2017 Pinkbike Awards - Mountain Bike of the Year Nominees

Dec 7, 2017
by Pinkbike Staff  
PB Awards


Mountain Bike of the Year Nominees


Choosing the bike of the year is always a tricky proposition, a guaranteed source of controversy and contention no matter what make and model emerges as the winner. We published nearly 40 long-term bike reviews in 2017 – that's a lot of new bikes to pick from, a selection that includes everything from shorter-travel, trail machines all the way to downhill race bikes. Even making it to the final round is a feat in and of itself, and plenty of heated debates sprung up when it was time to narrow down the list to the five finalist listed below.

Who will emerge victorious? Transition's Patrol Carbon took the crown in 2016, but you’ll need to wait a little longer to find out this year's winner. In the meantime, read on to find out exactly why these five bikes were nominated for the Pinkbike's 2017 Mountain Bike of the Year.










Why it's nominated

The updated Norco Sight may not be breaking any new ground as far as aesthetics go, but wild looks aren't a requisite to be considered for bike of the year. With 130mm of rear travel and 29” wheels the Sight sight sits in a category where the competition is fierce and the expectations are high for both climbing and descending. The Sight delivers on both fronts, with excellent traction and easygoing manners that make it well-suited for everything from long, cross-country rides to diving into rougher, steeper terrain.

It wouldn’t be unreasonable to consider calling the Sight into duty for an enduro race or two either – its build kit is certainly up to the task, and on the right course it could be a worthy contender. Norco also deserve props for using different chainstay lengths depending on the frame size, preserving the bike's well-balanced nature even on larger sizes.

From the review:

bigquotesWith the Sight, there's only one thing you really need to remember: this bike is all about fun. Uphill, downhill, and everything in between, the Sight C 9.2 is an all-mountain bike in the truest sense, with the right angles and parts for it to excel almost anywhere. Mike Kazimer






Why it's nominated

The 2017 Slash actually emerged at the tail end of 2016, but our long-term review aired in 2017, which puts the red speed-demon in the running for Bike of the Year. It's that unabashed need for speed that helped cement the 29”-wheeled Slash's nomination – this is one fast bike, a purebred enduro race machine if there ever was one.

With 150mm of rear travel, a slack, 65-degree head angle and a stiff, full carbon frame the Slash excels in the steeps, but remains manageable when it's time to climb back up for another lap. Trek's Knock-Block feature, which prevents the fork from smacking into the frame when the handlebars are turned past a certain angles, did raise a few eyebrows when it debuted, but it didn't cause any trouble out on the trail. More than anything, the Slash helped usher in the next generation of 29ers, and there's no doubt that we'll be seeing even longer and slacker options hit the market in the near future.

From the review:

bigquotesIf you have the terrain and the confidence to fully take advantage of the Slash's potential, it's a potent weapon out on the trail, and one of the best descending longer travel 29ers currently on the market. Mike Kazimer








Why it's nominated

Mini-DH, freeride; no matter what you call it, the Supreme SX is a formidable machine. It's basically a pedal-friendly version of Commencal's Supreme DH 4.0 downhill bike, with the same high, single-pivot design and seatstay-mounted, idler pulley. The Supreme SX's looks make it stand out from the sea of cookie-cutter frame shapes out there, but they aren't just for show. On the trail the Supreme SX is nearly silent, and with 180mm of rear travel there isn't much out there that will slow its forward progress. Want an even longer and slacker ride? The straight 1.5” head tube makes it possible to adjust the geometry by swapping out headset cups.

Add to all of that the fact that Commencal's consumer-direct model allows them to offer an outstanding value and you have one solid contender for Bike of the Year.


From the review:

bigquotesA 'downhill bike that you can pedal' is oft-touted, but the Supreme SX is a real brute on the descents with good enough capability on the climbs, if you're not against the clock. Paul Aston









Why it's nominated

Cannondale have always marched to a slightly different beat, but the latest iteration of the Jekyll may be the most conventional-looking version of that model yet. There's no Lefty to be seen, with a 170mm Fox 36 taking the place of the conversation-starting, one-legged fork. Of course, it wouldn't be a Cannondale without at least a couple unique touches, and in this case it's the bike's adjustable travel (a bar-mounted lever is used to choose between 130 and 165mm of travel) and an asymmetric rear end that make it stand out.

But it's the 27.5" Jekyll's handling that truly earned it the nomination – with a generous reach and stubby chainstays the Jekyll is a riot to ride, a bike that can be pulled up into a manual at the blink of an eye, yet still possesses enough stability for racing and bike park usage.

From the review:

bigquotesForget all of the acronyms and techno babble surrounding the Jekyll – this is a bike that likes to goof off, to drift around tight corners, manual at any chance, and generally cause a ruckus out on the trails. Mike Kazimer








Why it's nominated

Santa Cruz released both the new Nomad and the Hightower LT this year, but it's the Hightower LT that gets the nomination for bike of the year. With 150mm of travel, the LT has the chops to mix it up on the Enduro World Series, but at the end of the day it's more of an all-rounder rather than being purely focused on the podium. That's not a bad thing, though; most of us aren't lucky enough to have EWS-level descents in our backyards, which means that climbing performance can't be tossed completely out the window.

