfort on long descents.

Due to aluminium levers instead of carbon, Magura has been able to drop the price of this exceptional brake package significantly, passing these benefits onto you, the rider. But don’t be concerned about the weight. The MT Trail Sport brakes (without rotors) register a respectable 485 grams for the pair. Magura has packed a ton of value into the MT Trail Sport brakes, without sacrificing performance.

magura_mt_trail_sport

If you’re a minimalistic cockpit fiend, then you can utilize Magura’s aftermarket brake-lever clamps to integrate with Shimano or SRAM shifters.
Photo: ©Jason Lorch


Out On The Trails

We ran the MT Trail Sport brakes on a long-travel 29er hardtail. Hardtails pull no punches when it comes to trail feedback and we certainly felt the sensitivity of the braking due to the lack of rear suspension softening the effect. Straight out of the gates, the stopping power on the MT Trail Sport offers excellent levels of modulation, a big bite and excellent stopping power on the trails.

With the 203mm Magura Storm HC rotors up front and 180mm at the back, coupled with the mix of 4 and 2 pistons, we had a consistent braking performance over the rowdiest of terrain. When needing to quickly scrub speed, the bite on the MT Trail Sport did not disappoint. A smooth linear modulation that curves up to a very strong bite. This smooth linear curve offers an impressive range of lever/brake feedback to apply a much higher level of control on the trails.

As we rolled into steep, often blind, roll downs, the MT Trail Sport provided us with plenty of confidence to slowly creep forward, inch by inch, with total control. Even on steep sections, the range of modulation allows for much more controlled descending, when needed.

Due to the four pistons up front, the front brake is noticeably more grabby than the rear, which was definitely a positive when we came into tight switchbacks or reading the trail wrong and needing to shut down our speed, quickly. Knowing how the front and rear complement each other, you can start to work with the brakes to your advantage such as, braking much later and relying on the power of the four-piston upfront to shut things down whilst letting the rear guide you in a more relaxeddrag” or “feathering” style of braking as you enter the corner, depending on your braking/cornering technique, of course.

Conclusions

What you get with the MT Sport Trail is a system that has been designed from numerous Magura riders mixing different piston combinations to dial in the best braking system. Now you don’t need to overthink your braking, just let the natural braking abilities of the 4 and 2 piston combination to take care of it for you.

MAGURA’s proven trail concept is a price/performance miracle compared to other brake packages on the market. It has the braking power of an MT5 and the modulation of an MT8 – all at a very competitive price point. Pound for pound, the MT Trail Sport is a winner and a braking system you’d be hard pushed to look past.

magura_mt_trail_sport

The powerful Magura MT Trail Sport 4 piston, front calliper.
Photo: ©Jason Lorch


Specifications

  • 4 front pistons for maximum brake power,
  • 2 rear pistons for perfect modulation.
  • Scope of Use: Trail
  • Weight: 255 g / 230 g
  • Master Material: Carbotecture, Flip-Flop-Design
  • Lever Blade: 1-Finger HC, Aluminium
  • Hydraulic: Yes
  • Brake Fluid: Royal Blood (mineral oil-based)
  • EBT (Easy Bleed Technology): Yes
  • Bite Adjust: No
  • Reach Adjust: Yes, 3mm Allen key
  • Banjo fittings: Yes
  • Pistons: 4 front, 2 rear
  • Tubing: MAGURA Disctube
  • Shift Mix: Yes (optional)
  • Remote Mix: Yes (optional)
  • Recommended Rotor: Storm HC
  • eBike Switch: No
  • Mounting: PM/IS
  • Colours: Black

Where to Buy/Price

The Magura MT Trail Sport can be purchased from any good retailer, local or online.

Priced at: $330.00 .approx (without rotors).


Jason Lorch

Chief Editor at Tyres and Soles
Born and grew up in Wales but now a fully fledged Aussie. A passionate mountain biker, hiker and general nature addict. I'm also a bit of a muso and enjoy a good craft beer every now and again (probably too often).

I hope what we do here at Tyres and Soles will inspire people to get out there and experience first hand, the natural wonders that surround them. So, pump up those tyres, don your favourite boots. Grab a mate, a partner, a pet… and head out into nature. But tell us all about it when you get back.
Jason Lorch

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