Field Test: Pivot Firebird 29

Dec 18, 2018
by Paul Aston  


PINKBIKE FIELD TEST

PIVOT FIREBIRD 29


Words by Paul Aston, photography by Trevor Lyden


The Firebird 29" was designed with enduro racing and bike park laps in mind, with 170 mm of travel up front and 162 mm at the rear. Similar geometry is available in a 27.5" Firebird if big wheels aren't for you.

The Firebird benefits from a flip-chip to adjust the geometry or run 27.5+ wheels, but all numbers are referenced in the low 29" setting. It features a 65° angle, 495mm of reach on our size XL, 429mm chainstays and a 74.5° seat angle, which is in the ballpark for this style of bike, but the chainstays have been kept noticeably short using the Super Boost 157mm rear spacing.
Firebird 29 Details

Travel: 162mm
Wheel size: 29"
Frame construction: carbon
Head angle: 65º
Chainstay length: 431mm
Sizes: S, M, L, XL
Weight: 30.2 lb (13.7 kg), w/o pedals
Price: $9199 USD
More info: www.pivotcycles.com

Our bike is the Pro X01 build with the optional Reynolds carbon wheel upgrade, which would set you back a whopping $9,199 USD. On the bike are a Fox Factory 36 GRIP2 fork with 44mm of offset, Float X2 shock with climb switch and Transfer dropper post, Shimano's new four-piston XT brakes, SRAM X01 Eagle drivetrain and Pivot's own carbon bars.





Climbing

This was the only XL sized bike on test, and the 495mm seat tube length means that riders wanting to upsize in order to get more reach might struggle. The Firebird was a really good climber, with some tweaks to the suspension from the recommended settings from Fox. The suspension stayed firm with a smooth pedal stroke, thanks to the DW-link suspension design, but did bob a bit when not pedaling smoothly through technical sections. With a couple more volume spacers and clicks of LSC added to the shock the suspension was calmer, as there was more support from the sag-point onwards. However, the rear wheel still tracked the ground well, resulting in lots of grip. Flicking the climb switch on the X2 shock does help with climbing, but more because of the way it helps the bike ride higher in the rear travel to improve the climbing geometry.

The effective seat tube angle is 74.5 degrees, which is slacker than the Firebird's competitors, which resulted in a rear weight bias and the front wheel wandering when combined with the short 431mm chainstay and a lanky rider like me. This might not be as much of a problem for shorter riders, as their seat position will be further forward relative to the rear axle.



Descending

Having a roomy front triangle always gets me off to a good start when descending, and having 495mm of reach on this XL meant the Firebird was no exception. The 65º head angle is about what we’ve come to expect on long-travel 29ers, and the shorter 44mm fork offset made the bike more stable at high speed, but this could be pushed further for an even more potent descender.

Short chainstays are still in fashion, and for riders on smaller sized frames they will probably work great. However, the real downside for me with the short chainstay on this XL bike, with its long reach and front center, is that I found balancing traction between the wheels difficult. Most of the time it felt like standing on the back wheel, with a light front end. Then, when weighting the front end in corners, the back end felt light and occasionally slid out easily. It’s something that is hard to feel, and the only way to figure it out is to ride a long chainstay bike, of which there aren’t that many around.

The suspension stayed active on small bumps, and I was really impressed with the Firebird on big hits. Whether it’s the DW-Link suspension ramping up through the stroke, or the latest version of the X2 shock and its bigger bottom out bumper, I never felt a harsh bottom out.





Pros

+ Fantastic looks
+ Great pedalling performance
+ Excellent suspension
Cons

- Geometry could be more progressive, especially for climbing and larger sizes
- No easily accessible bottle cage mount
- Price








307 Comments

  • + 179
 My wife was just in a car accident, so we need a replacement that we did not plan on having to buy, and because her old Acura was old we were out of pocket for the whole amount and got nothing for her super-awesome car...



I know exactly where this comment will land me among all the dentist, lawyers and professional money counters that hang out here.. But... holy Eff.. never-ever go car shopping (on a budget) then come on here and read a bike review that is under the same budget you are trying to buy a car for..

Sorry us mortals are getting left behind around here.

On the bright side I'm super stoked to hear that Fox Factory suspension and Sram Eagle X01 works as well on this test bike as it did on the last 7.
  • + 63
 You're not behind, you just aren't as in-debt as most.
  • + 72
 Sorry to hear about your wife and having to replace your vehicle.... Hope that goes as well as it can considering. On a lighter note, funny comment about the suspension and drive train. lol
  • + 19
 Every bike related publication says the same thing in response to comments like yours. We are trying to review more bikes that are “affordable,” so they review one bike every other month that is 3000 dollars instead of 8000.

Maybe the reviewers should get a clue and hype up more affordable models rather than review only high end models and point out minute flaws as though they actually matter to the average rider.

Then again I ride a hardtail that will last decades so I’m not in the target market for reviewers. And yes you can go big on a hardtail, and race xc and have less trips to the shop and I just had my first few beers of the night, peace y’all
  • + 8
 I mean, they seem to review all of the bikes. Check out a Capra, if Pivot is outside the reach of your pocket book.

www.pinkbike.com/news/review-yt-capra-29-cf-pro-race.html
  • - 11
flag kmg0 (Dec 18, 2018 at 15:35) (Below Threshold)
 Sucks for you.
  • + 25
 Why are you moping about this? The same way your wife is getting a 10K Acura, you can get yourself a used bike that was expensive and out of your budget when it was new. If youre in the market for a pivot firebird 4 years from now I bet you'll be thankful for this review.
  • + 17
 Good news is you don't have to spend 1/2 as much to get a bike that is equally as capable. Hell, you can spend around $3500 and end up on something that will be just as fast. Let the boutique brands and their import drinking riders exist.

I'll be over here with a Canyon/YT/Transition/Specialized Evo/_______ having just as much fun, riding just as fast and shotgunning PBRs.

Oh, and I used to test bikes at a different mountain bike website. Don't tell anyone but bottom end 12 speed is just as fast as the blingy top shelf stuff. "Cheap" code brakes stop just as fast and Fox's GRIP 1 damper is so good I can't tell a difference for how I ride...

Anyway, good luck car shopping. Maybe spend $6K on a used hatchback and then the remaining $3.5K on a Canyon Torque or something. Something to think about Wink
  • + 11
 @mkotowski1: the manufacturers give them demo bikes, of course they'll be the higher spec ones, they want them to shine. It sucks that they are so expensive , really it's just like reading exotic car mags.
  • + 4
 and there's those of us who can easily afford a bike like this but still see the list price as laughable
  • + 7
 I wish I could afford a $9000 car, you're living in luxury.
  • + 17
 You could always just buy one component a month and then in maybe 3 years or so you'll have to start all over again since nothing will be compatible.
  • + 25
 @Allmost, there's a value bikes portion of the Field Test on the way. We've also reviewed a range of more wallet friendly options this year, including the Stumpjumper EVO 29 ($3,620), Giant Trance ($2,890), and the Guerrilla Gravity Smash ($3,995), among others, with more in the works.
  • + 3
 @mikekazimer: don’t you guys just review what the bike companies send you?
  • - 6
flag jefflong (Dec 18, 2018 at 17:05) (Below Threshold)
 @bvd453: Sounds like something a californian would say
  • + 3
 @jefflong: So does "I have to pay $4,600 / mo for childcare". The grass in greener in Willamette Valley
  • + 1
 @Allmost an "old Acura" that is worth CAD$12,400 sounds like a pretty good car, actually!
  • + 0
 @mkotowski1: You are the minority tho in a group of people where the higher percentage demographic wants to see the latest and greatest and makes a new bike day purchase every two/three seasons.
  • + 1
 @src248: ashy to classy brah! ????
  • - 1
 @mikekazimer: Can't wait for the GG Smash review although I'm looking at the race build with possibly a coil. Waiting....
  • + 4
 @Heydre: Levy reviewed it a few months ago. It was a glowing review, really. I'll let you do the Google honors.
  • + 4
 Over 9k for a bike before tax is pretty mind blowing to me also, BUT....it is the absolute best tech and exactly what the pros use. If you think about other products on the market this isn’t really that far fetched. You can buy a new car for 16k or a Porsche for 90k, and enjoy either. My budget tops at about 3/4k for a bike and I ride it till it breaks.

