2011 Kona Operator DH and Freeride bikes: Exclusive Photos and Geometry

Aug 3, 2010 at 17:46
Aug 3, 2010
by Mike Levy  
 
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Kona is looking ready for 2011 with the release of their completely revised downhill bike, the Supreme Operator. Inside you can find exclusive photos of the new machine, as well as geometry and spec info.

Read on...

2011 Kona Supreme Operator

Kona's DH bike for 2011 uses a revised frame that features their reliable suspension design combined with drastically shaped frame tubes. A tapered headtube, loads of stand over clearance, and new clevis type pivots are just some of the additions.
Kona's DH bike for 2011 uses a revised frame that features their reliable suspension design combined with drastically shaped frame tubes. A tapered headtube, loads of stand over clearance, and new clevis type pivots are just some of the additions.


Kona's long standing Stab downhill bike gets a complete revamp for the upcoming 2011 season, including a name change to the Operator. The Stab has long been known to be one of the more stable big bikes out there and has been a favourite of riders who benefit from a bike that is able to plow through the roughest of tracks, but possibly at the expense of not being maneuverable as some when things get tight. Kona looks to address this issue with the 2011 Operator by not only dropping an impressive amount of weight - the size small Supreme Operator pictured here comes in at 38 lbs - but also using revised geometry. The bike's shorter chainstays should add up to a more playful machine that responds better to rider input and line changes.

Up front you'll find a short tapered headtube that hides a integrated headset
Up front you'll find a short tapered headtube that hides a integrated headset


2011 Kona Supreme Operator details

  • Entirely new frame for 2011
  • 200 mm of rear wheel travel
  • Tapered headtube
  • Large sealed bearings a aluminum pivot axles
  • No more floating brake
  • Shorter chainstays than the Stab
  • Total weight: 35 lbs
  • Color: Red polished
  • Sizes: small, medium, large
  • Available as a frame only
  • Available November, 2010
  • MSRP $$6599 CAD


Updated hardware holds together the new clevis type dropout pivots - stiffness and additional bearing life are the goals. I for one am happy to see a standard thru-axle on the back. Note the replaceable pinch bolt inserts as well.
Updated hardware holds together the new clevis type dropout pivots - stiffness and additional bearing life are the goals. I for one am happy to see a standard thru-axle on the back. Note the replaceable pinch bolt inserts as well.


Although it is far from fashionable to continue using what is proven to work well and be reliable, its nice to see Kona sticking with their time tested suspension design. After many years of small tweaks and adjustments Kona has produced a system that works well without all the hoopla associated with a new system. The 2011 version sees an upgrade to much bigger sealed bearings in each pivot and massive aluminum axles that tie everything together. At the rear of the bike you'll spot clevis type pivots that promise to add a bit of stiffness while improving bearing life.

Operator geometry
Operator geometry

2011 Supreme Operator spec list - good to go out of the gate.
2011 Supreme Operator spec list - good to go out of the gate.


Mike's opinion: While I fully expect a lot of readers to balk at Kona's continued use of the four-bar design, I'm happy to see them stick with it and fine tune the system through the years. Kona's proven and reliable linkage activated single pivot arrangement has been in use for many seasons and there is no reason to scoff at the design simply because we are inundated with new acronym filled press releases every month. I'm excited to get some saddle time on the new bike and see if the changes that they've made have addressed some of the Stab's shortcomings. If so, this bright red bike could be the underdog that surprises a lot of people during the upcoming season.


The rear shift cable runs internally though the chainstay for cleaner lines and some added protection
The rear shift cable runs internally though the chainstay for cleaner lines and some added protection




2011 Kona Operator FR


The 2011 Kona Operator FR is looks to be ready for some serious throw down sessions.
The 2011 Kona Operator FR is looks to be ready for some serious throw down sessions.


The Operator FR uses the same frame as the Supreme, but with a more freeride friendly parts selection that looks burly enough to survive a summer in Whistler bike part under any grom. Just as is found on its bike brother, the Supreme, the front of the bike sports a tapered headtube that works well with long travel single crown forks like the 180 mm Domain that the bike comes stock with. A Fox Van R controls the bike's 200 mm of travel. The big silver bike should have riders dusting the cobwebs off their shovels and chainsaws to build some new and large features.



The FR model features the same tapered headtube as it's big brother, the Supreme Operator
The FR model features the same tapered headtube as it's big brother, the Supreme Operator

2011 Kona Operator FR details

  • Entirely new frame for 2011
  • 200 mm of rear wheel travel
  • Tapered headtube
  • Large sealed bearings a aluminum pivot axles
  • No more floating brake
  • Shorter chainstays than the Stab
  • Use's the same frame as the Supreme Operator
  • Color: brushed silver
  • Sizes: small, medium, large
  • Available as a frame only
  • Available November, 2010
  • MSRP $$2799.00 CAD


Operator FR full spec
Operator FR full spec

Massive bearings and clevis pivots out back on the Operator FR
Massive bearings and clevis pivots out back on the Operator FR

*There will be a mid priced offering, the Operator in a DH version too and it will be priced at $3299.00*


Visit the Kona website to see their entire lineup - the Operator is from the future, you won't find it there yet!
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247 Comments

