I chose the Abus Granit X Plus 540 as the best all round bike lock in every year since I started this website in 2015.
And it remains a fantastic lock. It has the highest build quality of any lock I’ve ever tested, which means it's easy to use, and never jams (for me at least). It’s got a great security to weight ratio. And there is a choice of two really good frame mounts to help you carry it around on your bike.
However, like most bike locks, it can be defeated in seconds by an angle grinder. And more and more thieves are using angle grinders to steal bikes these days.
But while the big brands like Abus and Kryptonite have done nothing to address this issue, a couple of smaller brands have launched bike locks that do provide some resistance against angle grinder attack.
Does this mean you shouldn’t buy the Abus Granit X Plus 540 though? Not necessarily. Not everyone needs an angle grinder resistant bike lock. And as we’ll see in this review, it’s still a great lock.
Let’s look at this in more detail…
The best made bike lock on the market and a perfect high security choice, if you don't need angle grinder resistance!
Abus Granit X Plus 540
3.20 lb (1.45 kg)
4.25 x 9"
(10.8 x 23 cm)
Other Security Ratings:
Abus Granit X Plus 540 Cons
How secure is the Abus Granit X Plus 540?
With a shackle that’s just 13 mm thick, at first glance, the Abus Granit X Plus 540 may seem less secure than other u-locks in the same price range.
However, the Abus shackle is made from a special type of temper hardened German steel, cast in a patented, parabolic square shape.
This makes it as strong as thicker shackles from other manufacturers. So you get the same level of security in a much lighter lock.
Indeed, Abus claim it can resist over 13 tons of cutting force which means that no bolt cutter can crop it. And because the shackle is pre-stretched, double bolted and uses a patented power cell locking mechanism, it can also resist 17 tons of pulling force.
Plus, don’t forget, the double bolted shackle means that any power tool needs to cut it twice to defeat it!
All in all, this means the Granit X Plus 540 is a very secure bicycle lock. Abus give it their maximum 15/15 security rating for bicycles. Sold Secure give it the highest bicycle rating (Diamond). And ART give it a 3/5 stars security rating.
In fact, it’s the only 13 mm u-lock to receive three stars from ART. The other u-locks with three stars (such as the Kryptonite Evolution Series 4 locks), all have 14 mm shackles.
And the only u-locks to surpass it with four stars are the 16 mm Kryptonite New York and the 18 mm Kryptonite New York Fahgettaboudit Mini locks which are obviously significantly heavier than the Abus Granit X Plus 540.
However, as we’ve already discussed, a modern portable angle grinder will cut through both sides of this lock in less than 30 seconds.
When I first started reviewing bike locks, this wasn’t the case. Portable angle grinders didn’t have enough battery power to cut through high security bike locks so quickly. And thieves weren’t using them much anyway.
So angle grinder resistance wasn’t a big deal.
Nearly ten years later and the situation has changed. In some towns and cities, it feels like every bike thief is using an angle grinder.
However, this is definitely not the case. Most bike thieves are still targeting crappy cable locks with cable cutters, and flimsy u-locks (or folding locks) with leverage attacks or bolt cutters.
And if you don’t live in an area where the thieves are habitually using angle grinders, or your bike is not sufficiently desirable enough to warrant such a brazen attack, then you don’t need an angle grinder resistant bike lock!
I recommend you take the quick 3 question quiz on the home page.
If the quiz tells you that you need a Sold Secure Diamond rated bike lock, then there's a good chance you would benefit from an angle grinder resistant bike lock. If not, then the Granit X Plus 540 may still be suitable.
And you should consider it, because it has a lot to offer...
Is the Abus Granit X Plus 540 easy to carry?
The Granit X Plus 540 officially weighs 3.20 lb (1.45 kg). That’s about the same as three and a half cans of coke. It’s not light. But it’s certainly not heavy either.
In fact, it’s the lightest high security, standard size u-lock available. Having said that, carrying it around in a bag all day will probably be too much for most people. So what’s the frame mount like?
In fact, you can buy the Abus Granit X Plus 540 with two different frame mounts (or with no frame mount at all). So make sure you check what it comes with before you purchase it.
The EaZy KF bracket is for frames with diameters 28-36 mm. While the USH 540 bracket is for frames with diameters 15-36 mm.
But essentially, the EaZy KF is a smaller mount, into which you clip and unclip the shackle of your lock, while the USH 540 is a much bigger mount into which you actually lock your U-lock.
The EaZy KF is more discreet and can be used with one hand. While the USH 540 is much more obtrusive, and while while probably a bit more convoluted to use, it’s also probably a bit more sturdy.
However both frame mounts have a much better reputation than the brackets that come with Kryptonite and OnGuard locks.
There are far less complaints about Abus brackets. And if you’re someone who depends on decent frame mount then this will obviously be a significant consideration when choosing the best lock for you.
For plenty of alternative transport options, check out my guide on where to put your bike lock when you're riding.
Is the Abus Granit X Plus 540 easy to use?
The Abus Granit X Plus 540 is 9.0” (23 cm) long and 4.25” (10.8 cm) wide. This is a standard u-lock size and gives a fairly good range of options when you’re looking for places to lock your bike...
