Rose Pikes Peak - First Ride

Jun 26, 2017
by Ralf Hauser  


With the Pikes Peak, Rose Bikes is bringing a brand new platform to the table that is available as a trail bike or enduro build, utilizing proprietary technology and modern looks.

It's been a while since Rose showed the first aluminum prototype of the Pikes Peak. While the name naturally brings to mind the legendary Pikes Peak International Hill climb up said mountain in Colorado Springs, the bike's real strength should show on the way down. With the final version of the Pikes Peak, Rose Bikes is intent on bringing a new platform to the market that is visually and technically modern, and a sign of things to expect from the brand in the future.

Depending on the shock being used, the 27.5" Pikes Peak is available as an all-mountain bike with 150 mm of rear wheel travel or as an enduro rig featuring 165 mm of travel. Using the new metric standard, the AM and EN models feature the same length shock, only with a different stroke. Therefore, the geometry varies by half a degree when used with forks with different stack height, catering to the demands of the two categories.


Rose Pikes Peak AM Details
• Intended use: trail
• Wheel size: 27.5"
• Rear wheel travel: 150 mm
• 66º or 67º head angle
• Frame material: high modulus carbon fiber
• Progeo technology
• Metric shock sizing
• Boost hub spacing
• Custom build possible
• Prices: €3,299 - €4,499

Rose Park Peak EN Details
Same features as Pikes Peak AM with following differences:
• Intended use: enduro
• Rear wheel travel: 165 mm
• 65.6º or 66.5º head angle
• Prices: €3,399 - €4,799
www.rosebikes.com
No matter the model, the full carbon fiber frames share the same specs. Weighing only 2369 grams without a shock for a medium-sized version, the bike is designed around a 1x drivetrain, which allowed Rose's designers to optimize the location of the massive main pivot and to go for a wider bearing spacing.


Rose Bikes Pikes Peak
With the Progeo technology, geometry and progression of the suspension curve is quickly adjustable.


One of the coolest features, however, is the patent pending Progeo technology. While the concept isn't new, the execution is, as it allows for a quick change of the bike's progression and head angle setting without needing to worry about losing any small parts out on the trail. The circular device requires a 6mm Allen key, and works by rotating and locking the shock position into one of four different positions. You can pick between steep geometry with medium or high progression or a slack setting with low or medium progression. The head and seat angle change by one degree, the bottom bracket height by 12 mm.


Rose Bikes Pikes Peak
The Progeo assembly can't fall apart when making adjustments.
Rose Bikes Pikes Peak
Within a few seconds and with the help of a 6 mm Allen key, the progression can be adjusted out on the trail.


Adjusted to work well with the latest generation of air shocks, the suspension curve actually becomes slightly digressive towards the very end of the travel in the setting with low progression, allowing the bike to use the full travel with less force. Consequently, the curve ramps up in the higher settings to avoid bottoming out under heavy load.

Other features include Boost spacing front and rear, a fully integrated headset, enough room to fit a half-liter water bottle in the size S or full-size bottles in the remaining frame sizes, post mount 180 rear brake, and a Press-Fit 30 bottom bracket.


Rose Bikes Pikes Peak
The Pikes Peak EN with 165 mm of travel is also available in an all-mountain package with 150 mm of travel.
Rose Bikes Pikes Peak
Fully integrated cables are easy to insert, thanks to cable guides running through the entire inside of the frame.


Geometry
Rose Bikes Pikes Peak

In regards to the medium and large frame size, the Pikes Peak's reach is on the longer side of the spectrum, but matched with a 35mm stems the bike falls perfectly into the prevailing philosophy that longer is better. The frames are available in three sizes (S, M and L) in a single color combination: black with green graphics.

Making their bikes available through direct sales through their website, Rose Bikes is currently mainly selling all over Europe and in the Benelux countries. Shipping to the US, Canada and other countries is possible, but fairly expensive – something that might change in the future.

Also acting as an online shop for bike parts with a stock of over four million items, Rose has the unique possibility to build custom bikes next to their complete models, since all models are being hand assembled at their facilities in Bocholt, Germany. A big redesign of the configurator is planned for September, which should make the experience of building your dream bike even better.


Rose Bikes Pikes Peak
A Horst Link at the dropouts delivers active suspension under braking.
Rose Bikes Pikes Peak
The top tube is pulled low for maximum standover clearance.


Pikes Peak AM

Equipped with a Fox 34 or RockShox Pike suspension fork and a Fox Float DPS or RockShox Deluxe RT3 rear shock – depending on the model – the bikes are delivering 150 mm of travel front and rear. Three different models are available. Starting at affordable 3,299 Euros, the top model still comes in at only 4,499 Euros with Fox suspension and Sram's X01 Eagle, which is quite impressive.

