While BH has had mountain bikes in Europe for some time, 2013 will mark their first entrance to the US market in that segment. Some models are brand new, some merely reworked to fit riders’ tastes here in North America. All, though, take advantage of their partnership with Pivot’s Chris Cocalis, who’s also had a hand in formulating their European-only (for now, anyway) full suspension bikes.
The Ultimate is their new carbon 29er race bike. There are a few visual similarities with the recently introduced Pivot Les but is its own bike. For starters, there’s a completely different downtube and seat – and chainstays. There’s also only a dedicated 12×142 rear axle, no swappable axles or dropouts.
It runs a 31.6 seatpost and has full internal cable routing, both unique to the Ultimate. Lastly, it’s 100g lighter, coming in at a claimed 1050g for a medium.
The chainstays and downtube take full advantage of the wide PressFit 92 bottom bracket shell.
Key specs: 17.1″ chainstay, 12.1″ BB height. 69.5° head angle.
Four sizes Small thru XL for $1,999 frame only and one XT/XTR build with Stan’s wheels for $4,999.
A complete bike weighed in at 24lb 9oz with mostly accurate spec (not sure about that saddle).
The alloy Zenith 29er is an existing model for Spain, but gets reworked for the US market. They wanted to bring it here last year but decided to add tire clearance (limited to 2.2’s before, but now both this and the Ultimate bikes have clearance for up to a 2.4).
To do this, they opened up the seatstays and added a one-sided forged yoke on the drives die chainstay and bent the non-drive tubes more to add space. The bent seat tube helps them keep clearance and have short 17.1″ chainstays.
Headtube welds are smoothed with a single remaining weld on the bottom left to prevent stress risers. It’s hard to see here, but looks almost like a reversed gusset.
Chainstays and seatstays are quite shapely and meet up at scooped out dropouts (click to enlarge).
An XT/SLX mix with Shimano/Alex wheels for $1,699 complete. Spec on the demo bikes wasn’t accurate so they asked us not to weigh them.
Below the Zenith is the Peak (not shown), a beginner level 29er that’ll come in at $899. Similar to the Zenith but with a lower quality alloy and less tire clearance.
While the 26″ hardtail market are all but dead here in the states, it’s still around in Europe and going fairly strong (for now). The Euro-only 26″ Ultimate has a radically different, almost TT-bike look to it with an integrated seatmast.
The entire frame gets some swoopy-yet-edgy design.
The Lynx uses Dave Weagle’s Split Pivot rear suspension design and is an existing model in 26″ variety. This 650B prototype fits in some larger wheels while maintaining the aesthetic that makes it such a wily looking cat.
Nice cable exit.
Rubena’s a Czech tire brand that’s making a push into the US this year…and we’re glad to see more 650B options. We’ve had a bit of time on some of their tires and first impressions are decent.
Interested in BH’s new road, cyclocross and triathlon bikes? Click here.