  • + 47
 I used to assume all Kona's little kiddie-hater hype must have been based on at least some truth...until I started riding Whistler, which has Kona as the 'official' park bike. A few days of watching the kids smash the shit out of their rented Stinkys with cased jumps, riderless landings where the frame hits a tree, and repeated failed attempts to make it down Goat's Gully...and then the same bike gets a simple wash and rented again the next day for a repeat butchery has made me a believer in Kona. For every 10 old Stinkys still functioning on the trails, show me just one 2005 Demo that is still in great shape, or an '09 Session with an undented down tube. Konas are ugly but they work well, and last. Little kiddies see an broken '02 Coiler so they assume all Konas break and jump on the hate wagon. Of course, FR/DH bikes aren't meant to be last that long in the first place - Konas are one of the few brands that are able to get handed down like old clothes, so of course they'll eventually break...but you can't complain a bike brand is shit becuase of 8 years of metal fatigue from novice after novice.
  • + 13
 Thank you for making sense Treebasher. I have been around mountain bikes a long time. Once upon a time Kona was regarded as one of the ONLY companies building serious fr/dh bikes. They have always served up a quality product, meant to be ridden hard - for an everyman's price. I think its sad that they have gotten such a bad rap from so many people, most who have never ridden their bikes- only to them to make themselves feel good about spending all that coin for a trendy boutique frame. I am a Rocky guy, Im not supporting Kona because I ride them, Im supporting them because they make really good bikes, and have been for longer than most of you have been alive. Have a little more faith.
  • + 5
 until i read the comments on this article i didn't realise there was so much hate for konas. ive always thought they were one of the better makes. also, i can attest to the beefiness of treks considering the amount of dh runs ive taken my fuel ex down without so much as a minor break.
  • + 2
 I have to agree that they make Konas tough. I've seen a whole bunch of ritual rental Stinky abuse at the local hill too ((hell, I've done some myself), and they just bounce back. I inherited a Kona Dawg last year, and being a raw beginner I've dumped, dropped, smashed and bounced it off more stuff than I care to remember - and it's still in one piece.

I'm in the market for an FR bike next year, and I'll definitely be checking out that Operator.
  • + 1
 I've got a 2001 Kona stab frame in my garage I think I'm the 3rd owner, gonna strip the paint off it and sell it on cheap, it's not the best thing in the world but it does the job and just keeps going. Hasn't been riden in about 2 years.
  • - 2
 I had broke my kona five-0 after 6 month... I didnt kill it like a crazy bastard, just used it and I was younger so I took some mistake but nothing serious
  • + 1
 i have a stinky 2000 i ride it regualy and i put it through its pace's ive mad little upgrades to it and it works fine i go faster than most riders on their newer bikes with more travel than mine. I can crash and batter this bike but it always come's back!!!!
[Reply]
  • + 22
 f*ck thats nice Drool
  • + 12
 Wow put the hot in hot Pimp
  • + 62
 im sure ill get neg proped for this but i dont really like the front triangle. looks too swoopy and the headtube looks like it would be kinda weak (and kona doesnt exactly have the reputation for the strongest frames).
  • + 11
 Quite a bit of change, I'll be interested to hear how they perform.
  • + 21
 looks good for a kona, but for 7 large? FORGET ABOUT IT
  • + 8
 Whats with Kona and their hideous link bars. Shits like two feet long, BARF!
  • + 3
 its cool an all, but honestly, in my opinion the front triangle is a little ugly
  • + 16
 looks nice, and doesn't look anything like a trek sesh or a glory to me
  • + 18
 thats no triangle thats a mess of bent tubing, i like it though step up from what they usualy build good going kona! im not gonna hate like the rest!
  • + 5
 Looks good! the only thing that i don't like is the headtube. I would definitely consider the FR though.
  • + 11
 Looks great, if they had kept the one good trait kona usually has, Acceptible bikes for a great price, ie; the older coilers and stinky, It's great bike as far as ride characteristics..And you could buy them with a great build for under 2k. Sorry kona, but your reputation isn't worth 7K, Yet.
  • + 6
 Good point Wil. And I'll add to what everyone was saying about the front triangle being ugly, or the hydroforming being strange. Looks do not matter in the least when you need a bike that will stay completely planted in every situation on every possible trail. I wish Kona good luck, especially with the headtube area strength, and I hope that they don't think pure looks will make people think their product is fantastic. The extra standover is a good idea and I personally think it looks fine, but time will tell whether or not they improved their product enough to compete with tough bikes that use floating links and manipulated paths like Specialized, Karpiel, Santa Cruz, and Giant.
  • + 6
 My first thought was that it is ugly as hell, but the price is actually great. $2800 for a complete means the frame will be dirt cheap compared to other DH frames, and the geo is fantastic. Since it is lightweight as well, I may be on one of these soon enough.
  • + 2
 WOW!! it's cool and all but man it is WEIRD. the front triangle is way too curvy and the swingarm links are really long! but it is a very good price and is very cool!
  • + 1
 does anyone remember Storm bikes? that's what that long top rocker reminds me of.
  • + 12
 It's the same price as the stabs. I saw the guy testing it at whistler a while back and that thing just takes to the air like no other bike.

