Norco, Lezyne, and Hyper - Interbike 2013

Sep 20, 2013
by Mike Levy  
Interbike 2013

Norco's 160mm travel alloy Range platform was universally loved by testers during the 2013 season, and especially by us here at Pinkbike, with the 650B-wheeled bike receiving praise for both its excellent suspension and handling. With that in mind, it was pretty clear what Norco had to do for 2014... carbon. And they've done exactly that, with three carbon fiber models sitting above two less expensive alloy bikes in the Range lineup. At the top sits the $7,345 USD Range LE pictured here, a bike that Norco wants to own the category - check out its Cane Creek DBair CS shock and RockShox Pike RCT3 fork, both of which are the current kings of the suspension world. The heart of the bike, though, is its brand new carbon fiber frame that Norco told us is 3/4 of a pound lighter than the current alloy version, and, we'd have to say, one hell of a looker. The sleek lines come from Norco going with no external cable routing options, with every line running through the frame by way of clever split cable entry grommets that clamp down slightly on the housing to hold it from shifting or rattling. This includes the entry point for the bike's Reverb Stealth seatpost, and even the rear shift housing is hidden within the drive side chain stay.

Interbike 2013

Our single gripe with last year's Range was its problematic '360 Lock' pivot hardware that, ironically, made some interesting noises after it loosened off repeatedly. Norco says that they've sorted this issue out, as well as the old bike's derailleur hanger that would come in contact with the derailleur's knuckle and prevent it from rotating far enough rearward for the wheel to drop out easily once the axle has been removed. They have also altered the bike's head angle slightly, slackening it out by 0.5° to 66° after getting some feedback from their Enduro World Series team. One thing that they haven't changed is the bike's pivot locations, with it retaining the exact same great suspension performance as last year's bike.

The entire Range lineup consists of five models, starting with the $2,385 USD Range 2 Alloy. Want some carbon? The buy-in price is $3,630 USD for the Range 2 Carbon. There is also a carbon frame only option that can be had either with or without a molded-in front derailleur mount depending if you are planning to build the bike up with a single or multi-ring crankset.

www.norco.com




Interbike 2013

Lezyne had us thinking that we were looking at a standard floor pump, but then we took note of the relatively small barrel and the "Shock Digital Drive" moniker on its wooden handle. Yes, this is a floor pump designed to fill up high-pressure shocks, most certainly a tool that would make more sense in a shop or demo fleet van than the average rider's garage. It sure is cool, though, and we just had to show the $110 USD pump off.

What makes it ideally suited to shocks? Besides the low-volume barrel that moves less air but makes higher pressures easier to reach, it is the pump's two-stage chuck that sets it apart. The nickel plated head is actually two pieces that thread into each other, and you simply back out the inboard section a few turns to disengage the pin before you unscrew the chuck from the valve, thereby preventing any release of air from the shock. There is also a two-stage bleed button that allows you to make micro pressure adjustments or let more air out by depressing it all of the way. And as its name suggests, it features a digital gauge that gives a much more exact pressure reading than a standard needle gauge.

Interbike 2013

www.lezyne.com




Interbike

Hyper's still unnamed, 150mm travel all-mountain bike is finally nearing production, and it's probably the one 650B-wheeled bike that we are most looking forward to spending a few months aboard for testing. That's because the man behind a lot of the design is Eric Carter, a BMX and mountain bike legend who is likely still faster down a hill than a lot of fresh, young pros. The design remains largely unchanged from when we first showed the
bike while at Sea Otter earlier this year, although there have been some slight tubing alterations in the rear end in the shape of thicker walled, taller chain stays. It still features burly looking captive pivots at the drop out and rocker arm, and a thru-axle rear end ties both sides together. Removable ISCG-05 tabs allow a chain guide to be fitted, or a direct mount front derailleur can be bolted to a small stub that protrudes from the spar surrounding the shock.