As Mike Kazimer wrote, “there are longer, slacker, and even stiffer bikes out there, but part of what makes the Hightower LT so fun is that it's not a demanding bike to ride.” Looking to get extra-rad? It's easy enough to toss on a longer-travel fork for extra smashing power up front, but out of the box the Hightower LT is raring to go, no matter which direction your ride takes you.

From the First Ride:

bigquotesThis is a bike that doesn't necessarily need to be fed a steady diet of steep, rowdy terrain to remain happy, although when the time comes to dive into the rough stuff it doesn't miss a beat. It's less of a specialist and more of a jack-of-all-trades, a versatile, extremely competent companion for just about every kind of riding Mike Kazimer




There you have it - the five finalists for this year's Bike of the Year. Carbon and aluminum are both represented, as are 27.5" and 29" wheels. The bikes do trend towards the more aggressive side of the spectrum, but they all have distinct personalities out on the trail. Which one will take the win? You'll have to wait until next week to find out.










266 Comments

  • + 276
 obligatory why didn't you include the bike i ride on that list???
  • + 269
 Because your bike sucks. How do you even stay upright on that 2 month old antique? What you need is the newest of the newer new school geo. .324mm here and .0273mm there and BAMM! You got yoself a bike thats more fun, stable, flickable, planted to the ground and poppy as hell. Get with it already, grandpa.
  • + 49
 @Boardlife69: If you don't already work in the bike industry, you're missing your calling. In fact, we should start a new bike company called "Unicorn Bikes" and we will offer a leasing program, so that way customers can always be paying for a bike...we just send them a "vastly improved" model every 2 or 3 years and sweet stickers (of unicorns of course). On the way to Kickstarter now.
  • + 31
 @jackalope: Thats a great idea. Then we can sell the old bikes off as "Vintage" and watch the hipsters fight over them. Thats how I sell all my old junk. I recently made $360 for a "Vintage jock strap, slight yellowing due to vintage patina, looks great on man buns or beards".
  • + 75
 Each of the carbon bikes is pictured by the large body of water. Aluminium bike on the other hand isn’t. Coincidence? I don’t think so. Make ethical choice people!
  • + 7
 @Boardlife69: We're going to make so much $$$. Btw, I really like how you cleverly used the term "man buns", as it could really appeal to all sorts of potential customers. I've actually been noticing several sh!t bikes dumped into local streams, so I will start extracting these, removing the brakes (obviously) and spray painting the chain a bright color. Easy money!
  • - 2
 @jackalope: if you’ll be making carbon bikes remember to store used nuclear fuel in workers cantina and flush at least 10 new born kittens per week.
  • - 8
flag enrico650 (Dec 7, 2017 at 14:20) (Below Threshold)
 Interesting, you only listed two 27.5 bikes which aren't very popular.
Why the Nukeproof mega 275 wasn't nominated? It just won the EWS championship .
I wonder why?
  • + 53
 @enrico650: The bike didn't win the EWS, the rider did.
  • + 4
 @jackalope: You jest but I recon that is a million dollar idea right there!
  • + 1
 @arrowheadrush: It's the Indian, not the arrow... seems appropriate/
  • + 23
 @jackalope: I prefer the term "twat knot" over "man bun". I least that's what I tell my son with one. Now get off my lawn!
  • + 2
 Hey @adrennan, @Boardlife69 meant to say your bike is not long, low, and slack enough.
  • + 2
 @arrowheadrush: Still ,the bike is affordable with a simple suspension design. A worthy contender.
  • + 2
 @WAKIdesigns: I just realized with all the talk about dumping carbon waste in the ocean you should research carbon boats! They get put in the ocean too.
  • + 1
 Regardless of that, why isn't there a wallgoose on that list
  • + 3
 @Monstertruckermotherfuker: ahahahahahha, oh thanks for that laugh Big Grin
  • + 0
 @enrico650: Do you really "wonder why"? Its a Nukeproof! It took one of the best riders of all time to win on it! Sam's fast on anything... I think bike handling and line choices and proper fitness won the EWS, not the MEGA!
  • + 7
 @enrico650, the Mega 275 Carbon is a 2018 model. We have one in for a long term review - keep an eye out for that in the coming months.
  • + 1
 @WAKIdesigns: Maybe the water is a montage to make us think about all the carbon fiber waste that will be polluting our oceans for next eon.
  • + 4
 @joni0001984: posts like this makes me want to put my carbon bike into the lake and troll the sht out of internet. If someone thinks he saves planet by buying a non carbon bike, we are doomed indeed. Go through your daily activity for a month, products you buy, wear on you, eat - how picky are you about where they come from, how they are made? What’s in them? This is what Leo doesn’t understand, it’s not all about him and Pole, he started a shit storm and disinformed a giant bit of MTB population making them
Feel that buying an alu frame is An environmentally sound choice by default. And every single bike manufacturer who knows how to make bikes will prove him wrong immediately in case of confrontation. Like Cesar Rojo did. All he needed to do was to post a few pics on instagram if he truly wants to raise awareness. It’s a small world, many would reshare it, just like awesome dudes at sick bicycle did. But instead he had to incorporate it into their marketing campaign.

