Intense Tracer 275 Carbon - Review

Mar 17, 2014
by Richard Cunningham  
 
You must login to Pinkbike.
Don't have an account? Sign up

Join Pinkbike  Login

REVIEWED:
Intense Tracer 275 Carbon
WORDS: R. Cunningham
IMAGES: Greg Lambert

Well over a decade ago, I had the opportunity to test the first Tracer that Intense manufactured in its Temecula, California, factory. Decked out in red, the TIG-welded aluminum chassis had the prototypical elements of the bikes we ride today: an active, four-bar linkage-driven suspension, exaggerated stand-over clearance, additional suspension travel, and its geometry was happily more aggressive than the upright, unwieldy XC clones of the time. On trail, the Tracer seemed like it could do anything and in test trials, every rider who threw a leg over it jumped to the front of the group. We joked that the Tracer was a magic bike. Intense re-released the aluminum Tracer a few years back, with nearly double the suspension travel, up-to-date frame geometry and 27.5-inch wheels - and when it began chalking up rave reviews, the question on the tip of every Intenisto's tongue was: “When will you make a carbon version?” Well, here it is:


TRACER
  'Effortless' is an apt description of the Tracer 275 C in action - it's XC light and DH fast. Harold Preston scrubs a ladder in East-County, San Diego.


Meet the Intense Tracer 275 C

The Tracer 275 C is the fifth carbon fiber chassis to emerge from the brain trust at Intense Cycles and it is as stunning to see in the flesh as it is to ride. Designed in conjunction with the composite specialists at Seed Engineering, the Tracer 275's lines closely follow the original TIG-welded aluminum model, with plenty of stand-over clearance, dual-link VPP suspension and super-strong oversized frame tubes. Rendered in carbon, the Tracer looks integrated and purposeful - more like a weapon than a bicycle. Rear suspension travel can be switched from 160 to 140 millimeters without affecting the frame geometry, and the 5.7-pound chassis has all the important features that a hard-charging trail rider or enduro competitor needs: ISCG mounts, internal and external dropper post routing, a direct-mount front derailleur option and a taper-locking, 12-millimeter through axle.

What you can't see, though, may be the most important aspects of the Tracer 275 C – updated, more aggressive frame geometry that is optimized to fully exploit its mid-sized wheels, and suspension rate curves, perfected for the long-travel trailbike role by three generations of on-the-ground VPP development. Intense offers the Tracer 275 C in small, medium or large sizes, and in red or bare carbon colorways. The frame with a RockShox Monarch RC3 Plus shock retails for $3199, and three complete builds are offered: the $9999 Factory model tested here, with SRAM XX1, RockShox suspension and Enve carbon wheels; the $6599 Pro model, with SRAM X01. RockShox suspension and DT Swiss wheels; and the $5999 Expert model with Shimano XT, Fox suspension and Stan's ZTR EX wheels. Our medium-sized Factory build Tracer weighed 27.54 pounds (12.52kg) with the $325 Cane Creek DB CS air-shock option.



Details:
• Purpose: all-mountain/trail and enduro competition
• Frame: high-modulus carbon construction swingarm and front section, 160mm travel VPP suspension, ISCG mounts
• Wheels: 27.5” Enve AM carbon, DT 240 hubs
• Fork: RockShox Pike RCT3 160mm travel
• Shock: (Option) Cane Creek Double Barrel Air CS (standard: RockShox Monarch RC2 Plus)
• Travel options: 160mm/140mm
• Drivetrain: SRAM XX1
• Brakes: Shimano XTR ICE, 180mm rotors
• Seatpost: RockShox Reverb Stealth
• Sizes: Small, Medium (tested), Large
• Weight: 27.54 pounds (12.52kg, medium, Factory build)
• MSRP: $10,324 as-tested
• Contact: Intense Cycles



Construction

Born simultaneously on three continents, the Tracer 275 C's carbon frame and swingarm were conceptualized by Intense, then handed off to the brains at Seed Engineering in Frieburg, Germany, where the Tracer's iconic profile and VPP suspension hard-points were morphed into steel molds and intricate carbon layup schedules. The manufacturer is an elite Taiwan composite firm that uses molded bladders to produce highly compacted unidirectional carbon parts, which emerge from the molds in a nearly finished state. Carbon swingarms and front-sections then travel back to the Intense factory in Temecula, where they are assembled using aluminum linkages and dedicated hardware that are CNC-machined on site.

bigquotes Manufacturing the linkage hardware and assembling the frames here is more expensive and time consuming than having it all made over there, but it gives Intense more control over the final product. We can catch potential problems early in the game, or make running changes when we find something that we can improve. - Jeff Steber: Founder, Intense Cycles


Adjustable Pivot bearings: Adjusting the sealed ball bearings at each rocker pivot location is made possible by a threaded hex fitting that is locked by a tapered collet inside the aluminum pivot axles. The lower link has Zirk-type fittings which allow Tracer owners to purge possible contamination and lubricate the rocker bearings there.

Internal cable routing. Cables and housings are routed through the downtube. The rear derailleur cable continues through the right chainstay. The dropper seatpost, however, is routed externally on the downtube, after which, it enters a port in the lower seat tube. Full-length housing uncomplicates assembly and ensures that crud will only have two access points to the cable.

Press-in BB: Intense chose a press-in-type bottom bracket, because the 92-millimeter bearing spacing allows the frame members to be significantly wider and thus, much stiffer in the critical bottom bracket area.

Intense Tracer 275C 22014
  (Clockwise) Behind the tapered headtube, most of the cables and hoses are routed internally. Full cable housing runs ensure that the cables are sealed from shifter to derailleur. The dropper post hose is externally routed on the downtube and tucks into a port in the seat tube. The rectangular boss is a direct-mount derailleur fitting. The VPP linkage bearings are adjustable via a threaded collet arrangement.


Clearance issues: Careful consideration was given to address the Tracer's stand-over clearance, which at its lowest point is a class-leading, 28 inches. More important, may be that the top-tube shock position provides space for reservoir-type shocks – which will most certainly be the preferred option for a 160-millimeter AM/trailbike. On the flip-side of the clearance issue is that there is barely a finger's width of tire clearance between the 2.3-inch Maxxis High Roller II and the Tracer's lower VPP rocker. For most riders, this may not be an issue, but woe to those who ride where mud sticks to the tires, because the combination of the VPP suspension's swingarm yoke and lower rocker form a perfect platform for collecting the stuff and feeding it into the spinning tire.

Overall Construction: The finish and quality of the Tracer we tested was at the top of the industry's carbon standards – and the 275 C frame is well executed in the detail department as well. Thick rock and chain protectors are installed on the downtube and right chainstay, and the reinforced lower rocker link drops below the front sprocket, acting as a sort of chainring protector. ISCG 05 mounts are included, should you need extra chain retention and in the rear, Intense uses a tapered end on the left-side of the Tracer's aluminum through-axle for additional security. For those who insist on a front mech, there is a fixed boss, molded to the seat tube for that purpose.

Numbers: Intense stated that the Tracer 275 C had a slightly lower bottom bracket than its aluminum predecessor, but the alloy Tracer's published BB height is 13.3 inches, and the Intense specs as well as our measurement confirms that the carbon Tracer's is slightly taller at 13.5 inches. The most important measurement, however, is bottom bracket drop, and in this case, the carbon Tracer, with its 27.5-inch wheels still manages to keep the BB axle center a half inch below the wheel axles, which is a powerful stabilizing force that is not available to 26-inch-wheel designs. Up front, the carbon Tracer's head angle is 66.5 - a full degree slacker than the alloy version, and the effective seat tube angle has been increased to assist climbing and pedaling effectiveness. The actual seat tube angle is 70.5 degrees, which helps move the saddle back to make room in the cockpit for taller riders. Measured through the bottom bracket center to the top of the seatpost, however, the effective seat angle hovers around 74 degrees, depending upon saddle height. The new Tracer's 17-inch chainstay length and 23-inch top tube (medium size) numbers are unchanged.

Intense Tracer 275C 22014


Suspension

Cane Creek's Double Barrel Air CS shock is a $325 upcharge from the Factory Build's standard RockShox Monarch damper, but the DB Air is the soul mate to the Tracer 275C's 160-millimeter-stroke Pike RCT3 fork. The chubby Cane Creek damper does not fit in the confines of many suspension designs, but there is plenty of room for it in the Tracer's front triangle. The carbon Tracer gets an increase from 150 to 160 millimeters of travel, and like its sibling, there are two shock-mount locations on the VPP suspension's upper rocker – the upper, for 160 and the lower one for 140 millimeters of rear-wheel travel.

Smooth setup: The Tracer's mission dictates smooth suspension performance through its entire speed range, which is considerably wide. The VPP linkage does not seem to have a dramatic rate change on either end of its stroke, which, when coupled with the velvety feeling DB Air shock dictates that its rider have and use pedaling aids. The fork, not so much, because it is unweighted on the steepest climbs and, because the Tracer 275 C prefers a slightly stiffer fork setup. In the case of the DB Air, however, the “Climb Switch” is a must-have to firm up the tail end when the shock is set to its optimal, 30-percent sag. In the case of both shock and fork, the fact that the Tracer has 160 millimeters of travel means that, unlike shorter-travel bikes, to get the most performance, attention should be given to both high and low-speed damping adjustments.

Intense Tracer 275C 22014
  (Clockwise) Renthal's 740mm Fatbar Lite Carbon handlebar is a near-perfect balance between strength and comfort. We were happy to see Shimano XTR Trail brakes with 180mm ICE rotors - no problems in the stopping department. The aluminum through-axle has a tapered head that locks into the left dropout. The RockShox Reverb Stealth dropper, topped by the hardest saddle our butts have experienced in a year. SRAM XX1 still kicks ass on Shimano.


Tracer 275 C Factory Build


Specifications
Release Date 2014
Price $9999
Travel 160mm
Rear Shock Cane Creek DB CT (RockShox Monarch Plus RC3 standard
Fork RockShox Pike RCT3 160mm
Headset Cane Creek 40
Cassette SRAM XX1 11-speed
Crankarms SRAM XX1 carbon, 32T chainring
Chainguide NA
Bottom Bracket SRAM press-fit BB 93
Pedals NA
Rear Derailleur SRAM XX1
Chain SRAM XX1
Front Derailleur NA
Shifter Pods SRAM XX1
Handlebar Renthal fatbar Lite Carbon
Stem Renthal Duo 50mm
Grips Intense lock-on
Brakes Shimano XTR Trail ICE, 180mm rotors
Wheelset Enve AM carbon
Hubs DT Swiss 240
Spokes Dt Swiss Competition
Rim Enve AM Carbon
Tires Maxxis High Roller II 2.3"
Seat Intense Logo
Seatpost RockShox Reverb Stealth



TRAIL REPORT:
Tracer 275
Carbon

bigquotes The Tracer 275 carbon is far from an evolutionary improvement - its performance and feel are beyond anything that has sprung from the fertile minds at Intense.


One does not need to be a talented rider to realize that Intense's carbon Tracer is an exceptional performer. If you can pedal a bike on dirt, you can go fast on the Tracer 275 C. How fast? Two of Pinkbike's test riders bested their big-bike times on local DH trails on their first outing aboard the Intense – which pretty much sums up this review. Take one run down the mountain and before you get to the half way mark, you will be pushing it to discover where its boundaries are. With the second descent, the new Tracer will feel like you are wearing it. The Tracer 275 Carbon is far from an evolutionary improvement - its performance and feel are beyond anything that has sprung from the fertile minds at Intense.

Setup: Using the default damping settings recommended by Cane Creek for the 2013 Tracer 275 gave us a tune that we probably never had to touch. We used a little more than the recommended 16 millimeters of shock sag though, noting that the Tracer seemed to ride over the chop faster with the fork set to run a little higher in its stroke than the shock. The optimal shock spring pressure was close to each test-rider's weight.

