GT Grade Carbon or Diverge?

I’m looking at a new gravel bike that can also do some winter road duties, bikepacking and possibly even a bit of commuting. This is to replace my ageing and much loved Carbon Jamis Renegade.
Needs to have mudguard/rack mounts and decent tyre clearance and a fair amount of stack - currently on a 61cm frame with 640 stack.

Like the fact that the Diverge takes big tyres but don’t like the idea of the future shock. Like the, dare I say, quirkiness of the Grade’s floating seat stays which seems to work and the latest version has internal cabling…

Anyone have any real world experiences of either bike or comments?

UK based and cash is finite at £3k max.

Thanks in advance for any comments/replies…

Probably not really going to be that helpful…I have the last version of the Grade. It’s comfy but the hype about the stays visibly flexing when riding… Well, no one has ever commented when I’ve been riding it! You can squeeze them by hand tho.

For me it’s a keeper cos of the external routing. Full length external routing for brakes and gears, just makes maintenance so easy!

The newer version is supposed to be a bit more off road orientated but I find this one good, it’s still got a fairly slack head angle. Mine rides well on the road, a bit of a barge on the bends but that’s to be expected.

The new version in grey, now I do like the look of that!

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I think the Diverge would be great for all of those uses.

I’ve got the non-STR version, so only the future shock in the headset. I came from a road race geometry background and had a very tough time getting used to the fit of it. I ended up shortening the stem and getting rid of the stock bars which had a big flare to them. After those changes I grew to really like it. I have a couple wheel sets and several different tire options and because of that it’s my go to for anything that requires a drop bar bike. Almost all of my outdoor rides are on my XC bike or the Diverge.

As for the future shock I really don’t even notice it. I lock it out if I’m doing a road style ride and open it up if I am off road. Only watch out is they do tend to wear out somewhat quick. Mine quite working after 3 years and I had to get a new one.

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Crux. I had an AL crux that broke, replaced it with a diverge (non-str year) and still lust over the crux

Trouble is stack is far too low on the Crux for me to get comfy.

UK based? Wild card…

Fairlight Secan or Faran for ultimate versatility.
You have a choice of tall or regular for each frame size.

I have blinged out carbon bikes but for UK gravel and commute, steel with big clearance is my preference.

Full disclosure, recently built up a Faran and it is brilliant.

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Can’t comment on Grade but have been riding Diverge for couple years (~31k km). Happy with it, I like stretched geometry, very comfortable on long distances with clip-on aerobars. Never any trouble on gravel or singletrack, decent speed on roads. Also like it for interval workouts, slightly higher weight (i.e. inertia) and stability helps to hold very steady sweetspot and threshhold power for long durations.

Anyway, currently moving to Canyon Grail instead. It’s tire clearance is slightly less but still can take 42mm, I am fine with it. I see them roughly comparable, reason for converting is additional Grail equipment (Groove aero extensions, FidLock QuickLoader) that frees up bars.

I was tempted with looking at Canyon as I have an Endurace but falling out of love with it a bit. Plagued by a creak which I’m in the process of trying to track down otherwise i would be considering them.
Good shout on the Fairlight but not what I’m looking for this time.
One of my friends has thrown a Marin Headlands 2 into the mix - takes me back to my early days dabbling with MTBs.

There you have it, grav bike of the year…

But interestingly it only scores 4.5 out of 5 stars and so did the Headlands 2 when they tested it. Not sure what other gravel bike they included in the test as i can’t see that they’ve released that yet. Suggests they’re drip feeding them out over the next few weeks…