and has anyone even seen a pic of a 09+ broken kona??
  • + 3
 im so impressed, if any of you think the head tube is gonna have a recall well think again, they took a huge step from what they used to have, i mean look at the bass, you guys will just have to wait and see what happends.
  • + 2
 i think its time every1 stops givign kona a hardtime i think the headtube looks great and liek some other people said lets justw ait and her eif they perform as good as they look
  • + 3
 got to be honest when i saw the prototype i really liked it but it doesnt as good in a full bike
  • + 5
 No, no, no, Im sorry almost 7K for Kona? I don't think so.
  • + 1
 ^^^ i agree. I like the ideas and its good to see Kona changing things up abit but to get interest from riders i think a price drop is needed! that being said Saracen went from making £200 bikes to creating machines that are now on the shelves for £1000 and up, so maybe this is konas jump into the serious market.
  • + 17
 i love how you are all saying the headtube looks weak. dont you think kona will have spent a bit of time and money making sure it wont. its not like they just pay people to make a bike look nice. i for one have owned at least 5 konas and havnt broken any of them, and im a 100kg bloke. and $6000 is nothing, you could spend that on a frame nowadays.
kona haters get a life, pretty sure paul bass and the rest of the kona team think they are good, so who are you to slag them off? as im pretty sure they can ride a bike better than any of you. oh and dont start with the whole they pay them, paul b could have ridden for anyone but chose kona and has stuck with them.
rant over.
  • + 1
 Good rant Ginger and for the records im no Kona hater. As a matter of fact Kona have been a leading brand in the bike game for years and if people cant take that on board then they are just ignorant, i personally am loving these little revolutions bike companies are making and good luck to them... im personally waiting for the people who have just constantly slated them to start back tracking and making excuses as to why certain companies are "accepted" now.
  • + 0
 well i liked kona.. got a cowan ds for a year now.. but seeing the "new" design. i am liking it less and less....fugly comes to mind..
  • + 1
 The FR one looks so nice, and it's pretty cheap (:
  • + 1
 price aint bad, comes in at just over 4 grand for the uk (if just a straight conversion), we have to pay upto 3grand for a frame!


a friend spent 6grand building a bike, that's close to 10K cad$

so stop complaining about price

also i hope this is stronger then previous deigns due to the metal used, 7000 series alu.
  • + 14
 Konas have been 7000 series for a long time, and in my experience they have been very strong frames. 95% of all broken Konas only exist on the internet.
  • + 1
 ha ha runner youre probably right.
  • + 3
 @ridemoto157 and badbrass95 i dint know what you are saying, but banshee has the longest link plates ever, only the kona-hate bandwagon again.
  • + 1
 I really liked Kona's before. and i do agree with the fact that banshee has the longest link plates. I like the idea but I'm not a fan of either the Kona or the Banshee. So im not a hater im a constructive critisizer
  • + 1
 i luv the black graphics on the chrome frames. like on the bass too :E
  • + 1
 there is another operator dh bike that is cheaper like, 4,000 i think..
  • + 1
 I think the longest linkage plates ever would have to go to Storm.
  • + 1
 yeh theres another , this is the operator supreme , there is an operater dh for only $3,099 USD..
[Reply]
  • + 17
 They have definitely stepped it up to a whole new level with these bikes! Hopefully it'll put some of the Kona haters to rest!
  • + 19
 Never gonna happen. 99% of the people who hate kona have never ridden one. It's just a popular bandwagon for the kids to ride.
  • + 8
 well i can be the 1% to say i have ridden and owned konas...was a hater,but these two bikes shut me up!
  • + 0
 I rode kona as well but they weren't bad other then brake jack!
  • + 1
 I'm in the unlucky 1% that has had the torment of having to ride a few of their bikes. I'm straight up not a fan. To those of you that think this bike is sexy, did you miss the great chunk of metal they've welded at the seat tube - top tube join. Also the curves of the frame looks like someone went a bit crazy with the curve tool in autoCAD (or whichever program they use).
The shear magnitude of neg props that I'm expecting to rain down on me, will do nothing more than to arouse me in such a way that it will fuel my dislike for Kona's even more. Until of course they change their design. Given how adverse Kona is to change, i don't think i'll see this in my lifetime.
  • + 1
 Why do you care so much about "props"? Some people..... And the fact you're freaking out so much about the curves clearly shows you haven't seen many bikes in your life because there are a lot more out there with way bigger curves. Also, lol "torment" oh you kids.
  • + 1
 @ Tom-moT: I ber you don't complain about the demo or sx-trail curves? Both of which are far more dramatic than this.
[Reply]
  • + 14
 That bike is not 35lbs with a full saint setup and 729 rims. Stop bullshitting kona!!!
  • + 0
 I got my 09 stinky down to 40lbs, so its not impossible, but you would be needing a lot of airshox and tubless tires. Not to mention a bunch of really really expensive lightweight parts. Possible? Yes. Likely? Not so much.
  • - 8
 Its a kona tho, so they went for lightweight rather than toughness of their frames.
  • + 1
 09 and the best is 40lbs? pretty sad because I got my 2004 A-Line to 40.5lbs which is as low as it'll go from it's original 47lbs but it's an old bike.
  • + 2
 No matter how light the frame is, with that spec no bike will be 35lbs.
  • + 14
 Maybe they just typo'd and it's supposed to say 53 lbs...
  • + 1
 Nope there was a 09 kona stab on here that weight in at like 34 pounds.Mind you that was with a custom CNC'd Ti rocker arm. www.pinkbike.com/photo/3529140
  • + 2
 It was a typo on our end, the weight of a SMALL Operator Supreme is 38LBS, sorry.
[Reply]
  • + 8
 it's amazing how many design engineers and metallurgists there are out there and can break down for us peons the whole theory of the bike and how it rides just from a couple of small pics on-line. amazing.................rock on Kona, keep up the great work !!
[Reply]
  • + 5
 Kona have pretty much singlehandedly pioneered mtb'ing as we know it now, creating the whole 'go big/shred hard' idea and making sweet huckable bikes accessable to the masses, every Kona I've ridden has been sweet, not the best, and maybe not the strongest, but at least you're not paying for 50% BS if you go Kona!
[Reply]
  • + 8
 definatly not worth 6 grand. even if its good parts. thats like a v10
[Reply]
  • + 4
 Sexy bike and Kona is a good company, but I don' know about the price tag. Yeah, tons of bikes are using this design, but it's a tried and true design and I know that Kona is WAY cooler about replacements and warranties than most other companies out there. If only the price was lower...
  • + 1
 There will be a third mid priced model, just no details on it at this time.
[Reply]
  • + 3
 Looks like a good step forward for Kona - personally I think both the Operator bikes look pretty damn good - and Kona have addressed some of the problems that the Stinky and Stab had