Fork settings for the RockShox Pike were six clicks out on low-speed rebound, five clicks out on the low-speed compression - with the spring pressure choice ranging from 80psi, which delivered a firm aggressive trail tune, to 120psi for gap jumps and DH trails. Sag ranged from 15 to 20-percent, and in those tunes, the red O-ring rarely indicated full travel on the stanchion tube. The Pike's spring rate and damping action seems to ramp up at full travel and for big impact events.

TRACER
  Edgy Maxxis High Roller II tires were a perfect match for the Tracer 275 C's on-a-rail cornering style. We had to push it hard to get a drift going.


Rolling/acceleration: For its intended role, Intense's choice to skin the Tracer 275 C with 2.3-inch Maxxis High Roller II tires was spot on. While HR II tires were once the gold standard for a fast-rolling tire with a lot of grip, they don't measure up as well to contemporary AM/trail designs. That said, the carbon Tracer gets out of turns quickly and maintains a lot of speed over both rough and smooth surfaces. Intense converted the HR II's to tubeless, which gave them some speed, and the fact that the tires were mounted to Enve Carbon AM wheels were also a major help. With the shock set in the 160-millimeter-travel position, we needed to activate the Climb Switch to wake up the Tracer's sprint, but in the 140-millimeter mode, the Tracer accelerates well in the open position, so we mainly used the Cane Creek shock's pedal platform for smooth climbs - or rolling trails, where test riders were in and out of the saddle quite often.

Climbing: Intense found the right linkage rates to keep the Tracer's rear tire digging for grip on technical climbs. Granted, a capable 2.3-inch tire is a big help in the grip department, but we attribute the Tracer's VPP suspension to the ease of which test riders could negotiate uncertain lines up steep sections. As lightweight as it is and with its relatively steep effective seat tube angle, the 27.5 pound carbon Tracer can be trusted to summit climbs that are normally the domain of short-travel XC bikes, but it won't do it with the same snap or freshness at the crankset. The attributes that make the new Intense an absolute shredder on the downs take some of the edge off of its performance under power. A smooth pedal stroke will reward the T275 C pilot with the best speed on the ups.

Cornering: As test trials come to a close, we have yet to discover the outer limit of the Tracer 275C's cornering ability. Turns are where the marriage of the Tracer and its Maxxis HR II tires become a match made in heaven. The bike's mid-sized wheels require a little extra lean to carve the same arc as a similar 26-inch chassis, but in doing so, the rider presses the HR II's reinforced edging blocks firmly into the dirt. This means that there is little or no setup required – by the time the bike is turning, the tires are already producing maximum grip. Throw the T275 C's responsive suspension into the mix and you get the recipe for shred. The new Tracer prefers to carve an arc, rather than back into turns rear-wheel first. When it does slide, both tires shrug off speed, so the Tracer stays composed and tends to carry more speed out of the bends.

TRACER
  A seat angle on the steep side puts the T275 C rider in an optimized position for climbing. The effective seat angle is greater than the frame's actual 70.5-degree figure.


Technical riding: The Tracer 275 C is a package deal for fast, rowdy riding. Combine the Tracer's stable steering, combined with an unshakable RockShox Pike fork, back that up with one of the best air-sprung dampers made, and connect it to a VPP rear suspension, tuned for descending and you get a hero bike. While our reviewers proved on a few occasions that it is possible to crash the Tracer, most often, we could count on the T275 C to cover our mistakes – big mistakes. We were sworn to secrecy during the test trials, but we did take the bike out to the DH jumps to show off the Tracer to big-bike contingent there. It was a testament to the quality of the bike and its suspension that there were no instances where the bike bottomed harshly, or flexed on an off-angle landing – which is a common trait among lightweight AM/trailbikes. Riding rough, natural lines, the stiffness of the chassis and its Enve carbon wheels kept the bike on point, which was especially handy when that line transcribed a nest of boulders or a parallel rut.

Braking: We would be remiss not to mention the power and modulation of the Tracer's Shimano XTR ICE Trail brakes, which required very little effort to control the bike while we were bashing it around the local hills. The Tracer was able to maintain a stable ride height while descending hard with the brakes on, and we were impressed with how much grip the rear tire had on the mostly slick surfaces in drought-ridden California. Without a doubt, the Tracer's VPP rear suspension plays a leading role there and a welcome one, as the bike was a lot easier to control with one finger on the levers and both wheels turning down the steeps.

TRACER
  Pushing the Tracer deep into its suspension travel did not slow it down much, where previous VPP designs tended to feel notchy.


Technical Performance

With its $10,234 asking price, it should come as no surprise that the Factory Tracer 275 C's spec chart appears more like a Pinkbike Christmas wish-list. To be honest, it is – and after riding the Intense for nearly two months, there isn't anything that left us wanting beyond a slightly wider handlebar. No surprise there, Intense has focused on the aggressive trailbike niche since its inception.

Enve AM Carbon wheels: Good – super strong and still lightweight. They accelerate like XC-trail wheels and we could run them hard into the rocks without the slightest worry. The spoke tension is even and they still run true. Bad – once you ride them, no other wheel will do.

Reverb Stealth dropper post: YES.

Renthal Fatbar Lite: Good – great feel without the harshness that some carbon bars have. It pairs well with the Renthal Duo stem for good looks and positive control. Bad – for those who love Renthal, many wish for a wider-than-740-millimeter option in carbon – a lament voiced by two out of three reviewers.

SRAM XX1 drivetrain: Perfect for this bike. Its positive shifting and single lever worked in harmony with the fast change-ups that are the hallmarks of the all-mountain arena. Bad – the occasional double shifting caused by the shifter's sensitive release lever when bouncing over rough ground.

Shimano XTR Trail brakes: Good choice by Intense to split the Tracer 275 C's component group to showcase the better aspects of two competing brands.


Pinkbike's Take:

bigquotesThe release of the Tracer 275 Carbon came with the announcement that Intense had restructured its business model to become a comprehensive, global bike brand - one that is dedicated to maintaining its roots as a bike maker owned by and devoted to top riders. The outstanding performance and beautiful lines of the Tracer 275 C sets the stage for a bright new chapter in the storied history of Intense. The Tracer 275 C is one of the most capable and well rounded all-mountain trailbikes we have had the pleasure to review. The only disappointment it has handed us is that we will eventually have to send it home. - RC


Views: 44,167    Faves: 374    Comments: 46


intensecycles.com
Must Read This Week

344 Comments

  • + 143
 ... and now we broke the psychological $9999 barrier too, and start to see some amounts have more than four digits.. I am really worried, looks like we are going to face with more carbon, more fancy technology and more $$$$$ in a few years. I can't imagine a bike which costs $11999 to be used for having fun riding in beloved mountains and feel the freedom when wind passes through my skin. I would better hide it in my stash. Because of this, because of where the bike industry going, some of us will stuck in the past, some of us have to.
  • + 1
 I don't think any consumer likes the increase in price. If you don't like it don't support companies who charge exorbitant prices. That said this is a beautiful bike and if you have the cash and want to support intense buy it. If not look else where.
  • + 59
 It's articles like this, that get me excited to ride my steel hardtail tomorrow. Knowing that I can have an insane amount of fun, on a bike that cost a fraction of this Intense Tracer 275, and knowing that I can afford some Irish Whiskey on St. Paddy's day, instead of putting green food colouring in my water and calling it green beer.
  • + 22
 Dont panic, I just purchased a sub 3k (aussie dollars, we get hosed down here) rig and its soooooooo much FUN. Plus it'll still be reasonably competitive on race day. As they say its the rider not the bike. Nothing better than yelling 'track' at peeps on 10k rigs...
  • + 1
 what bike @Istanners?
  • + 25
 I have an idea, and it might sound a bit crazy, but hear me out. How about, you don't buy this bike? Perhaps find something more in your price range. By the sounds of your comment it's not about the bike it's about the ride, so you will be absolutely fine on a $500 hardtail.
  • + 23
 Lovely looking bike had my attention till I read the press fit bb bit.
  • + 3
 yeah minty1, I'm a huge Intense fan, ride a 6.6 and it still goes like the clappers, been thinking of a new Intense carbon frame for the future, but that press fit BB, don't dig it, it's not home bike mech friendly, keeps popping up in my head
  • + 8
 What fancy technology? Carbon and bigger wheels ain't exactly cutting edge new technology.
  • + 30
 My dad just bought the most expensive motocross bike on the market, and it was less than this Tracer. That's absolutely ridiculous. There is so much more technology and expense in that motorcycle than there is in the Intense.
  • + 13
 I so agree Apostt. Wouldn't it be nice if we were all so rich that we could afford 10k+ on a bike which could be ridden so hard.... but wait, do these bikes really have to cost 10k+?? All arguments about engineering, manufacturing, and complexity are rendered mute and moot when you consider that motorcycles are sold at this price point. This new generation of pricing has to be the most blatant expression of price gauging I've ever seen and people defending it?

I can imagine editors joy in having the opportunity to test these rigs but come on, is this really what the general reader is buying? I'd love to see editors refuse to ride these bikes and request the 3-5k bikes (which are still stupid expensive) just to be offer the majority of readers a little more realistic review.
  • + 12
 Ferrari of bikes for sure. can't afford it? don't complain. it's not for everyone
  • + 4
 I wouldn't say 6k is too much to ask. It's the same price as a complete m9
  • + 3
 eh how many Brands of car produce car up to 500 grand and more and a lot of people buy any way.
  • + 28
 What technology does a motorcross bike have that hasn't been around for twenty years either in cars or road bikes? Genuine ? Not taking the piss. What are the production runs like? How huge is the company that makes it? Where is it made? How much does it weigh? How much does it cost to maintain? Where can you ride it? How in tune with nature are you when you ride it? Is this a motor cross website? Do you go on surfer websites and tell them they should buy boats instead? Do these surfers then tell you they don't care and that you obviously don't get it?
  • + 0
 whats the difference between this and the carbine 275...
  • + 5
 I'm just wondering why the article seemed so... gushy? It is like, this bike is the be all and end all of bikes, the way the article is written. I mean, it actually beat the timing of two riders that was previously set on a DH rigs. I don't know...
  • + 3
 I do wish bikes were more reasonable in price, and some are, but it's not fair to compare prices to motorcycles, because the economy of scale for motorcycles is several times that of high end MTBs. Basically, they get price breaks because their sport is so much bigger.
  • + 12
 I'm so excited...cheering for Intense's home-run, and, frankly for the industry as a whole. Where would we be today without these break-through bikes of yesterday? tup
  • + 1
 Agreed....just because people pay the Bronson 10k price doesnt mean this bike is worth that.
  • + 5
 Its just a Write up, expensive as it is, we will still buy what WE think is right....what WE thinks is best and what WE can afford. Im saving my cash on brake pads and tyres since im planning to ride my 26" to hell and high waters
  • + 16
 Haha the amount ppl whine on here. First of thanks PB for showing this awesome bike, second, I don't watch Top Gear hoping they show off a new Honda accord, let me see the Aston Martins, Ferraris, Lamborghinis etc
  • + 11
 For f*ck's sake, if you're bitching about how you can't afford this bike, but want it so bad, buy the $6000 version, it's got a sick build kit, XT, Fox, and stan's. Yes, $6000 isn't cheap either, but it's a high end carbon bike with a great build kit on it. If you want something cheaper, buy a norco range, I'm pretty sure you can get them for under $3000
  • + 2
 This excites me. In 10 years the cost of carbon will be down because of manufacturing processes and the 3D printing will make titanium parts as cheap as aluminum stuff. High end forks will use grapheme coatings And while high end stuff will cost even more, but low end stuff will be as good as current state of the art. Good things are happening in manufacturing right now. I know it sounds crazy, but Walmart bikes often have threadless headsets and 3 piece square taper bb like high end bikes of 15 years ago.
  • + 4
 10 years?!?! They've been making carbon bikes for the better part of the last 25yrs, and making them in China (where the labor is much cheaper), for the last 12yrs. The process hasn't really changed that much over the last 10yrs. They will always jack us just because its made from carbon, citing whatever acronym for the process they're using (that isn't that different from the process everyone else is using). And titanium will never be as cheap as aluminum because it is inherently more difficult to extract it from the raw ore.
  • + 4
 "we broke the psychological $9999 barrier too, and start to see some amounts have more than four digits."

