Back as a young Bohunk in the backwoods of the Old State Hospital, my life goal was reduced from becoming the next great American novelist to simply owning an Airborne bicycle. In a decade of racing, I’ve witnessed just one Airborne bike in-person. The ads and photos of the Airborne frames, often replete with a foxy-looking WWII-era pin-up, were enough to make a lad riding GripShift rather dizzy. Airborne’s price point and products have changed over the years. Now, they offer some of the most competitively priced bikes on the market. Race-ready, affordable, and somehow casually elegant, the Goblin is their top of the line mountain bike that won’t cost you as much as a car. 

It’s armed with an alloy frame so it’ll last till 2045, but gets SRAM X7 and Avid brakes, paired with a Rock Shox Reba fork. It’s Airborne’s best 29er offering with Kenda Small Block 8’s installed. Compared next to TREK and Jamis’ similar offerings, it’s a steal at $1,100 for the same components as other models $300-500 more.