At A Glance
CORE's Nexus burst on to the scene a few years ago now and already has a firm following of committed riders. The Nexus 2 keeps to its main ethos as part of the Universal+ series; it is a hybrid kite designed with looping, wave riding and freestyle in mind.
Like most in its class, the Nexus 2 houses 3 struts, a simple bridle system and the Future-C shape design. Taking inspiration and elements from both the Section and GTS, the Nexus houses the changeable CIT bridle modes for fast modification and the Surf Profile, which is a slightly lower profile for increased drifting ability.
New for the Nexus 2 are the Radical Reaction Tips. This is a modified wingtip design whereby the leading edge profile between the front bridle and back lines has been altered to both improve agility and control in waves and also a slightly widened wing tip shape improves the agility and relaunch of the Nexus 2.
Attention to detail and build quality come as standard with any product from CORE. The Nexus 2 benefits from the new Exo Tex light struts which are a change from the traditional, heavier, Exo Tex dacron found on the leading edge. The canopy is made with Coretex triple ripstop, and the Grintex abrasion patches adorn key wear areas for even more protection.
The Speed Valve 2 and Speed Pump System ensure you are on the water in no time, and the whole package comes in a high quality and comfortable backpack for transportation.
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We were lucky enough to head out on this kite with the brand-new Sensor 3 bar system. A much-anticipated upgrade, like the Sensor 2 it comes in 4 variations for complete customisation depending on your style, preference and discipline.
We took the Sensor 3 bar for a spin with the Section 3. Being the "standard" bar, it holds many of the same features as that of its siblings. However, it could be seen as the go-to bar if you are new to the CORE range. These new bars have been designed by none other than Rick Jensen, who if you know your kitesurfing trivia, is a stalwart in the competitive freestyle and park scenes.
The bar itself is made from high-grade materials with an ultra-strong and resilient titanium centre insert. This bar is then coated with the new Griploc grip, which has been made to be fantastically soft yet highly practical with a superior grip and feel.
New bar ends allow you to open and close the stealth line winders as needed, and the connection line to bar attachment maintains the precise steering feel direct to you. These attachments also allow you to alter the distance between the outside lines, for personalisation, with a quick and straightforward mod at the bar ends.
The pre-stretched lines and Tectanium powerlines are sourced and made in Germany, and as you would expect, are second to none in terms of performance and quality. The lines come in 18m as standard; then you can customise the length with the addition of 4m and 2m extension sections for whatever you wish to use that session.
Of course, the biggest change for this new Sensor 3 bar is the quick release. Though we have been assured their twist release will still be an option, CORE have now moved to their CIC (CORE Intuitive Connect) release. Incredibly well thought out, the design is ergonomic, practical and slick. A push-away release, which is built into the moulded chicken loop in various sizes and style options depending on your discipline. We used the standard-sized chicken loop. However, there is also the Pro Loop for freestyle, and the rope slider for wave and foil specific riders.
The Sensor 3 bar uses the SSF (supported single frontline) reride system, and to reconnect the chicken loop, it is merely a matter of slotting the disconnected end back into the CIC mechanism and listening for the click.
PU coated centre lines benefit once again from the Auto Untwist feature, and the trim system uses a simple 4:1 pulley for ease of use and maximum efficiency.
In The Air
The Nexus 2 is one of those kites you can jump on in all manner of conditions and have a blast. Our first session on this kite was in those classic Cape Town conditions of 30 knots and hanging on to an 8m. Luckily for me, the kite behaved perfectly, and its predictability means you will build confidence quickly to throw yourself around and make the most of this kite.
Designed as an allrounder with waves in mind, the Nexus sits well in the window with a good upwind drive. Do have a play around with the bridle settings on this one and change to suit your discipline of the day. In cross-shore conditions and set to the wave configuration, the easy upwind riding proves invaluable to lets you catch wave after wave with only 1 or 2 tacks required to get back to your starting point. On this note, the drifting capabilities of the Nexus 2 are rather good, though do require slightly more input than say the Section which is a dedicated wave riding design. The power available on-demand through the bar allows for some excellent wave riding in all manner of conditions as you can very easily power yourself through slower sections or outrun a closeout monster.
In lighter conditions, the Nexus 2 still has a fast flight speed and some good low-end grunt, whereas in the higher end of its range the power is remarkable but not out of control. The cleat system allows for plenty of extra depower and provides a very wide wind range from one size of kite. The turning speed of the Nexus 2 has increased, the kite has become much more agile, which is perfect for both light wind foiling and more powered surf and twin tip riding.
The relaunch is very good, helped no doubt by the new wingtip shapes. A simple backline hold is all that\'s needed to get the kite to roll over and relaunch.
For some classic boosting and freeriding, the Nexus 2 hits the nail on the head. Great feedback through the bar, a hugely playful feel in the kite and that accessible power available whenever you need. There is a big jump inside the Nexus, which is accessible and forgiving. Not quite as foolproof as the XR, it does need a little rider input, however, get it right and you will float for enough time to throw your wildest old school moves.
The Nexus 2 has good unhooked capabilities. It is stable and provides a good forward pull with accessible slack and good feedback through the bar. We did, however, find it lacking that spark of saying the GTS for a more advanced freestyle rider. That said, for the odd freestyle session, it would be perfectly adequate and certainly get you to the level where you would need a more specialised kite.
Looping is where you may well recognise this kite, and there is a reason it is King Of The Air rider Steve Akkersdijk\'s favourite kite. A huge progressive loop, yet it is predictable and confidence-inspiring allowing you to progress with what you are doing underneath. There is feedback at all points, and for the height and speed produced, you will continue to feel in control.
There is a huge amount of usable power on demand and a hugely playful feel in the kite.
Fantastic for high performing loops and waveriding, it does lack a little in the freestyle department somewhat, though this is where the GTS 5 steps in and takes over.
The Nexus 2 is sure to be a classic in its own right. The build of the kite as you would expect from a CORE product is excellent, and the new lighter weight strut material is noticeable in the increased drifting performance. There is a huge amount of power and versatility available on demand by simply changing a few small settings with the CIT modes, and the kite excels for both wave riding, and also big air freeride and loops. The Nexus 2 is a crossover kite which has the best of both worlds.
This review was in Issue 81 of IKSURFMAG.For more information visit CORE Kiteboarding