Taipei Show: SR Suntour Springs forward with New and Updated Forks, Prototype Carbon Crank, and a new E-Bike Kit

SR Suntour Forks Crank suspension seatpost (4)

While most of the fork news out of SR Suntour at the show came in the form of small improvements to reduce weight, there were a few new forks in the mix as well. All new to the line up is the new Aion, which is more of a budget version of the Auron as it is built with a cast crown instead of the Auron’s hollow crown, and a steel Q-loc instead of aluminum. The Aion will be available in a number of travel and wheel sizes like the Auron, which will now available in a 29er version in addition to the 27.5″ forks offered for its introduction. Billed as an Enduro fork, the Auron received good marks from Saris in testing, which should only get better with new models.

In addition to fork improvements, SR Suntour had some other developments like a prototype carbon crank and and e-bike system…

SR Suntour Forks Crank suspension seatpost (2) SR Suntour Forks Crank suspension seatpost (6)

SR Suntour Forks Crank suspension seatpost (3)

SR Suntour Forks Crank suspension seatpost (1) SR Suntour Forks Crank suspension seatpost (7)

On the rest of the forks, improvements were like an Easter egg hunt with small touches wherever you looked. Things like the Durolux fork getting a lighter, hollow crown, 15mm Q-locs showing up on a number of additional forks, and the Rux dual crown DH fork gaining a non-quick release axle option. That last one was apparently something consumers had asked for, so going forward there will be a 20mm tool free axle, and 20 mm bolt on axle version available.

SR Suntour Forks Crank suspension seatpost (8)

SR Suntour Forks Crank suspension seatpost (10)

SR Suntour Forks Crank suspension seatpost (11) SR Suntour Forks Crank suspension seatpost (9)

SR Suntour produces a lot of cranksets, but in the hopes of getting more into the high end side of the market they are introducing a double version of their XCR mountain crank. The new XCR Double will use an outboard bearing bb system and their hexagon shaped spindle interface. Not quite ready for prime time, but on display was a prototype carbon double crankset with what looked to be a removable spider. After their introduction of a carbon suspension fork, it seems they are exploring other options for what to do with their new found carbon abilities.

SR Suntour Forks Crank suspension seatpost (13)

Suspension seatposts have never really gone away, especially for cheaper hybrids, but higher end posts seem to be making a comeback. SR Suntour is now offering more colorful versions of their SP12  seatposts so you can match your ride.

SR Suntour Factory Tour Taiwan Fork and Ebike Procution Facility Chang Hua591

Adding to their HESC (Human Electro System Components) line is an all new e-bike system geared towards mountain bikes. While the first HESC system utilized a front wheel drive electric motor and rear wheel drive human power, the mountain bike system uses a pedal assist rear wheel hub motor, with the HESC twin sensor crank which measures torque and rotation to decide when to apply power. The system will be geared towards longer battery life than outright power, which seems to be a different direction than many e-bikes are headed.

SR Suntour Factory Tour Taiwan Fork and Ebike Procution Facility Chang Hua590

SR Suntour Factory Tour Taiwan Fork and Ebike Procution Facility Chang Hua587 SR Suntour Factory Tour Taiwan Fork and Ebike Procution Facility Chang Hua586

SR Suntour Factory Tour Taiwan Fork and Ebike Procution Facility Chang Hua588 SR Suntour Factory Tour Taiwan Fork and Ebike Procution Facility Chang Hua589

The e-system is controlled through a centralized computer and remote that is USB rechargeable. From there you are able to change how much power is delivered to the wheel. The HESC mtb system can be mounted on most frames, as it uses standard component fittings and a bolt on rear hub.

The video outlines the urban, front wheel drive HESC system, but the technology is mostly the same. Skip to about the 1:00 mark to get past the 2wd part.

taispons taipei bike show coverage 2014

Comments

Putaforkinit - 03/27/14 - 1:20pm

I rode a Suntour forks a few years ago w/ some minor issue on poor low range of adjustment. It rode nice but was not too durable (Epicon) blew the cartridge in 6 months. Can’t stand their TA15 QR. I hear good things about their forks but X-Fusion is the preferred if you’re not going w/ a major brand. When X-Fusion gets their branding and graphics on par or above the big guys, they will be hard to beat since they perform so good (too vanilla for USA market). Suntour graphics and branding are absolutely terrible. Need some serious Western branding/graphics. From what I hear their internal staff is insane to deal with. Too many people all trying to push the company in different directions or simply have no idea what they are doing. Also heard the internal company politics is a nightmare (managers: Taiwan, Japanese, USA, Europe) fighting all the time… not a happy place to work. They need to fire the lot and figure this out before they can move forward as a viable highend brand. Suntour in the old days before Shimano grew up, was strong and a cool brand, but that was long ago.

Wilhelm - 03/27/14 - 3:19pm

Any news about SR SUNTOUR´s V-Boxx?

putaforkinit - 03/27/14 - 4:09pm

Per the website it looks real heavy (3400gr), 9s, has a twist shifter and lame cast arms… looks like it has not changed since 2006 so not a lot going on. A Rohloff weighs 2600gr and has 14speeds. Suppose it’s good for internal research and technology development but not a viable product for the market.

Jimmy Deaton - 03/27/14 - 6:16pm

I’m sorry, but when I see that Suntour logo all I think about are those old hideous X-press shifters…

pichy - 03/27/14 - 6:18pm

Suntour is the bigger suspension fork maker in the world. They’be for so long producing the entire line of Marzocchi forks and shocks. And Manitou too. Now they are making DVO’s forks, and every single low range bike equipped with suspension fork is from Suntour. So I think they have money and resources enough to play with the big guys. If they want to…

unicornssuntour&rainbows - 03/27/14 - 8:11pm

Money is not the issue for Suntour. They are the best spec for price value on lowend/mid range OEM spec on Asian assembly… they make a lot of money (cranks and forks). This is what makes them lazy and not dedicated to aggressively pursuing the aftermarket. I’m sure they want to but just look at the product. It even rides well I’m sure but that will not make people want to buy them. People have to relate to the brand and Suntour has zero brand value to aftermarket customers. They own DVO I heard so maybe this is their answer to aftermarket sales. If I were Suntour owners, I would put all my resources into making DVO a complete line and drop their highend Suntour product… but I’m sure X-Fusion, Rockshox, Fox and the other up and coming brands like Suntour doing what they have been doing by not connecting to aftermarket customers. Hell check out MRP now making a good run at it. Suntour branding/graphic managers are lazy, confused or both.

Aaron - 03/28/14 - 11:25am

I have an Epicon RLD from ’09, and it still holds up; great fork and I’ve been happy with it since day one.

I wish people would give them a chance, instead of assuming everything they make is crap. Yes, their low-end forks that come on entry level bikes are junk, but so are ALL low-end product from every manufacturer.

hitar_potar - 03/29/14 - 8:44pm

Uuummmm, Suntour does not own DVO – they simply produce the parts for the DVO stuff because they have the production lines. DVO has its own team for designing and assembling their own stuff. :)

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