I am looking forward to the upcoming bike reviews and field test that are in the 2-4k range.

@Allmost -Sorry to hear of your wife’s accident and I hope everything goes well with your car shopping.

(Side note. You can buy jeans from a retail store for 30, or buy some jeans from a Gucci store for 2600.... now that’s some horse bip)
  • + 10
 You know you can get the Firebird for about $5k right? These complaints about the top build kits are getting old. Also I hope everyone realizes that you can find a nice dealer and negotiate prices right? But I guess whining is more fun.
  • + 2
 @Heydre: its a good bike. I know several people with them, and I like my MT as well
  • + 9
 Good news! You can get the same bike with a less blinged out build in their XT group for $5,300. Just sayin. Go to Car and Driver or Motor Trend and see how many base model cars they're testing. The manufacturers are always going to put their best foot forward when it comes to providing test bikes. But nearly all of them have offerings for those of us who are more budget minded. I've got a Santa Cruz Bronson that can easily be built to $9 or $10K but mine is the $5K version and it's glorious. I could have gotten a very similar experience for $3,500-$4,000 with a YT, Canyon or Commencal but you can build those to be a lot more expensive as well. Manufacturers are out to show the best of the best that they have to offer. I have a hard time faulting them for that when they make more budget-friendly offerings available.
  • + 2
 @kdiggity: well said... That's exactly how I built my sb130.. There are options to save money on a build without giving up too much.
  • + 1
 @Heydre:

Um... hey Dre. PB already reviewed the Smash as did Vital. No need to hold your breath, brah. Do it already.
  • + 1
 @mikekazimer: My nephew bought the base 2018 Stumpjumper aluminum 27.5 this summer for $2800 and it rips. 150mm travel, wide rims, quality 2.6” tires, dropper post, modern(ish) geometry, Fox 34 fork with GRIP damper. He rode it for three weeks on trails and parks from Oregon to Alaska and the bike never held him back. His bike was 99% as good as my dentist-worthy ride. I’d love to see a comparo of the least expensive bikes that a beginning rider could legitimately ride on real trails at Whistler, Bellingham and Oakridge.
  • + 0
 @bohns1: I don’t think I’m in the minority, most people who ride do not have new bikes every 2 or 3 years. O wait you must only ride with rich people
  • + 1
 You are not the only one. The "Pros ride this!" is not a viable response in 2018. Brosnan won a race on a Boxxer Team. Custom Coilovers for your car are cheaper than a 40 Fukushima and H20 X4+ DH shock. Carbon MTB wheels are more expensive than 8x OZ Superleggera rims. Of course, there is a market for everyone, but I do not think that anything more than 2.5-3K is money well spent for the amount of fun you "might" have. Look at Sam Pilgrim, he started winning competitions 10 years ago on a Diamondback hardtail, now he flips 16" bikes. Hey, pros ride 16" bikes with Gigaboost Wheels and 16GB of RAM.
  • + 3
 @SirWilhelm:
Thank you for the kinds words, she is doing better, and we have a replacement on the way. After the crash it won't be an older cheap shitcar. Saving money on cheap jeans is fun and neat, but when cheap jeans make the difference between almost getting killed by a truck and just being shook-up, we are getting better jeans with Air Bags and ABS this time.
  • + 5
 Crying about it on pb is really going to help
  • + 2
 I think the bike companies want their highest end builds tested to get better reviews, instead of a cheap build that might feel not as good especially to the pinkbike team that must be used to top end builds And also when I'm out on the trails I see a ton of super high end bikes, so despite the internet complaining there's a lot of people getting the top end bikes
  • + 1
 @mkotowski1: huh maybe where your from... I ride with anyone damn near.. For the hobbiests rarely do I see guys on bikes older than 5 years.. Has nothing to do with richness and everything about priorities.. For many years my neck of the woods it's a priority.. Its the vehicles of many of the riders that take a back seat.
  • + 1
 @bohns1: I have a 1500 dollar car and a 2000 hardtail it’s bomb lol I hear ya but 5 years and 2 or 3 are a big difference
  • + 1
 wow.....like buying a new fiat panda.
  • + 1
 @metong: to be fair I had to put 1500 in the car to keep it running so far lol
  • + 1
 @mkotowski1: 2 or 3 for quite a few and 5 is pushing it is what I meant.
  • + 99
 Man I’m tired of the dentist thing. Once I pay off my million dollars (actual dollars) of practice debt, student loan debt, this dead end office lease, then pony up for ownable real estate when I have equity enough in practice to borrow against, and lay down a couple hundred k of that, I’m gonna buy a $10k bike, ride it as long as I’ve ridden my aluminum 26” Jekyll, and throw double birds at anyone that complains that after working my ass off and paying down seven figures of debt, I didn’t earn the right to ride whatever the hell I want without your low rent commentary on my high end bike. That or I’ll throw a 36fit4 on my Jekyll and run 27.5 up front with my offset bushings, eccentric bb, custom angleset, and put that 10k in to another worn out Tacoma that isn’t half as nice as what everyone else on these damn boards drives. Dentist bike my ass, every dentist I ride with rents on our trips because our bikes are all jankier than your average summer lift operator at any North American bike park. I don’t pick up a car magazine to read about a ford tarus and I sure as hell don’t have any interest in dreaming about having a mediocre bike. You want to know how a budget spec bike rides go rent it! They’re all over the place... rent over. Get off my dang lawn!
Oh, and brush and floss.

But don’t get me started on orthodontist bikes...
  • + 12
 Finally! Best response ever. Exactly what everyone really needs to know.
  • - 24
flag mkotowski1 (Dec 19, 2018 at 4:13) (Below Threshold)
 If your tired of the dentist thing manybe you should get a new job and stop complaining. It’s no ones fault but your own you put yourself I. That much depth And the fact you need to pony up for ownable real estate? Yeah you and everyone else who has ever lived. Give me a break you could get ahead if you weren’t chasing status symbols and complaining about your dept. no one give a fck you have felt or if you buy a 10g bike.
  • + 4
 Where is your practice located! I'm coming to you to get my teeth fixed.

p.s. can you fit me for smiles direct invisiline? haha! Your orthodontist comment made me say it...
  • - 10
flag mkotowski1 (Dec 19, 2018 at 13:32) (Below Threshold)
 So 69 upvotes, more dentists on pinkbike than we thought, who new people with so much money could be so Whiney haha
  • + 3
 @mkotowski1: make that 77! Many on here I'm sure earn a pretty damn good living.. Most are probably not dentists.. But the man has a point..

