2024 Kastle ZX100

Ski Stats

Sidecut 134/100/123
Radius 18m @ 181cm
Lengths 168,175,181,189
Weight 1950g @ 177cm
MSRP $799
Power Score: 8.43

Finesse Score: 8.55

Kästle’s MSRP’s hover near the peak of the retail pricing mountain, where the air is so thin only a few brands can survive in it.  Kästle’s relatively new Czech ownership wants to expand the line by dropping a few experimental models down to a lower altitude, where the people, particularly less affluent younger people, can afford to acquire them. Hence the ‘Z” in its name, a reference to Gen Z, otherwise known as young adults.  The first foray in this direction was the ZX108, a non-metal, robustly rockered Big Mountain model with surprising moxie, introduced just last year. The ZX100 is its first offspring, with a retail tag of $799, a pittance for a Kästle and right in line with the rest of the market. The low price wouldn’t be worth much if the ski couldn’t cut it, but the ZX100 is a knockout, particularly in the softer snow it’s made for. This became evident on a spring day at Mt. Rose, where the snow surface evolved from boilerplate to mush in the span of three hours. As soon as the top surface became loose enough to dislodge, the ZX100 was in its element. Although it has no Titanal in its guts, its classic wood-and-fiberglass sandwich is strong on the edge and peppy coming off it. It’s sidecut is also right out of the time-honored playbook, with just a little more shape and tip-to-tail taper angle than the norm.  Without the metal to dampen its response to pressure, the ZX100 feels quick and lively even though its natural sidecut radius is 18m in a 180cm and short turns aren’t really its wheelhouse.  Any ski with a Power/Finesse Balance score above 90 is doing a lot of things right.  The flex is balanced and even, and the ZX100 resides comfortably on the borderline between drifting and edging as it dances close to the fall line. If you want to make a tighter turn that’s more carve than swivel, be prepared to work for it, but that’s the case for just about every ski in this genre.  It somehow manages to feel lightweight and more maneuverable than most AMW models, yet it’s not particularly light; the Kastle FX 96 Ti is actually lighter, despite sporting two sheets of Titanal.
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