Pikes Peak EN

Similar in price (starting at 3,399 Euros and going up to 4,799 Euros), Fox's 36 Float or RockShox Lyrik with 160 mm of travel are found in the front with a Fox Float X2 or RockShox Super Deluxe delivering 165 mm of cush in the back.




One of the funny things about bikes is that while a lot of them look very similar, the ride characteristics can differ very noticeably. The engineers at Rose have done their homework with setting up the Pikes Peak EN, and I can't remember ever having had an easier time dialing in the suspension. With 25 percent sag on the Float X2 shock, and following Fox's recommended settings for high- and low-speed compression and rebound, not once did I feel like touching the dials during the ride on the challenging trails around Italy's Kronplatz.

Not unlike many longer travel bikes, the rear end does bob somewhat under pedaling load and dives into the travel when mashing the pedals hard – to a certain degree a side effect of the Horst Link-driven System and the high sensitivity of the Fox Float X2 shock. Changing to the more progressive settings of the Progeo system only helped a little, but with a flip of the climb-switch, which is fairly easy to reach even while pedaling, the Pikes Peak efficiently drives toward the top of the hill. Some may disagree, but I sure like the fact that the shock isn't fully locking out in that mode and still delivers traction on rougher climbs.

Immediately noticeable is the one-degree change in geometry when switching from the slacker to the steeper setting. With a 75-degree seat angle, pedaling becomes more efficient and personally, I wouldn't be unhappy if it was even a degree steeper, which would especially aid pedaling efficiency in the slack geometry position.

Overall, the Pikes Peak EN is a capable climber for its category with zero pedal feedback, an overall weight of 29.1 pounds (13.2 kg) for the top model of the range, the option of steeper angles with Progeo and exceptional grip on really steep, technical uphill sections. One of the few things I would change is going to a 32-tooth chainring instead of the 34-toothed ring that our test bikes came equipped with. Since most components can be swapped during the order process on their website, that's an easy fix.


Rose Bikes Pikes Peak
What comes down must go up first. The Pikes Peak EN 3 is a capable climber at 13.2 kg.
Rose Bikes Pikes Peak
The rear suspension is easy to set up and eats all types of obstacles for breakfast.

While the Progeo adjustment doesn't offer an on-the-fly adjustment, it comes pretty close. Armed with a 6 mm Allen key it really only takes 15 to 20 seconds to flip it from one position to another, without having to fuss around with any loose parts. You open up the bolt until it locks out, push the knob in and with the Allen key still inserted, rotate the system to its preferred position with predefined slots, tighten it up and are good to go. We were told that with constant use of the prototype for about two years there haven't been any issues in terms of wear.

Still, most people will probably only change settings when confronted with a really long climb. In rolling terrain, both the slacker and the steeper positions will provide good amounts of control for either the ups or downs, so there really is no need for constantly stopping to make a change.

Whatever Rose did to the kinematics of the rear suspension, I have no qualms to say that they hit the nail on the head with their setup. Its ability to gobble up small and large hits with aplomb, while never feeling sluggish or undefined, puts the function of the Pikes Peak's rear suspension right up there with the best enduro bikes I've ever ridden.


Rose Bikes Pikes Peak

While the slack setting with low progression is best suited for flowing trails and medium-sized obstacles; switching to the medium progression adds just the right amount of support for drops and bigger hits at high speeds without unnecessarily firming up the last part of the travel. If I spent some more time on the bike and for courses with really big drops and jumps I would probably play with adding another volume spacer or two in the Fox Float X2 shock (the Pikes Peak is shipped with one spacer) and see how it would affect the rear suspension when things get silly rough, but overall the performance of the rear end was encouraging, to say the least.

The Pike's Peak's handling in corners and stability at speed was confidence-inspiring, and while 65-degrees seems to be the go-to number for a modern enduro bike's head angle, I never got the feeling that slackening the bike by another 0.6 degrees would make a drastic change for the better. The steer tube length on the size small frame could be 10 mm shorter for more choice of bar height, but that might be nitpicking to most riders.

While I didn't get the chance to ride the all-mountain version of the Pikes Peak, it is safe to say that in terms of geometry, suspension performance and weight (12.3 kg for the top model), it should also be right on the money for the trail bike category`s demands.


bigquotesAs always, limited time on a bike for a first ride evaluation is not enough to come to a final verdict, but I have no trouble to say that the downhill performance of the Pikes Peak EN's 165 mm travel rear suspension can rival the best on the market.