You bust your ass long enough, why not ride amongst the best!
  • + 4
 sounds like you think i have money, didnt read the post eh? Wink its called debt.

whiney? nah. its awesome actually. nothing more exhilarating than betting the bank's money on my own success, like skiing in a no fall zone, lean forward and drive it!

i just dont like seeing my earned profession being treated as a slur.
  • + 3
 @dan23dan23: biggest city in western nebraska.... denver

and dont let anyone you care about do smiles direct. *good* ortho is a lot harder than people realize, and having some undereducated labratory manager in puerto rico design your case finish seems very risky to me!

theres nothing more expensive in this world than cheap orthodontics!
  • + 1
 @recon311: it happens, man. People on pinkbike make fun of dentists, but many people in real life fear you and are forced to pay you with credit cards that they already can't pay down. You have the power.

Lots of people in real life are biased against my profession, so I have no real reason to care about what people think with regards to my mostly ethical life choices
  • + 2
 @recon311: yeah. I was hoping my comment on smiles direct was read like those who suggest you buy a YT, instead of supporting your local shop...

Cyclist need to support other cyclists, so more people can enjoy cycling!
  • + 2
 I feel somewhat bad for making a dentist crack earlier, especially since one of my friends is a dentist and gave up mountain biking because he can't afford to close his practice due to a hand or wrist injury.
  • + 2
 @Marcencinitas: ha i dunno - i read your comment as a compliment. dentist worthy.. has a nice ring to it
  • + 2
 @Mntneer: ive never forced anyone to do anything! but i understand your point. and yes i agree, lots of people have fear, i deal with and overcome that barrier along side my clientele ever day. but i wouldnt go as far as to say i have any real power at all... comoditization of dentistry and healthcare has turned us in to 95% service industry 5% healthcare in the public's mind and we are all interchangeable!

that said, if you or anyone you know is in a tough spot, go talk to those dentists on their crazy expensive bikes at the trail head and show them a new line or give them some beta on a new trail section - build a relationship! most of us love to barter, trade services, or help out our buds. and the nicer the bike the dentist rides, the more wiggle room he probably has in his revenue to help out a fellow biker!
  • + 1
 @recon311: @recon311: I agree that the complains about "dentist bike" reviews are silly. However, I don't know that its a dig at dentists, more just a comment about how expensive the bike is? Maybe I misunderstand it.

Anyway,I think if you want to spend your money on a fancy bike, go for it! Regardless of whether you are a dentist or a lawyer or an engineer or whatever, biking is fun and having a nice bike that you appreciate in many ways is what its all about. As long as you're not a dick about it, and you don't brag to me about how your bike is better, I don't mind at all if you have a nicer bike than me. Keep working, buy a nice bike, and then show off your nice teeth smiling every time you ride it!
  • + 1
 Would actually like to ride with you when I come back to CO with the wife. Love your sense of humor and your willingness to speak your mind in a way that educates people rather than slamming them - cheers to you sir. Ps I need a cleaning do you do nitrous?
  • + 1
 Well said. I own this bike. Why? Because there was very little choice left, when I started ticking what I wanted from a new bike. The FB 29 was left after a couple of months of testing similar rigs... My previous bike was the Sworks Enduro 29, I smashed the hell out of it for 5 seasons, it delivered big time, never failed and even got the money I paid for it back withing a year. I take the best stuff because i want it to survive the worst. I need it to withstand me. Abuse. Wear. I never look at resale value. I spend about 200 - 250 days on the bike every year, so whenever I mount it, I want to smile every single time. Pivot FB 29 is exactly the upgrade I needed from my E29 plus a little more on the design and quality side. After 30 days of riding since purchase we summed 37000 metres of climbing from long alpine tours to easy park days. The bike shines through all the mud it is covered with. So would my smile if I hadn't had shitty teeth. Well, now. How about a dentist?
  • + 69
 i heard you can get a "sir edward masters" version on this bike. comes with an autographed set of jandals and a water bottle shaped like a penguin (supposedly you can keep it in the freezer to keep it chilled before your ride)
  • + 56
 Can we get Paul Aston riding and discussing all the bikes please? I love his specificity and most importantly it seems like he's getting the bike up to speed, which validates his opinions.
  • + 11
 Yeah this. Also Paul is WC DH fast so has proven credibility
  • - 28
flag raditude (Dec 18, 2018 at 12:18) (Below Threshold)
 @IllestT: Doesn't matter if he's fast or slow, just matters if he's bias or not. I'm sure Valentino Rossi has opinions on motorcycles, but he one he gets to make a living off of is always the best.

Let's just settle on calling him a social-media influencer, not a journalist. Then he can say whatever and be credible.
  • + 12
 @raditude: it matters to me
  • - 24
flag raditude (Dec 18, 2018 at 12:27) (Below Threshold)
 @IllestT: What if trump is faster, would you believe him?
  • + 1
 Completely agree.
  • + 13
 @raditude: sounds like you're slow and would prefer races that gave out participation trophies
  • - 2
 I am sorry Britain wins with Canadia. Fastest descending journalist Paul Aston, fastest climbing journalist Steve Jones. Go Europe! wait... something is wrong in that statement
  • + 10
 With all due respect to the other reviewers, having Paul review the bikes is like the difference between UK and US Top Gear. It's almost as if he has subjective opinions beyond regurgitating the marketing from the manufacturers website. It's a staggering advancement in North American bicycle journalism.
  • - 3
 @jclnv: yeah, he’s a bit like Chris Harris. But Levy is a lot like Clarkson.
  • - 2
 @WAKIdesigns: What calling Reno a shithole? Oh the controversy!
  • + 1
 @Mntneer: are there any???
  • + 2
 @thesharkman: nah. Might just have to get the equivalent of a half marathon-13.1 sticker to put on your car
  • + 0
 Yeah that's a pretty similar comparison really.
Paul Aston = Chris Harris / Justin Plato / Tiff Needell
  • + 48
 Would Definitely go for cheap ass Yeti!
  • + 41
 Does anyone else wish they would review the mid-tier versions of these bikes instead of the halo models? I would be much more interested in seeing how the $5,300 Race XT version performs. Same goes for basically every other bike on these tests. I can't help but wondering if having the best of the best on the component spec might mask something that us non-dentist type folk would end up riding.
  • + 43
 We probably all do, but it's not a big deal.

Complete bike reviews are mostly about geometry and rear suspension design.

Once you've got it narrowed down to a few platforms, look up reviews of individual components and avoid forks, brakes wheels and tires that won't match your riding style/weight.

I really doubt nice wheels or good brakes "mask" anything regarding general handling/geo/suspension performance *caveat if the "reasonably" priced version comes with a radically different rear shock or fork
  • + 3
 Riding the GX version of the Yeti SB150 and its pretty awesome. I doubt the extra 3000 to get the X01 is more than 5% better in performance. I could see the Grip2 being better obviously and the hubs, but drive train is a wash and i upgraded the brakes to TRP Quadiems. I am actually thinking of going coil for the rear shock.
  • + 14
 Agreed. This quote from the article:

Most of the time it felt like standing on the back wheel, with a light front end. Then, when weighting the front end in corners, the back end felt light and occasionally slid out easily. It’s something that is hard to feel, and the only way to figure it out is to ride a long chainstay bike, of which there aren’t that many around.

So, the highest end spec feels like garbage because the bike is unsettled in a natural riding position.
Now imagine what it would feel like with lesser components.

Oh, and that price tag is hilarious. Maybe you could do two reviews. One for mere mortals and one for dentists.
I've taken the liberty of providing you with some sample URLs:

www.pinkbike.com/news/dentist/field-test-pivot-firebird-29.html

www.pinkbike.com/news/everyoneelse/field-test-pivot-firebird-29.html
  • + 1
 @Poulsbojohnny: Or, since it is the holidays. we can go christmas story.


