Scott Genius LT 700 Tuned Plus - Review

Dec 8, 2015
by Richard Cunningham  



It came as a surprise to us that the folks at Scott Sports - one of the industry's more conservative, race-oriented think tanks - would launch one of the first elite-level trail bikes to be designed around high-volume, plus-width tires. Scott's motivation to build the Genius LT 700 Plus was to blend the wall-climbing traction and mistake-proof technical steering of plus with the attributes of a modern, slack-geometry all-mountain trailbike chassis and, as PB's Paul Aston reported in his First Ride feature from Scott Camp this year, the Genius LT 700 Plus manages to hit the mark in all of those categories.


Details:

• Purpose: All-mountain trail bike
• Frame: Carbon front section; aluminum suspension
• Boost hub spacing, 110mm F, 148mm R
• Wheel Travel: 160mm, front and rear
• 27.5" plus-sized wheel design
• Adjustable frame geometry via a reversible "chip"
• Low-mount Twinloc remote controls fork and shock simultaneously
• 160mm Fox Float 36 FIT4 Kashima fork
• Scott/Fox EVOL Nude shock: remote Open, Traction, and Locked modes
• SRAM X01 eleven-speed drivetrain, 30t chainring
• Shimano XTR brakes, rotors - 180mm R, 203mm F
• Syncros TR1.5 wheels with 40mm aluminum rims
• RockShox Reverb Stealth seatpost, 150mm.
• Sizes: small, medium, large, and X-large
• Weight: 27.8 pounds/12.64kg (actual, medium size)
• MSRP: $7999 USD
• Contact: Scott Sports
RC Scott LT 700 Plus Squamish


Meet the Genius LT 700 Tuned Plus

Scott's Genius range is targeted at the advanced all-mountain and trail rider crowd, and is divided into "700" models, which have 27.5-inch wheels and "900" models, which use 29-inch wheels. LT stands for "long-travel" and in the case of the LT 700 Plus, that means 160 millimeters on both ends of the bike. To create the top-range LT 700 Plus "Tuned" chassis, Scott borrowed the high-modulus carbon fiber front section of the 900, then mated that with an all-new Boost-width swingarm and suspension. The wider, 148-millimeter Boost hub format helps frame designers reshuffle all the rear suspension bits to make room for 27.5-inch tires as wide as three inches, while only adding three millimeters to the chainstay length. Scott's intention is to maintain the handling qualities of its conventional wheeled Genius bikes, which is a good thing.

Scott LT 700 Plus Squamish 2016
Scott LT 700 Plus Squamish 2016
Scott's Twinloc cable-remote simultaneously controls both the "Nude" Fox Float EVOL shock and the 36 Float FIT4 fork.

Damping control is all Fox, with a remote-actuated 36 fork and a Scott-developed Float "Nude" shock. Both fork and shock can be switched simultaneously from "Locked," to "Traction," or "Open" modes using Scott's Twinloc lever which now sits underneath the handlebar and below the dropper post control on the left side of the handlebar. Scott mixes two favorite PB staples: a SRAM X01 drivetrain, with Shimano XTR brakes to take care of business, and fills out the rest of the bike with Syncros wheels and cockpit items. The end result is a wicked looking 160-millimeter-travel trail bike that weighs in at only 27.8 pounds (12.6kg) and retails for $7999 USD.

Scott LT 700 Plus Squamish 2016
Syncros TR1.5 Plus 27.5 wheel mounted to Schwalbe Nobby Nic 2.8" tires - initially, they look huge, but after a few rides, they seem normal.




Scott Plus graphic showing Syncros TR 1.5 40mm ID rim and 2.8 plus tire deflecting under cornering loads. 2016
Syncros' 40mm TR1.5 Plus rims are an essential component to Scott's plus concept. The extra width helps to prevent the low-pressure tire from deflecting laterally.



Scott Sports Plus rim graphic
Syncros' rim profile graphic shows the difference in scale between its 25mm all-mountain and 40mm Plus rim designs.
Why Plus 27.5?

When plus-sized wheels and tires first appeared on Surlys, casual observers pawned the concept off as little more than "fat-bike lite," but a handful of visionaries, including some heavy hitters like WTB, Trek, Specialized and Scott, embraced the mid-size floatation format as a chance to reinvent the basic mountain bike.

Presently, plus tires are sold in 26, 27.5 and 29-inch sizes, and while some are still debating over the optimum rim width, wheel size and tire diameter for plus bikes (Trek is banking on 29-inch plus wheels, while Scott and Specialized are embracing 27.5-inch wheels), all signs say that 27.5-inch wheels with rims near 40-millimeters wide and tires ranging up to three inches will be the eventual winner, and for good reasons:

Scott advertises that 27.5 Plus adds 21-percent more grip to the superior roll-over of a 29er, while giving the rider a substantial measure of comfort and control. Depending upon the choice of tire, the overall diameter of 27.5 Plus is less than a half inch (10mm) of a 29er wheel, so a plus 27.5 bike can share the 29er's proven fork offsets and frame geometry - and its wheels as well. Interchangeability aside, wide, low-pressure tires require wide rims for lateral support, and 27.5 plus seems to strike the best compromise between optimizing traction, roll-over and cornering stability while minimizing the rotating mass of the wheels (reportedly, the 700's plus wheels and tires add up to a half pound more than conventional 29er wheelset with 2.3" tires).

The penalty for all that goodness, says Scott, is only a five-watt drag disadvantage over conventional wheels and tires. The 27.5 plus format's interchangeability with 29er wheels means that Scott owners who buy into plus and later discover they can't live with that five watt penalty can opt out - but we doubt many will.

bigquotesThe penalty for all that goodness, says Scott, is only a five-watt drag disadvantage over conventional wheels and tires.


Plus Geometry

Adjustable numbers: Frame numbers can be adjusted by a half a degree using a two-way "chip" on the rocker link that drives the shock. Reversing the chip toggles the head angle between 66.3 and 65.8 degrees, lowers the bottom bracket by five millimeters and alters the bike's reach by four millimeters. The LT 700 Plus's seat angle is intentionally steep (74.0 or 74.5 degrees) to better position the rider for steep climbing and to create more reach without an excessively long top tube.

Short chainstays: Conventional 27.5-inch-wheel Genius 700 chainstays measure 445 millimeters. The chainstays of the Genius LT 700 Plus are only slightly longer, at 448 millimeters, so the difference in weight transfer while climbing or cornering should be negligible between the two models - no small feat, considering the additional girth and height of 2.8-inch tires mounted to 40-millimeter inside-width rims.

Scott Genius LT Plus geometry


Suspension

Scott's "Tuned" suspension is about as straight up as suspension gets: a single-pivot swingarm that hinges about 80 millimeters above the bottom bracket center that drives the shock through a top-tube-mounted rocker linkage. Scott cleverly positions the seatstay pivot so near to the rear axle that it (we suspect) causes the LT 700's rear suspension to emulate some of the uncoupled braking qualities of a concentric axle pivot like Trek's ABP and Dave Weagle's Split Pivot. As mentioned, the LT 700 Plus uses a welded-aluminum rear end, but we are sure that, should the Plus genre take root, future LT 700's will soon sport a carbon rear suspension, just like their conventional-wheeled siblings.

Scott LT 700 Plus Squamish 2016


Nude shock upgrades: Fox makes the LT 700's Nude shock (which probably stands for Never Underestimate Deranged Engineers) based upon its Factory Float Kashima platform, and this year the dual-travel damper get the EVOL air spring system, which doubles the throw of its negative spring and produces a seamless transition from its initial travel, through the mid-stroke. Commanded by Scott's Twinloc lever, the middle "Traction" option reduces the shock stroke by 38 percent while dramatically increasing its spring rate. From the rider's perspective, pedaling feels much more firm, and the rear of the bike rides noticeably higher. Fox set the blow-off threshold conservatively low for the shock's lock-out option, presumably to protect its internals, because many LT 700 owners will be accidentally smashing features with their Twinloc levers in Locked mode. As a result, the suspension feels firm, but never immobile when "locked" and there is always a small degree of suspension movement under power.

Fox 36 fork: The beating that the RockShox Pike delivered to Fox over its CTD fork range, may take a while for customers to forget, but most who have time on them say that Fox's new 34 and 36 forks are better this year than anything RockShox has in its arsenal. Scott's choice to go with a Fox Factory 36 Kashima fork on the LT 700 was a good risk - it's stiff, lightweight, and the new FIT4 internals deliver smooth action from top to bottom with precision ride-height adjustment available from the black low-speed compression dial above the remote damping control.
Scott LT 700 Plus Squamish 2016


Improved Twinloc

Look no further than the 700 Plus's Twinloc lever to see how deeply Scott's racing heritage overlaps its all-mountain range. Twinloc offers three suspension options: "Open" with full travel for both fork and shock; "Traction" mode, which improves pedaling efficiency by reducing the rear suspension travel to 100 millimeters and increasing the shock's spring rate, while simultaneously boosting the fork's low-speed compression damping; and "Lockout" mode which, in the case of the LT, increases low-speed compression to the degree that both the fork and shock feel locked out, while still allowing the suspension to react to big hits on the trail.

Scott LT 700 Plus Squamish 2016
The new DownSide Remote finally puts the Twinloc levers below the bar. The lower lever selects "Traction" or "Lock-out" modes, while the upper release lever toggles the options back to "Open."


As mentioned, Twinloc has been moved below the handlebar (named the "Downside Remote"), which is hugely better than up top, where the dual-lever apparatus, with its splay of cables, clamps and hardware was unnatural to manipulate and offensive to the eyes. Of course that means the remote button for the RockShox dropper post must be located on top of the handlebar, but in action, the new configuration is worlds better.


Smart Build

Eight thousand dollars is outside most bike buyers' definition of an affordable trail bike, but Scott shamelessly broke the $10,000 barrier for mountain bikes a long time ago. Considering that the Genius LT 700 Tuned is Scott's most elite plus bike, their product managers showed some restraint when they fleshed out its parts. No-doubt, choosing a second-tier SRAM X01 transmission and relying upon Syncros (owned by Scott Sports) to fill out the running gear and cockpit items saved enough cash to foot the bill for its carbon front section and Kashima-coated Fox factory suspension bits. The soul of the LT 700 Plus literally revolves around its wheels, where Scott chose the best performing tire of the moment: Schwalbe's 2.8-inch Nobby Nic EVO, and then mounted them to ultra-wide rims so they could handle lateral cornering stress without rolling or tucking. In short, Scott spent its cash-roll on the right components.

Components:
Specifications
Release Date 2016
Price $7999
Travel 160mm/100mm (R), 160mm (F)
Rear Shock Fox Factory/Nude dual-travel, Float EVOL Kashima
Fork Fox Factory 36 Kashima FIT4 160mm, remote control
Headset Syncros
Cassette SRAM X01 10 x 42
Crankarms SRAM X01 carbon
Chainguide Scott DM top guide
Bottom Bracket SRAM GXP press fit
Pedals NA
Rear Derailleur SRAM X01
Chain SRAM 11 speed
Front Derailleur None
Shifter Pods SRAM X01
Handlebar Syncros AM1.0 Carbon 10mm Rise / 35mm 9° / 760mm
Stem Syncros aluminum, 50mm, 35mm clamp
Grips Syncros lock-on
Brakes Shimano XTR 9020, 180mm (R), 203mm (F) ICE rotors
Wheelset Syncros TR1 Plus tubless
Hubs Syncros TR1 by DT Swiss
Spokes DT Swiss Aero Comp
Rim Syncros TR1.5 Plus, 40mm ID, aluminum
Tires Schwalbe 2.80" Nobby Nic EVO (F/R)
Seat Syncros, carbon rails
Seatpost RockShox Reverb Stealth, 150mm travel

Scott LT 700 Plus Squamish 2016





bigquotes In spite of my skepticism, it proved to be one of the more enjoyable trailbikes I have ridden in the Pacific Northwest.