Scott already did this with the Spark Ltd back in 2009.. in the region of 12k
  • + 9
 The more $$ you spend on a bike, the more you have to ride it to get a return on your investment. Just another reason to ride more haha! At least thats what I tell myself everytime I blow more money!
  • + 2
 The prices of carbon mountain bikes are high because until recently, the demand is low for carbon mtb frames. All because most mountain bikers are distrustful of carbon frames. See the road bike market? They embraced carbon frames and that has made carbon frames available at lower price brackets. Just like hydraulic disc brakes are stupid expensive for road bikes now but we can get one for mountain bikes with good quality yet reasonably cheap.
  • + 11
 I have some bad news, bro. You are not the target market for this bike, so bitching about the price doesn't mean anything to the folks over at Intense.

See: www.pinkbike.com/news/opinion-why-the-mountain-bike-industry-isnt-going-to-listen-to-you-2014.html
  • + 4
 My mistake is that I test rode expensive bikes... and they got me to feel like I wanted to re-experience that. My current go-to bike suddenly felt inadequate. I've tried to upgrade it when I found sales, and enjoyed the novelty factor of each upgrade, but it doesn't seem to have an overall balanced feel, where the performance in the front doesn't quite match the rear like it did when it was stock. I've had to adapt to each change, requiring some tweaking of the component setup and my riding style to smooth out the ride. Buying new gets you exactly what you want, without the hassle of selling used parts and scouring for deals, so you can spend more time riding and enjoying new things. If I were a reviewer, I'd have fun for the novelty factor of trying something new alone, but it would also be interesting to keep refining my senses to try and notice all the little nuances.
  • + 1
 Sorry. $10,234. And the bars and stem arn't carbon. Not to be a weight weeny or anything, but for that price for any components not to be the most expensive ever produced is ridiculous.
  • + 19
 The comprehension skills of today's readers are in steady decline...

The frame and shock - $3199
Expert model - $5999
Pro model - $6599
Top end ENVE/XX1 model - $9999

If it's too expensive don't buy it, or learn how to work and save your money. Plenty of cheaper bike options available. If your not having fun with your current setup then perhaps you need to re-evaluate why you mountain bike. Stop being so sensitive and get rid of your sense of entitlement as if every company needs to work according to your budget.
  • + 4
 Globalization is a biatch! Evolve or Die! Intense chose the latter one. Who in the right mind can spend over $10g on a mountain bike? Even if I made over $100g a year I couldn't justify paying this amount of money for a bike. Sure its a nice bike but the competition is heating up. This year's Norco line has far better deals on carbon bikes. Everyone is going overseas and it doesn't mean that quality control is bad over there. It is company's responsibility to oversee the production process but they can hire someone to do it in Taiwan.
  • - 3
 lol you are comparing Intense to Norco. poster requires Marketing 101, quickly
  • - 1
 Can we have a review on this bike without ENVE WHEELS?
  • + 2
 Luckily there will always be companies like canyon and yt industries making the same amount of money by selling bikes direst, so the consumer gets them cheaper. Whilst the price may increase, they will still be bargain bikes. Especially for yt, now having zinks feedback. I'm not sure if they have a dh team and an enduro team but it's likely that we will see more and more yt bikes at international events.
  • + 6
 Omfg, take it easy, who cares what's the recommended retail price? In a year you'll find it on eBay for half of the original price.
Do you think I paid $2200 for my Rocky Mountain Slayer frame? Or $1000 for my Fox Talas RC2 fork? If I add the retail prices of those two components, I'll get the price I paid for my whole bike (equipped with full XO groupset and Crossmax wheels).
  • + 3
 man i was hoping we would see the end of mountain bike action mag style reviews. every bike reviewed is the best and a trail slayer. corners on rails, etc.. blah blah blah. 10 grand. what a joke. i can go buy a sweet ktm for less and ride it on the road and trails. there is zero justification for a mtb that costs that much.
  • + 5
 I haven't any problem with this price if you can prove me that it ain't the price of hype but of high technology and innovation.
Give me Intense and SRAM margins, and I will told you if this,bike really worth its price. You can have a custom titanium, american handmade bike for the same price, with very limited series of mastercrafted components for the same price.
For information, productions costs for a trek remedy alloy frame + shock are no more than 300 bucks...
Just think to that before casting your money by the windows, and find something that really worth the bucks you want to spend and can bear the test of time.
  • + 4
 gnarbar hit the nail on the head... nobody (to my knowledge at least) gets mad at Ferrari for making expensive cars. They certainly don't say "because this Ferrari is so expensive, I will no longer be able to own a car in the near future." It's about perspective.
  • + 3
 Cars have a much wider array of options than bikes do, however. I can get a reasonably sporty car for between 20,000 to 30,000 new. Ferraris cost (veeeeerry conservatively) 250,000 and up. That's (roughly) 7 times the price. a price tag of $10,324 divided by 7 is $1474. you can barely get a full suspension bike for that. If you start using numbers for top of the line Ferrari's, which would be more comparable to this bike, the equivalent price gets to wal-mart bike territory. Certainly nothing that compares to what kind of car $30,000 will buy you. Now, as I posted above about motos, and holds even more true to the auto industry, is that economies of scale don't match up: the auto industry is one of the largest on the planet. But Ferrari, on the other hand, compares far more closely, due to their in house manufacturing and custom fabrication, they're leveraging the auto industry's advantage far less than say, Toyota. I'm not making a point here, really, just providing some context.
  • + 0
 Anyone else noticed that some manufacturers no loger states the "Standover Height" or "Top Tube Height" on the 27.5 and 29er bike specs data? They must be afraid when people see the height specs they will be turned away. I'm 5-2"...even if i can afford these ferraris of bikes, it just doesn't make sense to me to be on a 27.5 or a 29er, it's just wrong!
  • + 2
 lol at the comparison to a ferrari. when i pay large cash for a ferrari i'm actually getting something more compared to a ford or chev, a hand built super car with a high hp engine and race worthy suspension. compare the carbon norcos to the intense. both carbon frames. both using other companies components and both using the same engine, me. no way a 10000 intense will outride or make me happier than a similar specced norco would at a lower price. there is no more technology on the tracer thanon a norco or any other major brand. both frames made in china. both similar weight. stop sipping the kool aid lol, ferrari of bikes.
  • - 2
 yet you still stubbornly fail to understand marketing or branding

nobody drools over a Norco. they don't get elevated blood pressure, their brain doesn't secrete endorphins, triggering deep primal desires. nobody would "love" to own a Norco. it's just a make-do bike. ok. average. good value for the money. mundane. functional

Streber knows design and he knows the value of the Intense brand. he's savvy. business savvy

and I don't even own one (used to)
  • + 2
 Hi gnarbar. I am nobody. Norco rocks at a good cost. They even send mid range bikes to be reviewed by PB. Intense is made in 'Merica so it is expensive. They use a good linkage, but it is no better than what you find at Santa Cruz, which has a better reputation for business practices, bb's, and reliable bikes. I have seen a few awful reviews on intense bikes in the past because of mistakes they have made. I would love to have an intense, but I'd take a Norco just as fast, especially since for the same price as an intense I can buy a much higher level setup. Heck, for this bike I could buy a top end Range Killer B and throw in an entry level Sight.
  • - 2
 Norco meets your needs and budget. that's marketing. Norco succeeded. no right or wrong, just failing to understand how brands are positioned, and the dark secrets of brand positioning is wrong
  • + 3
 Just because a brand wants to present itself as top shelf, doesn't make it fact, no matter how much they may wish it to be true. Taletotell is absolutely right about Intense having a mixed reputation.
  • + 4
 What branding? Intense does have a mixed bag past I know, I had a brand new out of alignment ss. If people are fooled into thinking the ride of an intense is somehow better than any other quality brand, then you're right I don't get branding. The bikes are over rated and over priced. Steber knows suckers then. And despite how long they've been around and the mystique they have cultivated they still struggle to stay in business. Sant Cruz is way more stable financially than intense. Intense is hand to mouth and always has been. Style over substance. Maybe I do get marketing and branding after all.
  • - 2
 Intense has been way more successful, in fact exponentially so, this past couple years. that's what's driving on their growth plans. not only do you fail to understand marketing or branding, you even fail to comprehend any of the basics of the mountain bike industry. you've never consideted the various options that Mr Steber might have to expand or sell his business, or even the various reasons and motivations why entrepreneurs like him decide at certain points to stay at specific stages of growth through the business cycle. another clueless Pinkbike genius
  • + 0
 Care to substantiate these failures to understand you keep mentioning? You say it but you fail to enlighten us.
I have nothing specific against Intense. I just don't see much in their favor over other companies. They make sick bikes, but that is not unique these days.
As far as branding and business goes, Intense has done a pretty good job coming back from their past mistakes. They even explained what they did wrong publicly. This bike looks sick too, as a high end rig. As far as branding goes, I haven't seen them do any more than (or even as much as) other companies to promote themselves, but that doesn't matter to me. All the major competitors put out high end beasts. That is just normal marketing. We see the high end and buy the low end in hopes of improving it to a higher level. You can hear it every time some hilarious little civic drives by with an exhaust kit.

Truth is everyone is making too much of this.
After $9000 I am surprised anyone cares about price. In that ball park you can either afford it or you can't. If you can't spend $10,000 you probably can't do 9g's either.
  • + 2
 O_o name calling "Pinkbike genius"!
  • + 1
 Epic cry baby action happening here as usual. The price reflects the build, the cost to engineer/manufacture, and economies of scale etc. If I need to explain my words are wasted.
[Reply]
  • + 56
 $10,324 as-tested............... better start selling my organs
  • + 52
 I don't think you're going to have enough organs....
  • + 9
 Hey now, Kiwiplague, dtroyan123 didn't say *which* organ(s) he was going to sell. He might be organimically well endowed.
  • + 10
 I'll give you 20$ for your liver
  • - 3
 Buy a babah frame (sub 400 dollar frames) and build it up, 2k14 models and prices are ridiculous!
  • + 11
 But you can get an XT version for $6K, which is somewhat reasonable.

HAHAHA WHO AM I KIDDING!
  • + 10
 if there is a hot cougar reading this now who is willing to buy this for me I will give my organ away for free
  • + 0
 then get the aluminum version
[Reply]
  • + 41
 Thanks for the review! Despite the fact that everyone here seems to be bitching about your reviewing a 10.000 dollar bike, I definitely enjoyed it. That's what I come here for. I mean, nobody picks up a hot rod magazine to read an article about a Toyota Corolla. THis is the Lambo of MTBs, and I for one think it's SICK!
  • + 6
 Exactly. Sure a WRX/Camaro/Mustang or whatever is a better bang for buck than a Mclaren P1 but I want to read about the Best so I know what I'll buy when I win Lotto and what I'm aiming for by modifying my current steed. When you meet someone on the trail riding one and see where you stand against them you'll see if your $2000 rig is 20 percent as fun or more and feel justified at spending that much against the guy on his used $400 hardtail. Life is too short to not have the best of something once in your life whether it is a steak or a bike.
  • - 3
 But this isnt the lambo of bikes...in 1-2 years you can get these frames for 1500-1200 used. This is all just marketing 'the next big thing to sell'. Its very little improvement over the carbine and you can get those for 1500 used. This is intenses answer to the Bronson and their tweaks to the carbine frame. Not worth 10k.
  • + 2
 Spot on maxlombardy. Do you guys also bitch and whine when car and driver puts ferraris on the cover instead of fords? And some big news for the cry babies... there will be cheaper specs available for this bike! ANNNND, there is even an aluminum version too to save even more money. They just reviewed the best spec, because that stuff is more interesting to look at and has the newest technology, which generally indicates what is coming to the affordable bikes in the near future.
  • + 5
 Glad to finally see this, I love imagining dream bikes like this that I will never own, just like I fantasizing about owning a Lambo one day!
  • + 4
 I was thinking the same thing: THANKS RC FOR THE REVIEW!
  • + 2
 agreed maxlomabrdy - if you enjoy mtb, you enjoy it in all its shapes, sizes, colors, and prices. Even though you and I will never be able to afford a 10k bike, you still enjoy reading reviews on the newest and best (I know best is relative, but still..) bikes available. I certainly enjoy reading reviews on the most technically advanced piece of equipment, regarding what sport it is. If you practice kart racing, would you bitch about F1 since you can't afford even 1 set of tires of it?

on another note: 10k is way above my wallet's capabilities, although a 3-6k bike isn't that far away. You can't expect to be 20 and have 10k as pocket change. You are supposed to work your ass off and make sacrifices, in order to one day (and not so far away) be able to afford a nice specd bike. I'm 24, still studying, paying some of my own bills via my part time job, and still managed to save up for a 4k bike.