A++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
  • + 3
 @dontcoast: Thank you for this nugget of common sense.
  • + 1
 @Snowsed341: I'm looking at getting the GX SB150 - I thought the 36 Elite fork had the Grip 2 damper?
  • + 13
 I'm looking at getting the GSXR 1000R, Oh sorry wrong site!
  • + 1
 @skill7: Fox 36 Performance Elite can be had with either the Grip2 or the FIT4... just depends on what they decided to spec...
  • + 2
 @escy44: Nearly the same price.
  • + 2
 I'm riding the basic Firebird 29. After spending a decent time demoing the XTR Pro twice, I honestly don't feel like I've lost any performance going for XT Race model. Mine even came with the four piston brakes and 35mm external rims. Spend more money if you like, but it doesn't seem to get you much more performance... I agree with everything they said in this review. I'm medium so the short chainstays work really well for me and keep things playful.
  • + 4
 @Poulsbojohnny: I think you actually reinforce my point - lower end brakes, wheels, heavier shifty bits and non-kashima slidy bits will NOT change the geometry or suspension performance in any dramatic way.

I imagine that this frame will feel 97.5% the same when dressed with less fancy bits, just a wee bit heavier.

Ok, say you are tall and looking for balanced chainstay length - the review hints this bike is not for you.
Nothing to do with component spec, NX or XX is irrelevant.
  • + 4
 @islandforlife: its not the elite, its the performance on the GX model. It has the Grip 1 damper not the Grip 2. I still think the Grip 1 is better than the fit 4.
  • + 2
 I'm riding the XT version for 4 months now and couldn't be happier with the bike. Feels fast and agile in corners (something I was worried when going for a 29er).

I really doubt the carbon wheels and the XX1 group would make any difference
  • + 3
 better to get the Marzocchi Z1 with the Grip dampener and the beefier chassis. You won't get the Fox creaking after a couple of months and save big $.
  • + 27
 Some jerk is bound to show up and say you could get a carbon Capra AND a carbon TUES for that price.
  • + 35
 You actually can though...
  • + 11
 @erictens: I actually did! But not all at once....
  • + 0
 I've been pleasantly surprised that they haven't been seen much around these reviews.
  • + 11
 Or a carbon Capra and a week at Retallack...
  • + 8
 More accurately, you can't currently buy a carbon Capra or a carbon Tues for any price. Or perhaps that's just in my region.
  • + 1
 And if you happen to live in europe you can also get a propain tyee cf with longer chainstays and the components of your choice for under 3.5k. I hate the talk about lawyers btw. Its not like all lawyers can affor multiple porsches, trust me there are lots of non wealthy lawyers and that job can be kind of a stuggle. I just bought the propain tyee al with formula stuff gx and fox dpx 2 for 2.800 bucks- no need to spend 5k+.
  • + 1
 @markinator: Both still available in Canada... but not the US.
  • + 1
 @optimumnotmaximum: issue is that the only long thing on tyee is chainstays, it´s very conservative bike in every other number.
  • + 1
 @Mondbiker: i think it depends on your size and preference, they made the 2019 model slightly longer lower and slacker. i am 1.8m and bought a large, which has a reach of 460mm a stack of 605 mm and a 65 degree headangle - thats pretty much in line with for instance the s.c.nomad (L) or the capra mentioned in the comment i replied to. i am not a fan of the longer slacker thing, just for the sake of it. i like a balanced ride and these numbers have proven to be just right for me. the only thing i would do differently is the seattube, its kinda long with 470mm -but then again i know that i have no problems with seattubes up to 480mm. i do not like the word "conservative", geometry fits you or it does not.
  • + 1
 @optimumnotmaximum: Everything depends on your preference Wink 460 reach in size large is average at best., same goes for 65deg. HA, 605mm stack etc, only thing that is longer than average is CS. If you have most numbers same as a herd, conservative is actually nice way of saying you are nothing special, in case of Propain they at least have interesting suspension design, I cannot criticize that. But when it comes to geometry...Spindrift is the most up to date bike from them, still not very progressive though.
  • + 1
 @Mondbiker: i think we have a very different approach, i do not want something progressive or special - otherwise i would buy a pole, sick or geometron. If have tried longer and slacker bikes and i do not like it. Considering the overall package the tyee is far more advanced than the spindrift ( more progression, more antisquat, better antisquatcurve). I do not care about the suspensiondesign of propain looking special, but in the most modern bikes in their lineup it does pretty cool things.
  • + 1
 @optimumnotmaximum: I´m not saying that you have to have the most progressive geometry out there, just stating that bike with long chainstays and everything else short/average isn´t balanced more than bike with long front center a short CS. Long CS will help with loading front wheel on any bike, that´s just physics and if you are not very confident on bike you will be positioned too far back to load the front wheel with the arms, so it will help in this scenario, but it´s not exactly needed on this exact bike as it´s not radical in reach or HA, that´s all. Most " bad" traits of long WB/reach bikes mentioned in reviews are caused by using idiotically short CS on otherwise long bikes, you don´t have to be genius to see it will change complete balance of the bike and leave you the only chance of weighting front wheel through the arms, which is damn hard thing to do all the time. If frame designers struggle to grasp such a simple concept, maybe they shouldn´t design bikes in the first place.
  • + 1
 @markinator: Al and carbon TUES have been in stock in the US store pretty much all year. got a pretty killer deal in Nov. The Capras have been mostly bsold out for months, but that where the planing comes in if you really want one.
  • + 2
 @Mondbiker: i see your point and in an ideal world every bike and bikesize should have a different and fitting chainstaylength. For instance it is quite obvious that i really like the new tyee but if i was 10cm smaller i would not want one. Propain offers just one chainstaylength for all tyee sizes and for the smaller sizes a 445 mm chainstay is a bit much in my opinion. Front /center lengths have massively changed in the last years though. Even in 2014 a reach of 460 mm for size L was revolutionary long ( kona process media hype). Chainstaylengths are not longer than in 2011 though ( my endurobike back then had 435mm most modern endurobikes have chainstays around 430mm). So my point is quite simple, a bike with 460mm reach and 65 degree headangle should have better balance with 445 mm stays than with 430mm stays.
  • + 1
 @optimumnotmaximum: even though I would say 445mm is long enough for much longer reach figures than 460mm, I can agree with the rest, modern bikes are trying to stretch the bikes forward and that obviously is not going to wor very well for anything other than lifting front wheel up for manuals/bunnyhops. Is that what people are most concerned about? I don´t think so, because if you don´t know how to bunnyhop even 380mm chainstays won´t help.
  • + 21
 Short chainstays on nearly 500mm reach?
Have fun applying pressure without your ellbows unnaturally out.

Just lenghten the chainstays on L and XL models... Yes costs Bit more money... Oh wait this thing costs 10.000
  • + 8
 Spending $10k isn’t enough to get size specific chain stays. Sorry.
  • + 5
 Right. They are selling you on a 10k bicycle and claiming that a) single CSL is optimally designed for all sizes; b) that it is cost prohibitive to have more than one mold for different CSL.
Do all these companies really have a single mold for all of their rear triangle production and 4-5 molds for front ones?
  • + 6
 @jollyXroger: one mold for XS/S/M and another for L/XL. Seems entirely reasonable. Or *gasp* make the rear ends, especially bikes with 2-piece rear ends out of alloy. Alloy chainstays just make sense.
  • + 5
 They were going to make two different length rear ends but their focus groups told them that most of their customers would be put off by an extra $400 on the retail price across the range. No one could stomach that kind of price hike.
  • + 3
 @jollyXroger: When you have 460mm Reach and upwards short chainstains just make you ride so far back that you constantly need to be in an extreme attack position to weight the front wheel (even more so than with a sub 50mm stem)....so that "extra stability and room" makes your front wheel go whoosh.
And biking in an attack poition is fine for 2 laps but not a whole bikepark day.

