Kona’s at it again, this time with a hardtail 29er that isn’t carbon. Instead, the 2012 Honzo is billed as an aggressive all mountain hardtail, and best of all it’s made from Cromoly. Kona claims that the Honzo is the natural evolution from the their love of the Steely, a steel hardtail 26 inch hybrid between a dirt jump and all mountain bike. Looking to incorporate the all day epic ability of the bigger wheels, while not losing the ability to tackle gnarly lines, 29 inch wheels were added and the Honzo was born.

Jump past the break to see what concessions had to be made to guarantee the Honzo lives up to its billing.

Setting out to build the Honzo, Kona had a few goal that had to be reached for it to be considered a capable bike. For starters, it needed short chainstays (16.3″) but still be able to run a 2.4 tire on a wide rim and still have room for mud clearance. Since there was no room for a front derailleur without changing the Q-factor, this meant forgoing the front derailleur and opting for a 1×9 set up with a chain guide.

To make that happen, Kona smartly included ISCG 05 tabs to run a The Hive LS1+ without the taco guard.

Out back we find that Kona has kept the sliding drop outs allowing the Honzo to be run single speed if desired. Elsewhere, the headtube on the Honzo is sized to allow the use of a tapered steerer tube with the FSA NO.10/No.7B/44 internal tapered headset, and the frame will feature a 31.6mm seat post with guides for running a dropper post.

The Honzo will be arriving in shops by the end of October, so if you’re already drooling get you orders in now!


  1. My Levi’s got tight looking at this bike….right up to the point I saw it had sliding dropouts. Not a deal-breaker, but wish it was a dedicated geared frame…..

What do you think?