Freeride
3.6

2016 Airush Lithium Review

TEST REVIEW SYNOPSIS:  More to love than ever; simplicity merges with satisfying performance.

Sizes Tested (m): 9, 12

Sizes (m): 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 12, 14, 16

Control System: Core Bar

THE GOOD STUFF:

The Lithium has become legendary for its ideal blend of user-friendly handling, good low-end power and stable flying character. In the air it has flying traits that are adaptable to a wide range of skill levels. The Lithium still has lighter touch steering and slightly less direct feel than the Airush Union but with its stable power and its easy set-it-and-forget-it handling, the Lithium lets the rider focus on board skills and should be considered a top choice for learning to ride a directional, surfboard or foil board. This year’s Lithium has better performance in the upper wind range than previous years. The ability to push the kite faster gives the Lithium some fun jumping ability and it has always been an easy boosting and friendly boosting kite with decent lift and glide. The power band is easy to find and makes the Lithium ideal for the intermediate that wants to take it to the next level. Overall the Lithium hasn’t strayed from its winning formula but it has an upgraded feel to it with a new shape to the wingtips that give it quicker turn initiation. These are all nice refinements within its own legendary, user-friendly, performance. The Lithium truly sits in a category that spans multiple disciplines and skill levels, making it a premium all-around kite that most riders will never outgrow.

THE TRADE OFF: Easy power and simplicity sometimes lacks a sixth gear for higher level of freestyle and boosting.

WHO WILL LOVE IT: Progressing riders that want to push their freeride skills to new levels, and dabble in all disciplines that kitesurfing has to offer.