It's time once again to gaze into the crystal ball and try to guess which new bikes we'll see released this year. The supply chain woes caused by the pandemic seem to be subsiding, but there's no denying that the typical bike release schedule underwent a severe shakeup. Multiple models were delayed significantly, and many of the bikes that will come out this year were actually supposed to be released months ago.
Luckily we've arrived at what seems like a very good place when it comes to geometry, and I don't anticipate any earth-shattering changes in that department this season, which means there might not be as compelling of a reason to rush out and get the latest and greatest model. That doesn't mean the end of progression, though; far from it. There are plenty of advancements on the horizon when it comes to drivetrains, brakes, and suspension. There are advances happening on the electric side of things too, but I'll keep the focus of this article on bikes without motors.
For those who aren't familiar with the process, bike companies typically refresh a model every three years or so, which means that compiling this list is as scientific as going through the archives and looking at the bikes that haven't been updated in a few years. There were also plenty of teasers released by companies over the summer as their athletes tried out the new bikes ahead of their official launch. Matt Beer put together a list of 13 other models
that might be updated this year, and at least one of those predicted models has already been released.
Keep in mind that this list focuses on updates or revisions to existing models - there are also lots of completely new bikes in the works.
Ibis dropped the HD5 from their lineup in 2021, which leaves room for some sort of longer travel machine in their lineup. The last version of the HD5 had 27.5” wheels and 153mm of travel – a mixed wheel version with a little more squish would make a lot of sense. As it is, the Oso e-bike currently has the most travel in the lineup with either 155 or 170mm of travel depending on the shock stroke, followed by the 147mm Ripmo.
The Ripmo was recently updated with a new swingarm to make it universal derailleur hanger compatible, so I wouldn't expect another change in the immediate future. Still, it does seem like there could be room for a longer travel Ripmo in Ibis' lineup too.
The Habit is one of several bikes that was on our list last year that didn't end up being released. There have been photos of Mitch Ropelato rallying around on a bike that's definitely not a Jekyll, so it's not a stretch to imagine that we'll something this year. Maybe.
The last iteration had 130mm of travel – I could see Cannondale bumping that up slightly, putting the Habit into the highly competitive aggressive trail category
The Optic is another bike that could be ready for an update, especially since there's a lot of overlap between it and the aluminum Fluid that came out this year. I could see it going in one of two directions – either push it more towards downcountry side of the spectrum and bill it as a more capable version of the Revolver, or go the other way, and give it a little more travel to make it a full-blown aggressive trail bike.
A carbon frame DH bike, likely the next version of the Fury was spotted at Fort William last season. DH bikes aren't updated quite as often as other models – there isn't as much of a demand, and if a racer is doing well on a certain frame they're not as likely to want to switch to something new. It has been over 4 years since the current Fury was released, so a new model in 2023 doesn't seem like a stretch.
One model in GT's lineup that we haven't seen updated in a while is the Sensor, their 130mm trail bike. A handful of geometry updates would bring it up to speed – things like a shorter (and steeper) seat tube, and a slacker head angle would put it in line with its contemporaries.
Rocky Mountain Slayer
The Slayer is another bike with geometry that doesn't require a radical overhaul. It could use some snack storage, though, which looks like it might be in the works based on a photo a keen-eyed reader sent in over the summer
. As I wrote in that article, the geometry isn't really in need of any major revisions, but assuming that the Slayer remains a 170 / 180mm freeride machine I could the head angle getting a bit slacker, settling around 63.5-degrees.
When Orbea released their new Rallon in late 2021 they also added in an Occam LT model to their lineup, a bike with 10mm more travel than the 'regular' Occam trail bike. One thing the 140 or 150mm Occam doesn't have is in-frame storage – I'd imagine that feature will trickle down whenever the latest version is released. Given that the Oiz XC bike and the Rise lightweight eMTB were both updated in 2022, it seems likely that the Occam is next in line.
The Jeffsy's last update was in 2019, when it saw it's travel increased to 150mm, inching closer to the territory occupied by the Capra. The head angle currently sits at 66-degrees, and the reach is 470mm for a size large, so I could see it undergoing the typical longer and slacker updates if there's a new model in the works. Increased room for a water bottle would certainly be appreciated, and I'd love to see YT incorporate some in-frame storage on future models.