Easy to setup, with great traction on varying terrain and with the ability to take hard hits, the bike feels at home in a wide array of riding situations. The Progeo technology is a nice touch in terms of quick geometry and spring curve adjustment, and with modern geometry, a highly competitive price, and the option to customize most of the parts, there are a lot of things to like about the Pikes Peak. 
Ralf Hauser


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71 Comments

  • + 58
 I really like, from the looks, to the geo, paint, part specs... looks like a solid option!
  • - 45
flag madmon (Jun 26, 2017 at 20:44) (Below Threshold)
 looks like a Specialized
  • + 15
 @madmon: No it doesn't.
  • - 14
flag makripper (Jun 26, 2017 at 21:00) (Below Threshold)
 @madmon: looks like a specialized giant Kona trek to me
  • - 21
flag madmon (Jun 26, 2017 at 21:12) (Below Threshold)
 @makripper: Same paint jobs and ripped off highlights
  • - 19
flag wakaba (Jun 26, 2017 at 21:32) (Below Threshold)
 @makripper: That's exactly what it looks like 3 years ago. Rose has a history of horribly designed, very very average bikes with cheap anodized bling. German consumers are trained to take tests literal - add all the points together. Highest number ist Testsieger, überragend, doppelplusgut. They think they buy the best when in fact they just bought the most average bike. Every model year one of the 4 German mail-order outfits is choosen by BIKE Mag as testwinner. No Rose for me ever. Virtually unsellable.
  • - 12
flag makripper (Jun 26, 2017 at 21:57) (Below Threshold)
 @wakaba: ding ding ding! winner! glad someone has a brain here haha
  • - 14
flag wakaba (Jun 26, 2017 at 22:23) (Below Threshold)
 @makripper: yep ,???? I can walk and breath at same time.
  • + 12
 @wakaba: Can you rub your stomach and pat your head at the same time?Smile
  • + 3
 And don´t forget the Price!
  • + 3
 Great looking bike indeed.
  • + 2
 @makripper: horst link patent expired designs ltd.
  • + 1
 @veljko: lol no shiet
  • + 25
 "As an all mountain rig with 150mm or an enduro rig with 165mm"
That sounds so pedantic and silly but what do I know I ride 26" wheels
  • + 29
 If you ride trail with the EN model you get in trouble with the bike police, and vice versa.
  • + 3
 Exactly lol
  • + 4
 @seraph: ah I understand now. I hope my ignorance was not offensive. We must stay true to the conformities we enforce upon ourselves.
  • - 1
 Germans ey
  • + 18
 I love anything that slides or rotates to adjust geometry, it give me another thing to check when diagnosing fu%king creaks and squeaks.
  • + 5
 The new press fit flip chip! To adjust your geo simply use the included bearing press tool to remove the chip, flip it, and press it back in! The lightweight tool only weighs 7 kg and fits in a standard mountaineering pack for quick trailside changes.
  • + 12
 Who else read prego sysem
  • + 2
 All those bikes with Amanooblearner-geo that are outdated now. Man do times change.
  • + 4
 Fully customizable geo will probably be the next big trend. So many bikes already have some kind of flip chip, just waiting to see who goes full enduro with bb chip, chainstay chips, offset headset cups for reach adjust, swappable linkage... all in one. Could be the best thing ever, or your worst nightmare!
  • + 7
 They should have tested it down Barr Trail to see if it held up to it's name!
  • + 1
 I agree! Pikes Peak region is also the home of Rock Shox and there testing grounds.
  • + 6
 As a Specialized fanboy and dealer..Damn, I kinda want a 29er version of this.
  • + 3
 After the Orbea review I'm a bit disappointed this is only available in the one colour. Still, looks like a nice bike, good sizing. Smart of them to make one frame that works for two different travel brackets. Good job, Rose!
  • + 3
 The orbea will be significantly more expensive for that privilege! I'll take less choice on colour for a better price/performance any day
  • + 4
 @blitz66: me too, but am I wrong for wishing that every bike could be mint green and pink? Razz
  • + 2
 @blitz66: I may be wrong, but at a bike festival I talked to the orbea booth and they said all colors were free of charge, it just took longer to get the bike as it had to be painted
  • + 2
 @blob425: I mean Rose bikes in general vs orbea! Rather than fancy colours, I've had NS bikes in past, i appreciate colour matching as much as anyone :p
  • + 4
 Looks sick, too bad you can't swap brakes on the top range model, not going to buy another bike with Guide's just to bin them
  • + 2
 curious about these flip-chip systems for changing geo. can anyone chime in how often they change it up and how much of an effect it makes in ride characteristics? i'm making fart noises with my mouth.
  • + 4
 My DH bike has two flip chips for travel and geo plus adjustable wheel base and head tube angle. I built it with them all in the middle and the only one I've ever moved is the one for travel.
Given how much I fiddle with springs and damping adjustments I really should play about with them more.
My guess is that most people put them in the 'more slack = more better' position and just leave them there.
  • + 3
 Come to think of it it's got spring progression curve adjustment too. Crikey I need to get the spanners out.
  • + 4
 Dat flip chip tho! I think I need like half an hour before every ride, to decide... mid, slack, high, low, steep...
  • + 4
 Pedantic has a meaning. Thats not it.
  • + 2
 Bike looks pretty ahead of its time, shame it had to get released so close to the carbine and will likely get overshadowed.
  • + 1
 Take the mondraker dune photo and make a New brand talking about technology advance looks like something very unfair a not True.
  • + 3
 Can i see tha aluminium prototype?
Plastic is just so .well. Plastic.
  • + 2
 That's mine ordered. Pity about the 12 week wait for delivery.
  • + 2
 It's official: in 2018 all enduro bikes will look the same.
  • + 2
 Looking forward to a similar 29".
  • + 2
 great looking bike and awesome price.....i like this a lot.
  • + 1
 It's longer than Specialized, Trek, Transition, YT, Yeti, Giant... and so on. So yes, it is.
  • + 2
 Test ride should have been here in Colorado at Pikes Peak.
  • + 1
 this reminds me of my old Karpiel disco volante
  • + 1
 Progeo looks a lot like rocky's ride9 tech
  • + 2
 Looks hella nice
  • + 1
 nice bike, i like the orbea more
  • + 0
 No XL? That's a definite "no" for me.
  • + 3
 Check the sizing, the large is bigger than most XLs, especially in the steep setting
  • + 1
 @src248: no it ain't.

