At A Glance
Designed and made in Germany, and born from their super-moto big sister, the Magura MT7s have landed on the scene in a sleek looking package that provides unrivaled stopping power. Heir to the old and highly regarded Gustav M, these are Magura’s latest flagship brakes designed and built for gravity and high speed riders.Buy Brakes on
To allow these high power beasts to compete in the enduro as well as downhill markets, weight has been reduced by a Carbotecture SL (carbon injected) brake handle bracket and a lightweight aluminium lever. By keeping things light on the bars Magura have been able to put a great looking 4 piston caliper in the middle of each wheel, demonstrating optimum weight distribution using the right materials in the right places.
On The Trail
Out of the box the MT7s come with really long hoses, so unless you’re fitting them to a tandem then you’re going to need to cut the hoses and bleed them. Word of advice, take them to your local mechanic, or if you think you know what you’re doing make sure to read the detailed online manuals - they aren’t as simple and easy as some brakes to work with!
Eventually I got them sorted and clamped on, along with a 203mm rotor up front and a 180mm on the rear providing a totally fresh set up. After a brief ‘breaking in’ ride down at the local woods it soon became evident that these were by far and away the most powerful brakes I have ever squeezed. Before getting stuck in any further I spent a bit of time tweaking first the lever reach then the bite point to my preferred position. Although the adjusters have quite an industrial feel to them, they were super easy to set up with no tools required.
The Carbotecture SL levers are a touch on the long side in comparison to others, with more of a two-finger feel to them. This means that the clamp needs to be positioned a little further away from the grips to allow easy thumb reach for the shifters and dropper post controls, which is fine only for those with longer than average thumbs. They feel a touch flexi on initial use and the curl on the end of the levers isn’t the most pronounced, but is still enough to provide a secure and comfortable feel when braking.
As mentioned before, the power of these brakes really is something special. You can certainly tell that the technology used has been filtered down from Magura’s motorsport involvement. Riding at speed you are encouraged to brake late into corners, which feels massively rewarding and keeps the adrenaline pumping all the way to the bottom. Testing has been thorough, and at no point, even on the longest steep descents, did any brake fade show its presence thanks to the high heat stability provided by the awesome 4-pot design.
Once you get used to the almost intimidating power the MT7s provide, the modulation feels great with plenty of feel at the upper limits of braking before locking up no matter how fast or rough you’re riding them. In fact, the quicker you’re travelling the better the modulation feels, whereas slow technical riding could bring the risk of an overly powerful grab of the brake just when you least want it.
The performance remained consistent throughout even though there was some noise created in wetter conditions, but there has been no need to tweak with the adjustments since the initial set up. Pad life is good, and when you do eventually need to replace them they are easily fitted from the top side of the caliper.
If you are the sort of rider who enjoys heading out for gentle XC rides, these are probably a bit too much brake for you – but then that’s not what they’ve been created for. If you like to charge full gas and prefer the gravity fed side of mountain biking, your riding will benefit from the masses of stopping power the MT7s provide. At high speeds they fill you with confidence to brake later and harder, allowing more time to be spent at speed and less time squeezing the levers. They are a touch on the costly side, however, you’re paying for unrivaled power. In the future it would be great to see the arrival of a shorter, more sturdy lever, but this is massively specific to a rider's personal preference. If you want the most powerful brakes you can find that have style to match, then look no further than the MT7.
At high speeds they fill you with confidence to brake later and harder, allowing more time to be spent at speed and less time squeezing the levers. They are a touch on the costly side, however you’re paying for unrivaled power. In the future it would be great to see the arrival of a shorter, more sturdy lever, but this is massively specific to a riders personal preference. If you want the most powerful brakes you can find that have style to match, then look no further than the MT7.
This review was in Issue 48 of IMB.For more information visit Magura
By Charley OldridCharley Oldrid is a man who spends a lot of time in the saddle. A highly experienced Mountain Bike Guide, having led trips all over world riding the finest trails he can find. His personal riding style can only be described as wild, getting sideways isn't an option on a ride with Charley, it's mandatory. If anyone can find the limit of a test bike, it's him.