But it's always better to fill as much as the space inside the u-lock as possible. This reduces a thief's access to the lock, protecting it from leverage and power tool attacks...
It’s slightly wider than many other standard size u-locks. You’re never going to have problems at bike racks, street signs and parking meters. But you still might struggle with thicker lampposts.
If you need something longer, the Granit X Plus 540 is also available with a slightly longer, 12.0″ (30 cm) shackle [Amazon]. This could be useful if you’re using it to secure two bicycles.
The Abus Granit X Plus 540 comes with two keys, one with a LED light to help you use the lock in the dark. And you also get a code card which enables you to order replacement keys should you lose one.
As with all Abus locks, you are able to order your lock “keyed alike” so it matches the keys of another Abus lock you may already own. In this way, you can have one set of keys that open several different locks.
The mechanism is protected by an internal dust cover that’s pushed aside by the key when you insert into the key hole. This keeps the mechanism clean and dry without inconveniencing you when you’re using the lock.
Abus locks have a very strong reputation for build quality and reliability. The Granit X Plus 540 is no exception and you can really feel that quality when you hold it. Everything clicks together with a very satisfying clunk and it’s a pleasure to use!
The Abus Granit X Plus 540 remains a really good bike lock in 2023. It offers a high level of security. It’s a practical size, which gives you loads of places to lock your bike.
And it achieves both of these things without being prohibitively heavy. In fact, it’s no heavier than most standard size, medium security u-locks!
Moreover, the fantastic build quality guarantees long term reliability, and it comes with a choice from two of the very best frame mounts.
However, it won’t protect your bike against an angle grinder attack. And if you think your bike is at risk of an angle grinder attack (because thieves regularly use them in your area and are likely to target your bike), then you’re best off looking at the Litelok X1 or the Hiplok D1000.
These two locks are much more expensive than the Abus Granit X Plus 540 though, and will be a waste of money, if you don’t need that kind of protection.
In fact, while I used to say that the Abus Granit X Plus 540 was an expensive bike lock, not only has the price [Amazon] come down, but it looks positively cheap (depending on where you buy it), compared to the X1 and D1000.
So if you don’t need angle grinder protection and want the reliability and easy use of one of the best made bike locks of all time, for a reasonable price, then the Abus Granit X Plus 540 is still worthy of your consideration!
I wholeheartedly recommend the Abus Granit X Plus 540. But as always, there are alternatives…
Alternatives to the Abus Granit X Plus 540
If the Abus Granit X Plus 540 is not exactly what you’re looking for, then there are a number of other locks which might be more suitable…
Looking for something cheaper?
The Kryptonite Evolution Series 4 Standard is very similar to the Granit X Plus 540. It’s almost the same size (just 0.5 cm narrower).
And in terms of security, it’s also rated Gold by Sold Secure and has 3/5 stars from ART. I don’t think it’s quite as secure as the Abus lock, but it’s getting close.
And it’s around 50% cheaper than the X Plus 540!
What’s the drawback? Well, the shackle is 14 mm thick, which means it’s a fair bit heavier (8.8 oz / 250 g) than the Abus lock.
And the frame mount is nowhere near as good.
But if you looking for a u-lock that is the same size and offers almost the same level of security as the X Plus 540, at a fraction of the price, this is a very good choice.
Looking for something more secure?
The only thing that’s likely to defeat the Granit X Plus 540 is an angle grinder.
The famous Kryptonite Fahgettaboudit Mini will provide slightly more protection against an angle grinder attack than the Abus X Plus 540.
But only the Litelok X1 will provide significantly more protection, while still being relatively light, a practical size and a reasonable price.
The 16 mm steel shackle is coated with an innovative ceramic compound that melts angle grinder discs!
In fact, the Litelok is one of only 3 u-locks to be awarded a Motorcycle Diamond rating from Sold Secure, which means it’s one of the most secure bike locks you can buy.
But it's still a standard size and less than 250g heavier than the Granit X Plus 540. Check out my full Litelok X1 review for more details.
Looking for something lighter?
There aren’t any standard size locks that are lighter than the Granit X Plus 540, while still offering a comparable level of security.
If you want a lighter lock, you’ll need to go smaller.
The Abus Granit X-Plus Mini 54 [Amazon] is essentially a mini version of the X Plus 540.
It's also rated Sold Secure Gold. And Abus themselves give it the same 15/15 security rating as the X Plus 540.
But it’s much lighter, weighing just 2.65 lb (1.20 kg).
Why? Because it’s just 5.51″ (14.0 cm) long and 4.25” (10.8 cm) wide. This can really limit your options when you’re looking for somewhere to lock your bike. But depending on where you live, what bike you ride it and you want to lock it, it could work well for you.
And if you’re looking for a lighter u-lock than the Granit X Plus 540, that still offers a similar level of security it could be a good choice for you.
If none of these options are quite right for you, try my simple 3 step guide that guarantees to find the right lock for you and your bike!
Abus Granit X Plus 540 Specs
Abus GRANIT X Plus 540
3.20 lb (1.45 kg)
4.25 x 9"
(10.8 x 23 cm)
Other Security Ratings:
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