Hyper Prototype Details

• Rear wheel travel: 150mm
• Wheel size: 650B
• Uses a single pivot, four-bar suspension design with a reversed ''moto-link''
• Progressively linear suspension rate (2.6 - 2.1)
• low and centralized suspension mass
• Removable, splined ISCG-05 adapter setup
• 13.2'' bottom bracket height (may change on production bike)
• 66.5 ° head angle
• Availability: TBA
• MSRP: $1,699 USD


As we talked about at Sea Otter, Hyper had a few major goals when designing the 150mm travel bike, with a low center of gravity, great reliability, and a low leverage ratio all on the list. To that end, the bike makes use of a single pivot swingarm and a set of rocker arms that activate the top end of low-slung shock. This is combined with a moto-style linkage that is partly hidden underneath the bottom bracket shell, with the shock attached to the diminutive lower linkage at the bottom end. How does it all function? The chain stays move up as the rear tire hits a bump, pulling upwards on the lower linkage while at the same time compressing the shock with the rocker arms, effectively compressing the shock from both ends. Carter told us that the bike's lower linkage is essentially a reversed version of what is used on a dirt bike, and that the system allows them to swap in different length link pieces to alter the leverage rate for development purposes. We had assumed that it employed bushings at each pivot given how compact the layout is, but the bike uses sealed bearings at every pivot location, as well as an extra level of sealing in the shape of added O-rings at each pivot.

Interbike

bigquotesHyper has been a Wal-Mart brand for some time now, and will continue to be. The success at Wal-Mart has allowed this high-end line for Hyper to even be a consideration. Hyper's stance and goal is to get more people riding bikes; not everyone can afford a super expensive bike or even needs one for what they are utilizing the bike for. A kid using a bike at college for transportation doesn't need a $6000 bike. - Eric Carter, brand manager

www.hyperbicycles.com


92 Comments

  • 190 6
 That norco is one of the best looking bikes I have seen in a while.
  • 45 2
 And given the part spec its nice to see its not 10k like everything else
  • 8 0
 yep that thing is lovely , especially the front end near the head tube
  • 5 0
 Agree with ^. With all the new bikes out, hopefully prices will come back down. Norco is looking good.
  • 7 0
 The lines have great flow. Looks like they spent some time on it.
  • 5 2
 Awesome bike. Shame you can only buy Norco from Evans Bikes in the UK!
  • 3 0
 I'm having fun just looking at that beauty...must be a blast to actually ride!
  • 4 0
 I hope they can meet demand. I'll be buying one in February.
  • 6 5
 Yeah, its a sexy bike.... the hyper however has on of the worst shock placements EVER, I imagine it will get chewed up with the tire throwing everything at it, pitting the shaft and eating seals to hell quickly... Bad design IMO.
  • 5 1
 Wow yeah thats gonna be a fucking vegetable patch after one run in the wet.
  • 4 0
 i hate to say this but the price on that norco looks like a good deal and its better than most other manufacturers. not to mention the bike looks sick and has a good review on the alu version that is. what could go wrong?
  • 4 0
 I'm so happy with my '13 Range 1, the only gripe I have with it is it's screaming green colour. But now. This. Aaaaarghw! Want! But can't afford. (Doesn't help that I just sold one to a friend on pre-order)
  • 2 1
 I got my aurum from evens, hugly discounted and they set it up perfectly, not only to recommended settings but perfectly for how I like it. I then had a bit of trouble with the shock (x fusion s fault bit Evans) and Evans sorted it no problem, free of charge. They had a lot of trouble with x fusion and yet they still provided a great service for me, whilst also giving my bike a gold standard service for free. I would definitely recommend Evans and I don't think people can say much against them.
  • 1 0
 I've never really looked at Norco that much. I like the original range, but this is just something else. Fantastic looking bike. I'm loving the internal routed cables, organic lines, suspension setup. That Hyper looks cool too, I'm always happy to see Zee on bikes. I wish more companies specced it because it is a fantastic group. I admit the rear mech doesn't feel quite as crisp as saint, but hey it's a third of the price and it looks better.
  • 2 0
 @shacky. Check out crosstrax in leeds they're sellin Norco, had me a blast on the first carbon operator in the uk last week courtesy of big Edd!
  • 2 0
 The tire clearance really doesn't look very promising, given that the wheel flexes and may pick up some dirt. Kinda decreases my stokeness level a reasonable bit.
  • 1 0
 Hehe, goodbye front derailleur, you've been useful, but hardly the most attractive component.
  • 1 0
 Well observed. Price point is right. Will get kids into the sport. Well done if they don't cheat the young customers!
  • 51 5
 Hopefully people will stop bashing Hyper for selling bikes at Walmart. That bike looks beautiful. People on this site buy things from Walmart but when it comes to bikes all of a sudden they make fun of brands for selling them there. Think of your first mtb..... Chill people....
  • 12 4
 I have my issues with such MTBs in Wallmarts, but I cannot deny how impressed I am that they came up with such a elaborated design and "those masses" are going to get a really legit bike right from the start. They could have made some ´05 Stinky-like cheapo with straight tubes and flat rockers made from 0,5" thick sheet of alu, but they really stepped it up. It's a real good piece of a bicycle design, all details seem thought out, and no short cuts like bushings instead of bearings. I mean for the Christs sake, that KHS Astro from yesterday looks way cheaper than this Hyper and will probably end up double as expensive - no order volumes justify that.