Scott's Long-travel, plus-wheeled Genius was easy to make friends with. It rolled with remarkable efficiency over the fist-sized gravel that carpeted many of the trail access roads. Hook-and-loop grip and predictable steering. Its steering is sure and predictable feel is only slightly heavier than an all-mountain 29er sporting 2.3-inch tires. And, like that AM 29er, the Genius Plus lags for the first one and a half pedal strokes when accelerating from nearly a dead stop. Beyond those minor negatives, the Genius LT 700 Tuned Plus (to use its proper name), is hard to fault. In spite of my skepticism, it proved to be one of the more enjoyable trailbikes I have ridden in the Pacific Northwest.

Setup notes: Two of us were riding plus bikes during our Squamish, BC, test sessions and we learned quickly that tire pressure trumped everything when it came to setting up our suspension. Too much pressure and the tires would feel bouncy over rooted and rocky sections as speeds increased. Too soft and the bike would lose its planted feel in the turns and tires would feel grabby under hard braking. Neither of those attributes play well with suspension tuning, so initially, I pumped both tires to Schwalbe's recommended one-BAR (approximately 14.5 psi) starting pressure before getting serious with the fork and shock.

Two rides later, I learned that the Scott did its best in a technical (and most often, very wet) forest environment with the front tire at 12 psi, the rear at 14psi and the suspension set almost exactly as I would tune a conventional-wheeled 160-millimeter all-mountain bike: 20-percent sag in the fork, 30-percent for the shock, with the fork's low-speed compression about one third of the way in. The only deviation that was specific to plus sized tires was that a faster low-speed rebound tune seemed to stabilize the voluminous tires when they were being pounded into successive roots or rocks.
Scott LT 700 Plus Squamish 2016
Greater tire volume means that small pressure changes can make big handling differences.

Pedaling: Those who have been pushing an all-mountain/enduro bike around the mountains, shod with aggressive, 2.3-inch (or larger) tires, will either ignore or fail to notice the small drag penalty of the LT 700's 2.8-inch Schwalbe tires. The tires look huge, the growl on paved surfaces, and certainly give the impression that they would be energy suckers, but they roll on hard pack with surprising efficiency. I put some good mileage in on paved highways and gravel logging roads, and after one or two rides, the only time I became acutely aware that I was on a plus bike, was when the rubber hit the dirt and the fun began. In their natural environment, the big Schwalbes roll faster than 29ers when the trail surface is rough or irregular and they maintain momentum like nobody's business.

The Genius LT 700 is lightweight when compared to any elite machine in the 160-millimeter class, so it has no problems punching up steep climbing pitches. Add the grip afforded by its monster knobbies and the nimble Scott pretty much invalidates any excuses for not topping a technical climb. Low-pressure, pliable tires wrap themselves around roots and catch multiple edges in rocky situations, so climbing traction is almost always assured - which reduces the climber's workload to pedaling and steering.

Energy Management: The chassis has a reasonably long reach and a steep seat angle, which make the transition from seated, to out-of-the-saddle pedaling an effortless movement. Riders who spend a good deal of time standing on the pedals will discover quickly that the Twinloc remote lever is an essential component of the Scott Genius LT experience. Pedaling forces will always activate the rear suspension to some degree, so the Genius rider quickly learns to manage pedaling firmness with the Twinloc remote control. I often locked out the suspension for logging roads, relying upon the big tires to smooth out the chatter. On trail, I almost always climbed in "Traction" mode, although I found that the Scott pedaled firmly enough in "open" mode to ignore the Twinloc lever altogether for long periods and enjoy the flow.

RC Scott LT 700 Plus Squamish

bigquotesThe Genius LT 700 Plus turns in and sets up for corners more quickly than a 29er with a similar head angle.

Turning and steering: Plus 27.5-inch wheels are within a finger's width of the diameter of a 29er's, and the Genius Plus shares the same front section, fork offset and most of the numbers of its 29er cousin - so it should come as no surprise that the Genius plus gets around the bends like a 29er. That said, the Genius 700 Plus turns in and sets up for corners more quickly than a 29er with a similar head angle, bars and stem. I attribute this to the possibility that the tire is riding farther down on its side blocks and thus turns a tighter arc at the same lean angles. However the science may work, when leaned over, the Plus bike carves a tighter apex than an equivalent 29er and about the same as that of a 27.5 bike.

Steering feels slightly heavy in tight, techy situations, because the front wheel is heavier than most, and also because there is more grip available. You can often feel the tire grinding into the trail surface when sawing back and forth on the handlebar. A soft, wide contact patch up front makes it possible to feed in a lot of front brake while descending steeps, and the added control is almost laughable. Once I learned to trust the grip, I could handily steer around and between nasty roots and rocks while dropping down chutes that would have most likely been brakes-off, straight-line, Hail Mary descents on my go-to trail bike.

bigquotesA soft, wide contact patch up front makes it possible to feed in a lot of front brake while descending steeps, and the added control is almost laughable.

Tire stability: When the concept first debuted, plus-width tires were most often mounted to all-mountain width rims with internal widths that measured 28 to 24 millimeters. Not surprising, that combination produced a hailstorm of complaints from hard-core riders that flexible plus tires rolled over on the rims when pressed hard in corners. Scott's pairing of its 40-millimeter ID Syncros TR1.5 rims with Schwalbe's slightly smaller 2.8-inch tire casings seems to have put those issues to rest. I experienced the opposite - surprising stability and very predictable cornering, as did PB reviewer Paul Aston at Scott's Plus launch.

Technical riding: The Genius LT 700 Plus thrives in a technical singletrack environment like Squamish offers, where its oversized knobbies, well-balanced chassis and ample suspension travel work together to take some of the edge off of the terrain and, in most cases, reduce the difficulty of features, natural or manmade. Its 65.8-degree head angle (we left the suspension chip in the slack and low position) is super stable when paired with the predictable steering of its plus-sized wheels. The bottom bracket is acceptably low, but not so much so that I was re-sculpting my aluminum pedals through the rock gardens.

Braking is impressive on wet roots and loam, especially if the rear tire's air pressure is reduced to around 12 psi. There is always the greased one that sends the tail end into a wild swap, but if you drop your heels and feed in a handful of rear brake, the rear end will find traction somewhere, often with a popping sound as the tire deforms around a root and then snaps free. Down steep rock rolls, there is a massive amount of stopping available from the font brake, but less than expected from the rear wheel, which requires more delicate modulation than a conventional-wheeled bike does. My opinion is that the narrower tire concentrates pressure on a smaller contact patch, which creates more grip than spreading that same pressure over more tread blocks and the plus tire's larger contact patch.


Minuses of Plus

Plus also has its disadvantages. First and worst is when the time comes to push those oversized tires through sticky mud. You'll be praying for skinny tires after you realize how every tread block on those Schwalbe Nobby Nics acts like a suction cup. Two miles of climbing in goo was lesson enough to either choose a better route or a different bike, rather than plod through the pudding on my plus bike again. There is a reason why DH mud spikes are relatively narrow racing tires.
Scott LT 700 Plus Squamish 2016

bigquotesYou'll be praying for skinny tires after you realize how every tread block on those Schwalbe Nobby Nics acts like a suction cup.

High speed corners define the dividing line between Plus and Enduro. Plus's confidence-building super-grip and steering work wonders in the deep woods when speeds are low and features are high, but with speeds and cornering forces pushed near the limits, the awesomely predictable grip of the LT 700's Schwalbe plus tires fade away and the once-confident rider is left to deal with an ambiguous drift. When push comes to shove in a high-G corner, there is no substitute for a stiff tire casing and a reinforced row of edging blocks.

RC Scott LT 700 Plus Squamish

bigquotesClimbing traction is almost always assured - which reduces the climber's workload to pedaling and steering.

Technical Report

Fox suspension: Scott's Twinloc remote system makes Fox a partner in the Genius' suspension, so it was serendipitous that Fox rolled out its best-ever trailbike suspension concurrently with the introduction of Scott's long-travel plus bikes. Once set up, the 36 factory FIT4 fork and Float EVOL shock quietly pumped out miles of silky smooth suspension action and spot-on ride height support. Welcome back.

Lucky engineering Patching a carbon front section from Scott's Genius 29er onto a newly designed plus-sized aluminum rear section seems more like a sci-fi plot than a recipe for a winning trailbike, but it worked. The Genius 700 Tuned Plus is one of the rare bikes that almost any rider can hop on and shred from the first pedal stroke.

Twinloc Downside remote: I would much rather ride a trailbike that did not require lever, nor my attention to optimize its suspension for climbing and descending. I'd rather opt for a battery powered system, like Lapierre's E.i. suspension before I'd embrace cable-operated forks and shocks. That said, Twinloc is key to the versatility of the Scott Genius - and it has proven to be both reliable and effective.

Tubeless dilemma: Inner tubes for three-inch plus tires are heavy, so to manage weight, plus tires must be tubeless. Which means that damage too great for latex sealant to repair is "game over" and that angry customers will be faced with having to throw away otherwise fresh tires - or figuring out a way to repair the holes. Tire and accessory makers need to get on this one, fast.


Pinkbike's Take:

bigquotesScott's decision to place plus at the most elite level in its trailbike range is a shout-out that the plus-wheel format is valid at all levels - especially for hard core bike-handlers. While it is true that an accomplished rider aboard a good all-mountain trailbike could replicate the handling and performance qualities of the Genius LT 700 Plus, it is equally true that adding plus-sized wheels and tires to that same trailbike would make it more enjoyable to ride, and in many cases, more capable for taking on the kind of trails that fill most rider's bucket lists. Scott knows this because that's exactly what they did. In the course of two weeks, I rode the Genius LT 700 Plus on a variety of trails from blue to black - on hero dirt, rooty loam, granite slabs, black ice and new-fallen snow. I hit a lot of unfamiliar features and it always felt as if the LT 700 had my back when I committed to something new. "Capable, easy to ride, and confidence inspiring" - What's not to like about that? - RC



Visit the review gallery for full-sized and additional images.



MENTIONS: @SCOTT-Sports, @schwalbe, @foxracingshox,


253 Comments

  • + 117
 I want to hate it but it looks good and honestly sounds like a good time to ride... Just like the old fat chick reference "love to ride em, just never tell your friends;
  • + 3
 Probably similar in ride to the special ed stumpy plus bike. If it is that's a good thing
  • + 7
 get brendawg,vinny,vink,kyle j to ride it and sell bikes
  • + 87
 The ultimate confidence test will be putting a pro enduro rider on it and see him or her podium. I doubt that will happen however if the reviewer is right about wobbly and drifty feeling during high speed cornering. The most ideal purpose for the plus side tyre in my opinion is making slack, capable hardtails that people can afford.
  • + 5
 I have wanted one ever since I saw the first posts on here about it. Although hearing about the "ambiguous drift" kind of disappoints me...maybe that's something that'll be answered down the road with something different about tread pattern.

Anyway, very curious and excited to try one of these sometime.
  • + 0
 Those are special, Forer Effect tires. VERY Kewl.
  • + 5
 @thestraightine I agree, and let's not forget this costs 8k$.

