Here's the full lowdown on our updated Short Travel Trail/Downcountry/Used-to-be-called-Mountain Biking bike, the FlareMAX Gen4.
The Generation 4 FlareMAX retains the 125mm and most of the geometry of it's predecessor, as we really felt we had hit a sweetspot with that in terms of combining the confidence inspiring elements of Longshot geometry, with a lively and easily cornered feel that's intrinsic to a fun bike that's going to be speeder-biked between the trees along swoopy, singletrack trails.
What's new is the adoption of the Jeht style seat tube and linkage arrangement, which boosts seatpost insertion by 20mm and ensures that the vast majority of riders will be able to fit at least a 150mm drop seatpost to the bike. At the business end of the suspension, we have adopted Metric 210x50 shock sizing to futureproof the bike, and the actual seat angle experienced by the rider is a touch steeper than the Gen3 (around 0.5 deg depending on saddle height). Our 2021 swingarm completes the picture with easy clearance for up to 2.6" tyres.
There is now a Rockshox Select Plus shock option, alongside our long standing, super tuneable, high performance Cane Creek DB Air IL which carries our Cotic developed Base Tune ready to go.
In terms of ride feel and intent, the biggest change for Gen4 is the adoption of some build kit options for riders looking for more of a scalpel than a hammer. All the builds now offer the options to specify a Rock Shox SID Ultimate 120mm fork (in iconic blue), HUNT XC Wide wheels and Wolfpack Trail/Cross 2.25" tyres. This combination of parts drops 1.65kg from the weight of a more trail orientated spec, coming in at just 12.7kg for the Gold XT build complete bike. Just how lively these parts make the bike has to be felt to be believed, yet it's not at the expense of capability. The Longshot geometry and great tyre compound give you astonishing composure in steep situations.
The SID fork, XC Wide wheels and Wolfpack tyres are an option on all the builds - they're a cost upgrade on the SLX based Silver build, but no cost options on the Gold XT and Gold Eagle builds. In July there will also be a Gold Eagle AXS option using the latest wireless groupset from SRAM. These can be reserved now for delivery in July.
If you want your FlareMAX a little more all round capable, we have RockShox and Cane Creek 130mm fork options, and our more usual HUNT Trail Wide wheel/WTB 2.5 Slashguard tyre combo on the Gold Build, and Shimano/Continental on the Silver build.
Here's the all important numbers:
Available right now are the UK made Launch Edition frames which will only be made until July. They are available in Sydney Blue and Gritstone Blue/Green Fade. Prices start at £2,099. Complete bikes start at £3,799 with SLX/HELM equipped Silver build, up to £5,249 for the Gold Eagle AXS build. As always these are just starting points and we have options for different forks, wheels, tyres and suspension throughout the range. Availability on bikes is going to be July at the earliest due to parts deliveries and availability, but frame orders can ship this week if you're quick. They are in stock now in all sizes and colours.
In August the Series Production Taiwan made frames will arrive, which will be in Hubble Purple and Matte Slate Grey. Prices start at 1,899.
We assemble all our bikes to order right here in the UK, so we can also be super flexible on builds. This is especially advantageous right now, because if a customer already has fork they can use, maybe some tyres they like, any part of the bike really, we can delete that part from a complete bike. We can then offer a lower price, and in all likelihood much quicker delivery. As always, drop us an email at email@example.com to discuss any options. Sam and Paul will be happy to help.
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