I'd love to learn though why did they complicate shock mount so much for a design that in theory should have low-production-costs so high on the list of priorities?

Anyways, great job Hyper!
  • 25 12
 I never buy ANYTHING from Walmart!!!
  • 7 1
 I bet the linkage on this bike has NO flex and they better be making a rear shock guard like Commencal does for their bikes.

If that Hyper bike is on sale at the classic "Walmart special" price, I'd buy it!
  • 4 0
 I hope they make a cover for the rear shock of some sort. Other than that, I like!
  • 2 0
 I would be very surprised to find out that this bike is actually significantly less than similar quality bikes. Has Hyper actually said that they are trying to make their high end bikes low priced?
  • 5 9
flag Mattin (Sep 20, 2013 at 9:30) (Below Threshold)
 Well it's their own fault, how stupid must their marketeer have been to sell to Wallmart and not to think it might damage their reputation?

Either get your company a cheap image and sell huge ammounts of bikes at Walmart, or get your company a good image and sell a lower amount of high quality bikes for more money in decent bike shops.

Every company does that, or often they make a new company for their cheaper line, so they don't damage their reputation. Think of NS Bikes and Octane One, or BMW and Mini (for which the Cooper costs about a quarter of a BMW).

If Trek would start selling their bikes at Walmarttheir image would go down the drain too.
  • 4 2
 @SORTAH, have you ridden a 650b yet? I'm honestly curious if you have.
  • 1 1
 They wanted a bike anyone could go buy and take it Enduro racing that weekend. Love the idea. Looking at the industry from a kids standpoint, what fun is it to try and be part of a sport where you can't afford anything the pro's ride? EC will probably ride this bike, albeit with some spec upgrades.
  • 2 0
 I wonder if Hyper will give the shop deal to walnart employees. If so i might just have to moonlight...
  • 1 0
 I bet is will be the same price as all the others. Lets see should I buy a motorcycle with a motor or a bike who's design is nothing original. I love Lezyne pumps, you never have to buy another since you can rebuild them all.
  • 13 1
 @SORTAH I doubt you would make it home if you had a Mariah Carey CD in the stereo and a shotgun on the seat next to you!
  • 2 0
 If this model is marketed to IBDs it may be difficult for an IBD to jump on the program when the rest of the brand has a much different perception being in wal-mart. regardless how legit this ride is that would be a difficult program to buy into and sell to customer for an IBD.That's a guess. not knowing that vital piece of info is important. however, like Akrigg on Mongoose and Zink on Hyper their names are worth quite a bit to any brand and both brands are at wal-mart so someone in mrktng is doing they're job well and that's plenty legit. right? i'm sure EC's got the details to go forward.