For people who don't have the money, the choice is easy between a good full sus 27 and a bad full sus 27.5. Same as choosing between a good hardtail and a bad full sus.
  • + 3
 I agree with @thestraightline as well. I'd consider going plus size but my rides involve pedaling up steep climbs of 2,000 feet. Enduro races require climbing 5,000 plus feet in a day. The last thing I want to do is add weight to my tires and wheels, even if it means making it marginally easier to roll over chunky stuff. What is the weight of these wheels/tires? Again, I love the idea of more options and understand the benefits of plus, but I'm not sure the benefits are worth the added weight if you have to earn your turns.
  • + 17
 Without debating the merits of the wheels size, tire size, genius, weights, blah blah blah....I have to say visually that is one dam sexy bike!!
  • - 35
flag RedBurn (Dec 8, 2015 at 9:43) (Below Threshold)
 I can't understand why the rider who test the bike isn't a guy that can go FAST the bike and push it to the limit to see what it really worth... pictures aren't showing speed, and testing this bike without having pushed it at 100% is non-sense. On these pictures here, it looks like the tester did a sunday ride with his 8 year old child, seriously
  • + 27
 @fr3er1d3r: You can really corner hard on the LT 700 Plus, but there is no chance that it will out corner an enduro bike with agressive tires. Plus is not about raw speed, That's where a conventional AM/trailbike can do a better job.
  • + 3
 I think it is unfair to say that the real test is to see if it can podium in an enduro event. Though the word enduro does come from the racing format, as a style of riding for many it isn't always about making it down the fastest. I think RC nailed the true test well by describing it as a whole lot of fun and then giving some objective comments about some areas where, if you prefer certain aspects of riding, it may or may not be great fit. I recently rode with a friend on a plus bike and it looked like a great time. I'd be excited to give it a go and see if it answers the questions I ask of mountain biking.
  • + 6
 @thestraightline
You are correct. I think due to rolling resistance and the fact that a lot of Pro riders prefer heavy drifting this type of bike won't be making it to the podium.
But it could revive the hard tail market.
  • + 1
 Have a look at movies for your monday: "El Sueño del Pibe". You'll find it a interesting and nice EWS experience with the LT plus tuned. Very important! Active captions and watch the nextone of the play list to understand what is all about. Thanks for watch!
  • + 4
 It is going to be a plus when this tire size blows over!
  • + 2
 Hard tail please, please, please...
  • + 2
 They're very fun to ride, aside from all of the noise from the rear tire contacting the seat/chain stays. And who doesn't love digital camo?
  • + 2
 my 26x2.35's never let me down! sorry, I am not buying into this new fad. the day a + size tire ends a ride in front of me I might consider trying it out. is this me being close minded, I am from Georgia.
  • + 108
 When did everyone start losing so much traction on climbs?
  • + 4
 ^^ This.
  • + 28
 well played sir.

and also, why does it matter so much? I climb for the descents. I will walk my bike to the top if the down is that good.
  • + 20
 ...and if you know how to corner properly. do you really need/want bigger tires?
These bikes are for noobs, I guess its good for the sport and selling bikes tho...
  • + 26
 Umm I can easily see the plus size being superior on tech climbs. However same or better effect can be achieved with procore installed into a regular tyre. Plus is fantastic for beginners and enthusiasts,and as RC confirms, provides incredible ride characteristics at lower speeds, and let's be honest most of buyers of 6k$ + bikes never get fast. They need a nice ride experience and a few nice acrobyms - nothing wrong about that. Nobody gets everything and people who despise them should go and interfere with themselves more often. Plus basically does what 29er was supposed to do but never really delivered. It makes it easier to ride in diffucult terrain for people who have developed lives outside of mountain biking.
  • + 3
 Noobs with $8000... almost twice as much as I paid for my truck in 2001. Just passed 200k mi! Anyway, I agree with you fellers.
  • + 11
 sometimes I take for granted that I've been riding a bike since I was 5
  • + 6
 @waki Chris Akrigg is superior on tech climbs. Not plus size wheels.
  • + 9
 Erm why do you expect people who ride little to be as good as Chris Akrigg while you are no good at it yourself?
  • + 0
 '''
  • + 41
 Hit the nail on the head with that color way. Something about digi camo with a fluorescent orange just works.
  • + 8
 Yea that paint job is 2L2Q
  • + 1
 @PDXcav HAHAHAHA
  • + 6
 Road this bike 2 rides in a park for total 6 hours, and also road the 700 Plus (not LT) for about 4 week with over 500 miles together, I can confidentially state, the Plus is here to stay, it does everything better than my Minions 2.35" on my 6" Pivot Mach 6. Drifting is very predictable, and actually fun.
Down side? most of this model will be sold-out before they'll hit the show rooms! If you'll find one in your size, take it.
  • + 3
 @nintense If only it were that easy. That's a lot of $$ to spend. Last year I had the dumb idea of waiting to get my hands on year old model Scott Genius 700 tuned. I quickly learned that that was a stupid idea. They were sold out before the year was over.

Anyone who's lucky/fortunate to buy any bike in this range is...well...damn LUCKY.
  • + 1
 I guess I Am lucky to be part of the industry, make it a bit more affordable, the down side is that I can't afford anything else Smile
  • + 1
 @nintense ahh I guess you work for a bike shop or bike company? Yeah, this sport definitely isn't cheap and having the top of line anything is crazy.
  • + 27
 "Scott cleverly positions the seatstay pivot so near to the rear axle that it (we suspect) causes the LT 700's rear suspension to emulate some of the uncoupled braking qualities of a concentric axle pivot like Trek's ABP and Dave Weagle's Split Pivot."

You suspect wrong. Its a single pivot and will suffer all the normal brake jack issues whether the seatstay pivot is 1mm from the rear axle, or on the moon. The caliper is attached to the chainstay, so it really makes no difference what you do with the seatstay.

Seriously PB, you should know better than spouting total bollocks like this. It just confuses people
  • + 17
 Oh bloody hell. Its a R Cunningham article. RC you really really really should know better.
  • + 1
 Agreed but the terminology is a bit off. Like almost every other full suspension bike out there (even the coveted Horst link) this bike will squat not "jack". The sensation of the rear end extending has nothing to do with the rear brakes direct application to the rear wheel but to the front end nose diving; making it seem like the rear end is rising. Now the degree to which brake squat happens varies from design to design.
  • + 7
 Indeed, you are absolutely correct, although its one of those cycling "things" where jack has kinda become a blanket term for "my brake does weird shit to my suspension"

Kinda like how "alloy" is taken to mean "aluminium" while infact any bike made out of metal is an alloy bike...unless it is actually made of pure iron, or infact pure aluminium...
  • + 6
 But... Brake Jack is a problem for sissies... Look, Remi Thirion rides on Formula brakes, how much worse can it get and he still refuses to leave top 10
  • + 2
 Haha, indeed. Infact one of my favorite ever bikes (Santa Cruz Super 8 ) suffered major braking feedback. I swear if I even looked at my brake lever, my knees started aching. Seriously fast bike tho. I have my suspicions that it's still reasonably competitive...If it didnt explode its shock every 3 minutes.

However, saying "brake jack aint so bad" and "this bike has a clever system to avoid brake jack" are two very different things...
  • + 7
 I have heard that if you never use your brakes brake jack is not a problem.
  • + 9
 Easy there, gabriel-mission9: The Scott is very supple and conctrollable when the rear brake is on, which is not usually the case with single-pivot swingarms. I carefullly stated that it was my opinion that the close proximity of the pivot to the axle may have had a similar effect.

The logic is simple: If a concentric pivot can uncouple braking, then shouldn't a pivot location only one millimeter off-center do the same? And if that is true, which it should be, then there should be a defined range about the axle where some decoupling takes place.

It's worth considering, that's why I put that paragraph in there.
  • + 12
 Except concentrics dropout pivots only truly uncouple the braking if the brake is mounted to the seatstay.
  • + 6
 deeeight and gabriel-mission9: are on the money. The brake caliper would need to be on the upper link to truly decouple the rear suspension.
  • + 9
 Personally I'd rather not read confusing unsupported conjecture in the middle of a review. There's enough bullshit to figure out coming from marketing departments. 'Bike behaves nicely under braking' would be more helpful.
  • + 22
 Am I the only one who is having plenty of fun on the way down already (rolling around on an 'antiquated' 08 26" am bike), but would love the ups to be easier? Seriously, there is no way that I want to add extra rim and tyre weight to get to the trail head, let alone the drag. I'm not gonna take Scott on and say if it only amounts to 5 watts or not, because I can't convert that into what 5 watts of drag means to me...which may be part of the point of that figure. What I do know is that I'm gonna feel it on every climb.
  • + 4
 haha yeah wtf does 5 watts feel like? I'm a big fan of Scott, but most people don't own a $700 watt crank converter, a different scale would be helpful
  • + 2
 A beginner puts out about 100 watts,
A well trained xc non pro puts out about 300
Olympic TT guys put out a peak of 700 or so
(Very rough numbers)

5w is chump change
  • + 1
 Nathan Rennie used to put out over 1800 watts and could have smoked all those olympic TT guys. theteamrobot.blogspot.com.au/2012/05/rennie.html.
Sounds like it would take away 5% of my power.
  • + 4
 Power to weight ratio is what matters. My bike+rider weight is about 200lbs. Giving up 5w on a 150w effort is comparable to gaining 7lbs. On a 200w effort it's like gaining 5lbs. That's pretty noticeable imo.
  • + 2
 So just loose 7lbs.
  • + 3
 I did! Climbing got easier. Turns out one kidney is plenty.
  • + 2
 Yeah my wife says something similar sometimes. Me: "I want a lighter bike." She: "Why don't you just lose some weight?"
  • + 1
 5 watts extra isn't much. In fact there is far more than 5 watts rolling difference from tire to tire. www.bicyclerollingresistance.com
  • + 19
 I'm getting really tired of underexposed images. I can barely see the bike in the first image besides the bright orange ...
  • + 2
 My day rate excluding travel and rental gear is $1500 FYI PB.....side lights or reflectors would have helped...
  • + 19
 prepare for people complaining about 'the industry' in 5...4...3...2...1..
  • + 5
 No! It's a great opportunity to make 27+/29" compatible bikes, and even 26/27" with a flip chip.
Some bike manufacturers will get this and eventually everything will be compatible!
  • + 1
 26/27.5 bikes have been around for years...
  • + 3
 Yeah but I have high hopes. one standard to rule them all... And on your bike bind them
  • + 12
 I don't like the industry.
  • + 2
 Yeah, it's full of these underpaid MTB fanatics running a massive joined up corporate super conspiracy to force us to hold on to our kit for longer because it's worthless to sell and the next thing you buy will be worthless in 12 months too. Or maybe its just an industry full of people who haven't a clue about long term industrial planning and individually jump from one thing to another desperately trying to keep up with the Joneses. And the fact customers are getting repeatedly screwed over is just an accidental by-product of this.
  • + 15
 i dont get how you can ride a 900g tire with 1 bar or less. those sidewalls must be super skinny. i cant imagine hammering down rocky trails without punctures.
  • + 14
 Plus bikes are aiming at getting new peoples to ride bikes. Top guys at shimano during Sea Otter this year told PB (can't remember the article) that at first when you discover the benefit of low pressure it makes you want to ride harder which is a good thing, but when you charge you experience punctures. So you have to increase pressure and loose the benefits and experience rebound.
So plus bikes are clearely for crawling through technical stuff or for beginners who want a confidence inspiring ride.
  • + 5
 i realy love the damping of heavy tires. but for normal 650b that means something like conti prot apex or schwalbe super gravity. i would assume a plus tire would weight somewhere around 1.3 kg which will definitly worsen the uphill capabilities
  • - 1
 These tyres being half an inch wider than what many people would run, it gives you nearly half an inch extra extra space for absorption before a rock hits the rim.
  • + 1
 Half a inch with half the pressure.
  • + 0
 Air compresses exponentially. Also the rim is much wider (wider rims have much less chance of pinch flats, that's why trials riders ride such wide rims) and according to the pic the top part of the side wall is much wider aswell.
  • + 3
 Wide rims decrease the risk of puncture that's true, but concerning the pressure, half the pressure at exponential is way under the pressure at exponential, learn your math. Add to that a bigger volume and the pressure in your big tire increases slower than in a regular volume tire, learn your physic.
  • + 11
 A better explanation of both plus sized wheels, aswell for 27.5: it is the so called Door-In-The-Face marketing technique:

"The persuader attempts to convince the respondent to comply by making a large request that the respondent will most likely turn down, much like a metaphorical slamming of a door in the persuader's face. The respondent is then more likely to agree to a second, more reasonable request, compared to the same reasonable request made in isolation."