why all the comments about the headtube snapping? its a 7005 series aluminium alloy taper headtube..loads of companies using a similar design
[Reply]
  • + 3
 Yea the $7000 price is a LOT, and the specs are a bit skeptical but a lot of people are jumping to conclusions about how the bike will perform, how much it really weighs, and how shitty it is. I could be wrong but it is a redesigned bike on Kona's part for next year and a bunch of people are bagging on it because it has "KONA" on it. Just to clear the slate, I have never owned a Kona and have done my fair share of sh*t talking about them myself, I am going to stay neutral on this one until the bike has been ridden and the good/bad is uncovered.
[Reply]
  • + 3
 Been reading what others have to comment and in the end the bike looks like what's out there already on the market. Only one person mentioned it looks like a Session and it can also be similar to a Giant but theirs even others. Bikes with this geo and shock positioning are starting to look similar with a little tweek here and there to tell them apart.
  • + 1
 Aesthetically yes, but it's all about pivot placement. IE rear pivot on chain stay vs on seat stay. It makes a huge difference as to how a bike performs.
[Reply]
  • + 2
 Almost every other new bike out there has a HTL comparable to this Kona. It's an effort to bring the center of gravity of the bike lower for stability. It's the same idea as lower BB's and pretty much everyone is doing it. Kona is just following suit here and that's a good thing. I'm not sure why everyone is tripping out on the head tube? Is this the only 2011 bike you guys have read about or what?
[Reply]
  • + 2
 I used to own a four-bar (Giant AC) and while I understand that every bike is different, I still think I would want, at least the option, of a floater on this bike. Also, does anyone know what's up with the pivot-thingy on the chainstay? It doesn't look like it does anything at all.
[Reply]
  • + 5
 $6600CAD ha ha ha ha I can get a new Demo 8II and a week riding all over BC for that!
[Reply]
  • + 2
 I'm super pumped on this bike!! I think it looks wicked. Can't wait to try one and I'm especially loving the polished frame!! I think that 35lbs would be a new record for an out of the box dh rig? Correct me if I'm wrong...
  • + 1
 Carbon V-10 will be 35 lbs out of the box too.
  • + 1
 ah yes. But you will prob have to sell your car and re-finance your house to buy one... As long as you live no more than 2k's from work you should be ok though!!
  • + 1
 There is no way this bike is 35 lbs with a build like that. They probably weigh another bike with single ply tires and air shock
  • + 1
 I believe the 951 has a 35lbs build as well..... cannondale has the new claymore with 180mm of travel(same as the old geminis) which could come in around 33ish with a DH build.
  • + 2
 Ya, I'm rockin a 38lb 951 as we speak and LOVIN IT!! could prob get down to 35-36 with 2.35 tires, hollow/alloy rear axle and ti spring... Still, this is "out of the box". But I do have Kona pedals on the 951 and they rock!
  • + 3
 It was a typo on our end, the weight of a SMALL Operator Supreme is 38LBS, sorry.
[Reply]
  • + 2
 Definitely impressed by the operator. Saw this earlier in the week (the raw proto) and I liked it. I like it even more with the nice paint job. The price tag is a bit too steep though. Kona's are hated on because they're so popular (the popular kids usually have the most haters) but they are one of the few bikes that have stood the true test of time.
[Reply]
  • + 1
 I'm a little confused at the lack of floating brake, on my bike it made a large difference. However looking at the seat stays the force vectors from the brake might be less significant than on previous Kona bikes. I will ride one and then make a judgement call.
[Reply]
  • + 1
 yea i duno how i feel about those.. i mean, im glad kona is finally making changes. but, i dont realllllllyy like the new frame designe too much. glad to see some drastic changes. have to hear a review on how they performe before i decide if im down
[Reply]
  • + 1
 by the way I ride a 2004 demo 9 and it in great shape over 635 days in the park not one problem. looks way better then older bikes. nice to see that the rear seat stay won't hit the seat like on the stab supreme. they also got rid of the off set seat stays were one is a little higher than the other. will be interesting to see how it rides without the floating rear brake it made a huge difference on top of that its $200 cheaper than last year,solid bikes the Supreme Operator has some stiff competition from giant and specialized. If they have a deluxe model it would look to be the best bang for your buck since all the frames are the same only different spec good job kona cheers
[Reply]
  • + 1
 Looks better than the previous bikes. Same general design, which works. Kona might not be the best out there, but they last forever. I have been thrashing my '07 Stinky for 2 years with no issues. There is a lot of "it looks like a Session" talk on here. Really? Is it me or has this design been around a lot longer than the Session? The Session can be called a revised Kona, maybe a Giant. Let's face it, most bikes with this shock placement "look" the same, but work very differently. Most bikes will be a revision of a previous design rather than something that completely shatters the mold. Good work Kona. Don't knock it til you try it.
[Reply]
  • + 1
 firstly, crimney thats curvy! i am a looong time fan of konas i have a 2007 stinky and its just bomb proof, i allways remember kona for the classic hucking bikes. this i quite like and it could well be a great step forward for them, i still miss all the old chunky bikes that weighed a ton but i supposes the way is forward and forward is hydroformed and lighter. im a little bit concerned as to how short the head tube is because generaly the longer the head tube the more surface area the down tube and top tube can cover, which gives the head tube less chance of twisting off in a large front heavy impact. but it is hydroformed which means there is no welds to crack so as long as there is enuf metal on the joint it shud be solid enuf for us huckers. lol as for the curvy tubes i hope thay have enuf meat on them cos the tubes wont be as torsionaly stiff as straight tubes but nevermind, its a kona, and i still love them. rant over.
  • + 1
 True. RE the trash talk over the 'swoopy' looks: the curves give better clearance for the shock and your nuts. Function over form.
  • + 1
 nut friendly bikes are good. i've had way too many close calls lol.
[Reply]
  • + 1
 Do I see stand-over-clearance??? I would guess it plows just like the Stab. The center-of-gravity seems lower than the Stab as well. If it handles the tight corners significantly better, I might actually consider one.