Why am I so pissed off about it?! Because such behavior creates more “f*ck it” people and misinformed people putting efforts into wrong places with best of intentions, than it does good.
  • + 1
 @jackalope:

only every two or three years?
  • + 63
 Wait...no 2009 giant trance on the list? That was my bike of the year!!
  • + 9
 Ha, the 2017 version honestly is a really great, well tuned all round bike. Then again, so is pretty much every bike on the market...
  • + 2
 @mnorris122: yeah it is, test rode the new Trance and it's good! Problem is my wallet doesn't agree...
  • + 46
 Picking 'Bike of the Year' is a fun thing to think about but the reality is there are too many great bikes available to pick just one.
  • + 9
 and extremely style dependent.
  • + 3
 Agreed, at this point in the game there's just too many to choose from. With that said all of them perform so well, it's just about what you can afford and what you like
  • + 5
 exactly there are as many bike of the year acticles as the are bikes of the year, which does say a lot
  • + 42
 At least niner is out.




Ouch.


Too soon?
  • + 11
 @onemind123: if they come back as Sixer you’ll be biting your tongue off
  • - 11
flag MrDiamondDave (Dec 7, 2017 at 16:24) (Below Threshold)
 Where is the E bike ...??????


Ebikes Ebikes Ebikes Ebikes
  • + 41
 No Ellsworth?
  • + 132
 You can't nominate Ellsworth bikes for awards. If you do Tony will appear on your sofa and start drinking your beer. Then he'll tell you it's your fault the fridge is empty and sell your house to an investment group from California.
  • + 13
 @Fix-the-Spade: Gold, Jerry, gold!
  • - 8
flag rumblefish255 (Dec 7, 2017 at 22:44) (Below Threshold)
 I’m not a fan of Ellsworth myself. But these bikes are nominated as bike of the year because somebody from each of these companies paid off the right people. None of these bikes are that great. Such as the Cannondale for example. I rode one of those the other day. It was positively the worst feeling bike I ever threw a leg over. And none of the rest are that impressive either. None of these bikes are actually the best bike of the year. Just the best financial backing.
  • + 1
 @rumblefish255: So enlighten us as to what the best bike is? Please say an ebike
  • - 7
flag rumblefish255 (Dec 8, 2017 at 7:50) (Below Threshold)
 @Rooster09: depends on rider preference. Do you want a progressive feel in your suspension or linear? Bikes are very personal preference. I’m not sayIn these are bad bikes with the exception of the Cannondale. That bike is very progressive in the initial stroke then becomes more linear in the mid to end. Exact opposite of what you should aim for. My point is there are allot of bikes that deserve to be on this list just as much if not more. But they are not here because they didn’t pay the right person off.
  • + 2
 @rumblefish255:

So of the 40 bikes PB did long term reviews on this year, which would you include?

That’s the pool of candidates. They can’t recommend a bike they didn’t do a long term review of.

For sure tho most of these aren’t very mainstream with the exception of the HTLT and Slash.
  • - 3
 Of the bikes they have done long term reviews on I would say the Devinci spartan. The Devinci has great suspension. It is very linear in the initial stroke of the travel and becomes more progresive towards the end. Also the Rocky Mountain Slayer is very similar in characteristic. Main notable difference I found was the Devinci had better control under braking since the rear pivot is on the axle the braking forces are independent of the suspension. And I have also ridden every other bike in this list of nominees not just the Cannondale. I have also done custom suspension tuning on each too. I am very familiar with how each of these bikes suspension linkages and leverage ratios work. And from that experience those are some of the things I have found. @WasatchEnduro:
  • + 36
 The Poly Square One seems like it should have made the list too!
  • + 2
 they probably dont have enough ride time yet. as they point out, the slash was released last year but the review for it was this year.
  • + 1
 Yep agreed
  • + 4
 The technology is innovative, but we'd really like to see it resolved in a different format. A 130mm 29er with that system would be incredibly compelling.
  • + 3
 that bike is fuckin ugly
  • + 3
 Had the Polygon look like a Session instead of a failed NASA experiment then it would be on this list for sure.
  • + 27
 As a SantaCruz fanboi and owner, I think the HTLT isn't a great bike of the year choice. It's an awesome bike, but it's not terribly new as it uses the same front triangle from the normal HT and not terribly innovative as it doesn't push the envelope of long travel 29ers. I think the Nomad would be a better choice.
  • + 5
 Agreed. Its not really a new bike, more a spare parts frankenbike
  • + 30
 I wouldn't trade last year's bike of the year for any two of these.
  • + 3
 Damn Skippy! Tranny Patrol all the way!
  • + 30
 The bike of the year is that 6.3 Kg Scott Scale honestly!
  • + 7
 "Bike of the year" is the guys thighs who built the Scott Scale Wink
  • + 1
 @nwtoney55: right, i made a poster of that....ah, for my lil sister
  • + 23
 Apparently if you paint your bike yellow it becomes the bike of the year
  • + 21
 What about the Proflex 752?
  • + 7
 only if it has the Girvin fork!
  • + 3
 You better be referring to the elastomer version. Coil springs front & rear... Pffffft! You need rubber to get a real bounce!
  • + 17
 Sees title of post, grabs popcorn, scrolls to comments...
  • + 16
 My bike never stands upright on its own, so these must all be magic
  • + 11
 Shouldn't this be called "Enduro bike of the year" because mtb of the year seems far fetched when there are no xc or dh mtbs to be seen. Surly the enduro bikes aren't the only revolutionary things this year shit treks have looked the same for how many years now so all it takes is putting some dumb design like not being able to spin your bars is revolutionary?
  • + 1
 Since XC is basically dead, and no innovative DH bike was released besides the Commencal that is nominated here, the only other category possible is Trail. The list actually has two trail bikes that can handle the rougher and steeper terrain, which is probably why they are nominated in the firat place. Another bike is an enduro rig that can transform into a trail bike and the final nominee is the only outright enduro race machine that got a nod.
  • + 1
 @Rubberelli: so did you forget about norcos new dh sled that was completely redesigned. Xc is far from dead just because you know nothing of the sport doesn't mean its dead.
  • + 3
 XC riders are wimps and DH riders are lazy. Thus when you talk about real mtb you are talking about enduro, the real riders.
  • + 2
 @mhoshal: the Norco prototype that hasn't been released, let alone reviewed by Pinkbike? Many brands don't even make an XC model any longer and the ones that do haven't changed them in years making it hard to have a competive choice for best new XC bike.
  • + 2
 @Bunabe: have you ever spent a full day trying your hardest at a bike park? It's really exhausting, same with pushing an 18kg or more bike uphill for another run.
  • + 1
 @Bunabe: I don't know, I'm pretty sure ripping your lungs out and hammering your legs for hours during an XC race doesn't make you a "wimp".... and I'm pretty sure Nino would wreck most of us in any biking discipline he chooses.... however I will agree that looking at XC bikes is like looking at dirt.
  • + 12
 My nominations (in no particular order):
Specialized Enduro Öhlins coil 29
Santa Cruz Nomad
Polygon XquarOne
Pole Evolink 140
Pivot Firebird
Nicolai G15, G16, G19
Mondraker Dune
Nukeproof Mega Carbon
  • + 13
 nothing much of interest I must be well off trend
  • + 14
 Good picks this year!
  • + 12
 Evil Calling? Yet SB5.5? Canyon Spectral? Transition Patrol?