It is no coincidence they first introduced fat bikes, and only later plus size. Same as how they first introduced 29ers, and only later 27.5". None of these would have been so successful as they are now without the door-in-the-face marketing technique.
  • + 8
 Cycling industry + size conspiracy is a bit far fetched, don't you think? More likely that big companies are just jumping onto emerging trends and ideas as to snatch that first customer base.

It's not like the big companies like spesh and trek first introduced the fatbike, 27.5 wheel or 29/27+ wheel, they jumped onto it after the concept emerged and gained traction.

In the case of + sized wheels, it's not unreasonable for someone to think of a compromise between a fatbike and normal bike and bring forth that idea, like it's not unreasonable for someone to think of a wheel size, between 29 and 26.

And consider that a fatbike and 29er wheel isn't unreasonable at all, they both have their respective strengths and demographic
  • + 6
 Never said it is a conspiracy, but they are using this technique to create acceptance.
For example if 29ers wouldnt have been promoted / excisted, people would probably dislike the idea of switching to bigger wheels (27.5"), same way as how many people disliked the idea of 29ers. But once they introduced the size that many people consider overkill (29"), it is much easier to sell a reasonable version (27,5"), which would else have gotten the same overkill status as 29".
Same with plus size bikes: people have a much more positive view about them after they have seen the overkill version of them (fat bikes).

It's not a conspiracy, it is a social marketing technique that is being used pretty much everywhere around you. If you want to buy a new tv, the first one they'll show you is the biggest, so after that the other ones (which would normally seem too big and expensive for you) now suddenly don't seem as big and as expensive, as you compare them to the biggest ones. Same goes with cars, phones, and pretty much everything. Often the biggest or most expensive version of a product is purely introduced so the sales of the model underneath (which they originally planned to be their main seller anyways) will sell more; as people tend to prefer a reasonable option and not the most extreme option.

The cycling industry used this technique aswell: we look at plus sized tyres and at 27.5" wheels as reasonable options. Why? Because they confronted us with the overkill version first instead.
If this wouldn't have happened we would dislike 3.0" wide tyres just as much as we disliked 3.0" Gazaloddis three years ago.
  • + 12
 Pretty sure people HATED the swap to 27.5, but it very much was shoved down our throats.

In any case, I see this as very much an incidental thing. 29er wheels exist because they're much better at 26 for rollover and keeping speed, fatbikes exist because regular bikes can't ride sand or snow. I highly doubt these concepts were introduced solely to introduce down the long run for an in-between technology, rather, I believe these were introduced to do a job that the predominant technology couldn't.

As such, it may seem like manufacturers are using this technique, but I see it as a natural progression of the industry. 27.5 may not have existed without 29ers first and +bikes may not have existed without the fatbike, but both were developed to reach a 'best of both worlds' result out of the standard and the specialized.

With the examples you've given, I don't think it even applies here. It applies more to, for example, Shimano's XTR Di2 compared to the new XT.

Fatbikes and 27.5+, on the other hand, are good at their own respective thing. Fatbikes are considered overkill because they are inherently very specific, 27.5+ less so because it's inherently more suitable for the average trail rider. Neither eclipse each other in terms of prestige or hierarchy to make another look more reasonable, unlike XT v XTR.

So why do we accept 27.5+? Is it because it seems much more reasonable compared to a fatbike, or because it offers performance/fun gains for the average trail rider? Do we see it as acceptable, only when, compared to a fatbike, or rather just in general? Is it as accepted as you think it is? you tell me, but I don't even consider fatbikes when looking at this
  • + 7
 @Mattin So you're trying to tell me there is no market for fat bikes and that they planned on switching to plus size as a marketing strategy?

Try living in a country with snow.
  • - 1
 Never said there was no market for fat bikes or 29ers. But I do believe the order and time they released the different models in, was no coincidence and was done on purpose, so that people would have a more positive attitude towards the products and thereby the sales would go higher. Not saying these products have no benefits or anything. But the way they released it is a marketing technique so they can influence our opinions about it so that we think we actually want it.
  • + 5
 Sorry but there is just no evidence to support what you are saying. It's like claiming that suspension went from 80mm to 200mm only so that we could settle on 160mm as the norm for travel.

Gary Fisher was playing with 29'ers nearly a decade ago. Surly, Salsa and Jones have been building wide tire bikes for nearly as long. Many of the changes are happening now because of technology breakthroughs (particularly carbon to keep weight down while strength high) and decreasing rates of improvement in other areas of bike technology. This allows mainstream manufacturers to adopt them and move towards new standards. The order of 29 to 27.5 and fat to plus is coincidental.
  • + 1
 Plus bikes will not replace Fat bikes, though they likely will cut further into sales of 29ers except amongst the XC racer folks. Scott themselves clearly understands this as they're adopting Plus tires on the Genius, Genius LT, Spark and Scale platforms. Hell even Trek is considering this on their fat bikes. The 2016 Farley's are compatible with 26 x 5 tires or 650B x 4s or 29 x 3s. Its more likely to convince a new buyer to have ONE bike platform and extra wheel/tire setups for it, than to own two seperate bikes (although in reality many customers who are sold bikes on that basis, like fat bikes which come with an extra 29er wheelset, never bother to use the second set of wheels). So far this season I've spent most of my riding time either on a 650B Full suspension XC trail bike, or my fat bike. My 650B hardtail has had barely any usage, and I sold one of my 29ers and might sell my other one to replace it with a Plus bike.
  • + 2
 There will always be a market for 26" and fat bikes, but that market has gotten comparatively small. It really comes down to what actually sells. You can still buy 26" bikes on any showroom floor, but they are usually on the lower end bikes now. The world moved to 27.5 and 27.5+/29 for higher end bikes because they are simply better, and people want whats better.
  • + 5
 Comparatively small for 26ers in terms of non-fat/plus bikes maybe but the market for Fat bikes is the only one for the 26er category that continues to grow in double digit percentages each year. Its become so popular here in the nation's capital region in fact, that the largest landowner/manager of public greenspace, the National Capital Commission, which historically has been very ANTI-mountain bike, has not only announced a pilot program to run fat bikes in the gatineau park this winter on existing snowshoe trails, but surprised the whole fat bike scene with a Snow Bike loppet race to be run during the international Gatineau Loppet races in late Feb the same weekend as the XC ski and snowshoe races. In addition for the first time in twenty plus years, they built an entirely new trail SPECIFICALLY so the fat bikers could access the other snowshoe trails from the parking lot they've designated for the pilot program. This is the only time I or anyone else who's ever tried working with the NCC can remember them making a trail for mountain bikers that wasn't part of some other multi-user national trail program.
  • + 2
 Man.. love PB for being such a conspiracy nut hideout.

650b was a consumer-lead trend. Don't believe me? Go and read through Derby's posts on MTBR Ibis forums from years ago, as an example. There were various people ghetto converting their 26" bikes to 650b.

It is not a coincidence that 650b turned up after 29". If anything it was the industry's strong hyping of 29" which people rejected but made some evaluate the possibility for incremental improvements to the 26" platform without such distinct bus-like handling of 29".

Similarly as ratedgg13 notes, fat and fat plus have been around for quite a long time, with Surley leading the development of plus.. hardly a linchpin in MTB corporata. But as some aspects of MTB matures, we start to look at other areas.. it is natural evolution.

To my mind I am very open to plus bikes. I ride for fun, not to win races. I don't care if I don't see a plus bike in EWS. More likely to care if I see Sam Reynolds, Wilkins, Brendog, Rat and others bumming about the woods on one in their off season, which more or less equates to my year-round, minus the big air. By all accounts they are quite fun, though there's still some doubt for me about whether they can be pushed or can really only be ridden to 8/10ths.
  • + 1
 650B a consumer lead Trend? hahaha That made my day thanks for the laugh. But I guess if your read it on the internet it must be true....right? hahaha
  • + 3
 Yes. It was. People here refuse to believe it because they were left out of being among the consumers leading that trend but that does not mean it really happened. I wasn't one of the consumers who led to VHS's domination over Betamax but i do not try and deny that it occured either. I however was one of the consumers who got onto 650B early and demanded more of it. Even if every pinkbike member EVER was a 26er for life wheel size buyer they were still just a minority of world wide mountain bike consumers.
  • + 3
 Deeeight, i have no clue where you had a substantial 650B demand. As I told you many times: 90% of 650B bikes before 2011-2012 boom were absolute rubbish, geometries were a mess, there were no real forks and most importantly, no real tyres. And a real tyre is for instance a Nobby Nic, Minion, MKing II, not some Kenda pish, or at best Neomoto. I am not on any "for life" wagon but "early adopters of 650B" had no fricking clue how a bike should ride if they were fine with crap like Haro. 650B was an industry push, at least a few insiders have confirmed it. Santa Cruz, Jeff steber, Specialized. The amount of paeudo-scientific bollocks that was thrown at customers was beyond belief with Giant's and Syntace graphs being the climax. You live in same denial as 26 for life crowd, trying to get credit for your "bored to death" preference that took off by a chance.
  • + 1
 @deeeight@nismo: Guys! Random weirdos on mtbr are consumer trend leaders!

Remember when they discovered air force ones? the snuggie? Kanye West? Off road recumbents?

Take your pick! Mtbr don't lie! Shit is fire!
  • + 0
 Ready for my theory? Next to be "obsolete" will be 29ers. They will basically make 27.5 the one wheel size on a wide rim (30-35mm) and offer bikes in plus and non-plus versions.
  • + 3
 Tell that to XC racers, marathon racers and everyone racing enduro on 29ers.
  • + 0
 Not sure if you are kidding or not... Almost every WC XC race since 2012 has been won on a 27.5 and almost every EWS since its inception was won on a 27.5 (with the exception of Tracy Moseley); not to mention all the DH guys switching to 27.5 last year.

It just makes sense for rim manufacturers to make one rim size that will fit all situations, and have the tire manufacturers design a given tire for a given situation. I honestly don't think they intended it, especially since 99% of their bikes are 29ers, but I think Trek coming out with Boost (making +bikes possible) put the nail in the coffin of 29ers.
  • + 0
 Typically the professional racers still on 29ers are doing so either because their bike sponsor doesn't have a top tier 650B to fit them yet (Emily Batty for example, on the smallest size 29er frame Trek offered had to run a ridiculously short negative rise stem and a seatpost setup that's TT style to move her forwards and lower on the bike) or they're tall enough to prefer a 29er over a 650B for XC racing. Depends on the course also of course, some are obviously more technical than others. You'll also see that with Pro's switching between hardtails and full suspension team bikes, and its why Trek now has a softtail in the model lineup again.