Of course every single person is a different case of which I don't know of, I'm just saying don't be so pessimistic and look for ways to work things out.
  • + 0
 Thank you! Finally someone makes sense. And thats not the lambo of mtbs that thing is the megan fox of mtb, Is so freaking sexy.
[Reply]
  • + 20
 For the same price you can buy one YT Capra for all mountain and one YT Tues for DH. And you still have decent money for stay in a bikepark a few weeks.
  • + 1
 Oh yes ! I want to see it tested on PB !
  • + 1
 Capra looks sick. Especially with the BOS suspension build kit. It's nice to see Intense stay in the game. But, there are a few items that will keep me away. 1) Pressfit 2) the overboard decals. Other than that, the bike does looks good. Glad to hear their sales are growing. Can't wait to see if the new Nomad rumors pan out.
[Reply]
  • + 15
 $10,000 is mental, you can get a similar speced bike from the Europeans for around half that price.... Who ever prced it needs to stop smoking the funny stuff!!
  • + 8
 These 10k bike reviews are bs. Of course it's gonna be the best thing ever for 10k. Second, pretty sure if I put 3k wheels on my tired old bike, the reduction in unstrung weight would result in a markedly better ride. And it took them 10k and carbon everything to get to 27lbs? My 6k cheaper aluminum bike came from the factory at that weight. Test the 5-6k bikes that people will actually be buying, since 5-6k is apparently now cheap.
  • + 0
 Except you CAN'T... you think you can... but you're giving up something to do it.... the dealer wholesale on that intense is a bit over $6k.
  • + 7
 Why cry about the price of the Gucci build when the ~$6,500 Pro build is killer? You give up the Enve hoops and the DB Air for Flow EX's and Monarch Plus, and the result is a bike that still straight up rips, and you keep an extra 4k in your pocket. But as far as the bike, the review NAILED it. Easily the best Intense trail bike to date.
  • + 8
 @SlodownU "since 5-6k is apparently now cheap."

This right here. The only thing $10K+ bikes to do is push the ceiling on what the public is willing to accept psychologically as a fair/average price tag for a brand's main lines. In other words, next to a $10K+ bike, that $6K setup all of a sudden looks like a "bargain". If you scroll through some of the comments you can see the effect at work. The amount of people that continue to apologize for the industry and desperately try to find justification for these price points is depressing. I'm sure this comment will get downvoted by the "$10K bikes progress the sport" crowd.
  • + 3
 The thing is... there are people who CAN afford these sorts of bikes... and they don't waste time complaining about the price on a web forum...they go out, buy it, and ride them. The industry doesn't care about a few kids on here complaining things cost too much... and I don't care if the "kid" is forty years old... if you're crying like a spoiled child over the price of something, then you're still a kid in terms of maturity.
  • + 1
 @slowdownu 27.5 lbs is pretty insane for a burly 160mm bike with a CCDB air and dropper... I seriously doubt your $4k aluminum bike has comparable specs/stiffness and weighs the same.
  • - 1
 xcross, my bike is a 2013 5-Spot, XT everything, boost-valve shock in the back.. From the factory $4k on sale, because "26 is dead and dying". Less than 28 pounds when I got it, still under 30 with a LEV and Fox 34. Rode my buddies aluminum Tracer with 1/2" more travel for a month while my bike was being built up and delivered. Even giving away 1/2", its better in every way, probably because the DW suspension is better. I'd find it hard to believe that the carbon version with 0.2" more travel is that much better.
  • + 5
 @deeeight Calm down man, no one is crying. The costs of the sport have sky rocketed over the last several years and everyone should be concerned. We want more people getting into this niche side of the sport and not being priced out.
  • - 1
 The cost of the sport has grown consistently and evenly every year, nothing more. There's been no sky rocket. Except perhaps in idiots on forums who suffer from sticker shock syndrome. Every time a magazine reviews a submitted bike (and magazines only review what is provided... so complaining to them about the price is pointless...they have no choice in the matter) that has a high price tag, there's always a minority who read the review who choose to post to cry about the bike being too expensive. Inevitably someone compares it to the price of a car or motorcycle. In the days of print magazines only, the numbers who'd actually waste the price of a stamp to mail a letter to complain was small, let alone spend time writing one. The internet however and web forums and people who might otherwise do something better with their time get to complain for no cost at all really.
  • - 1
 Also if you think mountain bike prices are up there, you need to look at road bikes for a wakeup call. The top road models from even mid-tier brands have been over 10k for several years now.
  • + 2
 Slo, key phrase on your bike was "onsale" What was the retail? I'd imagine somewhere in the 5500$ range. Just a step below the low end w/ xt everything at 6K$, I guarantee at the end of 2014 you will be able to find the intense low end, on sale at slightly more for a carbon frame. I kinda feel like you're comparing apples and oranges. Plus, intense does sell the carbine w/ a pretty low spec retail at 4K$, or the tracer aluminuim w/ low spec at 3400$. I don't like the prices either, but there is something for everyone for the most part. Oh, and anyone who pays retail is a sucker.
  • + 2
 These are getting to the price of a powder sled (like a RMK) or a street bike....lol
  • + 1
 I'm with you Knife.
People have to stop comparing full retail to last-year-run-out-super-special-online deals. wait 12 months or until the next wheel size appears and watch these go for half the price. I'll bet you could walk into a shop right now and negotiate 10% off that price. Like you said, Apples to Oranges.
  • - 2
 As I said earlier, the dealer wholesale on that bike is in the 6k range... that's a 4k difference from full retail... some dealers might ask for full retail but a lot won't and last I check Intense doesn't enforce a MAP policy (and couldn't in europe anyway).
  • + 1
 Aside from price let's all be honest, that bike is tits. I'll be more than happy to let a bunch of people with 10K laying around buy this bike, as long as it finances more Karver Vids. That I hope we could all agree on.
  • + 1
 @slowdownU .... that is an absurd argument, your bike retailed for $6k just like the more reasonable build for the tracer 275c! And your bike is a couple pounds heavier and probably not as stiff... don't mean to be a jerk your bike is incredible and certainly was a great choice, but it's in the exact same pricing league as the bike you are complaining about. Had your bike been spec'd with Enves, a CCDB air, and dropper those changes alone would have bumped the msrp up to between $9-10k... and that is with an aluminium frame.
  • + 1
 xcross, my bike actually retailed for $5k, around what an equivalent Pivot, Rocky Mtn, etc.would have cost. It was on sale as at the end of the model year. Pretty sure if I put Enves on the bike, stiffness would be indistiguisable from a carbon bike, since wheels play a big role here. Everything else in the spec is pure personal preference. If you want to review the inherent goodness of a bike, review something speced mid-range, that way you are reviewing the more of the performance of the frame and at a spec closer to what most ride, and not the parts. There are enough reviews out there on the parts. This is like reviewing a GSX-R with magnesium wheels, Ohlins suspension, a cast swing arm, and blue-printed motor. Like this is what most people drive off of the showroom floor.
  • + 2
 I would agree that mt bike prices have consistently increased over the years. What really blows my mind is that the quality of the product no longer matches the value of the price tag.
  • + 5
 C-dale: I'm not sure what I expect from a 10k bike. Perhaps it should cook me breakfast after a good mornings ride (pun intended!).
The high end of the market may be getting further and further away as companies produce these 'Ferrari' models. But look at the Carolla's that we're all buying, they are brilliant! I just test rode a $2k bike that was better than my three year old 5k bike. The value and performance in lower end models is crazy at the moment. A Deore group doesn't give much away to an XT one. Aluminium frames with 160mm of travel pedal well, weigh less than thirty pounds and are priced to sell. The existence of a $10,000 dollar carbon model doesn't make the alloy version any slower.
[Reply]
  • + 13
 'Enve' this, 'carbon' that', 'XX1' etc, 'Intense' blah blah blah... I used to love the days a top spec bike was actually attainable! I'll be sticking with Mavic rims and an Xt groupset with some 'shitty' aluminium frame and crappy 26" wheels thanks - I ride to have fun, 26" wheels are more fun and not spending a f@ckin obscene amount of money on 2 wheels makes life more fun...!!!
  • + 11
 Save even more and buy SLX! I find it to be very good group, especially the cranks.
  • + 11
 Mmmm, cause it certainly looks like Kovarik wasn't having fun on his 650b wheels...
  • - 2
 @ bolmaing - I said 'more' fun, any bike is still fun! If you're going to try and be sarcastic, learn to read all of a sentence first! Misconstruing someone simply renders your point obsolete!
  • + 2
 You say that as if that is the only version available. It's the factory version, i.e. The same build their factory racers will be using(depending on their riders other sponsors) factory rides have always been exorbitant. They are just saving the consumer a little bit of money by putting it all together for them. I won't ever be buying a "factory version" but I'm not mad that one exist.
  • + 10
 too many baby tears about pricing
  • + 2
 I like top gear because they review high end cars. I know I can get a reliable corolla for cheap, but that doesn't mean I hate on the lotus evora. Plus this tech will cost half this much in 5 years. Norco has already shown that carbon can be cheaper.
  • + 4
 Stop all the Bi#chin people. If you want one, get a real job and make it happen. If you don't one, shut up and enjoy the eye-candy.
  • + 1
 Mate. Talking about obsolete points. At what point in time was a top spec bike attainable? Your sarcastic comment about 'shitty' aluminium frames and crappy 26" wheels, then going on to say "I ride to have fun, 26" wheels are more fun", certainly sounds like having fun on any bike other than a 26" wheeled one is impossible. Thank you for clearing up this confusion by saying any bike is still fun.
[Reply]
  • + 14
 I want to see Kovarik on one at Pietermaritzburg
  • + 3
 Ja, by the sound of RC's ra ra review, it could win anything even ridden by an off the these days off the pace Kovaric.
  • + 2
 Jeez, you don't call yourself headshot for nothing....."off the pace Kovaric"....Kapowwww spplaatt.
  • + 1
 Lol, Kovaric is a brilliant rider for sure, but at his last and only WC race in 2013, he didn't qualify did he?
  • + 1
 hey headshot you should give it a go with a pinched nerve in your back ya douche. And for future, before you judge or speculate, use your brain to maybe ask a few questions.
  • + 2
 Foot Out Flat Out. As fast as in his prime, perhaps not, but still one of the greatest shredders of all time. No one goes around corners like the Karver. www.pinkbike.com/video/354399
  • + 2
 Headshot at least spell his name right, it's kovarik not kovaric. Greatest winning margin in wc history the guy is a pinner.
  • + 1
 I am a huge fan of Kovarik. I did not speculate I simply pointed out he's not WC material at the moment. What is a douche? We don't use that word around here - is it like maybe a compliment? If so, thanks clarco!
[Reply]
  • + 9
 If you are angry about the price, it is only because you want to call one your own, and you want it now. That is understandable though.
These type of "Dream Bike" reviews are actually what I look forward to the most, because they are a sign of things to come. These are the bikes that have everyone else scrambling to find a way to either match, or one-up the performance, and this is a driving force in progression.
It's like when someone pushes the envelope of what is possible on a bike. Did you get Pissed when Zink flipped the sender, or when Kelly flipped the canyon gap? Will you ever be able to achieve that? Probably not. Those riders are paving the way for future progression, the same way these manufacturers are paving the way for the next generations of bikes.
If you go buy a $2,500 bike of today, it would probably eat alive a $5000 bike from 5 years ago. We just always want to be at the front of the trend and technology wave, but if you truly love just getting out there and riding, you should be stoked that better and better bikes are getting built and have the performance to prove it.
We should be far more worried if companies stop developing "Dream Bikes", because as soon as progression comes to a halt, things go the way of the dinosaur.
  • + 0
 Super bikes are only as good as we make ourselves believe they are. It's your life, believe in what you want, do not convert strangers. Life is too short to care about such things, kill Miley Cyrus, kill her!
[Reply]
  • + 7
 Who ever spends $10k on a bike is a absolute muppet. Think what you could do with that much money- I'd rather buy a $4,000 (and still very nice) bike and go to Whistler for a whole season.
  • - 1
 jealous, much?