No? None of these?!
  • + 4
 No kidding. I would be hard pressed to think the Patrol wouldn't win two years in a row. I am a bit biased however
  • - 10
flag cunning-linguist (Dec 7, 2017 at 12:29) (Below Threshold)
 @RBalicious: but it's the same frame as the trek and, well, almost every other bike out there! Just a 4 bar, only the angles and marketing are up to date! No idea how they manage to charge so much for such simple bikes!
  • + 4
 @cunning-linguist: But it isn't. Yes, linkage is the same, and that is where my observed similarities end. Have you ridden one? Fun factor is an 11 out of 10
  • + 2
 @cunning-linguist: i would not describe the evil, trek, yeti as 4-bar layouts.
  • + 3
 @adrennan: you've missed the point, not the yeti or evil, but just look at how many bikes have the same layout.

And to the bloke above, yes thanks, ridden three of them and they feel like a bike. Like most of them. Just like a bike...
  • + 2
 @cunning-linguist: You sound like some grandma who tries a Lotus and shrugs "feels like a car, what?"
  • - 3
 @bishopsmike: okay let's put this into context: I Drive a 2002, have had loads of classics, Austin Healey's the lot. Have also driven Marcos, Lotus Elan S1 etc... and I totally understand character my friend...

But the Transition bikes are just the same as loads of other bikes all bar a few mm here and there, lots of money for old tech. The Commencal is way ahead of it...
  • + 1
 @cunning-linguist: BMW 2002?

Do we really want our bikes to be too characterful? You would't want the rear to fly out and throw you into the undergrowth like an old 911, for eg. Neutral and predictable is a good basis for any kind of riding no?
  • - 2
 @BenPea: yes, a BMW 2002.

And I agree that it will help with bikes, but that isn't my point!

I'm saying I understand character as I was being slanted on about that, my beef is with why people pay for a Chinese parts bin bike with almost industry standard frame parts and some different marketing.

My words are obviously lost somehow. Put simply, how are Transition so expensive for such a simple and copied design...
  • + 2
 @cunning-linguist: I wouldn't leave perfectly valid points lying around, they have a tendency to vanish.
  • + 2
 @BenPea: goodies! You get me!!! :-)

Yeah, they do, basically PB will look after whoever pays the bills. Same for us all though, it's how industries work!! Lol
  • + 11
 The trek should be disqualified based on the amount of warranties they had.
  • + 8
 And all the vw adds we had to see
  • + 5
 Oh, do you have the data to back that up?
  • + 6
 @FisherFreerider: I broke a front triangle in three days. Another guy I know broke one in about three weeks.

