Prototype Felt Virtue Captured On Film!

Sep 21, 2010
by Mike Levy  
Felt's prototype Virtue was caught on the Pinkbike camera during the last day of Interbike's outdoor demo. Inside you'll find photos, information, and a video that lets you glimpse into the near future!

Read on...
Watch the video to learn more about Felt's 2011 Virtue:

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While the new Virtue does use Felt's Equilink to control its suspension action as in previous years, the frame has received a ground up going over that left nothing untouched. Lighter weight, smoother lines, a stiffer front end, and adjustable travel were all ticked off the wish list for 2011. The result is the bike you see above, a much more refined Virtue that lets you choose between 120 mm and a slightly more forgiving 130 mm of rear wheel travel that is mated to a 120 mm fork up front. While the travel difference may be only 10 mm, Felt's engineers were looking for the option of having a slightly more forgiving stroke while still retaining the bike's sprightly feel. As you can tell by looking at the photo above, the 2011 Virtue features a lot of tube shaping, even the one piece seattube is hydroformed to curve where the main rocker link pivots from. Also changed for the upcoming season is the switch to a tapered headtube up front in the name of stiffness. This is the shapely aluminum model, but an aluminum front triangle and carbon rear end model will also be available, as well as mega trick full carbon (both front and rear triangle) version that will be the lightest Virtue yet.
While the new Virtue does use Felt's Equilink to control its suspension action as in previous years, the frame has received a ground up going over that left nothing untouched. Lighter weight, smoother lines, a stiffer front end, and adjustable travel were all ticked off the wish list for 2011. The result is the bike you see above, a much more refined Virtue that lets you choose between 120 mm and a slightly more forgiving 130 mm of rear wheel travel that is mated to a 120 mm fork up front. While the travel difference may be only 10 mm, Felt's engineers were looking for the option of having a slightly more forgiving stroke while still retaining the bike's sprightly feel. As you can tell by looking at the photo above, the 2011 Virtue features a lot of tube shaping, even the one piece seattube is hydroformed to curve where the main rocker link pivots from. Also changed for the upcoming season is the switch to a tapered headtube up front in the name of stiffness. This is the shapely aluminum model, but an aluminum front triangle and carbon rear end model will also be available, as well as mega trick full carbon (both front and rear triangle) version that will be the lightest Virtue yet.

At first glance the rear of the Virtue looks like many other full suspension bikes out there, but there is more to it than that. Have a closer look and you'll spot the bike's Equilink, the vertical upright just aft of the seattube that connects the two suspension links together. Felt claims that this link acts to cancel out pedaling forces and allow the shock to remain more active and function well without a lockout feature. Felt updated the Equilink system with new DU bushings and larger diameter polished pivot axles made from stainless steel as well.
At first glance the rear of the Virtue looks like many other full suspension bikes out there, but there is more to it than that. Have a closer look and you'll spot the bike's Equilink, the vertical upright just aft of the seattube that connects the two suspension links together. Felt claims that this link acts to cancel out pedaling forces and allow the shock to remain more active and function well without a lockout feature. Felt updated the Equilink system with new DU bushings and larger diameter polished pivot axles made from stainless steel as well.


Visit the Felt website to see their entire lineup.


Stay tuned for more Interbike coverage!



15 Comments

  • 1 0
 Although a test is in the works, I've yet to throw an leg over a Equilink equipped Felt. If any of you out there have spent time on one please share your thoughts on the the bike's suspension and how well it pedals. Does the Equilink work as advertised?
  • 2 1
 I have briefly demo'd one on demo day at a race, and it was noticeably better than most bikes while pedalling, but not shockingly so, it felt about equal to a fox shock with the propedal cranked up all the way.
  • 1 0
 ive owned the now discontinued Redemption model, with 6+ inches of travel and dhx5 air, it was an awesome ride, massh it with all you got and you feel that special link working, you really do. did lots of runs down local trails and also on the street for commuting sometimes. pretty darn good compared to even the fsr links. i sold it to buy a car, sad.
  • 1 0
 that suspension looks freakin awsome! i aint never seen anything like that before. the brake on the chainstay is cool too/ the hydroforming on the stays is well thought out, and how the hell did they make the top bearing of the seatstays seamlessely integrate into the tube???
  • 2 0
 i wonder if the carbon frame will feature the same nifty rear caliper mount provided that it has no dropout pivots...?
  • 2 0
 textbooksonic, The carbon frame has the brake mounted to the seatstays.
  • 1 0
 good to know, thanks mike
  • 1 0
 good to see some worthwhile improvements to the virtue. now go and use that to improve the redemption. especially that frickin' ridiculous standover height!!
  • 1 0
 The bike pictured is an extra large, but had enough standover that at 5'10" it looked like I would have room to spare.
  • 1 0
 i was referring to the standover on their redemption model
  • 1 0
 glad this proto looks easy to eye, not like the others playing with hydro-forming as they run out of the ideas of how to improve their suspension Smile
  • 1 0
 most people have never had to change a shock bushing? i had to replace 8 peoples bushings while out in france.
  • 1 0
 Some bikes are certainly harder on shock bushings than others. I've had bikes that have required new bushings every few months and I've had bikes that have never needed to have one replaced.
  • 1 0
 yeh. to be fair 5 of the bikes were all new commencal DH's and it was the rear bush on all of them that had gone. so they must be particularly bad
  • 1 0
 looks very simple but i think for this bike need more colorsSmile

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