Orange Crush: Not to be confused with the citrus soda from the 1980’s or a REM song, this is a hardcore trail ripping hardtail with 150mm of travel that devours dirt and put a smile on my face.
The Crush has been in the Orange lineup for many years. For 2017 the frame gets a geometry update to modernize the bike while cranking the fun factor to 10. In keeping with the trend of longer top tubes and shorter stems our size medium test bike had a 615mm top tube and a 50mm Kore stem. They pushed the head angle out to 65º in order to better accommodate the increased travel of the 150mm RockShox Yari fork. The increase in travel combined with the low slung bottom bracket (310mm) helped make this bike stable and FAST on the descents. During my time on the bike I was able to test it on everything from my dry local cross country trails to some wet conditions in the Pisgah National Forest of North Carolina.
Crush the link below for specs and a full review…
Make no mistake, at 27lb and 6oz (weighed with tubes in the tires) this bike is not a flyweight cross country machine, but it is still a capable climber that gets you to the top of the hill, maybe just a little slower. However, once you get there, that’s when the magic begins. Point it down the trail and hold on tight because the bike rips up everything in its path while charging down the trail. The slack head angle, 150mm travel fork and short 430mm chainstays combined with the 760mm handlebar allowed me to slalom through the tight stuff and not get bounced off line. I was somewhat hesitant to ride a hardtail again after many years on a full suspension, but once I figured out the bike’s sweet spot for the setup and weight bias it was a dream to ride. The rear of the bike never got out of line and always felt like it was in sync with the front as long as I kept it just on the safe side of being out of control. However, the bike begs to be pushed further and harder than my (I need to be a responsible adult and show up to work in one piece tomorrow) skills are willing to take it. Check out the video below from the Orange bike guys in the UK featuring Phil Atwill Crushing it on his Orange CRUSH bike.
The Crush S packs loads of fun into a budget friendly package. With a retail price of $2,100 this bike comes with a very durable, cost effective spec that provides a firm foundation for future upgrades. Also included are some nice features like a forward facing seat clamp slot to cut down on the amount of water entering the frame in damp conditions, hidden cable guides, dropper post capability and a chain guide.
My only complaint is that it really cries out for a dropper post, which is only a model-specific compliant. Thankfully the frame for an internally routed dropper to be added later or one comes standard on the Crush PRO ($2,450) and CRUSH RS (from $3,725). And I wish the rear end were Boost spacing, too, to match the fork…which would make for easier wheel upgrades. For 2018 the bike will swap the 142×12 bolt-through rear axle for the Boost 148 standard.
ORANGE CRUSH S BUILD SPECS:
- Frame: 6061-T6 Aluminum with a 5 year warranty.
- Wheel Size: 27.5″/650b (Our 27lb 6oz test model included tubes)
- Front Suspension: RockShox Yari 150mm RC Boost
- Hubs: Formula
- Rims: Alex
- Shifters: Shimano SLX 11spd
- Rear Derailleur: Shimano SLX Shadow Plus with Clutch 11spd
- Crank: Race Face Ride Single 32T Narrow Wide with Chain Watcher
- Cassette: SRAM PG1130 11-42 11spd
- Chain: SRAM PC1110 11spd
- Brakes: Shimano M506 180mm Front/160mm Rear
- Tires: WTB Vigilante Front, WTB Trail Boss Rear
- Saddle: KORE Durox
- Stem: KORE Cubix 50mm
- Handlebar: KORE Durox 760mm
- Seatpost: KORE XCD
- Grips: Strange Lock-On
The Orange Crush comes in four sizes (S-XL) and can be found in the USA exclusively at aventuron.com