I don't doubt it.
  • - 6
flag FisherFreerider (Dec 7, 2017 at 13:44) (Below Threshold)
 @AgrAde: So you smashed them in to something? Got it.
  • + 6
 @FisherFreerider: what I know is that allot of folks in Squamish and Whistler didn't get a full summer of riding due to waiting on warranty frames.
  • + 8
 @AgrAde: I object your honor; Subjective. I have had my 9.8 for a full race season and successfully beat the piss out of it, blowing 2 shocks and ran a coil that voided the warranty and destroyed the stock wheels and still haven't broken the frame on it yet. And none of the 4 of them I sold have had any issues at all. The one 2018 I have sold on the other hand.... what a nightmare.
  • + 2
 @FisherFreerider: Nope, main rocker bearing blew out the front of the seat tube.
  • + 1
 @The-mnt-life365: coil voided warranty? There’s your problem: choosing a bike from a company that doesn’t warranty a bike if you put a real shock on it.
Politics aside, can we refer to bikes as snowflakes?
  • + 1
 I was also very surprised to see a Trek in the running for bike of the year. Until recently I had a 2011 Remedy 9 that had broken 2 chainstays. I now have a 2016 Slash 9.8 that in a year has already broken 2 chainstays (leading to multiple weeks off the bike). I have a couple friends who have also broken their Trek chainstays and a friend who broke their rocker link. I also have a friend who has cracked a 2017 Slash front triangle just in front of the bottom bracket. Come to think of it, I don't know many people with Trek who haven't had to warranty something. I've always loved Trek and how they feel but this is starting to really concern me and has me wondering what's going on with Trek? (On my '16 Slash this year I've also had to warranty my Pike fork, Monarch Plus shock, Bontrager wheel, DT Swiss EX471 rim, and Sram GX cassette.)
  • + 11
 @SoCal-AM: the fact that you have had to warranty the frame and Pike fork, Monarch Plus shock, Bontrager wheel, DT Swiss EX471 rim, and Sram GX cassette makes me think you need a new (more durable) hobby. That is a helluva lotta broken shit in one year.
  • + 1
 @erikkellison: Dude I know i'm saying!! It isn't my fault that treks cable routing looks like it was done by patchy the pirate with a wet drill. Who the heck makes cables come out of the frame exactly in the path of your oil can?!
  • + 9
 Trek Slash? Come on! That bike has 2 massive engineering fails. The knock block...total fail, and the whack ass seat tube. Yeti SB 5.5 or the Orbea Rallon would have been a better selection.
  • + 10
 Where is the Rocky Mountain Slayer ?
  • + 6
 Same question here !
My friends calls it the "cheater biker" 'cause it climbs too well for the amount of travel it has..

I do agree with the nomination of the SX though.. That bike blew my mind when I took it for a spin at crankworkx..
  • - 7
flag Golden-G (Dec 7, 2017 at 18:12) (Below Threshold)
 That bike sucks.
  • - 2
 Worst bike ever. Totally sucks more than any other bike has ever sucked before. It sucks so much that you sucks don't even know how much it sucks.
  • + 10
 The Sight is awesome!!!
  • + 1
 I actually crossed the Sight off my list based on the 650b model, it seems to me like they should be two separate models. The 29er sight is like 10mm longer and only 1/2 degree less slack, so effectively much more aggressive than the 650b?
I had to go look just now, I was wondering why it was rated here, when I'd ignored it
  • + 1
 Have you ridden it? I've ridden the fuel ex, and on paper it looks identical. Thoughts?
  • + 1
 @hamncheez: me?
No, I didn't even look at it, because on the 650 Sight for the seattube length I can use, I'd have the same reach as my old bike. I was wrong to think the Sight would be similar across wheelsizes. Turns out that the 29 may have been good
  • + 1
 @andrew9: Norco uses shorter stems on the 29ers so they make the reach slightly longer.
  • + 7
 No SBG Transitions? Sentinel already reviewed so it would qualify. That new fork offset doesn't rate high enough on the improvement-meter to get a nomination?
  • + 2
 hard to win bike of the year when there really aren't any of them out in the wild yet...
  • + 2
 Bit of a late release, but agreed. The Sentinel looks to be THE bike for 2018.
  • + 2
 @RobKong: I've seen atleast two Sentinels out and about.
  • + 2
 Yeah but it wasn’t a long term review which is a qualifier to be considered.