you would just have to do a complete tear down/rebuild if you did by this @ walmart for obvious reasons. hehe
  • 2 0
 Hyper is only selling a low end dirtjump bike for kids ! you wont see this kind of bike in walmart
  • 1 2
 I'm ok with what hyper is doing, but are they wanting 1600 for the frame alone? hmm.. no thanks - I'll take a Trance 27.5 instead...
and they need to stop recycling that same EC quote about guys riding bikes around campus... unless that's the intended use of this particular "all-mountain" frame...
  • 6 4
 Me neither. But this is a high end bike shop hyper bike.. Is everyone on pinkbike a stupid fucking idiot kid or just retarded.
  • 6 7
 Your not going to be buying these bikes at wal mart.. Serious people you actually think this bike is going to be sold at wall mart.. Hahahaha RETARDS ALL OF YOU... It's a high end bike just like the pro mongoose line that EC , Needles, and other pro and top amateurs rode a few years ago.. They were not purchased at wall shit nor will these Hypers.. I don't even know why I'm wasting my time on this idiot / retard site of Internet mountain bikers but serious guys your DUMB!!! Good day. And you can all suck it
  • 1 1
 Is the 1.7k for the whole bike or the frame?
  • 1 3
 Never happy with Colts, got rid o them. Prefer my pair of 1939. Pity the Carey CD has the center hole punched out already. Never know if bullseyed or missed.
  • 3 0
 Hyper has been making REAL race worthy BMX bikes from the start. And NO, you can't buy them at fallmart. Their have one of the lightest aluminum frames in the BMX racing biz, and I would buy one in a heartbeat.
  • 2 0
 When I worked at dicks we didn't deal in anything more than $600 bikes, but because it was a Diamondback dealer I was able to buy the $3100 Mission 2 for $1400. If hyper cuts wallyworld employees that deal then count me in. Period. We all know you can't buy this there. If you could I would be happy since it would mean the store was improving slightly instead of selling crap to the zombie hordes.
  • 13 0
 That first norco is sex in a bike. Too much want
  • 9 1
 I'm ok with them selling bikes to walmart... but please, just make a half decent, simple frame that people can depend on. Stop with the 40lb "full suspension" crap bikes that fall to pieces. Do it for the sake of those who can only spend 200 bucks on a bike!
  • 2 0
 Real Hyper bikes are not for sale at fallmart. They are real quality bikes sold at real quality shops. Don't believe me?

www.hyperbicycles.com/race/featured-products/mission-1-pro-xl-frame.html

Even if you don't race BMX, you have to admit that is one damn sweet frame. And I do believe that EC either designed it or helped design it.
  • 10 1
 Hey guys... Thanks for all the kind words on the Hyper bikes... Its exciting to show it in its sample production state....for people commenting on price... It will be $1699 For the frame set.
  • 8 0
 The pump actually looks good, it was actually worth showing unlike half the pumps shown on this
  • 1 0
 Those pump are worth every penny. Though I never pay retail, but the one I got is just amazing!
  • 2 0
 don't own a shop, still want that pump.
  • 10 5
 "Progressively linear suspension rate" Do they even know what they are saying?
Progressive is suspension that gets harder to compress through the travel, linear stays the same. It can't be both
Still a nice bike tho, but the norco looks sick!
  • 11 1
 I think it means its linear in its growth. As in the rate it stiffens is constant. Soomething like this www.cas.miamioh.edu/~wilsonkg/old/gene2005/images/grwthL.jpg
  • 5 0
 Thinking it means it becomes more linear deeper into the stroke; just like the 2.6-2.1 compression ratio would suggest. The wording does read a bit oxymoronic though...
  • 4 0
 Linear only means that it stays the same when it's talking about travel vs force. Linear Rate is probably talking about the ratio, where it forms a linear line (most lines are linear) between two compression ratios as it goes through the travel.
  • 1 0
 In bike suspension linear means solid rate for the whole motion. In math, it's a different story.....,
  • 4 0
 good job Hyper. best of luck with the new bikes and entering the high end market.