too many bitter kids on PB

maybe MTB really is just for little kids/teens
  • + 5
 If you're going to try and be a clever dick then at least get it right. I wouldn't be jealous, I would be envious. My actual point is not about the bike being too expensive - it's about people who go and spend $10k on a bike believing it will make them ride better. Can't believe I've been called a bitter kid by some jumped up 13year old scrotum. Easy to spend thousands of dollars on bikes when it's money from your Moms purse.
  • + 1
 not a little kid, not jealous, just not loaded. not hatin on the centerfold but where's the girlnextdoor?
  • - 5
 gavlaa another clueless kid from the flatlands of the Fens, global epicentre of mountain biking
  • + 1
 @gnarbar, I understand what you are saying. But there's many people who always buy top bike models (bike fans got to have them if they can afford them) but still complain about the price afterwards. A mid level model bike that's built overseas costs approx $5g's these days and that's ridiculous. Passionate fans of the sport should all be able to ride decent technology bikes without breaking the bank. This is becoming some kinda elitist cash cow industry and it will "water down the talent level" of the sport catering to the rich. At least they should make some decent entry level bikes that kids working at fast food can afford. The Ferrari of trail bikes should be half the price of that $10G maker. I can't see where all the money is going other than somebody's fat pocket. These bikes are not made in a computer chip factory.
  • - 3
 i think it's a great bike but it would be better if it was a 29er
  • + 1
 Unless he has had a scrotum transplant, gnarbar's scrotum is far older than the thirteen years suggested by gavlaa/gnarbar's profile. Perhaps if we didn't all spend so much money on cosmetic surgery on our testes, >$10k for a bicycle would be more attainable.
  • + 2
 @Gnarbar - clueless? Pot calling the kettle black right there. I do live in a pretty flat area though hence my original comment of spending the money on a season in Whistler. Learn to read dickhead!
@Mr Brett - I'm 33 and my scrotum has never looked a day younger than 100!!
[Reply]
  • + 6
 This bike is a work of art! Beautiful!

For those complaining about the $10K price tag on the bike tested, the MSRP on the frame is $3200. That's pretty competitive (Specialized's carbon Enduro frame is going for $4K, Santa Cruz's Bronson is going for $2,900). You could probably pick up that frame and build a pretty solid bike for around -- or even slightly under -- 5K. That's not cheap either, but bikes have cost that much for some time now. It's not that big of a shock.
[Reply]
  • + 6
 Pinkbike, don't you fellas have a copy editor SOMEWHERE--ANYWHERE? The syntax, grammar, and technical detail accuracy in this write up are abominable. Usually I count on your site being one of the more well-spoken on the net, but not this time. That quibble aside, looks like a great bike! I love my M9 and have been wishing for an intense trail bike from Intense. I'm a little bummed they kept the too-short (IMO) top tube from the Carbine 275, but that's a preference as much as it might be a fit issue.
  • + 2
 Agreed were you running 2.3 or 2.4 in tires? I'm curious as I'm in the market for a new back tire and dont know If I should go 2.3 or 2.4. I was running 2.5s but if I can run a 2.3 the way you guys were writing about them by all means...
  • + 8
 No proofer this time. The reality is that, no matter how many times a writer goes over his own work, he or she will miss a few obvious errors. When I do miss something, though, I can be sure that the PB English scholars will catch it. ^^^ Fixed, rclugnut, THX
  • + 2
 Since we're picking nits, that first FSR Tracer would have been welded up in Elsinore, no?
[Reply]
  • + 5
 Intense really played this one well. Even if you get a turd review, they won this marketing campaign. Invite the media down in advance, wine and dine them, swear them to secrecy, and let them fight to be the first review article to drop on the release date! I have a very hard time believing that we will ever see a completely unbiased review in mountain biking again. That ship has sailed. It’s an awesome looking bike though;-)
[Reply]
  • + 5
 I would be less annoyed with and may actually take the time to read such articles if I could read about how a lower priced spec fared as well. That is to say, review a bike line, the entry or lower cost model and the high end version. Give me an idea of how the affordable version rides, then tell me about all the great things I could never rationalize buying with the top end spec.

On a related note, this article plus the pathetic local bike shop article from a few days ago disappoints me. I really really wish we could get more tech articles (NOT the sponsored crap like the enduro suspension setup nonsense from last week), reviews of bike lines (e.g. review the session line, not only the session 9.9) and stop spamming me with support local bike shop crap. One of my local shops is ok, and I purchase there, but I do also purchase online because I am a consumer with a fixed budget, mortgage, bills and common sense. Don't tell me I need to pay MSRP because that's the price. Everyone know there is a big markup in this industry and I am ok with paying more some times to support local, but not 40% more just to wait 3 weeks to have it arrive. Then month more for servicing/warranty...


Sorry for the "local" rant but I am tired of being bombarded by this crap. With that said... off to another website.
  • + 0
 Seems like everyone is posting this review today. My apologies Pinkbike.
[Reply]
  • + 4
 Hey guys, it seems like everyone is getting caught up on the 10k price tag for our factory build bike. The msrp reflects the top of the line build kit we could offer. and well we know that its not for everyone there are people out there that this build is for. its just another offering for an already great frame, just like you can spend $100.00 on an Iphone or $850.00 on it.Or you could spend 22k on a base model mustang or 60k on the top of the line.

Because we know that the factory build is not for everyone we offer 2 more builds for the Tracer 275C as well . We also have a pro build for $6,599.00 and an expert build for $5,999.00
If anyone of those 3 are still a little high for some people we offer the carbine 275 with a foundation kit for $3,999.00.
And if carbon is not for you but you still want a 275 bike our Tracer 275 alloy model comes with 3 different kits as well. Pro $6,049.00, expert $5,649.00 and foundation $3,399.00. And FYI all of our aluminum frames are still hand made here in southern California and that's something that we take great pride in being able to do still.
[Reply]
  • + 4
 Still made in China ,still nothing REALLY new .Im not a China made hater but intense used to have that US handmade magic. Sorry to say it but no real ferrari is made in China or no real harley is made in China either.Still there are plenty China made bikes that i like a lot but they miss that handcrafted ''magic''. I really dont like where intense is going and not for the price tag.Intense bikes were always pricey i just dont like the fact that intense tends to follow the hype.Its the 5th intense bike i bought (carbine btw) and i thing the last one.Sorry Jeff but i prefer your hardcore handmade frames.Who gives a F@&*k about the new CEO anyways.
[Reply]
  • + 3
 I can afford this bike but as a responsible buyer will buy something for around $4000 beecause athough its great and is worth every penny, I would only spend that if I earned it through winnings in competitions as that is what it is for. As A winner It would be supplied or it would be a tax write off for my earnings, A better rider than me deserves it,
[Reply]
  • + 6
 Its 10k yo..... damn. fuckit ill spend a bit more and buy a decommissioned Russian fighter jet......
[Reply]
  • + 3
 For over 10 g's the review should be:: best f..ing bike ever made, there will never be a bike that comes close to how this handles and it will automatically turn you into a pro rider.. Anything less than that then its a failure for that much money.
[Reply]
  • + 5
 If bikes costing over $10K isn't one of the signs of the apocalypse, surely a Kovarik video set to froofy electronic music is.....
[Reply]
  • + 3
 I've been riding top line bikes for about 13 years now, before that I rode the "ordinary" Treks. My first top line was a Rocky Mountain TSRX-50 which I got for $2800, friends thought I was crazy to spend so much on a bike, even though it had tons of technology built into it.
My latest bike is a Yeti SB66 Alloy frame. The Yeti was $4000, I did not have the funds for the Carbon frame.
When Santacruz came out with the Solo and Bronson is when I stopped dreaming of a top line mountain bike as an option, they all now fall into the category of "bike porn" something to see online but never really have.
I am afraid my Yeti is my last "every other year bike", I now have to buy a bike every five years, hopefully it does not break.
Welcome to the "bike porn" era, where good bikes are like formula 1 cars.

Now there is no real justification for these prices. Bike companies used to make a profit margin of 12% in 2003 (I did some work related) and since then just got more efficient, meaning their margins are way higher. tho their defense they spend more on promotions and advertising, but not even close to reducing margin.

Looking into cost of goods: the manufacturers claim the technology needs to be paid for and that sophisticated manufacturing process is costly. well here is the news flash: in 2003 the available components on my Rocky Mountain were top tech and manufacturing process just got better since, not the other way around.
Today we have automation at an arms length and 5 axis machine tools more available at lower costs, not to even mention, most manufacturers have their frames and components built in Asia (my Yeti frame).
  • + 0
 So to all you guys who ride an $11000 bike (and probably crash a porsche every other weekend), make sure you wear your Oxford Cardigan to the tracks, you are not in my gang.
  • + 2
 12% is an abysmal profit margin. You can't blame them for wanting to do better than that.
  • + 1
 Additionally, intense is located in ca., some of the highest taxes in the union. At least the employer mandate keeps getn delayed, ..after elections.
  • + 2
 Not even kidding, last time I had a fancy fancy "superbike" it was a 2012 S-Works Stumpy and sold it to a dude with a Porsche Cayman with a roof rack to hold his bike. He took the Porsche to the track for fun. I don't know what kind of cardigans he has, but I do know I now have a steel hardtail.
  • + 1
 And just to be fair with myself, with the manufacturers and with the readers here, it is not only the bike manufacturers I blame here, it is also the parts and component manufacturers who are, in some cases monopolizing specific areas. Take gears for instance, there is a duopole between SRAM and Shimano, prices are very similar and performance is very similar. Same thing goes to shocks, the duopole between Rock Shock and Fox. These component manufacturers are taking way more than they should, we as consumers should seek good products from new manufacturers in order to support competition. A good example is the tire industry with multiple manufacturers, you don't see a tire going for $800, they are within the $35-$80 and you can find very good performers at the lower range.

I am only wondering if there is one more entity to blame in this price frenzy, us, the consumer for sheepishly drinking the coolaid and paying the asked price.
Don't get me wrong, the bikes and components are great and I think we are at the best time ever for bike technology, it is just the price I am mad about.
  • + 1
 I always have to combat these types of statements because I honestly feel they are just so false. Yes, we like bikes. But I don't think anyone is drinking kool aid. The moderately priced stuff is out there and it performs. The Deore, SLX, Zee, components come to mind and the performance is light years ahead of top tier offerings of years ago. Secondly, this will never be like motorcycles or like cars, we are a small segment and these companies do a lot considering the sales figures. Third, there are lots of players in the suspension market, pay attention! Besides it's never been just two. Yes, I think certain parts can be pricey, but the reality is there is a law of diminishing returns. There are plenty of options out there for everybody. Let's just go ride!
  • + 1
 For the tire vs. fork pricing argument... Tires cost a solid $50-100, forks cost a solid $500-1,000 (and more in both cases for the super high end). Have you seen the inside of a fork? It is easily 10x more complex than any tire and everything has much narrower tolerances. If the tread on my tire is off a couple millimeters no big deal I won't even notice, if a valve in my fork is machined 1mm off my fork doesn't work at all.

