The same is true of Tyrolia’s younger and trimmer brother, Ambition. The Ambition sheds an additional 10 ounces (280 g) per foot. Not an astounding difference, but noticeable underfoot and enough to be one of the lightest BAT bindings on the market, a perfect passport to backcountry adventure.
That metal toe plate has a 42mm wide mounting pattern, as wide as Marker’s touted Extended Power Frame series, whose claim to superiority is a wider mounting pattern. It does make a difference.
Without actually skiing one, it looks like the plate for the binding offers about the same torsional rigidity as the Freeride. The widest part of the heel feet are about as wide. It looks to be more immune to ice than the Adrenaline because it doesn’t sport open cells for snow to pack in to. The snow can freeze to metal, but it won’t pack like the underside of the Adrenaline. Even so, these might require regular coats of silicone to keep snow from clinging to the plate.The Ambition adds Tyrolia’s freeflex technology to a touring binding, allowing the heel to move fore and aft when a ski bends and compresses the toe and heel around your boot. The freeflex technology prevents the sensation of a flat spot, and allows the ski to flex more naturally, less constrained by the bindings rigid plate.
Adjustment of size is not as easy as with the Adrenaline where you just flip a switch up like the old Naxos. You actually need some tools, but a simple screwdriver does the trick. This is where the Ambition separates itself from the pack. All other plate style AT bindings have more than one plate size, so you need to decide up front on the small, or large plate size. The Ambition is one size fits all.It achieves this minor miracle by adjusting both the length of the plate and the position of the heel post. The plate itself can only move in coarse, 10mm increments. To account for finer length adjustment, the binding heel itself can move +/- 5mm. The heel post can then be positioned to hold the plate down for the coarse size, or mounted on a track (perfect for rentals) to accommodate the full range of plate sizes.
The Ambition looks to be perfect for the skier who isn’t sending their carcass off cliffs on purpose and whose alpine boots are DIN standard, or an old pair of lugged AT boots without Dynafit fittings. It’s a great choice for short tours, and isn’t too heavy for long ones either.The biggest problem with this binding? Lack of availability. The market for AT bindings is either in the light is right camp, or beefy is better. The Tyrolia/Fischer/Elan Ambition is dead center with the Freeride and it’s tough to make middle of the road sound sexy, even if it is the best choice for most skiers.
MSRP: $ 425
Weight/foot: 2 lbs., 4 oz. (1030 g)
Sizes available: 260 – 350 BSL
DIN range: 4 – 12
Ski Brakes: 85mm, 105mm, 125mm
Ski Crampons: 90mm, 105mm, 120mm