Propain, Pole , Nukeproof, Stumpjumper Evo all are way less expensive and have adequate cs lenghts-
  • + 5
 Meanwhile, the YT capra and Jeffsy which start at $2.5k have longer chainstays for the XL and XXL sizes.
  • - 2
 @CaMKii: and still too short for the med and large.
  • + 2
 The chainstays are short because Supa Boost, or wait the other way around, I forget.
  • + 19
 This now has me wanting to see a PB Reviewer's shootout on the Credit Line PB Hot Lap. We've seen Kazimer, Sapp, Moore, RC, Levy and now Aston ride. Set up a "PB Reviewers Hot Lap Fantasy Contest" where we get to pick our top 3 out of the reviewers. Each reviewer gets to pick the bike they liked the most from the field tests and race it against the clock.
  • + 5
 @mikekazimer make this happen!
  • + 13
 @MikeyMT, I'm all for it. Maybe we can make it happen at the next Field Test in the summer. Right now the weather in Squamish is better suited to ark building or waterproof jacket testing.
  • + 17
 Some of these comments are weak ASF. It's a carbon super bike - no shit it's $10k. If you can't afford it, move along, buy something else and kid yourself it's just as good. I have the 27.5 version of this bike and it was worth every cent.
  • - 7
flag NYShred (Dec 18, 2018 at 13:28) (Below Threshold)
 "It's a plastic luxury bike for posers - no shit this industry is pushing it for $10k." - there, fixed it for ya.

There's a sucker born every minute... Happy birthday!
  • + 8
 And, as always, there's less expensive builds available that are also killer.
  • + 7
 *A carbon superbike that can't be bothered to have size-specific chainstay lenghts.
  • - 2
 Keep telling yourself that.
  • + 7
 @NYShred: not sure how you're a sucker if you've achieved a life that allows for bigger margins of disposable income... Some of us want the good shit with the blingy bits...

There's a lot worse to spend your hard earned on in this life.
  • + 0
 Carbon superbike? Glad you enjoyed the sugary water beverage. Care to explain why the rear suspension doesn't cycle smoothly in the huck to flat slow motion video?
  • + 0
 @yzedf: Bottom-out bumper?
  • + 3
 @yzedf: well for some reason they had the climb switch on the shock set to firm (you can tell because the tab is facing forward). Cycling through the suspension on mine it firms up in the mid stroke when the climb switch is on, but when it's open it's smooth the whole way through.
  • + 2
 @ButtersNZ: makes sense!
  • + 18
 Finally! i was getting the shakes from withdrawal! i dunno what i'm gonna do when these reviewers are all done!
  • + 14
 I own this bike in Medium with the XTR/XT build, X2 upgrade and DT wheels. Its a bloody beaut! I write cheques a I can't cash on trail and this weapon chews it down with ease. I came off a number of very capable 130-140mm travel trail 29rs and I find myself bracing for impacts that simply don't happen on this rig. The real hero of the FB29 is the climbing (in Medium I don't suffer the SA distortion the ape length and long reach obsessed tester did) its fully planted upfront, nimble and easy. The Grip 2 is no holds barred the best damn bit of fork science to date in bike history. Amazballs 10/10
  • + 9
 I’d have to write a cheque I can’t cash to buy it.
  • + 4
 But then I’d write cheques I can’t cash while riding it.

Then I’d write a cheque I can’t cash at the hospital.
  • + 1
 you should ride the MRP Ribbon.... and it won't creak.
  • + 4
 You lost me at Amazballs...not gunna say it...ever
  • + 0
 @Heydre: so I lost you for the 10/10 part then. I'm good with that. :-)
  • + 1
 @jaydawg69: Good call. I have a Ribbon on my Chromag and LOVE it also. The feel of the grip2 damped 36 is a level up however. My opinion only and strictly based on performance as I like MRP as a company and their team are ace with customer service and build great products. Fox is well, Fox.
  • + 11
 I'm riding a first gen Santa Cruz 5010, I could probably swing a 10k bike but after test riding a new Yeti I literally came away thinking "It's just not that much better". So instead bought a new shock and some new brakes and it'll be fine for another 4 years.
  • + 3
 Wise decision!!!!
  • + 4
 I'm with you there. Did a lot of demo days this year and overall came out happy but disappointed that I like my current bike more than just about everything. Was sad because I'd always dreamed of having a yeti and I didn't like it much
  • + 10
 Stop blaming Pinkbike for providing ABSOLUTELY FREE unbiased bike reviews for write ups on bikes that are 'much to expensive for me' or 'only dentists would ride' & 'more than the car I drive'. Its basic tiered pricing models, called economics. They same way you find car manufactures hitting different price points IE Ford, Lexus, Porsche. I dont see people reading a review on a Porsche and saying 'this is so stupid, I could never afford this'. Why are you here then? Go google reviews for a 2016 transition Patrol or new YT Jeffsey. I continue to be blown away by this logic. Your here reading because these bikes are inspirational and the best of the best. Not because you can afford them. Read the review, but go find a used bike in your price range.
  • + 1
 preach!
  • + 1
 I love your passion for high end bikes! Lets ride soon!
  • + 11
 With us sales tax that’s over 10,000 dollars holy shit
  • + 2
 Not in Oregon.
  • + 1
 @pistol2ne: or Alaska or Delaware or New Hampshire or Montana. Lucky residents.
  • + 11
 Fantastic looks? Looks like a billboard with a seat.
  • + 7
 What i noticed at the drop to flat tests is, that the most bikes have alot of flex in the headtube area (the fork moves for and back). i dunno if its good or bad...but it looks like pivot is one of the stiffer ones
  • + 4
 i think the flex is in the bushings where the tubes meet the stanctions.
  • + 4
 @striveCF15: nah seems like 95% of the flex in the fork is purely down to the CSU
  • + 3
 @IllestT: that‘s another possibility, but i think the headtube is definitely not flexing Smile
  • + 10
 In before bottle cage comments
  • - 12
flag BenPea (Dec 18, 2018 at 10:45) (Below Threshold)
 Go f*ck yourself Smile
  • + 14
 @BenPea: Go get your lube
  • - 5
flag BenPea (Dec 18, 2018 at 10:55) (Below Threshold)
 @freeride2020: the only lube I have access to right now is beer that is stronger than it looks
  • + 10
 @BenPea: False, strong french beer isn't possible.
  • + 10
 @raditude: that's the mistake I made too. I won't judge you for Budweiser if you don't judge us for Kronenbourg.
  • + 3
 @BenPea: I was going to give the nod to the UK. Tactical Nuclear Penguin. Take a look.
  • + 2
 @raditude: Bad. Bad bad bad. Is that legal?
This is where I pull out my British passport btw.
Anyway this Firebird looks quite good doesn't it?
  • + 1
 @BenPea: I want to like this bike a lot. I rode the original and it was a fantastic experience. The rear suspension worked so well and it just did everything it was promised to do. It still is a bar i measure bikes to.

