Lapierre chose the beautiful village of Chatel, France, in the heart of the French Alps, to unveil their 2014 line of mountain bikes. This particular product launch focused mostly on all-mountain and enduro bikes, as they are obviously the most sexy segment at the moment.
Of particular interest for this product launch is the fact that Lapierre has removed 26” bikes from a significant selection of their mountain bike line. As it stands now, only the Lapierre dowhnill, freeride and entry-level hardtail bikes will run 26”. The Spicy and Zesty All Mountain are now 27.5” (650b), while the new Zesty Trail and entire cross-country range will be 29”.
Since we’re talking suspension with all the bikes in this launch, it’s important to note that Lapierre has employed the Rock Shox e:i “intelligent” rear shock system on these bikes. This electronically-modulated rear shock system, announced last year, is found on 13 of the 2014 models. Switch past the break for all the details…
Lapierre’s patented OST (Optimized Suspension Technology) has also been updated for the 2014 model year. Lapierre worked with enduro racing phenom Nicolas Vouilloz to develop OST+, which is still based on a virtual pivot point and promises to eliminate pedal bob.
As for materials used in frame construction, Lapierre has made more use of carbon fiber, and they’ve done away with 7005 aluminum. Instead, they’ve moved to use the Supreme 6 aluminum alloy, which is stated to be 12% stronger, 1.5% lighter and offers a longer life for the bicycle frame.
So let’s get to the bikes.
2014 Lapierre Spicy
The completely updated Spicy is only available with 27.5” wheels, which keep it “enjoyable and maneuverable.” With 150mm front and 160mm rear travel, it now comes in four sizes, with an XL added to the range. Lapierre has lengthened the top tube by 15mm (on the medium), and dropped the bottom bracket by 10mm. They also claim to have made the bike stiffer: 16% for the rear triangle; 25% at the bottom bracket and 8% at the head tube. Three models of the Spicy are available: Team (full carbon); 527 and 327. We also rode the re-introduced RockShox Pike fork on the Spicy Team.
2014 Lapierre Zesty AM
AM stands for all-mountain, and the Zesty AM aims to live up to its name with the same frame as the Spicy, but with different suspension settings, promising more efficiency. The Zesty AM runs with 150/150 travel, which gives it a 67 degree heat tube angle. As with the Spicy, the Zesty AM is 27.5, and comes in four sizes. Lapierre must be betting on the Zesty AM because there are six versions of it: the 927; 727 and the 527, which are all carbon for the main frame and Supreme 6 for the rear triangle. The 427, 327 and Lady 327 are all Supreme 6 affairs.
2014 Lapierre Zesty TR
The Zesty TR is a brand new model in the Lapierre family , as they felt such a trail bike was missing from the line last year. The TR runs 29” wheels, offers 120mm of travel, and sports 67/74 degree seat/head tube angles. The bottom bracket drop is –35mm, which is quite low. Four sizes are available, and there are three models: 929; 729; 529.
2014 Lapierre XR
The cross-country XR has not changed much from 2013, but Lapierre aimed to lower its weight. The 100% full carbon frame is said to weigh in at 1.8 kilo (3.96lbs), but we couldn’t verify since no bare frame was available. Front and rear travel is 100mm, and it now sports a 142×12 through axle in the back.
Check back soon for initial ride impressions on the Spicy Team and the Zesty TR.