As to waki's complain about the availability... 650B was a USA (and to a lesser extent Canadian) driven consumer demand at a time many europeans were still resisting adopting 29ers. But the day after Nino won his first world cup on a 650B, the demand amongst europeans skyrocketted. Kirk Pacenti literally SOLD out of his entire tire and rim inventory by middle of the week and it all went to europe. As to geometry and what not... that's his opinion... which doesn't count for anything outside his own buying habits.
  • + 2
 Please give me the percentage of Kirk Pacentis market share... in high end MTB market in 2010. You may add an estimate of ALL other companies who were selling 650B bikes in USA at the time. Also please attach the results of polls where people were stating what wheel size is good. You may give me a few people who were asked by market research of any major company if they would be willing to buy a 650B bike. For now I assume that you have no clue about product design and development, finally with marketing it but please Kill me with facts.

So again: it is 2011, you have a dude on Kirk Pacentis hardtail with shitty Manitou fork, neomoto tyres and you put it against a Santa Cruz Tallboy Carbon with Fox 32 Float RLC, RocketRon/ NobbyNic tyres on carbon rims, and you have a bloody nerve to tell me that this bike has any qualities?! That there is a SANE man saying that his bike is better because it has 650B wheels?! Then you try to tell me that there was an army of people who salivated on Kirk Pacentis bikes because they had the innovatory 650B wheels, and look away from: Nomad, Tracer, Spark 29, Cube Stereo, Epic 29, Stumpjumpers, Reign (I can make this list as long as you want). I do not want to meet any of your clientelle on a group ride. You are good in excell sheet and Sheldon Brown, and this is where it ends.

BTW I just bought a 650B bike. For none of the pseudo-scientific facts nor Nino Schurters race resulats that dorks, losers and product developers mention. And please stop mentioning racers and their bias since their mechanics could quickly tell you that front line men have little clue on what they are riding and guys like Schurter or Barel are very rare equipment specialists among the flock. Go around World Cup pits and ask racers what pressures... make it easier: ask them what model of tyre they are riding, make a list of answers. Then come back and tell me that they would love 650B but they have sponsor obligations or lack of particular bikes in the line, so they are forced to ride 29ers
  • + 1
 I will quickly break it down for you: there is a demand for a dropper stem. Some visionaire like Pacenti makes one and markets it. Demand raises a bit due to exposure. Then several big companies like RS, Fox and Suntour looking for new products to generate revenue and gain edge over competition, makes one in cooperation with handlebar and headset makers, and using their marketing leverage greatly increase the demand. 90% of potential buyers were unaware of such product and now want to try it. Then one of the dudes who wanted such stem 5 years ago fks around telling everybody how smart he is.
  • + 1
 Pinkbike the new /pol
  • + 9
 What? A review of plus size tires that actually mentions there might be some downside to them? Holy cow. What is this world coming to? RC, expect angry phone calls from the industry any moment now.

In any case, nice write-up. Seems like a decent bike. Probably not for me.
  • + 6
 Okay, so its no longer the search of the 'one" bike. Its now the hunt for cash to have one of each of all the new wheel sizes. Gotta have a plus trail bike for those slow rooty routes, but a normal 27.5 or 26 for the park , an XC bike and a DH bike and and and. Cant wait for teh 29er DH bikes to arrive.
  • + 1
 Yeah, never even noticed that! A couple years ago, bike reviews were saying most AM bikes could be the "one" bike anyone needed. Lately all the bike reviews are being like "this is the best [x] bike to have in your stable."

Excellent point!
  • + 6
 This reminds me of the 27.5 inch wheel debate in that its one of those changes that's not really that much of a change. With the wheel size debate I am not an anti-big wheel, '26er for life' guy (I ride a 29er trailbike). But 27.5 always struck me as too close to 26". Are there benefits? Yea there probably are. But are those benefits enough to justify a wholesale industry change to a wheel that's only marginally bigger? Thats where I'm not sure.

These "plus" bikes seem like the same thing. You clearly have benefits to fat tires (and draw backs) and you have a related growth in fat bike popularity. But I'm skeptical of these plus size bikes, with tires that are wide, but only marginally wider than the widest tires a normal bike can fit. Is it really much of a change that we need a whole new line of bikes?

I mean the end of RC review sounds great. ""Capable, easy to ride, and confidence inspiring". But thats something you can say about a whole shitload of other trail bikes that already exist without a new, marginally bigger tire size.
  • + 5
 RC does his best to gloss over the biggest downside to this bike - that it is meant for beginner to intermediate riders but is priced for the very advanced. He rightly does this because he knows it is outside of a bike review to question market strategies and how many once-a-month dentists there are on the trails to buy this. But he pretty clearly points out that this bike would be a better option for most people (i.e. - not advanced riders) but that it is priced at the level of competitive race machines. What is not said is the psychology that most riders think they are more advanced than they really are. They believe if they have the same bike as the pros they will be competitive on Strava. The big boys in the industry know this and that's why their marketing budgets are spent on sponsoring top riders, rather than marketing to the uninitiated. So, the commercial outlook for + right now is not good. However, if a Spesh or someone were to come out with a plus-sized $1500 full suss model and market it right to outdoor and fitness enthusiasts, it might do very well. However, that is not the focus of the industry at this time.
  • + 1
 Specialized does have a plus size alloy stumpy at less than half the cost of the bike above. Not quite 1500 but what decent full suspension can be bought for that nowadays? You can buy a solid plus size hard tail for that though.
  • + 3
 There are a lot of age 30+ mountain bikers out there with more disposable income than riding skill. The number of $5-10K bikes I see around the Colorado front range is astonishing, and I assure you, not all of them are being ridden fast.
  • + 4
 Magazines test what is provided to them to test. Scott also has a Genius Plus model at half the price as the one tested. Took me mere seconds to excercise the basic common sense you apparently lacked to go look at the scott website to see that.
  • + 3
 I've said it before, I remember when BMX just died overnight in the 80's. It was terrible. We had state of the art bikes (at that time, in the USA) and then boom, it all went to China.
Seeing how the MTB industry is constantly coming up with new "innovations" like this + thing to find new customers has me hoping that a similar path isn't just around the corner. I love the current generation of bikes since around 2010 or so when thru axles and great brakes became the norm, not to mention all the other good ideas that have stayed since then- dropper posts, short stems and wide bars for example.

Please, please MTB industry, just keep it going. Spend more on promoting the sport to new riders and less on selling current MTBers crap they don't need. Lobby congress for more trails that are MTB specific and upkeep on the ones we already have. More pump tracks and bikeparks too. This will get you all the customers you'll ever need. Work on getting the kids outside again and off their smartphones, they are the future for the industry, not an $8000 bike for Dentists that will ride 3X a year.

Put Slopestyle bikes in the stores and promote your current riders to these kids. There are 20 bike shops in my area and I haven't seen a Slopebike for sale in a store in years, and only wish they were around when I was young. Get MTB as an activity in all schools for the kids that don't like playing with sticks and balls. Hire passionate people to do these jobs and you will have a sport that is here to stay.
  • + 2
 The funny thing is, @jhenterprises, the high end bikes of today are made in China. They just charge $8k for them!
  • + 5
 The geometry chart shown is for the Genius Plus NOT the Genius LT Plus. The LT plus is almost 2 degrees slacker for the head angle. The same mistake is made in the text.

"Scott cleverly positions the seatstay pivot so near to the rear axle that it (we suspect) causes the LT 700's rear suspension to emulate some of the uncoupled braking qualities of a concentric axle pivot like Trek's ABP and Dave Weagle's Split Pivot."

On the Scott, the brake is mounted to the chainstay and the position of the pivot has no effect on the braking forces. This is a well written article but Cunningham should learn the physics of bicycle suspension before he makes comments that are false.
  • + 4
 Agreed about breaking!
  • + 3
 Paging Mr. RC...
  • + 3
 Genius LT Plus Head angle is: 65.8 degrees with the chip on low and 66.3 when flipped to high setting.

Damn I love this bike.
  • + 9
 Also, 445mm chainstays are NOT short in my book... Come on there's a couple 29ers out there with chainstays that are a good 40mm less, and still have room for big tires. And NEITHER ONE is boost!
  • + 6
 'A good 40 mm' is a bit exagerated but I agree with you. The new Canefield Riot is 414 mm with 29" wheels and big tires.
  • + 3
 Yeah fair enough. I typed that about 5 minutes after waking up. 30 mm is more accurate. I had a Riot with the 414mm, and now have a Honzo 29er with the same.
  • + 0
 @Ridge-Rider

You sir appear to have a brain. Congratulations!

For your amusement:
flowmountainbike.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/08/Pyga-140-First-Bite-8.jpg
Facepalm Very confused Thumbs Down Madder Really Mad
  • + 1
 @gabriel-mission9 Wow, what bike is that? lol
  • + 2
 that bike is a Pyga. The Pyga Disc Warper I believe its called. Designed by the much worshipped Mr. Pat Morewood Everyone has bad days i guess...
  • + 1
 It's a good idea, the movement of the pads relative to the disc is minimal. Wink
  • + 1
 Its a bad idea. And when pressed Morewood himself will admit that it is purely that way to dodge patent infringments... Its a really bad idea. I have ridden one and the pings and pangs from the rear wheel are bad enough, let alone the damage they are doing to your disc and pads...
  • + 1
 So it was a good idea "on paper" lol
  • + 0
 Dat chainstay doe ! Dealbreaker
  • + 2
 @gabriel-mission9 at high speeds, it probably doesn't matter a ton since the pads are sliding around the rotor anyways. Its once you get close to lockup that you'll either rip your pads out, stiffen up the rear suspension, and/or warp your rotors.
  • + 2
 Yeah, it was momentary lock-ups to manouver the rear end that caused it to really complain. Say you are drifting a loose corner , and give the brake a little jab to widen the drift slightly (as one of many possible examples) you get a bit of a PANG! out of the rear rotor as it gets twisted all out of shape, and is then suddenly released. I also discovered you can lock the suspension in the compressed position if you overshoot a jump and land with the brakes on trying frantically to slow down for a corner. That made all sorts of weird shit happen underneath me...
  • + 1
 Hardtail chainstays are easier to make short, but they can definitely be shorter. I'd expect a better design for that kind of $$$. Doubting that the typical Scott status buyer really cares tho' ...
  • + 6
 So back in the day I put 2.75" tires on my Dh bike and everyone laughed me to scorn. Too wide was the mantra. Even Mike Levy said that you don't ever need anything wider than 2.5 in the front and 2.35 in the rear.
  • + 2
 I had a set of Kenda 2.8's on my DH bike for a while. Those things were probably bigger than these "fat' tires. Barely cleared the arch on my Boxxer.
  • + 3
 Valid point but remember a wire bead dh tire is far different than these schwalbes mounted to a 40mm rim. The tread width alone doesn't tell the whole story. It does beg the question though, where are all the 2.5" Kevlar bead trail tires? I have 29" internal rims and there are only a couple tires that actually take advantage of the wider rims.
  • + 2
 @ryan83 I hope you mean 29mm rims? But yes, After riding 2.5 wide tires on my light freeride bike (it wasn't expensive enough to call it an enduro), and switching to an E29, I gave in to peer pressure and put a 2.25 on the back. Everyone kept saying that a faster rolling tire is more important, and that getting better cornering skills is more important than a grippier tire. After a season on the skinnies all I want to do is go back to a high volume 2.5 again.
  • + 2
 yes indeed and my mistake with the ". @hamncheez although one day the industry may provide us with 29 in wide rims! They will be called "steamrollers" and provide a great compliment to eBikes.
  • + 4
 "In their natural environment, the big Schwalbes roll faster than 29ers when the trail surface is rough or irregular and they maintain momentum like nobody's business."