Fast forward to now, i'm sure it rides well and there are solutions to hydration. But damn, $5,200 as the entry-level price point. At least the socal boys can get you in the door for $3,599 on a Nomad A. True, shame on them for a rebound only rear shock on any bike below $7,200, but $5,200 and no frame only. I am pretty sure i could build that bike for $sub 4k via chain reaction with the quality of wheels and drivetrain they're putting on it.

Add in the fact that it is a pf bb, it just never seems like they can tick all of the boxes these days. True it has all the latest bells and whistles. Vertical seatpost, metric, super boost. Just that bb that kills it for me. I'd rather have the better price and ease of use of the santa cruz carbon cable tubes and threaded bb. Re-sale seems a bit easier too so when/if a Nomad 29'er happens, i could get on it easier.
  • + 1
 @raditude: That's a lot of stuff to mull over, especially in this state of mind. Also, did he say that this is a 29er that's better for smaller riders? The world's gone nuts or I need to try one.
  • + 3
 @raditude: "At least the socal boys can get you in the door for $3,599 on a Nomad A." Santa Cruz is nowhere close to southern California.
  • + 4
 Upon showing that $9199 price tag to my dirt bike in the garage, it immediately got defensive. It quickly told me that since I paid less for it that I could ride it harder and put it away more wet. For now, I'll save my money and stay with my dirty, slutty, and less expensive Sherco.
  • + 4
 Solid review! But, I feel it needs more over-the-top quotes such as: "So fast, I thought I was in an episode of Star Trek and the warp speed malfunctioned and I couldn't turn it off", and "You know that effect when you take a picture and zoom in at the same time? Yeh, that's pretty much what it feels like".

As a Pivot Firebird 29 owner (not a dentist, I swear!), this bike is unbelievably fast. It's truly frightening.
  • + 4
 Finally an honest review of how an enduro bike climbs. Im so sick of reading how great 170mm bikes climb. They may climb better than dh bikes or long travel bikes of just a couple years ago but we all know they climb like shit at the end of the day. And that's ok because they arent designed to climb like my xc bike. Just dont tell me they do.
  • + 7
 Is it just me or do all bikes look the same now? ????
  • + 1
 To a certain degree, yes, upon closer inspection, no. It's why a good paint job is important
  • + 7
 Doubling up on the drop to flat slowmo ... +1
  • + 5
 can't you try something a bit different than those plastic same bikes ?? Spe, Yeti, Canyon, Pivot .... boring like a noddle soup
you are
  • + 2
 Think the same! Glad its not just me
  • + 3
 It's wild to to think they'll make a million $$ just by selling 100 identical bikes and they don't even have room for a water bottle in the frame. I mean, seriously... R and D just a little more for that kind of money, you'd sell more anyways.
  • + 3
 I wonder how much the XL sizing affected the performance. I mean, Pivot says that the XL is for riders who are 6'2"+. At 6'1, Paul is the only rider on the test that's even close. Everyone else in the group is 5'7 - 5'11.

The rest of the field test seems to take a "let the manufacturers' decide what's best" attitude. If Pivot believes that the right size for the bulk of the field is a L, why not trust them?
  • + 10
 Aston rode an XL, and I rode a large.
  • + 2
 @mikekazimer: Ahh. That makes more sense.
  • + 3
 I’ve only ever spent that kind of money on my wife’s bike, it’s a full bling Pivot Shuttle, 10k retail had me backing out the door, 25% off had my wife riding out the door. She’s worth it cuz she rides bikes for a few years.

I’m riding a GG Smash, 6# aluminum frame, it’s pretty good, and only 4K built.

Yeah, PB likes to show us the rides of the rich and famous, but I’m not into caviar carbon, my dreams are more aluminum.
  • + 8
 Bring on the Ransom.
  • + 4
 It's on the way...
  • + 1
 @mikekazimer: Nice one Mike
  • + 6
 I like my under-down tube bottle mount as long as their's a cap on the bottle. Works well and suspension comes first!
  • + 4
 The first Pivot I’d actually buy. Cost is crazy but I’m sure a good shop would knock off thousands. Also, no bottle cage is an excuse to wear a sweet fanny pack...so stop your bitchin’.
  • + 9
 Bottle on frame + bottle on sweet fanny pack = 3 hour ride without a large Camelbak reservoir.
  • + 10
 I really doubt a shop could knock off too much. Bikes at the top ends, especially from smaller brands, don’t have much markup on them.
  • + 3
 @Austink: Margins on bikes bikes are generally in the 30% region.
  • + 5
 @mat-massini-media: At least in the state that is not even close to the margin. A lot of brands, including both big and more boutique, its lucky if you can get 20%
  • + 4
 @Zanethefargonian: Exactly. I'd be shocked to see a shop that could knock off thousands before some kind of end of the season clearance.

The only thing I've seen on current season builds are shops that'll let you buy components at a discount as part of a custom build. But I doubt you'd save a ton there doing a comparable build, since manufacturers generally get such significant discounts on components already.
  • + 3
 I'm with you about this being the first Pivot I'd buy. This one looks killer! The others are kind of strange looking. Well, I'd also rock its cousin the Mach 6.
  • + 2
 @Austink: I've had two buddies buy top of the line Pivots from certain local shop that will remain anonymous because I'm not sure Pivot approves of such things that did receive couple thousand off retail. Did they know the shop owners. Yes. Were they friends or really close acquaintances. Yes. Did the shop sell them the bikes as an employee purchase. Also Yes. Did they actually work there. No. Should you buy/drink beer with your local shop owners. Well duh!
  • + 0
 owners of dentist bikes are proud of what they spend.
  • + 3
 @jaydawg69: I'm proud of my bike that happened to be spendy in the process.. But I'm no dentist!
  • + 2
 Note that the 2017 Transition patrol XL has virtually identical geometry numbers except that it has 12mm less reach and no super-boost (or even regular boost). Super boost is just another gimmick to sell bikes to schmucks, ninnies and fomos.

I've also heard anecdotally that Pivot had some not insignificant issues with broken stays last year.
  • + 3
 Pivot has some issues with broken frames every year.
  • + 2
 the super boost is only a DH hub(12x150) with a fancy name lol, i think that is where they should went directly and pass the "normal boost"
  • + 1
 I'd like to hear the engineering and physics argument for using superboost. How does it allow for shorter chainstays or a stiffer rear end or whatever reason of the day by using it?
  • + 2
 @bcmrider: it allows fitment of a stiffer rear wheel.
  • + 7
 By "not insignificant" do you mean significant?
  • + 5
 Read here about what Knolly's Noel Buckley has to say about 157 spacing (aka: Super Boost) - www.knollybikes.com/engineering

When you read through this, it's a no-brainer.
  • + 4
 @jonasdh : 12 x 157 but yeah pretty much. I agree they should have just gone with that rather than toe in the water with "regular Boost"
  • + 0
 @islandforlife: The only fault is that no one needs super short cs on normally sized bike, like this review and many before proved.
  • + 1
 @islandforlife: You are correct for 29ers with short chainstays (which inevitably results in slack actual seattube angles unless they want the the front triangle top tube to be a mile long). Superboost is absolutely unnecessary 27.5 bikes.
  • + 2
 Why is 44mm offset for 29ers all the rage now? From my understanding it makes the bike more stable but isn't that a downside especially on a 29er? I demoed a Jeffsy 29 and Primer and both were very similar bikes. The jeffsy felt like a school bus in switchbacks. The primer was much more nimble. The knock on 29ers for a long time was they were like school buses and now we are purposely going back to that?
  • + 2
 Yes. You obviously haven't been reading the comments for the past year or so. Everyone wants a long-ass sled that is as stable as possible for going as fast as possible on the (relatively open) downs. Any trade off in climbing or cornering performance is seemingly acceptable to achieve that end. No one seems to acknowledge or care that 1300mm+ wheelbases don't corner as well, they want bikes longer still.