Working on getting my local sales rep to "drop one off" at our shop. I'll post back if/when this happens.
[Reply]
  • + 1
 I keep seeing this bike on a number of sites and wonder why no one else asks why Kona removed the floating brake?, Finely this artical mentions it, but it only says 'No more floating brake'. why has Kona now decided to leave it out after many years of claiming their bikes with the floating brake systems were one above the others. I ride a stab and also have an old Banshee chap. I dont know if i really notice anything different other then making the Stab more frustrating and more time wasted trying to switch out a tube on the rear wheel while on the hill.
  • + 1
 As best as I can tell, the floating brake seems to have been replace by those "clevis pivots" on the seatstay. If you look at it closely and visualize how that particular pivot will rotate as the suspension cycles, I think the effect on the brake will be similar to that of a floating brake. I do really wish that Kona would properly explain this new pivot though. There's not a single word about it on their website.
  • + 1
 Here are the reasons why there is no more DOPE:

first of all, new frame design. The more horizontal seatstays and repositioning of the pivot points result in less brake infuence on the suspension.

Weight is an important factor. With the function being much less with the new design, it is a great place to save 800 grams.

Also, trails have changed, riding has changed. Tracks are more flowing, man made then they used to be. This calls for a different bike alltogether.
[Reply]
  • + 1
 Wow looks like an incredible improvement over the old Stabs and Stinkys. I'll bet that thing will be a pleasure to ride. And I'm sorry but I had to point this out. Check the caption for the Operator FR: "The 2011 Kona Operator FR is looks to be ready for some serious throw down sessions" Lmao
[Reply]
  • + 1
 Change is good and welcome with this lineup. Sleek lines, lower profile. Looks ood, only way to know for sure is to test them, common demo days. But the whole lineup looks good. The Operator FR is a nice change. Nice looking bikes and I'm sure they'll stand up to the abuse, whistler dont have them for nothing.
[Reply]
  • + 1
 I don't get the comments regarding strength of the frame, or it "looks" weak. Way to be an interweb engineer. I'm sure you know more about material strength with one look than a company investing millions in a bike?

That said, the prototype looked a lot cooler. The production frame is all over the place. As much as I didn't really like the old Stabs, I reckon they looked better. :/
[Reply]
  • + 1
 LOVE KONA!!!!
lOVE OPERATOR FR!!!!
And who thinks kona are unreliable and brake its complete rubbish and it is was one the best freeride bikes on the market right now so if u thinks konas crap go cry to ur mum!Big Grin
[Reply]
  • + 1
 they have really stepped up this year. looks like they have done their research and came up with a solid-enough line of bikes for once. definatly better option than the stab. props to them for really taking a step forward
[Reply]
  • + 1
 not to sure on the looks bit expensive but i will be intrested to see how it ride could be a great thing for kona i think it will grow on me similar to norcos crazy frame lines,
[Reply]
  • + 3
 im sure it rides good but man is it ugly. i dont know what they were thinking
[Reply]
  • + 0
 cool new look cant wait to ride one next season and and 35lbs great the kona dh bike i ride now is around 39lbs i.and it dose not look like a giant glory since kona has used almost the same frame for over ten year who bike looks like who?
  • + 1
 It was a typo on our end, the weight of a SMALL Operator Supreme is 38LBS, sorry.
[Reply]
  • + 1
 I'm trying to find somewhere to buy this thing... I've saved up the money for a new DH bike, and I'm looking at this one. Is it a good buy? It seems to be. And where can I goddamn buy it!? Wink
  • + 1
 all operator DH's are sold out for 2011 your only choice now is a FR or the Supreme Operator
  • + 1
 I bought a Trek Session 88 2011 instead. Wink