I'm skeptical about this, RC. What 29ers? All of them? The ones you rode last week? It's especially confusing when you later say this, "Plus 27.5-inch wheels are within a finger's width of the diameter of a 29er's". So, it's a heavier, slightly wider and slightly smaller diameter 29er tire that has a claimed 5W drag over "conventional wheels and tires" (which is again an undefined comparison). So, how does this bike "roll faster than 29ers"?

TEMPLE
  • + 3
 "Scott cleverly positions the seatstay pivot so near to the rear axle that it (we suspect) causes the LT 700's rear suspension to emulate some of the uncoupled braking qualities of a concentric axle pivot like Trek's ABP and Dave Weagle's Split Pivot."

This is an insult to Split Pivot, ABP, and your own intelligence.

How much did Scott pay for this ad???
  • + 1
 hehehe, keeps the lights on i guest. (*^ sad
  • + 4
 I used to ride a 3.0 tire up front and a 2.8 out back. Until I rode 2.3 minions and realized the mistake I made. To fat tires -- we are never ever ever getting back together.
  • + 3
 Sorry if this has been said, but how is it possible that tire with so much more width can so little impact on rolling resistance? I find my HansDampf 29er to be slower than I'd lke than the Nobby Nic that preceded it, and they're only 2.35. Not judging, just curious. I'd really need to try it. Other than that, that bike looks totally hot.
  • + 3
 I don't get that either, especially because testers will complain about the rolling resistance of a regular sized tire with aggressive knobs, let alone comparing it to a massively wide tire
  • + 1
 Maybe the lower pressure helps with rolling resistance? I run my tires at 20front/25back and I'm 200+ without gear, so would I be running these at 15/20 kinda thing? I'll do the whole review at some point, but I wonder how the chunky tires do on steep techincal climbs. I'm sure they grip like nobody's business, but if they don't feel slow at all then I think there is some kinda magic involved. Or maybe this is the case of the most extreme world-wide new bike stoke ever seen, and the world will hate it in a year, haha
  • + 2
 the larger the volume the tire is the more it relies on perfect air pressure. Since narrow tires bite more, you can get away with higher pressures. Fat tires can't be run hard or soft without some consequence.
  • + 3
 Rolling resistance has to do with tread deformation front to back more than anything. Think of it like every time one of those big knobs hits the ground it tires to lift the bike up, but the tire deforms to "flat" once it hits the pavement, then then next knob hits and does the same thing. That's why tires with small tightly packed knobs roll so fast vs tires with big knobs spaced out farther.
  • + 1
 I would thing there was friction regardless of knobs, though, no? On smooth ground a 25c tire has less rolling resistance than a smooth 2.0. That's my experience, but it may just be perception
  • + 1
 @acme54321 " Rolling resistance has to do with tread deformation front to back more than anything. Think of it like every time one of those big knobs hits the ground it tires to lift the bike up, but the tire deforms to "flat" once it hits the pavement" -- Until I read this I never understood why rolling resistance was a bigger issue for rear tires than for front. Now it makes sense, thanks!
  • + 1
 Guess the fact that knobs will deform under pressure from pedal pressure would add to the desire for shorter more stable knobs on the back for the sake of pedalling efficiency. I love tires.
  • + 1
 all that surface area makes a huge difference. comparing different size road bike tires and you can notice it, let alone these things.
  • + 1
 The latest trend in road bikes is that most cyclists switched from 23mm tyres to 25mm tyres, because some research showed the wider tyres had less rolling resistance at the same air pressure. Had to do something with that it takes less energy to dent the tyre. For that same denting reason flexible tyres roll faster than stiff tyres. But no one has tested where the limits are of which width has the lowest rolling resistance. And at the same time also extra weight and extra air resistance come into play, which needs to be put in the calculation aswell.

One explanation for mtb slicks to be slower than road tyres, is that road tyres go up to 300 tpi, which means super flexible tyres. Where as mtb slicks (also designed for road usage) are usually only around 60-120 tpi, so not nearly as flexible.
  • + 1
 Yeah, I am waiting for the power meter test for all tire sizes on the same course. XC 2.0 vs AM 2..3 vs Plus vs 4.0 full fat. And I bet the 5w claim is for steady state effort at a constant speed, not accelerating, which is where a much larger energy cost is going to happen.
  • + 1
 Any chance you will share the results on Pinkbike? I'm very interested in seeing the results, done by someone who is not trying to sell their product to us.

As both my frame and fork fit 27.5 aswell (i ride 26" now) I hope to find someone with a similar wheel set as mine and with the same tyres. If I manage to find that I want to do a short XC lap, timed with strava, switching wheels back and forth in between every lap, to see if there would be any improvement on my time with 27,5", as the cycling industry claims.
  • + 3
 Tyre prices are never going to come down. The manufactures are having to make tyres for, 26, 27.5, 29, fat bikes and now this thing. I can buy car tyres for cheaper then a set of maxxis. Just another thing for wobblers to get on and talk a load of geeky shit that they read in a magazine zzzzzzzzzzzzx
  • + 3
 Enough of this plus stuff... I have had it... Bigger the tyre, slower you go... Bigger the tyre, easier is to ride on rough stuff... Don't need to run super low pressure with modern suspension... Every freaking year the industry has been coming up with The Next big thing.....
  • + 3
 @RichardCunningham - so it sounds like this is a fun bike, not just for beginners/early intermediates. And it handles similarly to an all mountain 29er. But it's a little vague when railing high speed turns, and it's a little draggy in mud. So what about taking an all mountain 29er, use wider rims and high volume (but not as high volume as 27.5+) 29er tires? Would that give you most of the grip of these, but less of the washed out/draggy drawbacks?
  • + 2
 I think that would be the easiest way to get a feel for it. I did that with my 26" wheel Liteville 301. It has 35mm rims, and I put 2.34 inch tires on it. They look huge, and they have some of the feel of a plus bike - and the 301 still corners like its on rails.

I think plus is still in the developing stages. To optimize it, rim and tire makers will have to get together and integrate those two components. Potentially, plus could morph into a re-design of the basic mountain bike for riders who fit between XC racing and Enduro. Odder things have happened.

Presently, if you rode a good plus bike, you may be surprised at how efficiently they roll - faster in many situations than a conventional bike in any wheel size.
  • + 1
 So will we see a bunch of this sort of thing - meaning a 29er trail bike platform that allows for standard 29er wheels as well as 27.5+? Seems like Specialized and now Scott are doing it - would you expect the same from the other big players? And for the type of person who might be a candidate for one of those bikes (been eyeing whatever SC might come up with for their new TB LT), are we basically looking at bikes tuned to different uses via different wheels and tires (from slow techy traction monsters on 27.5 to 29ers with extra grip with higher volume tires for winter to Enduro missile or epic ride backcountry mile-muncher with classic 29er setup)?
  • + 2
 On a TRON looking bike like that you HAVE to wear space looking spandex and be a super hot siren woman with with a ponytail flowing in wind while you ride rampage stuff but without actually landing, just sort of slowmo-hovering off into a 80's poster sunset. So many reasons I could never ride that bike...
  • + 3
 Some people may not like this, but plus size wheels and tires legitimize 26" wheels. A plus size 26 is pretty damn close to 27.5 and will be more "Playful" then + sized 650b's or niners.
  • + 3
 All that bike with that weak rear shock. time to step up you rear shock game. let see the float X at least, I know i know it might actually make the bike 28 pounds god for bid!
  • + 2
 Normally tech trickles from racing to civilian world. Now, most of us certainly aren't pro's, but seems concerning to me nobody is using this technology in any of the major disciplines of MTB (XC, Enduro, DH)? Is anybody racing these things and doing well? Even 29er's have had an impact in DH...
  • + 2
 Does the boost hub spacing mean you need special cranks to have a good chainline? If so, do you have the same Q-factor.

IMO it would be cool AND MUCH MORE APPROPRIATE to compare the exactly same bike whith 29er wheels and compare speeds on downhill tracks and compare watts on all sorts of terrain (flat, technical trail, mud, climbing on rough stuff). And do this whith various riders. This would actually clarify and justify if you actually need another standard of tyres, hubs, rims, forks or not. It's much better to proof that it is better or not then just say that it FEELS better or worse. The first time I rode my 29er I also felt slugish but then I found out that I am faster, my feelings were wrong.
  • + 2
 no it does not change Q factor, the chainring is spaced out further. here's a comparison between this bike and the regular 650b Genius LT www.youtube.com/watch?v=8YH9MUEdRO0&list=PLXWBBaEdFtbI7up6AUo-2EsIPyTgkjfhp&index=33
  • + 2
 "It is equally true that adding plus-sized wheels and tires to that same trailbike would make it more enjoyable to ride, and in many cases, more capable for taking on the kind of trails that fill most rider's bucket lists." So now adding 27.5+ tires automatically makes your bike more fun and more capable? Everyone sell your trail bike so that you can get a 27.5+ bike. Otherwise you are limiting the capability of your bike and how much fun you can have. That seems like such a broad and ignorant statement to make.
  • + 2
 I just want to say props on this review, its very well balanced!
The inclusion of the negatives associated with the tire format is welcome, and the negatives were well compared to the very positive aspects of the tire size. I like the fact that the full picture is being written about!
I've seen a few fellow riders try some 27+ hardtails where I live in central PA and really enjoying them. However most of our riding is very slow, and very technical, with very few fast descents, which seems to fit the bill for this style of bike and tire.
Nice to hear about the somewhat mushy performance at high speeds (which makes sense), sounds like these kinds of bikes will be good east coast trailbikes, but probably not the greatest for parts of the west.
  • + 2
 I got to test that very bike on 2 of my favorite local trails with a Scott rep, and it was like a very hard drug. Immidietely after riding it I was wanting more! I offered him one of my testicles in trade as a joke, but then started thinking about how much clearance my E-29 has. 82 mm front, and 78 mm rear. The W.T.B. trail boss 3" on a Velocity dually 27.5 rim is 72mm wide & fits well in a Pike! For the rear tire, I am running the 3" VeeTrax Fatty, which just like its 29+ Brother is a bit narrower than the claimed 3", so it fits perfectly in the back. My cost for 2 tires & new rims/ spokes was under $300. I will probably never put the 29 wheels back on, its so much more fun.
Also, Scott has the LT + in Alloy frame for about half of the $8000 price tag, but if you already own an Enduro 29, I reccomend the plussed out"
  • + 5
 Reading all this with the comparison of the Giant ATX One and Glory in mind ... Big Grin
  • + 2
 Been demoing the 16 stumpy FSR expert 6fattie and it is a blast to ride and slightly faster than my 15 Stumpy 650b expert on the same downhills. Only downfall I can see is being a Clydesdale it takes a bit more energy going uphill. Personally I want more play with a smaller tire but this is a great option for those who want to take the edge off of rocks. Great for guys with joint pain or older guys who don't want it to hurt so much through the rocks, even good for someone new to the rocks. That being said, it still kind of dumbs down the trail, call it the official IMBA trail bike.
  • + 8
 The ergonomics of a bike can't be ideal for your hooves but I commend your typing ability.
  • + 1
 I thought the same thing about it feeling like "cheating" , but i just couldn't stop smiling and giggling. Climbs like an E-bike! Bigger riders should be on bigger tires~
  • + 1
 @ WHOAA - that's how I see it also, the tradeoff on trail feel. My 29er loses a bit of trail feel in order to roll better in some situations over a smaller wheel. I'd love to demo all 3 (Stumpy in each wheel size) as I'm in the market for a new bike come spring. 29er or 27.5+ for riders looking for a little more forgiveness in the ride, either due to age, preference or living in an area that very rocky. Like many, I'm very skeptical about such large rubber on the climbs. Anyway, hope to get some time on a + before making a decision, though I'll likely be on a 27.5 or a 29er but with modern geo.
  • + 2
 If you live in a rocky area, plus size won't be your friend. You will be going through tires. RC mentions this in his article.
  • + 1
 I love Rocky rowdy trails, and + tires are my new BFF! still prefer 4-5" tires for snow, though.
  • + 1
 Hmmmm... I've been very interested in the 27.5"+ since I first saw it on an actual trail bike, solely because it seemed like a bigger contact patch would be BETTER for high-speed cornering, i.e. what(IMO) most people who buy 'Enduro' bikes end up doing(pedaling to the top of a nice DH run, then letting it rip). If I'm alone here, then I guess these bike will do well.
If I'm simply one of the hoard however, then if it doesn't allow one to travel faster down his/her favorite DH run-which at least here in BEEEE-U-TEE-FULL Southern Kalifornistan contain(s) MANY high-speed corners(that also contain sketchy grip, and loose and exposed rocks, but rarely any mud), then it's useless as far as I can tell.
BRING BACK THE 26!
  • + 1
 When you say "Scott chose the best performing tire of the moment: Schwalbe's 2.8-inch Nobby Nic EVO", do you mean the best performing PLUS sized tire of the moment?