For fork offset, reduced offset increases mechanical trail, adding more stability. The best positive attribute I have heard reported is that reduced offset brings the front wheel slightly back into the bike and thus adds weight and grip to the front tire. Most people who have tried both back-to-back say the difference is small and either works. It's kind of hard to believe that 7mm can make all the difference in the world...
  • + 0
 @Climbtech: If you have 425mm CS on 1300WB bike, it doesn´t corner well, if you have balanced front and rear centers, long bike corners better in every situation other than extremely tight switchback, and even then it gives you more confidence to either use scandy flick or endo as they are much more predictable.
  • + 1
 @Mondbiker: For this type of bike and its intended purpose, I agree that your desired geo is appropriate (proportionally longer WB and stays). That a longer bike corners better in every situation, I don't agree. I think it depends on your trails and the speed you ride. If you ride tight, twisty trails, or slow speed jank, a long bike is just a hand full. If you ride WBP, then longer is probably better (and more fun).

That everyone keeps pushing for longer and longer bikes says to me that maybe they don’t ride tight trails, are happy to give up performance on tight trails for more stability at speed, or they just don’t recognize or admit that there is a tradeoff. The cynic in me fears it’s the latter and that is the basis for my comment about WB above. (You at least acknowledge one downside, and propose a workaround.)

For me, changing the bike's geo to one that requires that I either endo or skid around a significant proportion (10% or more) of corners is unacceptable. Others may not see this as a problem, or not encounter it much due to the nature of their trails. A limo gives a nice smooth ride, but there is a reason a corvette has a short WB, and it makes it more fun to drive.
  • + 1
 @Climbtech: If you are not willing to sacrifice 10% to gain advantage in 90% of riding situations... Your choice. And you really think corvette has short wheelbase? Standard wheelbase S class has 10% longer WB, 10!!! And it´s luxury vehicle with living room kind of space for passengers on rear seats vs 2 door sports car.
  • + 2
 One thing I'm interested in is the how high the seat is in its dropped position. A few bikes I've ridden in the "super enduro" category, IMO the seat clamp is too high and the seat doesn't drop low enough to get a good crouch going or absorbing jump landings.....
  • + 2
 After reading many (not all) the $$$$-comments and discussions I would like to take a second and thank the pinkbike-team for the professional and detailed review, especially regarding this test-video which shows details like damper in action slo-mo etc.
Thank you, pink bike, this review-video has an outstanding quality.
  • + 2
 “Yo, I'll tell you what I want, what I really really want.
So, tell me what you want, what you really really want.
I'll tell you what I want, what I really really want.
So, tell me what you want, what you really really want.
I wanna—, I wanna—, I wanna—, I wanna—, I wanna really, really, really wanna zigazig*, ah.”

*My translation: Go ride a SC 5010 or Pivot Mach 5.5.

(“Wannabe” lyrics by Spice Girls)
  • + 12
 thanks for clarifying your source.
  • + 1
 I own the Last years 27.5 Firebird in M. Love the bike But wish i would have taken L. This year i saw the supercool Sandstorm version of the firebird 29 in Les Gets and thinking about switching to it. Has anyone ridden both to compare?
I rode the fb in bikeparks a Couple of times and i was surprised how well it works. Is the fb 29 as good or better in that matter?

Despite the 29 is 1cm longer i'd probably go for the L anyway to make it more capable for Bikeparks and downhills. Then i'd probably get rid of my dh bike as well and go for the onedoitall.
Hope someone can give me his thoughts or Share his experience?!

The things that put me off though this year from pivot's side... No foxing Frame Option!!! What the hell! That wouldn't be that bad if the prices to get the x2 shock and better fork were in a less ridiculous area. Frown probably would have bought the framekit already. The prices were already high, no Need to get more and more greedy. Just my two cents on this.
  • + 1
 I have ridden the FB29 and I think it's a fantastic bike. However with so much travel, even though it's a good pedaling platform, there still is a lot of weight transfer when applying power.

From my perspective, there is an inherent loss of efficiency as the travel increases regardless of weight/ efficiency being completed dialed a they are on this bike.

I think the FB29 is an SB150 competitor, not a do it all trail bike like an SB130 for example.
  • + 1
 Hey, Pinkbike: How about doing a reader survey to determine how long your readership actually keeps a specific MTB and how many do regular/frequent in-depth basic maintenance themselves?

My non-scientific impressions after perusing Craigslist, your Buy/Sell area, and other similar online locations, are: a lifetime warranty is worthless (a 5 year one would be sufficient) because most riders "upgrade" within 3 years so as to have the latest bike geometry, suspension improvements, etc.; and after reading unending reader comments on reliability, most riders don't take care of their bikes very well after/between rides.

PS: Paul: Are those the Pedaling Innovations Catalyst pedals that James Wilson recommends? You rock!!

Back to Pinkbike: Hope I've provide enough controversial ammunition for atleast 20 more articles! :-)

Ride on!!!
  • + 1
 Nice job guys, again. Good reviews. I'd like to hear more specifics related to how the suspension behaves. Maybe take some focus off of geo measurements - which we can easily and quickly get from the brand's site. More time on suspension characteristics would be great. Thanks.
  • + 1
 Truly sick and tired of the incessant whining about bike prices. Not only is the entire point of these bikes, the industry, and different products missed for the complainers, but in my locale 90% of the bikes I see on the trails here in ATX are $5-9K bikes @ MSRP, including my own. So these reviews are completely relevant to pretty much everyone I come across on our trails.

No manufacturer is going to send the base spec over, because if you ride the top spec compared to the low end spec, there can be a significant difference in how they perform, and not to the favor of the low end spec. And reviews don't really take that in to account.

Had to laugh at the 'Dehydrated Americans' comment. Was initially very excited to recently get a bike that had bottle storage. It makes for a good place to carry tools, but the only time I use it as intended is when I take my wife cruising around aka 'an easy/ slow ride'.
  • + 1
 You fellas need to sort out your tarrifs issue, the RRP for bikes is crazy.

There’s no NZ rrp for this but the Giant Trance 29er Pro 0’s RRP is currently 27% cheaper here. And that includes 15% GST whereas you’ll probably have sales tax added on top.

It’s absolute nuts.
  • + 1
 At around 2:30 min mark in the vid he says superboost lets them make shorter chainstays, something I do not see any logic behind, rudimentary maths tell me that if you shorten the chainstays you can even afford a narrower hub to maintain the same stiffness (think about moving the Base of a triangle closer to the point), they then go on to say the bike is a little too stiff seems to me that regular boost would be fine. Please any engineers who understand this better than me, explain, I'm genuinely interested.
Side note, my last bike had 148 and my heel wore through the paint on the left stay where my rear foot is, I can't imagine this issue getting any better with wider spacing.
  • + 1
 An object is only worth , what a person is willing to pay for it. Don't like 8-10k plastic bikes. Buy a nice Aluminum frame with a decent rear shock and buy nice parts for it on sale....will save you a few thousand bucks Smile
  • + 0
 looks like an overpriced old santacruz that wont make you 7 thousand dollars quicker than the more attainable bikes that the likes of YT are making. Doesn't even look to be pushing the boundaries of geometry. I'd rather get a pole or something like that which actually pushes some boundaries design wise.
  • + 0
 If you want to know how an nx or gx build rides compared to xx1 or x01 - worse.