Next year will be very interesting tho. I’ll bet the Sentinel makes the list. I’d love to demo one! Ridiculous!
  • + 4
 I think I've gotta go Cannondale here. Rad looking bike, a bit less of the "gimmicks" (whether they work or not aside), and versatile. I also like the Commencal, that's a cool bike too. Not to say the others aren't... I guess I just like things that are a little bit outside the common box.
  • + 4
 I've got the cannondale (one spec lower than the one pictured) and it's pretty awesome. Super fun an playful, but is still very capable and goes fast if you want it to. Definitely the best bike I've ever owned, but that's not saying too much
  • + 6
 No Wreckoning, but I suppose PB would have to review it first. It dusts the Slash (and the Rallon for that matter) in the big 29er sweepstakes and is a better deal too.
  • + 5
 Well said!!! Couldn’t agree more!
  • + 5
 Unless you climb your bike ever
  • + 6
 @slo-town-cyclist: I climb with mine all the time as it is my daily driver. It is the fastest bike I've ever ridden both and down. I've demoed the Slash, the Rallon and the Enduro and none of them climb any better, but the Wrecker destroys all of them descending.
  • + 7
 For reals. Does anyone have an actual answer why PB constantly gives Evil the cold shoulder (or Evil to PB)? Seattle is just a stones throw away from Squamish yet zero bikes reviewed. This despite the constant comments from readers on basically any thread of any kind. Like I’m pretty sure even that nerd fest of a post on Vorsprung suspension tuning probs has some guy yammering on about a Wreckoning this or a Wreckoning that lol
  • + 3
 @Deanosuar: Because that is what VitalMTB is for.
  • + 1
 @slo-town-cyclist: mine climbs really well and I have a 170mm fork on the front. Faster than some of the hardtail xc guys.
  • + 1
 @nocker: depends on how much u need to extend the seattube. For tall guys like me it does not climb well...if u care about that which i don't.
  • + 2
 @nocker: where did you get a 170mm 29er fork?
  • + 2
 @hamncheez: You can get a Rock Shox Lyrik up to 180mm and the Suntour Durolux is 170mm.
  • - 1
 Wreckoning is a nice bike but it's not the most aesthetically pleasing to the eye. And no, it's not faster than a Slash on a Downhill Race given the same rider.
  • + 4
 @mikeyin19: Pump your brakes, kid. The Wreckoning is the most beautiful two wheeled, human powered machine since the 26" carbon Wilson
  • + 1
 @mikeyin19: try one out for a bit before making that judgement. You might just change your mind.
  • + 3
 @hellbelly: yep I have the 170mm lyric with the Mrp cartridge. Rides really nice!
  • + 7
 I'm giving the cannondale a thumbs up (even though it's sorta TRON"ish" looking) just shearly for dropping the stupid lefty.
  • + 2
 Great bike. However they are 165mm and 170mm up front, not what pb said haha.
  • + 7
 hmmm no Nomad? easily deserves to be on that list.
  • + 3
 that bump stop on the trek is effing stupid....i laughed my arse off when i saw the dogma xm had one and trek have one too. i love the rest of it but it needs to be dropped from the list for this alone. I know the reasons they made the front triangle this way but its honestly not needed. I dont see frames snapping at the headtube everywhere or people complaining about lack of stiffness. As i say other than that i really like it but we dont need "improvements" like this just to make a fast buck.
  • + 5
 But wait, I thought everyone loved YT. I do, I have one. And they pay Gwin enough to buy a Mclaren.
  • + 1
 I was expecting to see this: a href="http://www.mdebikes.com/it/new-carve/" target="_blank">MDE Carve/a>
or this maybe: a href="http://www.mdebikes.com/it/new-damper-29/" target="_blank">MDE Damper/a>
why can't WE vote the bike of the year?
  • + 6
 Where is the nomad????
  • + 0
 It's a 2018 model, duh
  • + 5
 Where's the new Kona Process???
  • + 3
 For all the "revolutionary" "MTB of the future" talk, the R3ACT to fUn or whatever it's called didn't make the list.... must not be that revolutionary after all......
  • + 3
 How about some bikes that weren't just reviewed by Kazimer? You have one by Aston, but I wonder if Levy, Felton, and RC feel the same.
  • + 13
 We do these awards as a team and argue it out endlessly. We're happy with our choices.
  • + 10
 @brianpark: So, Kazimer's the best at arguing then.
  • + 3
 @Fix-the-Spade: kazimer probably just calls dibs on all the fun bikes first.
  • + 5
 @brianpark: Once you guys come up with your choices do you sit around that big table and pretend to be the comments section? That must be fun as hell
  • + 4
 @brianpark: you should argue more.
  • + 3
 @Fix-the-Spade: he's out of control!

Really though, it's mostly that Kaz reviews the majority of our long-travel 29ers, which were the zeitgeist for 2017.
  • + 5
 @brianpark: You guys should kill two Pinkbike tropes with one stone. Do a dual review of the Following. Have Kaz do a review and then hand it off to RC, Felton or you to do part two. One does a Squamish review and the other does a Galbraith version. Same bike, same setup (dependent on size). No communication until after the fact.
  • + 1
 I bought a supreme sx and it really is almost silent...EXCEPT a tiny rock got into the frames chainstay...now all I hear when I ride down a trail is the rattle from this little rock...
  • + 1
 I rode the Jekyll's baby brother the Trigger at a demo. Wasn't bad. Little bit too much travel for what we have in my area, but it's fun bike. Geo was pretty spot on, but most are these days.
  • + 0
 Supreme SX: "The straight 1.5” head tube makes it possible to adjust the geometry by swapping out headset cups". Sorry, but with signle-crown TAPERED fork this is simply not true. I love this bike, but this 1.5 straight tube is only for commencal's convenience (they use same tubes as for DH bikes).
  • + 1
 Is it fair to point out that the Commencal Supreme is also nominated becouse its the first freeride bike in ages? i think that's what makes it stand out from the rest of the list.
  • + 1
 A friend bought the Trek Slash and he crashed because of little rock. I tried it and I missed my old Mondrakers. The rear suspension design should be okay, but that air front fork is b*lls.
  • + 3
 Hightower LT all the way! Well balanced, stable, corners like no other and fast, it needs 200mm rotors.
  • + 1
 Top of the table reads:

. P W L D Pts
North America. 5 4 1 0 12
Asia. 5 0 0 5 5
Europe. 5 1 3 1 4
  • + 4
 No gearbox bike?
  • + 4
 the deviate bike is too new so they wouldnt have had time for a review and i believe the zerode was a list of nominees in a previous year (and doesnt have much going for it besides the gearbox)
  • + 1
 @adrennan: I think he meant the one with the Effigear mentioned recently. Considering the PB comment section, the suspension action got people particularly excited.
  • + 1
 Pinkbike as always only has bike no one will ever be able to afford. Can they do a practical list that not dentists may be able to afford.
  • + 3
 Boring... last year had better nominees
  • + 3
 Quite surprised one of the new Transition SBGs aren't on the list...
  • + 1
 commencal or cannondale but if the orbea rallon was here i would vote for that on looks alone....although it is supposed to handle rather well too.
  • + 3
 So the best 2017 bikes are all red or yellow ! Easy to remember, thanks
  • + 2
 Any Norco owners out there experienced a snapped chainstay arm? I know of at least a few buddies who had that issue.
  • + 1
 I'm sure the Commecal rides great, but sweet Jebus that thing is fugly! Plus look at that saddle position, who rides like that!?
  • + 2
 Freeride will never die - but you might if you ride with that saddle tilted down like that
  • + 1
 @dazzyb Chris Porter folowers like Aston.
  • + 2
 How does this thing work? I'm curious which bikes were considered and not nominated.
  • + 5
 All the bikes we reviewed this year were considered.
  • + 2
 @brianpark: Thanks for clearing that up Smile . Surprised to see the new Kona Process, the Devinci Spartan, the Transition Sentinel, Rocky Mountain didn't make the cut. Actually there were so many others that whose reviews seemed pretty much undivided positive. So I guess it must have been tough.
  • + 1
 Has anyone ever cycled a Santa Cruz bike, without shock, through its travel? I am pretty sure they put sand in their bearings.
  • + 1
 Agreed! They are the worst bikes in the world.
  • + 1
 Well, I don't care about your nominees. My bike of the year is a Rocky Mountain Instinct BC. Sadly, I don't have the money to get one...
  • + 3
 What...not a single eBike made the grade?? Shocking!
  • + 2
 indeed....
  • + 2
 I’m still electrified
  • + 2
 I feel like the Knolly delirium is a better example for Freeride will never die... Shame Knolly doesn't get more attention
  • + 3
 Commy
  • + 11
 @nojzilla

That's a bit strong. There hasn't even been an investigation in to Russian collusion during the creation of the short list. Although there have been some suspicious Pinkbike accounts producing some real negative propaganda about the bike industry this year.
  • + 2
 @Dropthedebt: besides putin rides a Tranny
  • + 0
 @Dropthedebt: The Russians haven't claimed to be Communist since Yeltsin took over. I'd look at the North Koreans or the Cubans. The Cubans seem to be more into soundwave based annoying of the US more than anything, so the finger of blame goes to the Kim dynasty. Kim has colluded with IMBA to get America out of the wild and onto sidewalks and big name bikes.
  • - 1
 I love how butt hurt people get when someone disparages their favored bike choice.
PUBLIC NOTICE: people are different. It’s OK to have differing opinions. Just because you disagree doesn’t make them wrong.
  • + 2
 Oh my gawd how come there's no 26" bikes on there?
  • + 1
 i wish there was though lol..not to kill off the other sizes but for choice which is what the industry promised us all more choices and not an effort to kill of the 26.....oh well guess im still bitter lol. one day i will have to upgrade my 2013 meta sl1 and then i will have to pick.....29er will be the one.
  • + 1
 The Whyte s-150 had the most glowing review I've read on PB this year, but it's not on the list.
  • + 1
 Based on the reviews here and elsewhere, the HTLT would be my choice for a light big hitting bike. Gimme!
  • + 1
 We all have our opinions, but damn, to me this seems like a strange line up of bikes to compare for "Bike of the Year".
  • + 2
 3/2 in favour of 29ers