Also there are some bikes that are more fit for an upgrade but pinkbike recently seems to only know about 10-15 bike companies existing so the article goes "well the bike is fine but add frame storage". We are spoiled. Just get a bike that suits you and ride it.
Anyway, now back to looking at shiny new objects and arguing about things i'll never buy.
Up to the consumer to decide what to do.
If you're so against the current product lifecycle style of the industry, you always have alternatives such as Nicolai/Geometron
But it's somewhat naive to expect Pinkbike to shut down the product side of their business "because we have enough bikes already".
I find myself remaining quite happy with my current bike/car/other consumer item when I don't engage with with media focussed at that item. If you only look at bike websites when you actually need a new bike you'll probably find yourself "needing" a new bike less often and happier with what you have. When I worked, many year ago, in physical bike shops the happiest customers were very often the old blokes with their ancient touring bikes that only came into the shop when something needed repaired, and the rest of the time they just rode the bike they had and enjoyed it.
Fixed that for you.
I mean seriously we replace stuff too open. I'm a gear head. I used to upgrade parts on my bikes like a crazy person (nearly all bolts on my old dh bike were TI, bought mavic deemax wheel just to use their front hub which was 4g lighter than any other front hub on the market for some dumb reason etc). But I didn't change whole bikes every 2-3 years. Especially now where the progress is much much slower.
Also saying the factor of updating bikes is "make more sales" - and how do you think it's achieved? Marketing and PR on sites like this too.
I agree being publicly traded makes companies update models and trying to force dumb buying. Generally the "constant growth" shareholder model hurts us all. Not even in a "protect the planet" but it's why we get useless standards pushed on us or why some non bike companies only think in short term
I seriously get getting new bikes 2-3 years some time ago when the progress was much bigger. A 2007 and a 2010 DH bike were miles apart but now? You don't even benefitthat much
There are at least a half dozen of us.
Just kidding, Im not a caveman, I don't ride 26"
nah... saddle fore/aft position is nearly identical to my ripmo and feels the same on the bike. XL vs XL.
There was more to it though with better pricing on the Tilt ofc and there being only a minor weigh save with a Rascal. Rascal frame weight is about halfway between a Ripmo and Tilt.
Not a dis towards Revel though, their frames look amazing and the Rail29 is a CBF Ripmo which is smart.
I love the look of their frames. For this round the short chainstays on the Tilt were a selling point over the longer chainstays of something like a Prime. I was trying to destabilize the bike. Make jibbing great again!
1. A new 130/140 Transition Smuggler, or
2. A newer Rascal.
Fine with the weight of the REVEL frames, but for gods sake if you're gonna have integrated headset, then slack it to 66* or so.
A rascal with tilt HTA/STA and reach, UDH, updated pivot hardware would be amazing.
Getting rid of the integrated head set would also be awesome but won't happen I don't think.
I bought a rascal over a tilt, but just barely.
I wanted to try more compact geo, and just honestly I prefer the looks and in frame water bottle is nice.
Now that I have an angle set in the rascal I realize I probably should have bought a tilt, but I still love the bike.
I do have a slack-r in my rascal but I sure wish it was 1.5 straight or 44/56.
Could be cool or just a big mess but would be interesting to see what the (lack of) consensus would be, along with which bike current in market most closely aligns.
My request would be for adjustments similar to the new fuel EX so you can run the bike however you like, maybe a bigger Headtube diameter so we can have inserts for Reach and HTA(taking inspiration from the norco range Prototype for the headtube but not that massive)
Flip chips by themselves, sure change the geo but they also play alot on the bikes suspension feel and i believe its what they are actually ment for but the selling point is geo adjust.
Its pretty much this bike
Matt Beer broke it
Not to mention reach gets reduced with each spacer
Lower than desirable stack heights make for confusing sizing considerations. Once you start trying to factor in low stack heights it becomes a game of is this frame going to be long enough, do I need 50mm riser bars, how many spacers does the bike come with from the factory, etc.