I agree, thought, that $10k is a gnarly price tag for a bicycle. The good news is that the mid-range bikes these days that are $4-6k are still leaps and bounds better than the top of the line bikes from 5 years ago that were in that same price range. So that price range has improved in quality, if that makes sense.
[Reply]
  • + 3
 Arrrrhhhh bloody carbon fibre everehere!! Oh sorry I forgot its the ultimate materiel to make a bike out of...absolutely nothing is better!! Seriously save your money, buy a decent 'metal' bike and use the change to take yourself on an amazing bike holiday instead! I bet you won't regret it!
[Reply]
  • + 3
 so thats review released simultaneously on PB, NSMB, Bikeradar, Enduro bike mag etc etc all the top spec models with the db air upgrade, I can see why Intense want their bikes reviewed with the best possible components (look how the Troy got slated when sent out with xc parts) but It'd be nice for one reviewer to say- no we'll just have your base model thanks as it represents what by far the largest amount of our readers can actually afford.
[Reply]
  • + 2
 Did price point time their ad, or did PB and pricepoint conspire to get this posted together.........grain of salt.

www.pricepoint.com/Brand/Intense-Cycles-USA

emailed within minutes of this being posted on pinkbike.
  • + 1
 Am I confused or this webpage says $5000 ?
[Reply]
  • + 2
 These prices are disgustingly overly gouging - A NEW 2014 Moto -x bike cost less! Lets see - must be that their suspension blows! Their beefier frames must crack! Brakes must suck too! Oh and lets not mention their motor - because it must be less expensive to make all those parts and assemble them. Sure, but Mtn bikes have carbon a plenty - you have to be a sucker (rich or foolish sucker at that) to pay that for a mountain bike - want to have fun and go fast - ride, just ride.
  • + 2
 I fully expected a river of tears at the bottom of this article. I have to say though I don't think it's "gouging". Let's start out with the fact that the wheels alone add 2k to the price over a top shelf aluminum option. If you look at the rest of the bike you have top of the line everything. Start adding up what those parts cost. It's easier when you buy bits and bobs here and there and never really bother to add up what you spent. The lower spec versions look great too and offer some great parts. When people say stuff like "foolish sucker" it makes them sound bitter and jealous... because if I had an extra 10k ... and I certainly don't.......but if I did ... I'd likely spend it on a mountain bike.
  • + 8
 The moto bike argument has been shot down hundreds of times. This bike, while insanely expensive, is just a suspensions tune away from be the EXACT bike that pros race. A moto bike that you can buy for $8-10k is what... $50k away from being a factory ride? So complain all you want, you can buy the aluminum tracer 27.5 with the cheapest specs for a much more affordable price and that will be comparable to buying a stock 450 mx bike from the dealership.
  • + 2
 All these apples to oranges comparisons to motocross are annoying. The companies that make motorcycles have their own competition And manufacturing base. Also their profit margins might be smaller But they make it up in financing and swag sales. Bike companies compete On price. They aren't gouging.
  • + 2
 They are also mostly part of much larger "mother" companies, which helps to float them through r&d. The units they will sell also dwarfs mtb by a large margin.
[Reply]
  • + 4
 read a different review, the handling sucks, poor peddling and front and rear suspension not matching up, looks like a waste of good old cheese.
  • + 0
 The link please.....
[Reply]
  • + 2
 I drank the ENVE kool-aid as well and have learned they are not the holy grail PB thinks they are. On my 1st set, I had a VERY reputable builder (on both PB and MTBR) build me a set of ENVE AM wheels. Structurally they held up well but the pillar nipples were snapping off one by one over time. I was told that the Stan's was probably negatively effecting the aluminum nipples? Whatever, I had a local mechanic re-build them with brass nipples and I had no further issues.

Fast forward about (6) months and I bought a Santa Cruz TB2 with ENVE XC's on it. I've had the bike for 7-8 months and have damaged BOTH wheels by hitting rocks at obviously, the only angle possible to damage them if you believe the hype. On my rear wheel, it appears I hit the lip of the rim wall which caused a 1/2" crack in the sidewall, causing all the air to leak out. I will admit that I ran it with a tube for a few weeks to get by and had no further issues but nobody buys ENVE's to run a tube. When I talked to ENVE about a warranty claim, I was screwed because I never "registered" the wheel set. As I was cleaning up my bike to put a new wheel set on, I realized the carbon layers on my FRONT wheel were peeling away and bubbling as well. So that's (2) ENVE wheels, both only 8 months old that couldn't take the abuse they brag about.

Built up a new Mach 6 and guess what, I moved on to NOX Composites wheels. $1100 cheaper than ENVE's and a better warranty and no need to "register" my wheels to make a claim.
[Reply]
  • + 2
 Yes the top spec bike is obscenely priced. I am wondering when they will be offering 5 year payment plans to pay for these things. Regardless, you can still get an XT spec'd Tracer C for under 6K (if you pay cash I am sure you can work a few hundred off that price) If you must have a carbon frame that seems like the entry point, at least with 27.5 bikes. Seems like carbon 29'rs are a bit cheaper now that mid size wheels are all the rage.
  • + 6
 Agreed, can always build from the frame up too. Note that Kovarik is driving the top model and isn't wearing gloves.... no money left over!
[Reply]
  • + 5
 The Tracer will always be my dream bike but until I win the lottery I'll rip it up on my old school Stinky from -02
[Reply]
  • + 2
 All this talk about the new Intense is awesome, but I noticed that all the trails I ride on a daily basis are getting a lot of attention here on Pink Bike. First It was Rocky Mountain on Mongo, now its Intense on Mojo and Mojo X. I would like to thank Richard Cunningham for the exposure given to this small San Diego east county area, I hope to see a lot more riders on the trail helping to maintain whats been been there for so long in my backyard. Love the new Intense!!
[Reply]
  • + 2
 I really do not understand what this bul***t is all about. Why nobody start crying when they see the prices for BMW M3 or Audi R8??? Oh my got its so much more expensive then Ford Focus !!!! I cant take it!!! Save money and buy one when You have mileage crisis. Or go to Decathlon and get 200 EURO bike
There are premium products and there are budget products. And there are huge variations in between.
[Reply]
  • + 2
 Press fit BB is the first issue, although last iteration seem to provide no creek BUT require a specific tool (at our cost, which sucks cause intense saved on constructions costs "thanks" to this "solution"still the bike is by far not cheap).
The splendid boss for a front derailleur should be removable. Is it? It doesn't seem like unfortunately and that sucks cause it REALLY looks ugly and you don't want that on a beautiful bike that costed you 2 salaries (or more).
Seat angle is not so great for tall guys, despite the explanation saying it gives us space. 74° is the usual lie (that's when your saddle is low). With the saddle in high position riders over 6'1 or so will surely have an actual angle of 72° it's acceptable, but why smaller people would have an advantage over me considering I'll pay the same price as them? That's surely what annoys me most with 27.5, lots of these bikes don't have a straight from the BB seat tube but feature a more or less prominent off set making seat angle too flat for tall riders. Long steep climbs any one? Is any bike designer actually tall??
[Reply]
  • + 3
 Thank you for the review RC. Beautiful bike! Congratulations to Jeff Steber and the team at Intense - you have created a beautiful mountain bike for all-mountain and enduro! This bike is definitely on my short list.
[Reply]
  • + 1
 Well after riding this bike in large before knowing the geo #'s, it felt cramped as did the al 275.
And there it is, 17.1? Reach and less than 24.5 top tube.
Awsesome bike otherwise! I'm 6'1.5", without a huge wingspan

Hope the xl isn't too big now, haha.
  • + 1
 no xl frame offered by Intense. Apparently their advice is a Large will fit. How can somebody in the xl frame range for years now suddenly be told get a large as the geometry makes it fit? Santa Cruz make an XL Bronson for a reason. I'll continue riding my Tracer VP XL until it breaks.
  • + 1
 August..ish
[Reply]
  • + 1
 I don't really have an issue with the price per se. What bugs me about this bike is that you have to pay extra for the DB air on a 10k bike. And they went penny pinching with the press fit BB. If you're going to make a 10k bike, don't cheap out on key parts like suspension and drivetrain.
  • + 0
 Totally agree. My previous FS bike had a press fit bb and it required a visit to the shop to have them source and install parts. Now all my bikes have threaded bb and this will be a requirement on my next bike. Not a carbon fan
  • + 4
 Press fit BBs are a better solution for carbon frames because they eliminate the need for a bonded metal insert and because the frame can now be molded to near exact tolerances. We are looking at the end of threaded BBs on new, enthusiast-level bikes within three years, as carbon dictates the nature of elite product and aluminum frame makers conform to evolutionary progression. Sorry mates, that's pretty much how it's headed.
  • + 1
 RC, try telling that to Santa Cruz. I'm not against PF BBs but SC sure knows how to do threaded BBs the right way on their carbon frames!
[Reply]
  • + 4
 Do you guys want to see Kate Upton in a bikini or your fat old lady? Same principle. The appeal sells.
[Reply]
  • + 1
 The Pike/Monarch/XT-equipped version is US$6k, which is in the ballpark of other comparable bikes from Specialized or Santa Cruz so chill out everyone.
If you go the DBA/carbon wheel route those brands' offerings are in the $9k+ range too.
[Reply]
  • + 1
 Every magazine review will no doubt wish to judge this bike not just on it's performance but whether it offers value for money of some sort i.e. is it worth it? Usually, when new breakthrough technology is released into the market the early adopters pay a premium in order to have the latest and greatest product money can buy. Now, from what I can see in the reviews of current top end bikes, the Tracer does not offer anything new or ground breaking. I'm not saying it's not amazing but I do question how Intense can sell a bike for $10000 when YT can offer what is being called a "game changer" carbon framed bike in the Cupra for @$5500 (sorry, using UK RRP's with dollar conversion). Every boutique bike brand must now be extremely worried about YT and Canyon, or the possibility of a US based direct sales manufacturer coming to market......
[Reply]
  • + 1
 If this was the lesser spec 5200 build, I bet people wouldn't be complaining, if I was sending a demo bike out I'm sure I'd be sending the top spec one no matter what the rrp, I wouldn't want the tester to be dismayed by the feel of lesser components I'd want them to be blown away by the bike! Looks like it worked! Compare this to the new nomad, £2799 frame only, intense is 100 more at £2899, not a mega price to pay on top if you want the intense . Whys the price high on the complete builds from intense? , simple, in the uk it's the import tax as the build kits come from the us, plus intense don't buy as many components as the bigger brands to get lower costs to pass on to the consumer as well as it hits a smaller company harder developing these bikes. you won't see this frame discounted in a year, intense don't have model years only current models, not like mass produced brands who have the next 2 - 3 years models already on cad.
[Reply]
  • + 1
 With slight changes meaning in a year you lose a fortune in depreciation, As the prices come down as your sat on a outdated frame version. As intense grow their pricing will come down too, look at Santa Cruz pricing in the last two years. Plus I don't think You can compare intense to main stream mass produced big brands it's a different ethos, it's a company set up to be all about the bike, not making the price point for people looking for a 2 - 3 k bike. Intense are good value frame wise and specing the bike yourself so it appears most people are hung up on the build kit cost? . Most riders I know change their frame or components, rather than buying completes everytime they want a new bike it's cheaper over the long run. Finally, We all know you can have as much fun on a 1000 hard tail as u can a 6k or 10k bike, that's up to the riders mindset, but why do people buy a m3 BMW instead of a diesel 3 series. They do the same thing right? We'll it depends on what the individual wants from the car or has the money for, you earn it you spend on what you want. . Ride a top spec bike back to back with a entry level bike you will see differences, be happy riding your bike whatever it is and give companies kudos for making what looks like a great bike, no ones asking you to buy it, you want value go mainstream or direct, but are you really getting as much value for money when you grab a bargain?
[Reply]
  • + 1
 "bested their big-bike times on local DH trails" Is that due to 1: their DH bikes are crap, 2: the local trails are not really DH, or 3: this is truly a miracle bike? On another point, why do maufacturers keep putting the Reverb remote above the bar?
[Reply]
  • + 3
 I love the bike, I have tested quite a few 27.5 bikes and really want to get one.

