Voted All-Terrain Most Improved by the SBC Kiteboard test team in the 2012 All-Terrain Freeride Head-to-Head tests. Sizes tested: 10, 12 (14m tested in light wind reviews) Sizes available: 4, 6, 8, 9, 10, 12, 14 LW m Design style: 4-line, 3-strut delta-SLE hybrid
The Lithium model has been one of Airush’s most successful kites, and this year’s redesign raises the bar. The 2012 Lithium features an updated three-strut platform, as opposed to the quad struts from previous seasons. Test results put the Lithium clearly as one of the pack leaders, and for the developing rider skills, it could be a top choice in the Freeride All-Terrain category. The new design has given this kite a crisper, more reactive feel with less bar pressure, while improving the overall stability, drift and balance. The Lithium had sporty power delivery that, when combined with the easy handling, built skills and confidence. The water relaunch was the best in class, driven by the lighter weight platform and swept leading edge in conjunction with V3 bridle system. Like many of its three-strut rivals, the Lithium had the benefit of easy-to-access handling that allowed for dabbling in every kite discipline without extra tuning or much in the way of compromised performance. The control bar and safety systems are well-polished and, overall, this kite matched the top contenders in more than looks; the smooth pivotal turns got testers out of trouble fast, the balanced drift suited it well to waveriding.
Not as aggressive as the high-performance freestyle Not as controlled for powered-up pop-and-load tricks or high-powered precision-handling models like the Varial X.
WHAT THE SBC TEST TEAM RIDERS ARE SAYING: “It’s an easy kite to admire: smooth power and control that feels comfortable and familiar almost instantly.” “Smooth handling with a good sense of power, clean components and style.”
Tech Features -New 3-strut platform -V3 bridal system -Wing tip dump valve