Commencal's Meta TR left us impressed with its trail-smashing capabilities when we reviewed it
in Sedona, Arizona, a few months ago. Even with only 130mm of rear travel, that version fell into the burlier side of the trail bike category. Now, Commencal has pushed the 29” Meta TR even further into the gravity oriented realm, giving it 140mm of rear travel and longer and slacker geometry.
There are four complete bikes in the lineup, with prices ranging from $2,199 USD up to $4,799 for the Signature model that's shown here. Highlights of the Signature build kit include a 160mm Fox 36 fork, Float X2 shock, Shimano XT 12-speed drivetrain, and DT Swiss wheels.
Commencal Meta TR Details
• Wheel size: 29"
• Aluminum frame
• Travel: 140mm (r) / 160mm or 150mm fork
• 64.5-degree head angle
• 435mm chainstays
• Weight: 33.9 lb / 15.4 kg (size L)
• Sizes: S-XL
• Price: $2,199 - $4,799 USD
There's also a frame only option, which is priced at either $1,399 or $1,499 depending on the color. What's New?
It's the Meta TR's geometry that's undergone the most significant revision. The head angle now sits at 64.5-degrees with a 160mm fork, and the effective seat tube angle measures 78.6-degrees, two degrees steeper than before. The reach has grown significantly as well – a size large now measures 490mm, a 15 millimeter increase over the prior version. Even the size small has a reach of 440mm, a number that used to be found on size large bikes not that long ago.
The overall look of the Meta TR's beefy aluminum frame has been altered slightly – the top tube no longer curves upwards to meet the seat tube, and the length of that 34.9mm diameter seat tube has been reduced to allow for the use of longer travel dropper posts.
Commencal say that the rear triangle is now more compact to keep it out of the way of feet and calves, although that difference seems fairly slight to me – it's still on the wider side of the spectrum. Build Kit
The Signature version of the Meta TR is well spec'd for the price, with Fox's top-tier 36 fork and Float X2 shock, and Shimano's proven XT 12-speed drivetrain. Commencal's distaste for anything carbon is well known, so it's not surprising to see that all of the parts are aluminum.
I was a little surprised to see that Shimano's 2-piston XT brakes were spec'd rather than the 4-piston version, especially considering the fact that the smallest rear rotor size the frame can accept is 200mm. It's not as if weight was that much of a concern – as it is, the bike's pushing 34 pounds; I don't think a few more grams would be a deal breaker.
Maxxis' 2.4” Dissector tires are in place on both wheels; I'd imagine riders in wet climates may want something a little meatier up front (my hand is raised), but as a rear tire the Dissector is a great all-rounder. Ride Impressions
Commencal bill the Meta TR as a 'mini-enduro' bike, and after a couple of rides on it I'd say that designation fits, although I'd probably take out the 'mini' part – there's no reason you couldn't roll up to a race with this bike and do just fine.
Some of those geometry numbers may seem intimidating on paper, but so far I'm really getting along with the bike's handling. It feels big but not too
big – I can take it on slightly mellower local trails without feeling like it's overkill, and it can still hold its own on properly steep and rowdy trails as well. The new Fox Float X2 and 36 suspension combo has been impressive; I'm still dialing in my ideal settings, but so far things are off to a very, very good start.
I'll be putting the miles in on the new Meta TR over the next few months – stay tuned for a longer term review later this year.