2013 Commencal Meta AM 29er all mountain bike

Commencal’s new Meta AM 29er borrows the recently introduced 26″ bike’s design for 130mm (5″) of travel.

It will launch with one model in a SRAM X9/X0 build with Fox 34 fork and shock, Fulcrum wheels, Formula brakes and Reverb post. Price will be around $5,000 USD, not totally finalized yet. It’ll also come with commuter-strength lights, something we’ve seen from several European brands.

It’s aimed at the enduro market, which shows the French heritage. Enduro is a popular format there. Here, we’d call it all-day trail riding or a marathon race, except that enduro races tend to be a multiple Super-D format. Thus, the bike is designed to climb as well as it descends.

This bike was plucked directly off the production line and is the only one in the U.S. More pics below…

2013 Commencal Meta AM 29er all mountain bike

It has full internal cable routing for both brakes and shifters, which keeps the frame very clean.

2013 Commencal Meta AM 29er all mountain bike

The suspension looks unique. In reality, it’s not that different from many other four faux bar bikes except for the lower shock mount placement…on the chainstays. Puts a new spin on full floating systems and Commencal says it was done to give them the suspension feel they wanted when used with 2×10 drivetrains.

2013 Commencal Meta AM 29er all mountain bike

A 142×12 rear axle and really tall post mount brake tabs suggest this bike’s intended usage.


  1. “In reality, it’s not that different from many other four bar bikes…”

    This is not a four bar bike, it is a single pivot. It’s pivot location is quite different from most four bar bikes as well.

  2. Designing the floating design like that is an example of how over complicating things makes the overall design worse. Increase leverage ratio, exposing the shock to whatever the rear tire picks up and throws, needing an intricate frame design to go around the shock… Anchoring it to the BB area like everyone else would be better, or better yet, making it like Trek, where the leverage ratio is decreased, is far better. Lower leverage allows for more sensitivity, softer shock spring rates, less load on the frame, and more.

  3. craigsj is right about it being a single pivot. The pivot location is more forward and higher. They say it’s optimized for 2×10, which seems like they basically followed the old pivot at the chainline theory, raising it higher to better balance anti-squat rate for each chainring. They moved the pivot forward, to get a more vertical/linear axle path, than a rearward pivot would offer, which gives the bike less pedal feedback, but less rearward travel and compromises square bump performance.

    Shock placement doesn’t matter too much. You may say it helps gain a lower center of gravity, but the compromises made to get that takes away from the all-around ability of the bike. Looks to be made more for a twisty trail carver, instead of a rock garden plower or a climber, while there are bikes out there that can plow rock gardens, climb, and do decently in twisty trails.

    Seems like Commencal is taking a step backwards. Single pivot designs aren’t rocket science, but Commencal… doesn’t help their image that the Athertons left either.

  4. Missed the point : do you have any idea of the leverage ratio on that bike ?
    From what you say, it doesn’t look like…

    You are right you should go for ridiculous low leverage ratio, then you won’t be able to adapt any shock of the market. Working on valvings has a certain limit and you increase the frictions in the whole system.
    Do you know anything of the progressivity of the system ? How did you calculate it ?

    Do you know that the height of the pivot has more influence on the axle path than the horizontal position ?
    The pivot position is higher than in the past, so it’s pretty much rearward….many of the bike design on the market are a lot worse from that point of view…
    You seem to forget that a bike is a complicated combination, it also has to pedal and a bike is always a mix of compromises.

    The reason why the main pivot is more forward comes from the balance we wanted to achieve between front and rear. And if you have old Commencal and new Commencal bikes, you will see that there’s not a huge difference…it’s all about adjusting the pivot to find the balance we want to reach.
    There’s no marketing in this…and from our experience, we had a better feeling with bikes with a lower centre of gravity.

    You are very good to criticize a product in front of your computer….you should better try this bike and then write here to give your feedback.

    We create our frames with a certain vision, we don’t ask 100% of the riders to agree with that, but before throwing some theory, you should better know what you are talking about.

    Enjoy the riding !


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