The GK Sonic is a supported leading edge, free ride, highperformance four line kite with a 100% depower capability. Perfect for riders who want a fast, high-booting kite with perfect upwind performance, huge lift and a massive wind range. Experienced riders will be able to push the boundaries of their freeride performance thanks to the enourmous generation of power and speed from the offset. The combination of its high-aspect-ratio, flat profiles and thin leading edge gives the Sonic its superior flight performance that will also be enjoyed by intermediate riders who are looking to advance their skills.
TEST TEAM NOTES:
Big, robust and manly are the character traits we picked up on first impressions of the 14 metre Sonic. The chunky, tough leading edge down to the simple yet rugged bar system leave you in no doubt that this is a big boy's kite, in this 14 metre size at least. All the fixtures and fittings are good, the one pump is sturdy, the stitched areas on the kite are well reinforced and there's plenty of attention to detail in the construction. The bar has been improved for this year and is one of the cleanest you'll see. Although not quite as lush as some of the most refined on the market, it's free of clutter and has some nice features. The pushaway plastic chicken-loop release is very simple to operate, coming away nicely and it clicks back together very easily too. There is a little knack to it, but a quick practice on the beach is all you need. Plastic moulded, the release is pretty much see-through, which is a nice touch and seems quite tough. Another nice little feature on the bar is the trimming system. It's situated above the bar and operates with a webbing strap, but the best part is that it's on a loop, so if you have shorter arms and struggle to reach most systems then you can pull the whole system round its own loop so that the straps are closer to you. It does mean that you're reducing the amount of depower a bit in the kite, as you're not going to have as much line to be able to shorten, but it means that you will be able to comfortably reach the system. The kite itself has a lot of depower on the throw anyway. When you first put this kite up you can tell it's got a lot of power. We were out in conditions from about 12 – 16 knots and were never short on juice. The light wind performance is very good. It's not a quick, whippy kite, but at 14 metres, you wouldn't expect that. Heavier riders should be looking at this as, even depowered, it provides a solid and strong feeling. Pulling hard it's got loads of grunt and plenty of floaty hang-time; in the light winds it was a credit to it that we could yank it back and still get some hefty boost with good hang-time to hold us up there nicely. The bar feels nice and positive in your hands and the kite is really steady and well behaved.
If you're over 85 kilos and looking for a really good kite to blast around on in light winds and still be able to do some nice floaty jumps and transitions when other people are bogging then you should take a look at this Sonic. Although it's not a totally new concept, it flies efficiently, is obviously well developed and does its job very well. For a big 14 metre the key to its excellent light wind ability is that it flies quickly on the up and down strokes. A lot of big kites really struggle to be really efficient on these power strokes and this makes it a lot of fun in these conditions.
Fantastic, powerful and floaty boost in light winds.
KW WOULD CHANGE:
Inject it with a bit more urgency.
SIZES: 17, 14, 11, 8 and 6m