Cheers anyway, though. Smile tup Beer
[Reply]
  • + 0
 does anyone else think that head tube is just gonna crumple or snap off? looks like in an attempt to make the frame be able to clear single crown fork crowns so you can do barspins, they moved the downtube/headtube junction higher, making the entire headtube/downtube/toptube junction very narrow. maybe we'll be in for the treat of the occasional snapped headtube picture. I mean, yea the bike looks great otherwise, really good geometry and parts. but that headtube worries me.... might be fine, but thats one of the areas on a bike I personally like overbuilt. you know, the whole, 'i dont want my fork to break off and go through my chest' sort of thing.
  • + 1
 It all depends, if that downtube is thick (at least near the headtube) it will be fine. If it is a thin wall tube, it could have issues. However, Kona has been in the game long enough, and they know a few things about building bikes. I'm sure they did some basic stress analysis of their frames to ensure that won't be a (major) issue.

It looks like Joe Smith has been racing this bike on the WC this season, and if it holds up the the tracks this year, then it should be fine for almost anyone! It's good to see Kona revamp their line
[Reply]
  • + 1
 The FR looks like a decent beginer freeride bike. The area behind the headtube looks pretty narrow though for the leverage a 180mm fork will put through it.. I'm sure Kona will have tested it plenty though.
[Reply]
  • + 1
 I totally agree with you love2freeride. The markup on bikes and components is outrageous, I mean you can buy a dirt bike for almost the same amount, but what are ya gonna do about it eh!
[Reply]
  • + 1
 wow the lower spec operator is available for 2500 euros in austria
www.jehlebikes.de/kona-operator-dh-2011.html
[img]http://www.jehlebikes.de/pics/11523/kona-operator-dh-2011.jpg[/img]
[Reply]
  • + 3
 Props to Kona for keeping there big bike line alive. The geo and weight of the dh bike looks spot on
[Reply]
  • + 0
 KONA PUT THEM SELVES ON THE MAP FOR MAKING A GOOD AND AFFORDABLE BIKE WHEN THEY WHERE MADE IN THE US/CANADA, BUT AT THOSE PRICES FORGET IT AND ESPECIALLY THAT ITS BEING BUILT IN TIWAIN, JAPAN, KOREA??????????????!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! WHEN YOU CAN GET A REAL BUILT BIKE IN THE USA, ENGLAND, FRANCE, GERMANY AND OTHER PARTS OF THE WORLD AND YOU KNOW YOUR ARE GETTING A QUALITY BUILT BIKE AND AT THE SAME PRICE!!!!!!!!
[Reply]
  • + 1
 they should aim the bike to be on the affordable side. too many high-end dh bikes that no one can afford as it is. make something for 3 or 4 g's so more kids can get the fresh components on the hill!
[Reply]
  • + 4
 Finally they have changed the design a bit.
  • + 8
 you just said it, a bit
  • + 0
 yeah, its kinda like the Session... without the full floater, and more expensive.. rubbish
  • + 6
 well the session was basically a smaller stab
  • + 6
 yeah cosmetically it's different, geo was already dialed on the stab, suspension was good/reliable, and yeah they got the weight down..
  • + 7
 I own currently 2 KONAS and I love them! I don't understand the hate, but I guess if I were 15 I would worry about people neg proping me here on pinkbike. I cant wait to add one of these to my stable! O....and I dont get how the headtube looks weak at all..looks like they only improved it to me.
  • + 1
 Chancho19 i currently own a kona bass and i love it and i liked my friends stinky, but as for the headtube did you even look at it? I really dont think that it is beefy enough to launch off of some 20 foot drops or rip down a race course and come out in one piece... but i guess we will have to wait and see.
  • + 1
 how does it not look strong enough its just taperd or wut ever just looks diferent if anythign i think it will ride nicer
  • + 0
 I dont get all this headtube hating, now companies have started internally gusseting and butting their headtubes so that they dont have to look beefy and ugly for them to still be strong. I personally think that if Kona have done this on the new Operator then I would have no worries about them at all. Just my pennies worth.
  • + 4
 @dougierandom - Its not more expensive at all far from it. If Kona keep their prices dollar for pound then the lower spec DH Bike will be not far off 2k RRP, the basic spec Session 88 is 2.9k RRP, thats almost another 1k, so you could either buy the Kona, a new helmet, an enter a whole seasons worth of uplifts or races - or buy the Trek, I know which one I would choose. Also the ABP aint gonna make the difference between winning a race or coming second, for most people concerned about price it wont even mean the difference between coming 49th or 50th.
  • + 1
 Is it just me or does that wheel base look enormous?
[Reply]
  • + 1
 i just ordered the FR should be here in a few days. a lot of great bike for the price i got it for.
i'll let you guys know what its like Big Grin
[Reply]
  • + 1
 I love my 09 stab, i dont run the floating brake on it, feels better without imo. Im loving the operator even more! Start saving!
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  • + 1
 it looks nice, but that massive gurder they are using for the linkage looks bad, kona have used the same linkage on every bike they have made, maybe time to break the mould
[Reply]
  • + 1
 no it doesnt, none of them 'need' the floater. My stab works awesome without it, i actually went out of the way to removed mine
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  • + 3
 This bike is stirring up alot of debate! Publicity props to Kona.
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  • + 1
 Norco triangle with Banshee chain stays means hold onto your receipts at least they have a great warranty and the rentals are flogged cheaper than any Norco
[Reply]
  • + 2
 Nothing wrong with a Kona, it's not what you ride but how you ride it! I'll be buying one as soon as there available.
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  • + 1
 $7000 Woow i would neeed to save up for like 10 years to get it. But the Kona Operator FR is something i wouuld be willing to save up for.
[Reply]
  • + 1
 the area, just after the headtube, looks very much prone to cracking. the tubing dia is too thin. maybe its got more wall thickness. btw the polished frame looks hot !
[Reply]
  • + 1
 I got to ride a prototype in RAW color, and it looked much much better IMO, will Kona offer a RAW color option, does anyone know?
[Reply]
  • + 3
 Kona's finally got their shit together. Yippy Skippy.
[Reply]
  • + 3
 hot damn, Kona is stepping it up!
[Reply]
  • + 1
 3.9 in. headtube on a small and a 4.7 inch headtube on the lg. is it just me, or is that pretty short for a dh rig?
  • + 1
 the crowns of the fork look insanely close to each other!
[Reply]
  • + 2
 Props to kona for stepping it up.
[Reply]
  • + 2
 why is Joe Smith still racing the World Cup on a Kona Stab?
[Reply]
  • + 1
 wow, the could at least get the cable lengths out front looking decent for the press photos
[Reply]
  • + 1
 They look really good, now they just need to give to the Operator FR some kick ass colors.
  • - 1
 they do look good, but i much prefer the look of the frame with triple clamps
  • + 2
 even though the frames are the same
[Reply]
  • + 2
 looks good, but still need floater...
[Reply]
  • + 1
 I'm sure it's a good bike but......