What trail was this bike tested on? I'm always trying to find new ones to ride in SD.
[Reply]
  • + 4
 Don't worry, this thing will be in the clearance section at Jenson and Price Point before the end of the summer!
  • - 3
 I can guarantee you it wont be
  • + 0
 If not, I'll buy a used frame in one year for $1500.
[Reply]
  • + 4
 Short clip of Luca Cometti, skimming over the chunk on the new T275
vimeo.com/86681783
[Reply]
  • + 1
 yhea, bikes can get expensive.
i know the differences between a $1200 and a $5000 mountain bike. You can ''ride it, feel it, mesure it''
what i'm always interested to learn is, what makes for the other $5000 ?

developpement cost, so is engeneering, getting the righ angles, lenghts and BB height should be pretty much aquired tho.

on the consumer side, getting a supensioned dialed, the right sag and good tire pressure is the best bang for the buck IMO


that being said, it wont ever get you to ride like Kovarik...
[Reply]
  • + 1
 $10,324 is ridiculous for a bicycle. I don't care if you're Sam Hill. How are we allowing these companies to get away with this shit? Who's buying these bikes? You can go on about economies of scale of bicycle companies vs. companies like Honda/Yamaha/ Kawasaki all day long, but there's no way I'm believing this is a fair price for a bike when you can get a kick-ass new dirt bike with all those technology and materials that go into one of those for less money. It has an engine, transmission, and a f*cking radiator. I love mountain biking, but I wouldn't shell out this kinda dough for a bike no way.
  • + 1
 lawyers, millionaires, who knows. someone very successful will buy this bike. honestly who cares. go yell at the next guy you see driving an expensive performance car and see if they care
[Reply]
  • + 1
 When is Intense going to make the Aluminum Tracer 27.5 with the the exact same geo as this one is what I want to know. This whole write talks about how much better the carbon version is than the current aluminum frame, pushing us all into thinking that we "must have" a bike that 99% of us can't afford.yes its pricey, and a 160mm travel bike with 27.5 wheels that comes in at a shockingly light weight and can still apparently romp a big bike worthy line should be, but I want the 30+lbs. version that's half the price, and I still want it to, at the least, have the same geo as its exotic super bike sibling.
[Reply]
  • + 1
 I really can't take reviews like this seriously. You expect anyone to believe that having ENVE wheels on a frame doesn't completely change how it rides and what its capable of? Should do a pinkbike poll: how many of you ride/can afford carbon wheels...
  • + 2
 It did say "once you ride them no other wheels will do." Sort of subtly admitting what you've said. PS yes, Enves make your bike ride totally different.
  • + 2
 You can hit stuff with Enve wheels that will easily flat-spot even the best aluminum rims - over and over again. So, yes, they can change how a bike rides...or more importantly, what the bike is capable of. Of course, you can break anything and AM carbon wheels rims are no exception, but in durability, they are head and shoulders above aluminum at the same or higher weight.
  • + 1
 I think the top of the line spec is appropriate and important when looking at a top of the line bike, or really most any bike for that matter. They are kind of a level setter.
If you really wanted to go about an unbiased/unfettered way to review a frame, you would eliminate as many variables as possible. Which on a bike, is a lot, but wheels is of course one of the largest contributors right after tires. To be able to pinpoint an array of ride characteristics derived from a frame or design, you need to start with a consistent baseline, and I think a best-in-class wheel set and component spec for its intentions is the right way to do that.
When the testers have extensive experience and can fully rely on a component like brakes, fork, shock, wheel set, and tires, they can really pinpoint what is being caused by the frame and design, and have nothing left to question in regards to what might be contributing to the feedback they are receiving when riding the bike.
This will make any shortcomings or benefits in the frame really stand out.
Then they can give a true opinion of the frame, and you should be able to adjust your expectations accordingly when looking at a component spec you can afford.
[Reply]
  • + 1
 They still make an alloy Tracer if this price tag is too high(it is for me and about 95% of PB members). Still has the Pike and comes with Fox CTD with the CCDB option. Elixir 9 brakes, Novatec Diablos, X01 drive and a Reverb. Not too shabby for a step down from this.
  • + 1
 The geo is different. I'm wondering how long it'll take them to update the 'bike for the rest of us'.
  • + 1
 One can only dream.
[Reply]
  • + 3
 66.5 HA, Long(er) TT, 17" chain stays with 6+" pf VPP travel…your move Santa Cruz.

(hopefully an aluminum version is coming)
  • + 1
 Reach is short for large and tt. Modern geo is closer to 18/24.5 respectively.
Btw, kona standover is 26" right..?
Hopefully the xl isn't too big and the wait too long!
  • + 1
 You are correct. However the point was that comparable SC bikes have longer stays and even shorter TT than the Intense here, which shares the VPP design.
Also, there is a lot of speculation that SC will release a Nomad update/replacement on April 1.
That is all. I am a big Santa Cruz fan, but wish they would bring the geometry a little more up to date.
[Reply]
  • + 4
 For 10k, I hope they figured out how to keep the shoulder bolts from backing out.
  • + 1
 for 10k i hope it doesnt eat bearings.
[Reply]
  • + 2
 Maybe in the future the title should be "Enve wheels tested with (insert frame manufacturer name here)" Seems to me every bike review I read these days has Enve rim wheel option.
[Reply]
  • + 3
 Quality bike, not sure why people feel the need to post that they still have fun on their bikes, its like the release of the carbon tracer is threatening to them?
[Reply]
  • + 6
 Needs a size XL.
  • + 1
 yes, no mention of this disappointing fact in the review...
  • + 2
 Website lists an XL geometry chart.
  • + 2
 you're right, the website shows the XL option, but their tech spec doesn't though... don't matter, I'm pretty happy with my XL Banshee Spitfire V2
  • + 2
 Spitfire's are rad. Weirdly enough, I don't fit well on the large or XL. They need a large-and-a-half. Wink
[Reply]
  • + 4
 Wtf are these prices.You can do exactly the same shit with a 2500 dolars bike
  • - 5
 mindless comment

Ferrari v Smartcar?
  • + 7
 Ferrari has 500 bhp over smartcar,the bike has the same engine
  • + 1
 I thought that here on pinkbike you can talk to civilized people.....
  • + 1
 You haven't been here long have you? It was a joke, don't take everything so serious.
[Reply]
  • + 4
 I'll stick with my Intense Carbine, does the job just fine with me.
[Reply]
  • + 4
 Ha and my aluminum tracer is supposed to show up later today.
[Reply]
  • + 1
 ooh look a $10k bike to get the knicker-wettest ranting again. too many bitter broke kids on PB. sick bike. not sure about VFM but I'm sure it will fill a gap in the market somewhere
[Reply]
  • + 3
 Best thing about this frame is the Video of Kovarik shredding trails my Brother and I built. Fark YEah!!!
  • + 1
 Nice mate! In what region are they?
  • + 1
 Agreed!! Didn't need to read the review...nor do I care that he's riding a 10k+ bike. That video was SICK!
  • + 1
 The one we built is Phoenix at Parklands on the Sunshine Coast, QLD, Australia. It's pretty flat but super flow with a few good hits. Still a work in progress.
[Reply]
  • + 0
 Since 1994 I've been riding high end bikes starting with a carbon Mongoose IBOC team sx $3500. Giant atx 980 $2000. Oryx equipe gold $3500. Rocky Mountain rm9 $6500. Devinci banzai $4000. Rocky Mountain element 70 $7000. Cove shocker $6500... I am totally in the market for a $10000 enduro, and I've been wondering if anything could compete with specialized. Now... what else?
  • + 0
 Damn. Wanna rub it in some more... U sound pretty well off up there.
[Reply]
  • + 3
 i havent been on Pinkbike in ages,so i have to ask. Is there anymore 26 inch (normal) bikes being made anymore?
  • + 1
 Only the good ones
[Reply]
  • + 1
 It's too bad the pieces are made overseas. One of the reasons I'm an intense customer is the "made in USA". Although if the carbon pieces were made here it would be even more expensive.
  • - 1
 If you like the American made feel of our bikes, check out our tracer 275 in alloy !
intensecycles.com/portfolio-item/tracer-275
  • + 1
 I love carbon, I have carbon. However, the writing is on the wall. In ten years, carbon will trickle down and displace the alloy. That is great for us, but bad for your welders and machinists. Even in the aviation industry (which I work), we have seen very reluctant American companies (Boeing, GE), caving and sending piece part manufacturing to Asia. And these are companies that can charge whatever the hell they want to customers as well, as there is limited choice. The good news is we have a serious shortage of welders and machinists in the oil and gas industry up here in BC and Alberta, huge money, and job security.
[Reply]
  • + 0
 1. I own and love and put way too much money into my Intense 951. Intense makes amazing bikes! 2. This is a beautiful bike. 3. My Honda crf450r with an engine, way more suspension, clutch, water cooling etc costs 2k less. 4. I will never pay more for a mountain bike than a motocross bike.
[Reply]
  • + 1
 So is there any real difference between the Carbon and Aluminum Tracer 275 frames? I see Pinkbike has tested both and could the differences be explained by different shock set ups?
  • + 0
 The first difference is the frame weight. The Tracer Carbon weighs about 2lbs less then the Alloy one.
the geo differs as well
carbon: Head angle = 66.5 bb height = 13.5 chain stays = 17" seat tube angle = 74.5
alloy : head angle = 67.5 bb height = 13.3 chain stays = 17" seat tube angle = 71.0
The Tracer carbon has a dedicated 142mm rear triangle, internal cable routing (with sleeves for easy assembly and no noise)
The Tracer Carbon comes in 2 colors 1 black and gray 2 black and red
The Tracer Alloy comes in 5 colors 1 works 2 red 3 black 4 flo orange 5 flo yellow
The Tracer carbon offers 3 different build kits
1. factory $9,999.00
2. pro $6,599.00
3. expert $5,999.00
The Tracer alloy also offers 3 build kits
1. pro $6,049.00
2. expert $5,649.00
3. foundation $3,399.00
intensecycles.com
[Reply]
  • + 2
 What a wonderful bike! I'd love to ride this beast! It's sad to see price like this, but if only I could afford it, I'd definitely buy itSmile
[Reply]
  • + 2
 No more Uzzi on the Intense website, is that gone from the lineup now or will there be a new one and subsquent announcement soon?
[Reply]
  • + 3
 Ever elevating costs are precisely the reason people will start to keep some of their frames longer and longer.
[Reply]
  • + 1
 "A seat angle on the steep side puts the T275 C rider in an optimized position for climbing." -The picture on this article shows the rider looks to be struggling on climb un-seated going wide on turn.
[Reply]
  • + 1
 Maniacal laugh. Everything about this bike is sexy. I'm so happy with it. Stomps going up. Smashes the descent. Thanks Fanatik/intense.
[Reply]
  • + 2
 Has anyone else noticed that several other websites all posted their review of this bike today?
[Reply]
  • + 3
 Carbon is a man's diamond and a sales man's go to fishing lure!
[Reply]
  • + 3
 a nice bike to start cycling!!!!!!!!!!!!
[Reply]
  • + 1
 $10,000 plus for a Tracer what a joke! me & my girl just purchased a Trek Slash 7 and a Scott Genius Lt and it was $3000 less than that!
[Reply]
  • + 3
 FINALLY!!!!! A bike within my budget!
[Reply]
  • + 1
 When will they start putting the Taiwan flag next to the California bear sticker? Seems off-putting to claim this is a california/USA built bike.
  • + 1
 All of our Carbon bikes are still USA built.
The frames are not made here in the states but what does happen is we receive a front and a rear is this
1 we inspect every front and rear for any blems
2 we press in the bearings
3 we assemble (or build) the frame by installing the upper (american made) link with 4 (american made) shoulder bolts. then the lower (american made) link with 2 (american made) shoulder bolts. then add the rear axle (also american made)
4 one of our master bike builders (johnny, american made as well) builds the frame in to a complete bike
5 then we pack it up in our (american made) box and ship it a lucky new owner.

so as you can see even though the carbon frames are not made in house. they are every bit a California / USA built bike.
[Reply]
  • + 1
 These companies won't drop their prices until people stop paying ridiculous amounts of money! Think about it, it happens with any other product out there.
[Reply]
  • + 2
 You can also spend 50.000 Euros but if you are nerdy, you will be always nerdy ahahahahahahahahahahah!!!
[Reply]
  • + 1
 802 mm/31.5″ in large in NOT "plenty of stand-over clearance". Did you copy-paste the press release from Intense? Please be a bit critical
  • + 1
 Or... is Intenses geometry charts wrong on their website? Where does the 28" stated in this text come from?
[Reply]
  • + 1
 my dream spec but unfortunately, the price is somewhat of a nightmare, LOL! but hey, those are top end parts, nothing was spared kind of thing.
[Reply]
  • - 1
 Wow - what a bike! But the video depicts amateur, trail destroying riding at its worst. Great bike, but at that price it's unlikely a bike to be purchased by amateurs. So why not get a better rider for the video who can flow the trail rather than trashing it?
[Reply]
  • + 1
 $10,000 is close to the average amount made by people in poverty in the United States..... and some people spend it on a bike, but on the other hand it is a really nice bike
[Reply]
  • + 2
 A few mm mud clearance so no good for Europe then And certainty no good for emeriti racing the UK !
[Reply]
  • + 2
 after seeing a $16,000 road bike, 10,000 for a mountain bike isn't too bad.
[Reply]
  • + 3
 You look younger in every riding photo I see you in, RC. Well played.
[Reply]
  • + 3
 It seems the bigger the price tag the more #bikeporn you get Wink
[Reply]
  • + 2
 "Step one: Buy a mountain bike.