I have this bike in xx1 build, every time i ride it im smiling a 10k smile.
Bring on the hate Smile

These reviews are like a christmas gift every day, keep em coming pink bike.
  • + 2
 I like how Paul presents, he seems a little more straightforward than the rest of the crew (not saying the rest are doing bad) but I'll be glad to see more from him.
  • + 3
 Dave Weagle is brilliant but who else does not like DW Link ride characteristics?
  • + 1
 I can appreciate but don't like DW's leverage ratio curve of rising and flattening out. I have had his suspension on a turner, sunday, pivot, ibis, and all were mostly great bikes, but I felt more at home on something that has a continued rising rate to the end.
  • + 1
 There have been issues with the chain rubbing on the rear triangle. It seems like an oversight that should be at minimum mentioned. I would have ordered this bike if that issue hadn't arisen...
  • + 0
 In my honest opinion I don’t like the bike thanks for the review though, so many bikes in this category for a fraction of the price. How much should a bike weigh in general it’s always about weight and more weight it’s either you take a loss before the ride that saves you weight or if the bike is to light go eat a burger before the ride lol
  • + 1
 Loving all the field tests team Pinkbike! Keep it up, its great to see the bike in action rather just just pictures and words
  • + 3
 What about the Tires? Biggest rear travel yet but EXO tires...
  • + 4
 every bike company is doing this to keep the weight down. literally everyone. show me a 160 enduro that's coming spec'd with DD or DH casing tires.
  • + 6
 @conoat, the Nukeproof Mega 275 we tested earlier this year came with DD tires front and rear, but that's the exception. Hopefully more companies take note, at the very least with a DD rear and EXO+ front.
  • + 2
 @conoat: whyte G170 29er, weighs a ton though... Devinci Spartan came with DD as well. Unfortunately, DD Casing is not available on a lot of tyres in 29 yet
  • + 3
 @mikekazimer: while I’d love to see the tire spec you suggest, the bike will climb like a hog because of those heavy and relatively stiff sidewalks and the company will get dinged for that in the reviews. It’ll also be heavy, although people seem less concerned with that these days on their Enduro and hard use trail bikes.

When my latest bike came with a 2.5 DHF Exo front and a 2.3 Aggressso Exo rear I was really happy to at least be able to run the front tire. Tires are such a personal thing it’d be really hard to please everyone.
  • + 3
 Like others said about the weight on the spec sheet, climbing performance. I bet a lot of average bikers are fine on exo and will notice the benefits more than the downsides too.
  • + 1
 @kevin267, @Speeder01, I'd rather have a slightly heavier tire over dealing with flats on a bike like this. For more trail-oriented bikes, yes, EXO is works just fine. The EXO+ casing could be the happy middle ground - there's barely a weight penalty.
  • + 1
 @Speeder01: I changed stock DHF DHR combo on my FB 29 pretty fast, and went back to my proven Shorty 2.5 up front and a DHF 2.5 DoubleDown stuffed with a huck norris in the rear. Nothing affects the bike's line and touches the rims now.
  • + 3
 My brand new Yamaha WR 250 was $8600. Pivot can eat a bag o dix.
  • + 1
 So your bike has an engine. Big deal.
  • + 1
 I'm confused about that ST angle. You're saying it is 74.5°, but on Pivot's web it says 76.25° in high setting and 75.75° in low setting. Who's right?
  • - 1
 STA at ride height [74.5] is going to be slacker than what's stated on the geo chart [76.25/75.75].
  • + 1
 They adjusted the STA lately on the website...I read somewhere due to different method to measure.
  • + 1
 @Foxy87: That's what a guy on Pivot's chat told me. But, nonetheless I would really really like to know that angle compared with other brands (measured at the height of the upper headset cup)
  • + 2
 You get the pricy carbon wheels for the money, and it is too stiff now? It is a 170 mm fully anyway, just don't get it...
  • + 3
 How many of you people bitching about bike prices have kids? #lifechoices
  • + 2
 You left out the main plus - it's available in 27.5
  • + 1
 I’m really hoping they have the pole machine in this group! Probably won’t but there’s always hope!
  • + 2
 This is why bikes need adjustable chainstays
  • + 2
 Most handsome bike I've ever seen so far
  • + 1
 Is the term "dentist" a new meme on PB? I did a search here and it was used 11 times in this comment section alone.
  • + 1
 Every bike and ski site jokes that every high end product is mostly bought by well off middle age people that probably don't actually shred that hard
  • + 1
 its antiquated, but rampant.
  • + 2
 Dream bike, if only you could fit a water bottle
  • + 2
 In the bottom out photo, is the 50t on that cassette missing a tooth?
  • + 1
 Looks like it, top dead center.
  • + 0
 A small 29er frame is just moronic! I've never seen a review on a small 29er frame or even on a small 27.5!! The small wheelbase and high standover makes for a shitty ride!
  • + 1
 What happened to the rest of the trail bikes and the trail roundup. Someone has been asleep at the wheel
  • + 2
 No summary for the previous four as for the first group?
  • + 2
 Damn, that last pic and the seat angle/position!
  • + 3
 Show's us how good the geometry really is for climbing... I sat on the bike and can't confirm the "good" uphill performance, espacially with longer legs.
  • + 1
 “Having a roomy front triangle always gets me off” is my favorite sentence fragment of this review series.
  • + 1
 So....why is it the same price as a good motorbike or a decent second hand car?
  • - 1
 If you ride a ten thousand dollar bicycle with the brand painted on the side in giant neon letters because you're sponsored, good for you, champ. But if you buy one, you are one sad douchebag.
  • + 1
 How is that different from any other bike? Say a black $3k Bronson with highlighter yellow SANTA CRUZ on the downtube..
  • + 3
 Salty..
  • + 1
 Finally no more lo-cal appetizers. Its meat n taters time
  • + 2
 Drooling
  • + 1
 YES PLEASE...minus the price tag.. ill take 2
  • + 1
 Does Paul Aston remind anyone else of an English T.J. miller?
  • + 1
 Omg, no room for bottle cage mount! What are we going to do!??!
  • + 1
 COMMENCAL META AM 29 next please!!!
  • + 1
 Cool ass bike....to spending for my blood
  • + 1
 Lets see the Mach 5.5 review???
  • + 2
 Paul is pinned
  • + 1
 Test the commencal clash Ahhhhh yeah
  • + 1
 Nice to see the catalyst pedals!
  • + 2
 Bargain, I'll take two
  • + 1
 Just gave my $2600CAD 2018 Trance 2 a big hug
  • + 1
 That's definitely one way to put a bike in a stand.
  • + 1
 wish i could have one
  • + 0
 Price: $9199 USD

AHAHAHAHAHAHAHAH
  • + 1
 You meant HOHOHOHOHOHOHOHOHOHOHO.......right?
  • - 3
 I just don't get the point of these super enduro bikes. I suppose if you want one bike to do it all pretty well. Give me a 130-150mm trail bike and give me a DH bike. Shit Martin won Whistler with the 150mm GT...
  • + 5
 I tried out the whole Pivot lineup this year and ended up buying a Mach 5.5 (160mm/140mm). It's easily handling any trail in Washington and BC. Most of the other bikes were just overkill and I would not want to climb many of them.
  • + 2
 @tripleultrasuperboostplusplus: Same here man. I downgraded travel (again) this season to 150 in the rear for the same reasons.
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