For those bashing department store bikes. Do any of you realize how many kids would go without ever riding a bike at that young impressionable age if there weren't that low price affordable starter bike? A VERY small majority of parents would spend even half what an entry level name brand bike costs in this sport. especially for a kids first or second bike. In some ways they are part of the reason cycling is even as popular as it is these day. We'd be generations behind without it. so hold your tongues and stop typing.
  • 6 3
 $1200 to upgrade to carbon and shave off 3/4 lb? What's the point unless you're a pro racer AND don't have any belly weight to lose? I don't understand the carbon craze.
Go on a slight diet for 3 weeks, lose 1 lb off your belly and save $1200, and feel healthier.

Am i missing something? Damn sexy looking bike though. I love my 2013 alloy range.
  • 13 1
 On more than one occasion it's been stated that the purpose of carbon isn't always weight reduction, it's ride performance. Look at Giant's road bike line (because it's easy to understand) - they have three levels of carbon: T600 (Competition), T700 (Advanced), and T800 (Advanced SL). Though each successive level includes a weight savings (most evident between the Competition and Advanced), the overall purpose is rigidity for performance. A person would buy the Advanced SL if they are looking for utmost power transfer for performance purposes. I bought the Advanced because it offers the most comfort to weight-savings advantages (hence why Giant offers multiple component spec options - you can get the right frame and right kit for what you're looking to do).

To further my point why you need to get your head out of your... weight scale. Go watch the YouTube video of Dave Weagle explaining the process of introducing the carbon swing-arm to the Wilson. He states he had to adjust his rebound settings on his shock because of the energy absorption and transfer. Then go watch the video of Steve Smith talking about his experience with the full carbon Wilson when he raced at Whistler - he doesn't say a word about weight, rather he talks about how it smooths out the terrain and is therefore more forgiving. Lastly, go spend three hours on an aluminum road bike and then another three on a carbon road bike and try to tell me it's all about weight savings.
  • 3 4
 +1 Dirty.... Weagle's an engineer, not a personal trainer, so of course he'd say that. And Stevie is an elite athlete, who has also leaned out quite a bit in recent years and now is one race shy of dominating the world DH scene. Yes there are performance enhancements but the largest of which is similar/better performance at a lower weight. $1200 for 3/4 pound is pretty steep, I agree, go on a diet and eat right and stop pounding 6% ales, boom, same as carbon. Close enough anyway.
  • 1 0
 Okay. I had only heard weight as a reason, but if performs better also that's great. I find it strange that a material can somehow be both "stiffer" and "more forgiving"
Btw, i think dw is just referring to the reduced sprung weight with the carbon seat stay, which makes sense.
  • 2 0
 The Range comes in 5 price points for 2014. There are 2 alloy versions and 3 carbon versions. A "$1200" difference in pricing reflects much more than just the frame. Each consecutive model is spec'd differently and offers many upgrades in addition to the frame difference. for full details on these differences have a look at the Range lineup at norco.com.
  • 2 0
 "That's because the man behind a lot of the design is Eric Carter, a BMX and mountain bike legend who is likely still faster than down a hill than a lot of fresh, young pros."

That statement might need a revision....
  • 1 0
 Range looks awesome, great work Norco, also props to EC hope it rides as well as it looks, one of the best externally routed MTB bikes ever, thats how a mtb bike should have its cables, some other big name marketing companies take a look at how its done right!

