PRESS RELEASE: Viral Bikes
We've been busy over the past year. Since being founded in 2016 in Denver, Colorado, Viral Bikes has called Los Angeles and Portland home, and is now on the move again, this time to Bend, Oregon.
In addition to the move, we have been in full development mode on a new model while simultaneously updating the Skeptic and working on some brand new carbon bits including a bar/stem combo aimed at the Enduro crowd and new 27.5” and 29” carbon rims. We’ve got a lot going on and are really excited about the things to come.
• Triple butted titanium tubeset
• 27.5+ or 29” wheel compatible
• 600% gear range Pinion C1.12 gearbox
• Gates belt drive
• 130-150mm fork compatible
• 4.25 lbs for medium frame
• $4,495 USD frame and drivetrain kit
First up, the 2019 Viral Skeptic gets some updates from the original, including a more ‘Enduro’ appropriate geometry. The new Skeptic is lower, slacker, and longer, keeping the bike utterly stable at speeds and increasing the reach dramatically from the previous iteration. The new Skeptic is designed around a 130-150mm fork and works with 29” wheels or 27.5+. At 140mm of fork travel, the Skeptic has a 65.5 degree head tube angle and a 75.5 degree seat tube angle, allowing for total control on fast and gnarly terrain while putting the rider in an aggressive enough position to keep the front end tracking on steep, technical climbs. The main impetus for the updated Skeptic was compatibility with the brand new Pinion C1.12 gearbox, which drops nearly a half a pound from the original P1.12, and has a narrower Q factor and chainline from the original box.
Paralleling the development of the new Skeptic, Viral was also laying down the design for their first new model since launching the brand. While the new bike is more a ‘derivative’ of the Skeptic, it’s definitely unique enough to get it’s own model name, aptly called the Dérive, which is a bike-packing ready version of the Skeptic. We have had a LOT of interest from the bike-packing community on a more specific bike-packing version of the Skeptic, so we decided to make the leap and create a new model. The sealed Pinion gearbox and oil free Gates CarbonDrive belt are perfect for this application. We worked closely with a handful of prolific bike-packers to make sure he got the spec’s right. The Dérive is built from the same triple butted 3/2.5 titanium as the Skeptic, but it’s geometry is a departure from the ‘all-mountain’ category of it’s longer travel brother. The Dérive is designed around a 120mm travel fork, with a still slack and stable 66.5 degree head tube angle, slightly higher BB, and has a full assortment of mounting options, including fender mounts, rear rack mounts, three water bottle mounts, and a top tube direct attachment mount for a top tube bag. With the shorter fork travel design, this bike can also be used in conjunction with a rigid fork (480mm or longer crown to axle recommended). The Dérive is the same price as the Skeptic and comes with the same Lifetime Warranty on the frame and 5 Year Guarantee on the Pinion Drivetrain.
The Viral Skeptic and Viral Dérive frame kits both come with the Pinion C1.12 gearbox, CNC cranks, 12 speed shifter, alloy Gates cogs, and a Gates CarbonDrive belt.
Pre-order sales are available now and Viral is offering a limited time pre-order special. Order a Skeptic or Dérive between now and the end of August, and get a free set of Industry 9 wheels built to your specifications. You can choose either 29” or 27.5+ (we recommend the Backcountry 360) and Viral will cover the wheelset value of $1265, color options and upgrades could add additional costs. A 50% deposit is required to get in on the pre-order special.
We are also showing some new carbon wheels and a carbon handlebar/stem combined unit. Both are still in prototype stages but will be launched later this year. The prototype handlebar/stem is an 800mm wide handlebar with a 9 degree back sweep and 5 degree upsweep (based on a 65.5 degree head tube angle) with an effective stem length of 35mm and a handlebar rise of 15mm. The prototype bars have gone through full testing and are now going through ride evaluation. Weight is right at 270 grams and price for the bar/stem combo will retail for $300. Rims have also gone through testing and are in the same ride evaluation phase alongside the handlebars. They have a claimed weight of 470 grams for the 27.5” with a 38mm ID.
The rims will aim for a $500 price point and both will also come with Viral’s Lifetime Warranty in addition to a crash replacement policy that will be very aggressive. We realize with certain carbon products there is a very difficult line to evaluate between a defect in the product and rider error and we want to encourage an open and honest dialogue with our customers about what happened and what caused a failure. This is the only way to get proper feedback. Let’s face it, this sport is rough on gear and people want to have some level of comfort that even when things go pear shaped they can fall back on a really great crash replacement policy and not be out the full retail price of the product. While the details of the crash replacement policy are not 100% solidified, consumers can expect at least ½ off retail with a no questions asked return of a damaged Viral product.
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for any further questions or if you’d like to get in on the pre-order special. Currently, the Viral Bikes web site does not take deposits, so you’ll need to reach out Viral to start your ordering process. Complete builds are possible and delivery will be late Fall.
Learn more at viral.bike