I'm thinking of trying to slap a pair of them on my Santa Cruz 5010, which already has Derby's 40mm wide AM rims with Conti Mountain King 2.4's on it. Not sure they're gonna fit tho!
  • + 1
 MasterSlater: Best PLUS tire of the moment. The new 2.3" 'Nics are very good, but there is better rubber available if you are looking for the ultimate AM/enduro tire.
  • + 5
 This bike is the waterbed of bikes.
  • + 2
 Have already ridden it but I didn't get along with the plus tires...I lost the front wheel grip in a perfect shaped bikepark berm which is no problem with normal tires. A 29" Genius LT would be interesting for me
  • + 1
 -----this is where + wheels end for me, ill stick with my 2.4's:

"High speed corners define the dividing line between Plus and Enduro. Plus's confidence-building super-grip and steering work wonders in the deep woods when speeds are low and features are high, but with speeds and cornering forces pushed near the limits, the awesomely predictable grip of the LT 700's Schwalbe plus tires fade away and the once-confident rider is left to deal with an ambiguous drift. When push comes to shove in a high-G corner, there is no substitute for a stiff tire casing and a reinforced row of edging blocks. "
  • + 1
 nice looking bike no doubt but I personally am not a fan of suspension shifters, just prefer the K.I.S.S. principal and set the sag up proper before the ride and leave it open!

also, wide rims and higher volume tires wheels are indeed a thing, doing it with 35mm OD / 30mm ID carbon wheels with maxxis minions DHRII / DHF and the benefits are for real on my 29'er trail bike so that part no doubt is a good thing.
  • + 1
 Scott is really coming on strong as a company. That's a sweet looking bike. I'm not excited about plus size but then again I wasn't excited about 27.5" and now I don't want to ride anything else. Maybe this is the future....
  • + 1
 Seriously, people arguing/complaining/commenting over the price? Scott is no different than other bike manufacturers. Yeti, Specialized, Pivot, Trek, Santa Cruz etc etc etc THEY ALL costs a boat load of money.

Seriously, some of you people can't believe a bike can cost so much these days? I'm not saying it's great that bikes have sky rocketed in price but to be shocked and surprised at the price is ridiculous onto itself. Where have you people been living? Under a rock?

Sorry, but most bike companies charge a boat load for their top of the line bikes. I don't like it any more than a lot you but it doesn't surprise me at all. It's to be expected.
  • + 1
 so having ridden a couple of fat bikes, hardtails one with rigid fork one with 120mm fork....this is probably a better fat bike better than some from last year that were full sus...but this is still a fat bike...getting the right tire pressure otherwise it bounces or does not corner properly....yes, that is really true of fat bikes, and if you get wrong it sucks...you will get bounced to heaven and it will feel like crap...i watched a couple of videos with this bike in it...and it is obvious there is bounce ....so if you get it enjoy, if you do not mind enjoy, i will stick with 27.5 very happy medium with 40mm rims...good article though
  • + 1
 Fantastic review RC ! Although I have to admit that your comments are creating a 1st World conflict; Scott Genius LT or Trek Fuel EX 9.9? In the 8K to 10K race for the ultimate trail bike, there are some serious contenders. Would love to see some side-by-side reviews in the future. Happy trails.
  • + 0
 Two points:

1. Right idea, wrong implementation.
2. "Plus" does not exist.

Point 1:

We're told 650b wheels roll vastly better than 26", yet the difference between 26" and 650b is the same as between 650b+ and 29", which we're being told is trivial, allowing bikes to be "dual fit". I do believe this difference is minor, which also means I believe 26" and 650b have nearly identical performance. This should not be surprising, as they differ by less than 4%.

The real difference is in tire volume. If we assume the ideal range in which a tire can conform to the trail is from the unloaded position to about 1 cm from the rim, a Plus tire gains about 40% more useful range of vertical deflection. Ten times the improvement in rollover gained from diameter.

If only there were two wheel sizes that allowed perfectly matched outside diameters when used with Plus or Narrow tires. Instead of normalizing the rim diameter and allowing the outside diameter - the part that touches the ground and determines the handling - to vary, we should normalize the outside diameter, as is done with other wheeled vehicles.

Conveniently, 26" Plus and 650b Narrow are a perfect match, allowing for stiff, nimble wheels, short chainstays, better suspension kinematics, and true dual-fit.

Point 2:

The current standard width of trail/AM/Enduro tires is approaching 60 mm, which is 20% larger than the 50 mm norm of several years ago. "Plus" tires are 20% larger than the current standard. Our current tires are just the natural evolution of tire size that reflects the new riding style, made possible by general improvement in equipment. This evolution was halted for years by a lack of wide rims to support our larger tires, but the new crop of wide rims is putting evolution back on track. 70+ mm tires are just the next step in this evolution.

We didn't feel a need to give a new name to the current tires and we don't need a new name for the next generation. "Plus" does not exist.
  • + 2
 Oh, yeah. Brendawg did endorse this bike after testing it, and I think the new wheels roll faster than a standard 29" somewow. Don't knock it till ya try it, eh. B~)
  • + 1
 I just bought myself a scale 910, its my when its way to crappy out to ruin my FS bike, bike and so far i really like it. Although it really needs a dropper and mine is coming soon.
  • + 0
 Does a half a degree in HA really make that much difference? I am skeptical as to whether there being two suspension settings with this little of a change is even worth the effort.

Also, why does it say the BB offset or height don't change?
  • + 2
 So let me get this straight, the big tires have more drag on the climbs and are loosey goose when pushed really hard. Sounds like too much compromise for me.
  • + 1
 "Presently, plus tires are sold in 26, 27.5 and 29-inch sizes" Really because I have been looking for 26+ sized tires (other than surley dirt wizard for 7 months now and not found any....
  • + 2
 Vee Trax Fatty
veetireco.com/product/trax-fatty
veetireco.com/product/speedster-5
Not the best, I know, but its something, and the trax-fatty has potential as a decent option for a fast and "light" dry hardpack conditions tire and for mid summer loose dust.
Surly also has a new 26+ sort of touring tire, but its only a 2.5 and its essentially a slick. Could fit the bill if thats what your after though.
Maxxis appears to be showing signs of tooling up some 26+ options, so I have faith!
They have their "trail" Shorty's listed as being offered in 26x2.5 in a WT exo casing, which is pretty exciting! Hopefully we'll see some 2.7WT's with exo and DD casings come down the pike in a their MTB line, and maybe even some of their DH tires.
www.maxxis.com/catalog/tire-492-121-shorty
  • + 1
 Riding buddy of mine runs Surly Knard 26x3.0. Not that another tire from the same manufacturer says much about widespread availability, but hey it's another choice...

surlybikes.com/parts/tires/knard_26x3
  • + 1
 Ahh yeah good call! I forgot about those ones.
  • + 1
 I've been looking for the same thing. If you are looking for a really burly 26+ tire then the Maxxis Minion 2.7 is amazing...if you like to ride your 26+ bike on steep DH trails or don't care much about rolling resistance!
  • + 1
 Yeah I have actually considered giving them a chance, for DH type purposes on my Nomad. Those and the Kenda Nevegal 2.7's.
bicycle.kendatire.com/en-us/find-a-tire/bicycle/downhillgravity/nevegal-pro
1450-1500 and more grams is getting pretttty high up there though for trail bike purposes, but could have a place for me maybe. haha. I'm ok with 1000~1250 grams though, as that is right in line with what I am used to riding with. The problem with the wire beaded 27tpi dirt wizards is they are still about 1200 grams, but just way too soft and delicate. The kevlar 120 tpi ones are a little over 800 grams, but the sidewalls and cap are Incredibly thin. If Surly they did a 60tpi, kevlar bead, tubeless ready, and some more substantial protection under the cap/sidewall/and bead area, and a better rubber compound!!? Then the Dirt wizards could be a fantastic tire. They do set up tubeless without a problem as-is now though, so don't let that concern you too much.
  • + 3
 Yeah, I picked up an Instigator 2.0 frame recently, so I'm betting on 26+ having more options in the future, but for now I enjoy some of the available offerings. I am a tire nerd and have been playing with some of the plus tires around such as: Dirt Wizard 27tpi, Vee Trax Fatty 120tpi, and the Duro Leopard (one of my all time favourite tires).

The DW 27 tpi is supposed to be a little more durable than the 120, but wish it were folding as the wire bead is wasted weight... runs about 1100g. Measures true to spec. Enjoy this tire a lot on the rear for AM/XC, though have yet to test on the front.

I also have a minion 2.7 I use for the rear. On a Dually (38mm internal) rim, only measures at 62mm casing/tread which is slightly less than 2.5". Nice tire, but not a 2.7, not even a "plus" tire really but still an awesome tire. Past minion models are criminally undersized. The new models seem up to spec being 8mm wider which is a big difference.

Purchased a Vee Trax Fatty recently, and it is also criminally undersized on the tread. It has a + casing with a standard tread. Which is nice... but not ideal as you get none of the wide tread benefits. It measures at a 70mm (2.75") casing and 62mm (2.44") tread. Come on, how DARE they call that a 3.0 tire. Nice volume, really light (~800g) and should still perform well on XC duties, but not what I had hoped for.

As for the Duro Leopards... these things are fantastic. 26" exclusive, although HEAVY at ~1800g, but I run a 20t - 36t granny gear, so I can punch these up quite steep and loose climbs in short bursts no problem. Where they really shine is the downhill, so I use them mostly for hike-a-biking. Great tread pattern. I did custom sipes on one of them which has increased the traction MUCH further still. These allow me to ride insanely steep big mountain technical lines I never thought possible with most other tires. Able to run down to 5psi on the front (30mm internal rim,160lb rider weight), and this thing is solid as hell. No noticeable casing roll on fast corners or bottoming out on big sharp hits. So stiff, and confidence inspiring.

There's a few more options out there such as the Knard, and the Vee Rival. Trying to get a hold of the Rival (Claimed 69mm / 2.7" ) which looks to have a very aggressive and nice downhill tread, but not available anywhere yet and only shown on the Vee Thailand website. Talked to Vee america and he told me he was ordering some in that should be available this month!