Intense M9!


PS: The polished look is great. Like Lapierre or Honda.
[Reply]
  • + 1
 wow the lower spec operator is available for 2500 euros in austria
www.jehlebikes.de/kona-operator-dh-2011.html
[Reply]
  • + 2
 love it!! cant wait to see the rest of the line up
[Reply]
  • + 1
 it looks more and more like norco every year. not a bad thing tho. i like how theyre switching it up
[Reply]
  • + 1
 Hmmmmm...operator or M9? Or Lapierre, or TR450, just way too much $ for that bike
[Reply]
  • + 1
 WELL DONE KONA!!! Always a fan of the brand and especially a fan of this lineup
[Reply]
  • + 1
 I think it looks pretty damn nice. Sure wouldn't buy one but they seem to be heading in the right direction.
[Reply]
  • + 2
 Looks like kona finally stepped it up.
[Reply]
  • + 0
 Big price difference between the Supreme and the FR. I'm guessing there will be an Operator Delux on offer? I'd like to see the specs/weight of that bike.
[Reply]
  • + 2
 It seems to be a great bike Wink
[Reply]
  • + 1
 cosmetically better, but still the same bike that they have made for nearly a decade or more.
[Reply]
  • + 1
 i think it looks a little like a trek! its pretty nice actually but way way way too much for the complete
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  • + 1
 wow. kona comeback! never liked them before, but this is sick! have to try it out next year in whistler!
[Reply]
  • + 1
 dude why does most of the bikes these days look the same, i want something that does the extrodinary
[Reply]
  • + 1
 nice movement from kona changing a lil bit the design!
[Reply]
  • - 1
 If they want almost 7 grand for that they can shove that up thier ass.... The new m9 is that much coplete and way sexxier....
  • + 6
 That's what to do. Buy every bike based on how it looks. Stop being superficial and realise that you never pay RRP on a bike anyway.
  • + 3
 But that's what all the kids are doing Monstrous. Never ride a bike, but hate it.
[Reply]
  • + 1
 the lower spec one in blue is 2500 euros in austria apparently
[Reply]
  • + 0
 That teeny tiny headtube junction looks like a weak point to me. Just my 2 cents.
  • + 3
 e-engineering at its best
[Reply]
  • + 1
 looks sick, wish i could get one like
  • + 1
 Ugly maybe, but looks like pure function to me. My props to kona for building something made to be ridden without any care for beauty sleep!
[Reply]
  • + 1
 i think they need a top of the line FR version aswell
[Reply]
  • + 1
 THAT THINGs ISS SOOO UGLY
[Reply]
  • + 2
 that frames well ugly Frown
[Reply]
  • + 1
 konas are finally looking better
[Reply]
  • + 0
 wow, dialed geometry, good looking(compared to the stab/stinky), light, and probably cheap. Nice work Kona, impressed.
  • + 2
 probalbly cheap???? didnt you read at all? MSRP $$6599 CAD, is this cheap with that spec? i dont think so
  • + 2
 yeah missed that.. $6599 is pretty nuts considering a tr450 build is $4956..
  • + 1
 Demo 8II= $5500
  • + 2
 Yeah compare the parts kit on that tr450 build to full Saint. Please. The Tr450 parts kit is ok, but thats just not a fair comparison.
  • + 1
 no kidding. and with konas reputation, they should al least give the consumer incentive to purchase one....giNt provides a better frame with better spwc for much less. now tell me which one you would buy?
  • + 0
 What? Show me the bike your talking about with a BETTER spec for less money. Im honestly curious.
  • + 1
 Jamis Dakar BAM 2, pretty much equal spec to the Kona, and $5475: www.jamisbikes.com/usa/thebikes/fullsuspension/dakarbam/10_dakarbam2.html
  • + 1
 You are correct sir. That is really a pretty good deal for that Jamis.
  • - 1
 OR your lazy ass can google itself
  • + 1
 Why do you little sh*t's always resort to name calling. Im just discussing here, YOU are being a dick.
[Reply]
  • + 1
 so cool a polished fr bike !!!!!
[Reply]
  • + 1
 this is just not my cup of tea
[Reply]
  • + 1
 kona has steped up there game, and make a slick bike
[Reply]
  • + 1
 sounds like a transformer.
[Reply]
  • + 1
 :'(... Its...to...*sniff sniff*...pretty....
[Reply]
  • + 1
 i just orderd my oporator fr cant wait
[Reply]
  • + 2
 konas lookin up!
[Reply]
  • + 1
 reminds me of the realy old stab deluxe think its the 02 yrar one
[Reply]
  • - 3
 a revised stab frame? looks like the same sh*t in a different pile to me. other than catching up on what other companies are doing innovating ie. swoopy tubes (which despite the general consensus on PB serves very positive benefits), tapered headtube, oversized bearings, internal chainstay routing, clamping drop outs.