The reach on an XL needs to be 490mm at a minimum these days. Throw in a short stack height and a short seat tube and they're sorely missing out for us taller riders.

Plus, it has kiddy wheels so no big deal until they follow with a 29er version in an XL.
  • + 1
 @bogey: It's longer than Specialized, Trek, Transition, YT, Yeti, Giant... and so on. So yes, it is.
  • + 3
 @bogey: + Intense after reading the Carbine article
  • + 2
 @src248: without even looking I know that you're wrong. The Trek Slash and Transition Patrol are both bigger when you look at reach and stack. The others are all tiny ho-hum big brand XLs that no tall rider would look at.

Then look at Santa Cruz, Kona, Orbea, Scott and a load of others using progressive geometry and your argument doesn't hold water.
  • + 2
 @bogey: Trek Slash is 481, Patrol is 483. (So yes the patrol is 1mm longer than the EN but 4mm shorter than the AM)
  • + 3
 @bogey: And a Bronson is 475. You don't know what you're talking about.
  • + 0
 @src248: you need to look at stack AND reach. If the stack is too low then you'll need a few spacers which reduces the effective reach. #bikegeo101
  • + 3
 @bogey: you specifically said reach has to be over 490, none of those are.
  • + 3
 @src248: I'm 6'5". It won't fit. Thanks though.
  • + 2
 @bogey: fit a longer stem and your sorted I've got a 150mm in the shed from 95
  • + 1
 @AZRyder: Ah yeah, I don't envy you. My choices are already limited at 6'2" and you've got in even worse. In my reach research I noticed Kona has a 510 reach on their XL, could work if you were looking. Sucks to be so limited
  • + 1
 @src248: Unfortunately, being left to only one company to build an adequately large frame leaves me in an odd spot. I've been modifying downhill bikes into enduro bikes for years, but the new crop of DH bikes all have seat tubes too short to fit a dropper. I have no problem pedaling 40lbs uphill as long as it fits. I'm excited for the Phoenix, Uzzi, Enduro, and all 180mm+ bikes that come in an XL without a dual crown. I only want one bike that can hit double black diamonds one day and then climb to the top of a peak the next. Maybe one of those will fit, literally.
  • + 2
 @src248: you seem to be confused again.

Yes, i think an XL should have a reach of over 490mm. In fact, I prefer 500mm and I'm not crazy tall. It took a long time but Santa Cruz has finally figured it out. The N4, TB3 and HT are all great for tall riders (STAs are a bit slack though).

No, I would not buy the Slash or Patrol - I was just calling you out on your BS. But you will notice that both have higher stacks than the Rose which will make up for some reach.
  • + 1
 @pimpedupmonkey: Dang, I just got rid of my antique stem stash!
  • + 0
 Comes with a fresh cup of Starbucks coffee I heard too
  • + 0
 Lost me at PF.
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