the end (of 650b) is nigh
  • + 2
 Bike of the year, every year, should be the Canfield EPO.
  • + 2
 Transition sentinel bike of the year hands down
  • + 1
 Where are Polygon Square One, Marin Wolf Ridge & Tantrum bikes?
The truly innovative bikes this 2017
  • + 3
 YT Capra?
  • + 3
 They did not pay PinkBike
  • + 7
 @femto505 @Matik777 it came out in 2015.
  • + 3
 POLYGON R3ACT
  • + 3
 P0ly1 Xquarun R3aq2 4 tha wyn
  • + 1
 @andrew9: hahahahahahahahaha yes!
  • + 3
 Polygon xquare pants
  • + 2
 wobbly swing arms and side loaded shock not great in my book.
  • + 1
 Where is a Pole bike? Maybe not that bling factor but a bike from riders! And affordable(and foldable????)
  • + 3
 No.
  • + 2
 Just ordered my new 18 Cannondale Jekyll and I could not be more stoked!
  • + 1
 Why not the "Juliana Strega"? A Nomad tuned to a smaller, lighter rider. I'm a male feministSmile
  • + 1
 I dont know if its some fancy photography but damn that Trek looks really good!
  • + 1
 No Marin Wolf Ridge?
No any Tantrum bike?
No sense then !!!!!
  • + 1
 Trek Slash... the best!!!!
  • + 1
 Evil Wreckoning out-performs both the Trek and SC.
  • + 1
 Where is the Scott Spark?
  • + 1
 So shocked that only big brand names were nominated
  • + 2
 exactly...
  • + 2
 Based on reviews posted on Pinkbike, would you be shocked if advertising dollars played a role in BOTY nominations?
  • + 5
 @erikkellison, I can assure you that advertising dollars have absolutely no relation to whether or not a bike is selected for BOTY.
  • + 1
 @mikekazimer: I want to believe you, but I’m sure you can understand based on the constantly glowing reviews of products on PB that there is concern that your reviews (and thus your nominations for annual product awards) might be biased.
Unfortunately, there is cause for concern, and really no way to prove lack of bias, but I appreciate your acknowledgement.
  • + 3
 @erikkellison, have you considered that there might be a lot of really good products on the market right now? When products have issues we call them out - there have been plenty of reviews that acknowledge the shortcomings and problems that we encountered. All of Pinkbike's editors work hard to present reviews that are based on real world experience, putting in countless hours of riding in all conditions in order to be as accurate as possible.
  • + 1
 When was the last time you guys said somthing was outright crap? Never have I seen an ad and somthings are just out right trash @mikekazimer:
  • + 1
 @freeridejerk888: we’ve had quite a few fairly critical reviews recently. The Durolux (that some other publications glowed about), the Rocky Mountain Altitude Powerplay, and the Yeti SB5c come to mind. We trend to testing good bikes because that’s what we want to ride (and our readers too), and we try to test bikes on what they were designed to do.
  • + 1
 No gearbox bike?


hehehe
  • + 0
 It's like choosing the car of the year from Audi, BMW or Mercedes. WOW...great work guys. Good luck on - .
  • + 1
 The Sight is awesome ????????
  • + 1
 yes, it is.
  • - 3
 Yea, not so sure about these nominations. Some are good choice (Hightower and the Commencal)..others not so much. I know of a number of long term Trek Slash buyers that have switched to other bike as the only option now is 29. Also a pet hate of mine is under BB cable routing (2 of your bikes shown), its so vulnerable to impact damage and for the most part with a bit better design the cables can be routed better.
  • + 0
 How is the Hightower a good choice? It's a slightly changed regular Hightower, same rear triangle, same front. Only thing they changed is the linkage.
  • + 6
 @YouHadMeAtDrugs: I love your name, but have you ridden a Hightower LT? They're truly awesome.
  • + 1
 I actually don't mind the under BB cable routing. Its not pretty but it provides added frame protection with no weight penalty.
  • + 2
 @BobbyLite: How does it add frame protection? It is a high movement area so if you don't get the cable in the right position it will rub the frame like crazy.
  • + 2
 @PsychoT: have done, it's a long legged Hightower. It's great, but like many other bikes on this list it isn't actually 'new'.
  • + 1
 @StackingItSince1991: Because cables make good frame guards....duh
  • + 1
 @StackingItSince1991: Just speaking from experience on my Habit. I dont have any rubbing issues and the cables covering the underbelly of my bike have saved my frame from a rock or two.
  • + 1
 @BobbyLite: Really? I would much rather a few dings scratches than risk damaging shifter or brake cables. Also most bikes now have the plastic protectors anyway.
  • + 2
 @YouHadMeAtDrugs: the HTLT has a new rear triangle and new links vs the OG HT. Add in more travel and the great dpx2 shock and is an awesome bike. It isn’t completely new but it didn’t need to be.
  • + 0
 SC HT is another level compare to the ones in the list. Test ride one for yourself.
  • + 2
 Santa Cruz HT!!!
  • + 1
 Why is the Trek nominated every single freaking year?!
  • + 8
 Because they make awesome bikes?
  • + 0
 Maybe they make good bikes?
  • + 4
 Because that red Slash looks like a Bloody Ferrari
  • + 2
 @mikeyin19: ...it looks like a session
  • + 2
 The bikes feel great but 4 broken chainstays in the last 3 years says otherwise for me. :/
  • + 1
 Granted they may make awesome bikes, but do they change it up enough each year for a fresh review on it so that it should be a consideration? Or is it just that awesome that it doesnt need to change and it sets the standard for others to follow year in and year out? I guess I don't follow Trek enough to have an opinion on performance.
  • + 2
 Hightower= Dad-Tower.
  • + 2
 Needs more Spark.
  • + 1
 Jekyll 4ever!!!!
  • + 1
 Mondraker Foxy
  • + 0
 Get that crap trek and cannondale out of here
  • + 0
 I suspect the Hightower will take it. If I'm right do I win one?
  • + 1
 No no no and no.
  • + 0
 every dentist knows CCM is the way to go
  • + 1
 Jekyll 4 ever ????
  • + 1
 Jekyll 4 ever .
  • + 0
 Ibis HD4, EWS team champions 2017.
  • + 1
 That didn't work
  • + 1
 Where’s the Nomad???
  • + 2
 Moved on Wink
  • + 1
 Turner sultan
  • + 1
 No carbon Process 153?!
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