It is still fundamentally the same ol' KONA platform that will still Jack up without the floating break. but when it comes down to looks, KONA has it in the bag. they must have some very talented graphic designers on there team.
  • + 1
 Agreed. Dropping the floating brake without changing the suspensions design in order to save weight? How's that going to affect the ride when you're hammering through the rocks and roots and the back tire's bouncing all over the place? I'll be on one next year and I'll be riding the shit outa it but I am a bit concerned about the brake jack... Stoked for a lighter bike though!
[Reply]
  • + 1
 ugh, chrome frames always end up looking reminiscent of Walmart bikes
[Reply]
  • + 1
 anyone know how much it'll be just for frame
[Reply]
  • + 1
 too expensive, and am i the only person who thinks it looks way too long?
[Reply]
  • + 1
 i still dont like the seatpost tube above the shock
[Reply]
  • + 1
 They remind me of the Trek Sessions.
[Reply]
  • + 0
 i had an 08 konastinky and i hated it to heavy to clunky but theese look nice
[Reply]
  • + 2
 looks like a Kona.
  • + 1
 ... not such a bad thing ...
[Reply]
  • + 0
 the headtube seems too short.
  • + 3
 Shorter headtube is better imho not worse. If you want higher bars you can always do it with stem/bar combo but lowering them is harder.
  • + 0
 pjrmtb31, how could a short head tube possibly be a bad thing?
  • - 1
 a longer headtube means you can beef-up that area a little bit more, and THAT can't possibly be a bad thing. especially on a dh rig... especially on a KONA dh rig.
  • + 1
 Properly designed headtube can still work and be short. My banshee headtube is rather short and its still in place Wink
[Reply]
  • - 1
 the prototype i saw of it looked much nicer, must say im pretty disappointed.
[Reply]
  • + 0
 i thought it was the 2010 giant glory when i first saw it.
[Reply]
  • + 1
 Can't wait to try it!
[Reply]
  • + 1
 holly sh*/-*
[Reply]
  • + 1
 i want the free ride one
[Reply]
  • + 1
 sweet dude !!!!!!
[Reply]
  • + 1
 really nice bike
[Reply]
  • + 1
 hello trek session
[Reply]
  • + 0
 i mean like different in feel
  • + 2
 How would anybody know.
[Reply]
  • + 0
 The operator looks awesome in chrome.

But the headtube badge? hmmm
[Reply]
  • + 0
 Reminds me of a trek scratch, a bit pricey tho
[Reply]
  • + 0
 nice session 88! wait a minute...
[Reply]
  • + 0
 looks like a trek session 88.
[Reply]
  • - 1
 The dh one looks good but is it really that much different from the stab?
  • + 3
 yea it is really different
[Reply]
  • + 0
 still need floater...
[Reply]
  • - 2
 I think we're gonna see a hell of a lot of snapped headtubes appearing on here in 2011.
  • + 2
 One of the designers were you?
  • + 3
 No, not at all. You are quite right though, I should keep prejudices out of this. It does look like a brilliant frame; much better looking than previous years. But like the majority of people on this website, I cannot justify anything until I have ridden the bike for an extended period of time. I like the look of it, only I think in my opinion that the tubes leading up to the headtube look too small.
[Reply]
  • - 2
 1. Still a kona.
2. 6500$!?!?!?!?! O_O
3. I could get a decent bike for that price.
4. Cool designs for 2011.
[Reply]
  • - 2
 its a kona.. eh.
  • + 1
 yeah. it looks nicer though...
[Reply]
  • - 3
 looks like the headtube would break only by looking at it!!!
[Reply]
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