Tradeshow Roundup: Mountain Bikes – Big, Small & Electric
Across the halls of Eurobike and Interbike, there’s always more to see than we have time to cover properly…so we do some drive by photo shooting.
Per usual, there are some wild linkage designs floating around, and this year’s standout was Rock Machine’s Whizz downhill mountain bike (above). Click through for detail shots, plus some 36ers, DH e-bikes and so much more…
There are floating shock designs, and there’s this. We’ve been pretty impressed with the feel of other floating shocks on the likes of the Trek Fuel EX 29 and BH Lynx, so we can only imagine how supple it must be on a 210mm travel design. What’s particularly interesting about this layout is the reversed upper rocker that pushes down on the shock while the bottom linkage pushes up. Usually the shock’s trapped directly on the lower stays in a floating design. Solidworks must’ve pulled some overtime on this one.
This Orange Strange 29er enduro mountain bike prototype pushed the shock’s forward mount all the way through the downtube.
With their Five 29 model already hitting 140mm travel, this one’s likely using a slacker geometry and the 150mm Pike fork with matching rear end travel. The frame’s front triangle gets a much more compact form for better stand over clearance, too, which is probably what forced the shock placement.
There are always some interesting bikes being rolled around Outdoor demo and the show floor, and these Payaso 36ers are no exception. 36ers remain mostly a novelty (with the exception of the Dirty Sixer), as low production one-off builds. Nearly all of them, like the Payaso have utilized the tires designed by Waltworks and built by Vee rubber.
They also had this stealthy number sitting near the Continental Tires booth.
36ers have an even higher handlebar than a 29er so Niner’s drop bar is used, though this one still had a few spacers under the stem.
And the ever elusive color anodized Thomson parts.
If 36″ wheels are too big but fat bikes won’t quite get the job done, there’s 29-plus. And if those still need a little something, Xtracycle can turn something like the Surly Krampus into a cargo bike to rule them all.
There are usually quite a few pro bikes around as well, like Greg Minnaar’s 2013 World Championship Santa Cruz v10. Just a few minutes later Chris Froome’s Tour de France winning Pinarello wheeled by as well. (Sorry, no picture. Couldn’t get our camera out in time thanks to Zach’s broken arm).
Let’s say you want to go as fast as Minnaar but don’t have the legs. If you’re in Europe, that’s no problem. Haibike had an extensive collection of battery powered e-mountain bikes, including this full featured long-travel version. The only thing keeping it from being a modern DH bike is a single crown fork.
From a US perspective, full suspension, trail ready e-bikes just don’t make a lot of sense yet. And even the Europeans we talked to said they pose concerns over “motorized use” on non-motorized trails. There’s the argument that they take away the purity of the sport. The counterpoint is that they let folks who might not otherwise be able to get out in nature explore the trails, or they just make mountain biking a bit more of a commuter event if there happen to be trails between you and work. Either way, Haibike was one of (very) many global brands showing a full range of motorized mountain bikes. And everyone from groms to teens to adults were checking them out enthusiastically.
Mondraker’s Podium SL 29 was as shapely as ever.
Love it or hate it, the integrated stem design is a clever one, using a rotating handlebar clamp to fine tune height and reach. They also introduced a 27.5″ version of their Dune and Foxy trail bikes. The white full susser you see in the first image on the back right is the Foxy.
The Trek Ticket S was introduced at Crankworx with news that custom painted frames matching pro’s bikes would be offered in limited numbers throughout the year. We found this animal in SRAM’s demo tent.