Rocky Mountain Storms into Short Travel 27.5 with new Thunderbolt

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Building on the success of their 27.5″ Altitude series, Rocky Mountain is expanding their mid sized wheel offerings with the all new Thunderbolt. Built on 120mm of travel with an aluminum frame, the XC oriented Thunderbolt is geared towards a fun, playful ride that is still race capable.

Get the details on the Thunderbolt, next.

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The Thunderbolt continues in Rocky’s Ride Tuned Concept meaning wheel size and suspension travel is all taken into consideration when designing a new bike. These factors have a big effect on the handling and performance of the bike which can require changes to the overall design to end up with the desired feel. Essentially, they’re not just taking an existing design and expanding or shrinking it to fit different wheels or travel.

Thunderbolt uses Rocky’s FORM 7005 aluminum tubing with an XC tuned Smoothlink suspension system to attain a stable pedaling platform that is still active when the trail points down – as it often does oustide Rocky’s HQ. Equipped with the latest frame features, the Thunderbolt is trail ready with a 142mm E-Thru rear, internal cable routing including stealth dropper, a BB92 pressfit bottom bracket, and Rocky’s ABC bushings for suspension pivots.

Four models of the Thunderbolt will initially be offered with the top end 770, 750, 730, and 710. The 770 above features Fox Float Dual Remote CTD suspension with a Shimano XT/XTR build including a Race Face Turbine 38/24 crank and Stan’s ZTR Crest Rims.

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The 750 still offers Fox CTD suspension but loses the dual remotes and drops the drivetrain to a Shimano SLR/XT 3×10 build with Sun Ringle Inferno rims.

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The Thunderbolt 730 drops the Fox front fork in favor of an X Fusion Velvet RL2 but keeps the Fox Float CTD rear shock. The drivetrain is mostly Shimno Deore with an XT rear direct mount derailleur (all of the Thunderbolts from here up use DM). Shimano Deore hubs are laced to Sun Ringle Inferno rims.

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The 710 is the only bike to use a few different standards, with a standard 135mm QR rear wheel and non-direct mount rear derailleur. Suspension includes a Rockshox XC30 TK Solo air fork and Rockshox Monarch RL rear shock and the drivetrain uses SRAM X5/X7 parts for a 3×10 system.

To see more detailed spec, check out the Thunderbolt on Rocky’s site.

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Comments

Ck - 08/28/13 - 4:22pm

Excited to see how this matches up in price to the Solo. I feel like my next bike will be a short travel FS, as i’m not sold on moving to a 29er so bring on the <=120mm 650b FSers.

Andrew - 08/28/13 - 5:07pm

Vs the Solo, Hmm… when the carbon frame version of this shows up next year the comparison will be painful. Interesting fact is that Rocky Mountain and Santa Cruz carbon frames are produced in the same facility and are unarguably some of the best carbon on the market, no bs Giant bicycle co suitcase frames here. Give me a carbon 799 with XX1 drivetrain and we have a deal!

Matt - 08/28/13 - 5:29pm

Alas, Yet another model without anything bigger than a 20.5″ frame….

SomeDude - 08/28/13 - 7:18pm

Yep, no bs suitcase frame from the guys that do more handmade carbon than anyone else (check where Santa Cruz has had many of their alloy frames made in the past). Just say you don’t like Giant. That’s fine but they unarguably make some of the best bikes on the market, be it their own bikes, or something from another brand (see what I did there). These should be fun bikes with that short chainstay length, but I am wondering what kind of flex that rear end might have with those long seat and chainstays to their respective pivots. It’s been a few years but I’ve been on a number of RMs XC bikes and have noticed the frames could use some help in the lateral stiffness category. Good looking stuff all around though.

Dilly down - 08/28/13 - 8:21pm

When RMB funally ditches those stupid ABC bushings that wear so quickly and cost $150 to replace (if your frame or swing link isn’t damaged) I might consider them again. Great looking bikes but beauty is only skin deep. They know they have a flawed design but keep rolling it through their lineup. Hopefully they have enough money in their warranty kitty to get through this.

glen - 09/09/13 - 8:13pm

I don’t see any mention of weight on the Thunderbolt. anyone know those numbers?

Adam - 09/19/13 - 9:38pm

Weight spec for frame and full build is very important for a bike in this category, but no mention of it.

brian - 02/14/14 - 10:24am

Agree with adam, i love the look of this bike but need a frame weight…. cant find one online, has anyone seen it?

leaning toward scott spark in carbon unless this has a competitive weight…

Tony - 06/19/14 - 6:33am

Medium – 29.3 lbs, friend just got a 750. Nice bike but whats up with the 3×10 and tubes?

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