Buy a mountain bike that is more expensive than your car."
  • + 18
 All my mountain bikes are more expensive than my car. My car takes me to work and the grocery store. My bike takes me to where I want to be.
  • + 1
 ^ HE GETS IT.
[Reply]
  • + 0
 bahahahaha 10g for a carbon Jamis. it'll prob crack somewhere in a month like all their other bikes. my guess is they added a few g's on there to pay off RC
[Reply]
  • + 1
 Hmmm.... glowing review synchronized with the huge banner ad from intense. Coincidence, no?
[Reply]
  • + 1
 carbon... light, strong, and the dreaded carbon creek. 2 outta 3 is good but I can't stand the creeky noise. No thx
[Reply]
  • + 0
 When did mountain bikers become such bitches?
"waaa, it's too expensive"
"nooo, you're jealous and poor"
"the wheels are too big"
FFS. It's a f***ing bike.
[Reply]
  • + 0
 I love it when you see a a ripper on a $1500 rig blast past some richy rich on a "$9999" carbon Ferrari!!!!

I hope this buggy comes with a windshield to deflect the dust!!!!
[Reply]
  • + 2
 Enduro racing that should say !
[Reply]
  • + 2
 1252 grams is taking "light weight" a bit too far surely? Razz
  • + 5
 1 kilogram of mountain bike costs $8000, welcome to the future : )
[Reply]
  • + 1
 For only $10,000, plus taxes... Would rather buy a aluminum bodied bike, a shitty car, a 6-pack and some BK.
[Reply]
  • + 3
 2 words.....YT Capra!
  • - 2
 That is one word and two consonants. Shock placement, linkage and pivots are all wrong.
  • + 1
 And the Intense is too short in both the wheelbase and the cockpit, also happens to be nearly 3 times the price people who have ridden the Capra only saying good things about them. If people wanna pay way over the odds for a name let them it's all about the rider not the bike people bang on about this and that linkage but if your shit your shit end of! I will stick to my Orange just what you need in the UK and it's 26", I should be ashamed I am so not Enduro!
  • - 2
 dont forget that the intense WILL have mud clearance problems and WILL fall apart in the lovely wet UK.
[Reply]
  • + 0
 I'm sorry but that price is rediculous. My bronson c has the exact same kit and is over $2000 less expensive. The bike looks amazing though
[Reply]
  • + 1
 So I'm confused - Intense has a Tracer 275 and Carbine 275 and the difference is...???
  • + 2
 Pretty much that they foolishly made the carbine too steep and cross country oriented. This frame is slacker and now that people pay 10k for bronsons intense thinks this bike is worth it.
  • + 2
 ^^^ The handling difference between the Carbine and Tracer 275 is a pretty big gap.
  • + 3
 RC please explain these differences, I'm genuinely interested as I have the carbine sl. That has a very similar build but weighs just over 25lb, crest rims, ac hubs, XX1, XTR brakes, reverb.
  • + 4
 Sounds like a killer bike. The Tracer's front end turns in slower than the Carbine - you lean more and steer less in the corners. The frame numbers are close, but the Tracer feels much more like you are in the bike rather than on it, so it is easier to corner over rough ground and to charge ruts and rocks without getting bucked around. Also, the T275 C's frame feels much stiffer in torsion. In short, it is a more stable platform. The tradeoff between the two is that the Carbine is noticeably more agile in tight trail situations. The Tracer C's performance is biased towards fast and steep.
  • + 4
 The carbine also has a different swingarm with changeable dropouts... you can change it from a 26er to a 650B or vice versa by buying the other dropouts not to mention run a standard QR rear hub instead of the thru-axle 12 x 142 rear end if you have older but still perfectly usable 26er wheels with regular QR 10x135 axle end hubs.
  • + 2
 Thanks RC - So in your opinion - will the Carbine stay around? Seems like from a product offering point of view very redundant. And I don't have a a problem with the price of 10K considering what it comes with. There are some people in that position that want the best money can buy. However, I wouldn't trade for my aluminum Tracer 275 with 1x10 and KS Lev dropper post. But it's a beautiful bike and I'm sure Intense will sell many!
  • + 1
 I guess I'm somewhat biased toward my carbine because I slackened my HA by 1 degree already with a new headset, and its much more stable on the descent. When I compare the geo numbers between the two bikes I'm not convinced they're so different that there's a need for a T275. Its just seems like a tweaked Carbine to me. (And I still love my Carbine).
  • + 1
 Really its a tweaked/lightened Carbine. Get rid of the extra features and you shed some grams. That alone is justification to raise the price among many shoppers.
[Reply]
  • + 1
 Anyone ridden one with a ccdb and monarch? Ordering the pro build and debating the upgrade to the ccdba
[Reply]
  • + 2
 Yeah I stopped reading at $10,324...
  • + 1
 bummer man, you missed a great review
[Reply]
  • + 1
 What crack addict wants to pay $10,000 for a bike.. wfh... go buy a truck or a car for that amount! What a bunch of SH_T!
[Reply]
  • + 0
 I have just one question:
How do you fare that at this price level you are 1.6 Kg heavier than CUBE STEREO SLT (also a 160 mm bike) ???
  • + 1
 Cube must be bullshiters.
  • + 0
 Cube weights are genuine. They make some great frames.
[Reply]
  • + 1
 It's a beautiful creation, I would do a man squirt on it.

Top tube needs to be longer though. 23.5-24" on a medium please.
[Reply]
  • + 2
 mix match sram and shimano. head tube
[Reply]
  • + 1
 i have a sinister ridge that i put together for about $8500 less, and it's the best bike i've ever ridden
[Reply]
  • + 2
 XT version cost 6 grand..............Sweet ride.
[Reply]
  • + 2
 Mtb: as addictive as crack, but twice as expensive... Well almost...
[Reply]
  • + 2
 STOKED you guys tested on my local trails I grew up on. SO RAD!
[Reply]
  • + 2
 @1:22 who need berms anyway.
[Reply]
  • + 2
 Id like to know how the DH runs were timed. Strava or bar mounted timer?
[Reply]
  • + 2
 that man can drift corners
[Reply]
  • + 1
 BTW..... 2014 s works enduro has press fit bb too
[Reply]
  • + 1
 What does intense have against XL sizing? Tall folk need not apply.
  • + 4
 Intense website lists an XL size...
  • + 1
 XL's are coming In September !!
[Reply]
  • + 1
 my bike cost 11 g's, i crash it into trees!
[Reply]
  • + 0
 money equals freedom if you are poor than you can just die. you are no value as a customer for big corpo-nazistyle-rations
[Reply]
  • + 1
 Pretty sure I did most of that on Saturday on my Reign...
  • + 1
 2 weeks ago a local enduro race was won on a Reign. By 20seconds on a 10:30 course. His name was Bryn Dickerson tho.
[Reply]
  • + 1
 Really, $9999!! Frekin ridiculous. Biking addiction sux??,
[Reply]
  • + 0
 This frame is what the carbine SHOULD have been two years ago. Intense is playing catch up to their own mistakes.
[Reply]
  • + 0
 So, why do I buy this over a bronson? Bronson is $2899, this is $3200, same frame...crankbros pricing perhaps.
  • + 1
 So even though we share the same suspension platform the bike frames are not the same the bronson offers a 150mm rear travel by using a fox ctd. 67 degree HA weighing in at 5.41lbs the Tracer C offers adjustable travel 140mm or 160mm by using a monarch plus .66.5 degree HA. weighing in at 5.10lbs also the Tracer C offers internal cable routing with sleeves for easy assembly and 0 noise
[Reply]
  • + 1
 Aduh... bestnya, tapi pengsan nak membayar!
[Reply]
  • - 2
 10k ya I bet there lining up to buy them. Way better 650b set ups out there for half the cost not to mention their funky frame dimensions a 19.25 frame for large??? They were to cheap to build an xl model
  • + 0
 like what ?
what complete bike can you get with xx1, enve, a pike, dt240 hubs, reverb post, carbon bars and xtr brakes for under 5k?
  • + 1
 There is an xl model...
[Reply]
  • + 2
 Anyone know the song?
[Reply]
  • + 0
 I dont think the problem is that people cant afford it, the problem is that companies are trying to rob us blind.
[Reply]
  • + 0
 Intense has followed suit with Specialized and Santa Cruz. I'll stick with Trek and Niner bikes thank you.
[Reply]
  • + 1
 Kovarik riding clipped-in??? What has this world come to... Frown
[Reply]
  • + 1
 Weird looking Bronson.
  • + 1
 Yea I though I've seen it before, I still think SC makes way better bikes.
[Reply]
  • + 1
 time to get a dirt bike
[Reply]
  • + 0
 how about a Transition carbon Covert XO 1 for 6200$?
  • + 1
 Add $400 and you get an intense carbon tracer 275 x01
[Reply]
  • + 0
 MTB the new rich boy sport, to any one who buys this "you sucker"
[Reply]
  • + 0
 its allways fun saying on your left to a guy on a 10k bike LOL
[Reply]
  • + 0
 Chinese plastic on $10K bikes.
[Reply]
  • + 1
 So this or Pivot Mach 6?
[Reply]
  • - 2
 in Denver, you would also have to add about $800 in tax??

If I ever meet someone riding a 10k bike, I might punch them...
  • + 0
 why ? So you can steal it ? Because you're jealous and can't afford one??
  • + 3
 I can afford one, but I just think its crazy ridiculous that a bike might cost that much.. is it really that much better than a 3k bike? really? its just dumb for anyone to pay that much money for a bike.
  • + 0
 how about a record player at 35,000$ I saw that and thought that was enough.
  • + 3
 Why stop on bikes? $50K + for a 2014 GMC truck? I saw a Jeep Grand Cherokee recently for $58K and just yesterday, I saw that Chevy has a TAHOE that lists for $71K.

Besides, how people spend THEIR OWN money is their business. If they want to buy a $10K bike, that's none of your business. I'm sure there's stuff you have bought that others would think is stupid to spend money on as well. I know there's plenty of people in Colorado spending plenty of $$ on weed to get high. I'll spend $100K on a bike before I spend $$ on weed.
[Reply]
  • - 1
 27.5 = marketing and for sheep.
10 000 dollars = for sheep !
[Reply]
  • - 1
 I'll just keep riding my 08 sc nomad...
[Reply]
Below threshold threads are hidden

Post a Comment



Copyright © 2000 - 2014. Pinkbike.com. All rights reserved.
dv14 0.126345
Mobile Version of Website