I have high hopes more options will come around! Big Grin The market seems like it's just too large to ignore, and 26+ would be a nice option for converting "standard" 650b frames as well.
  • + 2
 'Tis a shame they stopped making the Arrow Savage. Which was the same thing as a Duro Leopard, only it had different versions such with softer/harder compounds and the"Light DH" version, which weighed a mere 1350g and would probably still be plenty stable, and amazing. As well as tubeless versions. I managed to get mine up tubeless pretty easily though after building up several extra tape layers.
  • + 1
 @Kyle201
Wow that's exactly what I did recently! Currently slowly collecting all the parts for my Instigator 2.0 frame, but built the wheels up first to take advantage of them on my Nomad. Not using the rabbit hole rims though. Might build those later on with some slx hubs or something. Also got the Trax Fattys and was a bit disappointed with them as well. Very rounded and the sidewalls are pronounced past the tread a bit too much for either end of the nomad. Has promise for a lighter duty, fast rolling XC type tire for the instigator though, so I plan on trying that on the rear, and an 120 dirt wizard on the front, for dry/loose/dusty mid summer conditions.
  • + 1
 @Metacomet
Congrats! It's a totally sick frame, with enough clearance to fit even a 650+ tire in the rear. Though the BB would likely be too high with that. It juuuuust barely fits a 26 x 4.0 tire on a narrow rim. I'm hoping to try a Panaracer Fat B Nimble at some point. Spec'd at 26 x 4.0 but apparently only measures 3.5 on an 80mm rim and so should fit with plenty of snow/mud clearance on the 'Gator!

Rabbit holes seem pretty sick, nice rims. I laced mine up to some bikehubstore hubs, check 'em out, great value and super easy tool-less axle conversions.

Indeed pretty lame about the VTF tread width... looks like you'd be riding on the sidewalls on a heavily leaned corner... though maybe the low pressures will counter-act that. Definitely not a gnar-riding tire.
  • + 1
 my dad has an s-works stumpjumper 6fattie and absolutely loves it. the plus tires are no joke, they have so much grip. if they can come out with a 150mm+ travel 6fattie, im sold!
  • + 1
 NVM this bike is one.
  • + 2
 One of the sexiest rides ever. I would hit any trail with this bike. I couldn't care less if it had snow, dirt, sand or mud. It just looks like a joy to ride.
  • + 2
 Remember F-Zero on Super Nintendo ?

Pink = 29er
Blue = 27.5
Yellow = 26"
The Green Goose = 27.5+

fzerocentral.org/viewtopic.php?p=13071
  • + 3
 That price though... sigh...one day.... What's the market like for similar sized tyres at the moment?
  • + 1
 WTB trail boss retials for about $75 Usd. I like the knobs much more than the Maxxis Chronicle or Surly Knard. The WTB bridger 3" looks promising too.
  • + 1
 as far as "bikes" and "mid-fat bikes" go, I think 2.8 tires are right on the money for aggressive riding. like how many downhillers run this size
  • + 0
 If you have a 27.5" bike with boost axle width can you try out plus sized rims and tires, or are the geometries different on plus versus non-plus bikes (like the regular genius LT versus the plus version)?
  • + 1
 I think most 27.5 bikes even with boost hubs may still have trouble fitting a 2.8-3.0" (plus) tire because the frame geometry isn't designed for the wider tires. I was considering a similar question about 29ers; specifically, can most 29ers with boost spacing also take 27.5+ because the wheel/tire combos are almost identical diameters/height. But it really depends on the bike. I asked a Trek rep about the new Trek ProCaliber 29er hardtail with boost spacing and because that's designed max for a 2.2" tire, then despite boost spacing, it's a no-go for 27.5+.
  • + 1
 Interesting... Thanks for the reply.
  • + 1
 If it struggles in the gloop, that means it won't take off in UK, and given importance of UK market, means it prob won't take off in general.
  • + 1
 Yeah, I was pretty interested in the bike until I read that part (not that I could afford it anyway). The gloop is real this time of year.
  • + 4
 and this "the awesomely predictable grip of the LT 700's Schwalbe plus tires fade away and the once-confident rider is left to deal with an ambiguous drift. " -like I've been saying all along
  • - 1
 Yeahhh because every 2.1 handles like every other 2.1, and every 2.25 handles just like every other 2.25, and every 2.3 like all the other 2.3's, and 2.35 like 2.35, and 2.4 like 2.4. Oh and of Course every 2.5 handles just like every other 2.5. Nothing else at play here. Nope. And not like those minuscule differences in casing size, let alone construction and rubber compound or some stupid superficial tread pattern have any real effect on how the tire behaves. Not a chance!
Not like so many other "normal width" Schwalbe's already have crappy unsupported knobs that squirm then fold over and then rip off, nor do they have damage prone paper thin casings!
The terms "Ambiguous drift, damage prone, packs mud in heavy gloop" all remind me of so many different tires, and none of them are "plus size". Gotta look at many of these tires as a starting point, as they are essentially brand new.
And at the end of the day, its Just another tire size.
A fantastic new tire size option that will work on many bikes and many wheels people already own, but will allow for broadening the conditions the same bike can excel in. Not every tire works in Every condition, and these are no different.

I almost think one of the things to reference when looking at these tires, is thinking of them more as tuning to an ideal pressure. Ever ridden in conditions where you were trying to get away with running lower pressure in you tires to suite the terrain, but you couldn't because they became too squirmy or you immediately started pinging your rims off of everything? Ever ridden terrain or conditions where you immediately knew you needed to go up in pressure from your "normal" range? This is kind of where I see these fitting in. Giving you another brush to work with, rather than throwing all your other ones away, which appears to be how these are being perceived at the moment.
  • + 2
 yes, but all fat tires float, unless they have something going on like long pointy spikes. That trait is almost unavoidable, and in the case of the fat tires on the market, they are all floaters
  • + 1
 So what is the demarcation point for acceptance or usability? 2.6? 2.7? 2.8? 3.0?
You know that many of the rampage guys run 2.7's? Cam Zink included. At least for that steep, fast, loose, chunky unpredictable terrain. Cause sometime float, contact patch, and increased sidewall height and compliance is a good thing. Even for aggressive as humanly f'ing possible riding. It's all dependent on the tire itself. Not Just the width.
  • + 2
 dry and loose a wider tire wins out every time - that's where they shine. They don't work in thick mud and it has nothing to do with mountain bike marketing, it has to do with physics. Why does motorsports know this yet in mountain biking its still up for debate? Why do steel ships float? because they're wide enough to displace water. f*cking simple man.
  • + 1
 Yeah I think everyone understands at least that much. The point you kind of helped me make though, is that just because a tire has a little more float and volume, does not automatically mean it is going to be completely unpredictable in a drift or even in a high G turn. The combination of terrain, tire width, tire construction, compound, tread pattern, tread depth, etc.. is going to play into this a thousand fold. Not just one isolated property in particular. Perhaps the Biggest deliberation in our sport at the highest competitive levels is tire choice, width, tread pattern, casing, compound, and tire pressure. That is where the rubber meets the... Dirt, so to speak. Cutting knobs, tweaking pressure, using different compounds, how those compounds work with different casings, width, etc... everything we all know and try to understand. There is no perfect One tire. Especially when it comes to a trail tire that is going to experience such a varied number of conditions across unknown number of different tracks. Fast, slow, climbing, descending, steep, flat, rock, root, gravel, sand, babyheads, square edged shale, sharp granite, grass, mud, scree, wet, dry, bog, wet clay, moss..... More choice is a Great thing. This concept and platform has a lot of merit, and I guess I'm just excited to see what else comes along in the way of tire options for all sizes.
  • + 1
 It is a very nice bike, I've no doubt about that, but I cant see me wanting to change from my non plus version as that in itself is a fantastic bike
  • + 3
 Sexiest trail bike I've ever seen.
  • + 2
 This plus thingy won't exist in 3 years. Nobby nics are horrible, too, but on a £6k bike!!?!
  • + 1
 Richard, I always enjoy your reviews. You manage to describe the personality of each bike you review. Like, I can picture it.
  • + 3
 I can't see the damn bike, it's camouflaged!
  • + 1
 Right trail, wrong bike! Plus Size is the same as FAT Size, stop lying to yourself. I have 2.5s maxxis/ FR600s wheels on my 26 Mt. bike, what's that called?
  • + 2
 8 thousand USD!!! Ok... maybe in the next life!!! If there is such thing!!!
  • + 2
 Nice bike, but Noby Nic won't hold long in rocky terrain. So what is the +weight of a solid plus tire?
  • + 1
 Genuine curiosity - how is it that bike manufacturers can justify charging the same amount or more for a bike as some motorcycles? How is that possible?
  • + 2
 Literally can't keep up with the bike industry. I'm just going to ride my 26 hardtail in the woods by myself
  • + 2
 bikes for beginners , slow grippy fat boring. ps why have suspension?
  • + 1
 Its seems like the equivelent high volume board in windsurfing, slower, but easier with less skill needed.
  • + 1
 Only time I would ride a plus sized bike is if it was a hardtail and 26+ was a thing
  • + 2
 the bike industry has NO idea where its going.
  • - 2
 2k extra for Scott's twinloc design sounds about right! Would of been on par with other mfgs if they would have made a full carbon frame. Going with an Aluminum rear doesn't show confidence in the plus design imo. Boost was supposed to be for 29ers not 650b bikes. I guess there's a market for plus bikes afterall but have not seeen one on the trail.
  • + 2
 I have to say that's one hell of a sexy looking bike !
  • + 0
 Sweet baby jesus, that's a nice looking bike.
But. Reused 29er front? 67.5deg HA? That lockout system? A 170mm trailbike?
Big bag of nope from me.
  • + 1
 Its a standard 650b front end the same as what's on the no plus bikes, HA is not 67.5, it's adjustable between 65.8 and 66.3, it can also go slacker by using adjustable head cups that are also supplied with the bike. It's way more than just a 160mm trail bike (Plus bikes are 160 not 170mm) and as for the lock out system, don't knock it till you've tried it!
  • + 1
 I'll leave it ta.
  • + 1
 "Normally": Less is more, and more is less, but with these Plus tires, more is more!!!
  • + 2
 Gorgeous bikes by Scott lately ; happy to admit that
  • + 2
 Now THAT is an expensive set of tyres. OUCH!
  • + 2
 Oh yay a new trend brewing...
  • + 1
 Dilemma: More enjoyable (scratches head)?! Does it come with a defibrillator?
  • + 2
 $8k, sure will get new people to ride a bike? That's genius!
  • + 2
 Still waiting for 29" plus.........just joking Big Grin
  • + 1
 Trek Stache. a>http://www.trekbikes.com/us/en_US/bikes/mountain/trail/stache/c/B335/a>
  • + 2
 oh no...that´s real! wtf
  • + 2
 I've already seen them on the trail too.
  • + 2
 I'd love to see strava comparisons with a regular LT...
  • + 1
 plus bikes plus electric assistance= Win
  • + 2
 Edit 710
  • + 1
 I really need a victory at lottery
  • + 0
 I can't help but be skeptical of NUDE after the debacle that was DRCV CTD made for Trek
  • + 2
 I wanna ride this trail
  • + 0
 If it wasn't for the twin lock I would actually consider it as my next bike
  • + 1
 I just looked at it and told my self "just an other dream"
  • + 1
 Do they grip pea gravel? If they do I'm sold.
  • + 1
 I'll have one to test ride!
  • + 1
 Yawn.
  • + 1
 I want that chain guide
  • + 1
 $8000....
  • + 1
 $8,000 huh?
  • - 3
 Looks like a Session!

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