A walmart bike leading the way on the details! Needs a dropper post, know its a pre prod but still set it up right for market its std component now for any trail bike/enduro 130mm plus etc.

Even like that Lezyne floor pump!
  • 1 0
 Hyper continues to impress me personally, everything I've seen from them looks like they belong in a high end market. Designs look flawless and price range is very competitive. I imagine seeing lots of hypers out there in the future.

Everyone who makes a big deal about this company being in Walmart, so be it. It's called branding and they've been fortunate enough to sell enough bikes to enter a high end market, if you ask me it's smart an strategic. How many companies who try to enter a jam packed and established high end market struggle? I like what hyper has done and what they will continue to do in the future.
  • 1 0
 I am really getting sick of people thinking that these high-end Hyper bikes are going to be sold at fallmart or think that they have anything to do with them the only thing that they may have in common is the sticker. Everybody just stop and think for yourselves... Do you think that you could buy a V-10 from a skateboard shop just because they have Santa Cruz skateboards? Have you ever seen anything high-end at fallmart... ever? No, and you never will.
  • 1 0
 Norco carbon is only .75 lbs. Lighter. So is the al range heavy or light?
In comparison, the 2 bronsons differ more than 1.5lbs, if not mistaken...?
ya, can't wait to see more konas from new designer at awesome pricing!
  • 3 0
 Carbon frame, 27.5 wheels, 1x11, dropper post... talk about modern. I like it, looks like a sweet rig.
  • 3 0
 That Norco Range LE is a beauty! It's on my list.
  • 1 1
 My only gripe with the Range Carbon is the low BB (13.2") and the relatively minor affect the carbon frame has on the overall weight of the bike. Even the "LE" model probably weighs 28-29lbs.
  • 2 0
 The Norco website lists the BB at 13.54"

The 13.2 is the Bb height for the Hyper.
  • 3 0
 Tony Ellsworth should take a long hard look at that Norco. And cry
  • 1 0
 The best thing that could happen to mountain biking is a extremely cheap capable bike that is available for mass consumption. Loving the hyper
  • 2 0
 The norco is hot. Out of my price range but beautiful
  • 2 1
 Anyone else notice the blurred out tire in the last picture of the Hyper? Whatsupwiddat?
  • 3 0
 That'd be depth of field sir, or lack there of in this case. The camera was focused on the rear linkage, not the tire.
  • 1 0
 Lol, it does look odd. At first glance it looks like just the tire is blurred out.
  • 1 1
 "Cane Creek DBair CS shock and RockShox Pike RCT3 fork, both of which are the current kings of the suspension world"

Pfffff , they haven't heard about BOS obviously ...
  • 2 1
 BOS is virtually non-existent in North America so they really don't count. They're supposed to be great but I'd have better luck finding a Unicorn at my LBS's.
  • 1 0
 One very small guy distributing the forks isn't going to change anything unfortunately. Bos needs to go with a major distributor to show they're serious.
  • 1 0
 I agree with U on that one but what i wanted to say was just for the reason of CC an RS selling more doesnt make them kings in suspension world at least in my opinion it doesnt...
  • 1 0
 The Hyper is outfitted with an Auron. Has anyone tested it? When will the fork be available commercially?
  • 2 0
 Norco is looking sick plus the price is the best going
  • 1 0
 Is it just me or does NSMB have pinkbike beat when it comes to INTERBIKE coverage?
  • 1 0
 That black xx1 cassette....drool
  • 1 0
 Is the 2014 Boxxer at the show?
  • 1 1
 Progressively linear suspension ratio. Surely that's a contradiction in terms.
  • 2 0
 Looks like a Commencal.
  • 1 0
 not at all... - a commencal v3 owner
  • 1 0
 Good news, Walmart can now sell me a 650b!
  • 1 1
 Is that Hyper using Split-Pivot?
  • 1 1
 that norco has a huge rear cassette
  • 1 0
 Norco pretty sweet man
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