Intense Bikes, based out of Temecula California, had a huge success with the creation of their Socom bike in 2007. Using the reliable and amazing ride of the VPP link, these bikes hit the market like throwing a stone in water.
Well, judging by the design, and overall look of the all new Intense SS, it has the makings to be the next big splash.So what exactly does SS stand for?
SS is an abbreviation for Slopestyle, a genre of riding that utilizes a lower amount of suspension and slacker angles. Slopestyle tracks usually consist of a number of things. Big jumps, gaps, drops, quarter pipes, and tight corners. A few of the better known Slopestyle events could be Whistler's Crankworx
festival or the Nissan Qashqai
events. Seeing as these events have such a vast amount of obstacles and hidden features, they require a bike that not only can handle this amount of abuse, but be versatile enough to work with the rider during this session.
SS has a low slung top tube that it makes it easier for you as the rider, to throw tricks and fly over built lines with ease. The Intense SS also has a 1.5" head tube, the reason behind this is fairly straight forward. With a bigger diameter head tube it allows for more contact with the top tube, and down tube making for a stronger junction without the need for gussets. With this added welding contact space the structural strength of the head tube area is greatly increased, as well as giving you the option of running a larger fork, such as a Totem Solo Air
, in a 1.5" steer tube. Please note that you can still run a 1 1/8" fork (standard) steerer with a 1.5" head tube, with the use of a reducing headset like those from Cane Creek and FSA. Low stack headsets make for lower front ends and in today's world of Slope Style and park riding more riders are trying to get their front ends lower while maintaining their desired travel lengths in their forks.
The rear drop outs on the Intense SS are replaceable and can be run in either 135x10mm or 135x12mm options. It comes equiped with ISCG mounts, allowing you to run a chain guide with ease. The Slopestyle is also front derailleur compatible, which is a nice thing to not have to worry about if you want to really get out and ride this bike in areas that aren't only gravity fed. They also incorporated a dirt and muck guard on the rear triangle, which guards the lower link of the VPP design from any dirt or water that may damage it.
The decals that the SS comes with are very well laid out and nicely designed too. Intense has moved their main frame logo to the underside of the down tube, which adds a nice clean look through the mid section of the bike and is great for those photo shoots when you are airing over the camera person. They badged the front of the head tube with their Intense Racing logo, and put a nice SS decal on each side of the head tube section, similar to an old style fighter jet. They also placed a clean Intense logo on the top tube, almost right over the shock. On the back of the seat tube there is a very fancy Intense decal, featuring a gnarly looking tree.
All in all the Intense SS is a very clean, and visually appealing bike that I am sure won't let you or us down as a park orientated bike, but I believe it's going to excel in a large variety of riding styles. It has quite a few neat little features that make it unique, and different than other bikes. Utilizing the VPP suspension design, Intense knows that this frame should run problem free and perform to the standard that we all know to expect from Intense Bikes
. Stay tuned to see what comes of the Slopestyle in the near future.