I have the Mone bar with some spacers under it and am happy with the fit. However, I'm also only about 5'10".
This is Ibis's new Osos's bike where the stack height changes 40mm from S to XL.
I’m 6’0” and run a high rise bar with max spacers so my bar height is close to 100mm above the bike’s stack. I would highly recommend you give something similar a try considering your height. It will dramatically improve your weight distribution and control over the bike. In short, get your bars close to your seat height at full extension.
Also I always thought the upside-down shock was to help facilitate a larger water bottle.
I'm skeptical that it's worth changing the Optic to a 150/140 - although Fluid 140/130 is starting to move into Optic's territory. Norco seems conflicted on their direction.
I think rrolly's point is valid given the Range 29 before the MY21 refresh was 160/150 for a generation.
Should have come with two lower ISCG tabs for people that want to run a bash, rather than just one.
Should have been built with a proper UDH not a Norco UDH 2.0 (we have a stock of maxles that we need to use up).
Should have had a steeper STA (my Sight is my preferred ride, even for trails where the Optic should make more sense because I am naturally more centred on the Sight).
Shouldn't have been designed around a shock tune that includes starting with all 4.5 tokens installed.
But other than those things is is an awesome bike, just not as awesome as the Sight.
It rides ridiculously well.
I'll agree with everything except the STA, a 76 degree effective at extension is exactly where I want it on a bike like this.
Everything you've said is a tweak rather than a generational change - so I think a good review overall!
A classic... www.transitionbikes.com/MegaFeatures.cfm?feature=Feature_SmugglerCarbon
They must have something up their sleeve though.
Optic @ 150 (carbon only) ??
Fluid @ 140 (aluminum only)
Whatever they decide, the Optic is in unique position for sure. Best bike I've ever owned and look forward to what they do with it next.
Just like cars.
Looking forward to the 200mm travel sight of 2066
It rides ridiculously well.
it's about time it gets an update (although it's still good)
Pinkbike tester gets new Slayer, goes to Whistler Bike Park to test
Gets hit by a Whistler Resort pickup truck crossing a service road on the mountain
Norco: "Sound weird but OK"
I would be down for that.
If they make changes to the Optic, won't they end up with a Sight?
Stumpy to get bigger changes.
A PF bb, with an eccentric bb would be cool, along with adjustable CS!
I believe Fezzari, and Transition are working on something similar as well.
A mulleted, short travel ripper of a bike!
While you can get a bottomless feel from a HP bike, you can also get a well supported bike that’s not as susceptible to braking and chain forces, freeing up the rear end to be more active and supported
I’d expect the bike I’m hoping for to be 29ish lbs, so 30ish with XC Cushcore, and WAO wheels
125, 150, 170, delicious
Couple things going on there
1. Not sure what Sight it was, but a slightly more progressive suspension suits a coil better, swap a @cascadecomponents link on there, and it’ll change that muted feeling.
2. If you’ve never ridden a coil rear shock, switching to one from an air assembly can be a vastly different experience, most of my clients have the belief that a coil is going to feel more lively, jump better, etc. I think it’s being able to see the spring, that gives off a sense of stored energy. When in reality, a coil shock, when setup to, allows for gobs more traction, more consistent feel, and a ground hugging, hole swallowing experience.
It’s not the coils fault, it’s either incorrect expectations, or a sus design not optimized for a coil.
I hear what you’re saying, the HP bike is trendy, and needs to be met with the correct expectations. I still can’t wait to give one a try
Yeah the 2019 Sight was the generation prior to the current one, it’s not a great candidate for a coil shock. The current isn’t too bad, but it’s made better with a Cascade link, which increases the progression, so you can run a lighter spring without bottoming out. But you’re right, it’s a very planted feel.
Different horses as they say
Maybe they did, maybe they liked it.
Or maybe they didn’t like it so it won’t be that.
I imagine they would make a big deal about new frames, as new moulds are very expensive.
Good questions. Maybelline I was wrong, however alloys have different shock mount/brace between top and down tube.
a shorter ride? cool, water bottle and maybe a multi tool in my pocket.
longer ride? I have my hip pack anyway...
I just cant get the reason why its a thing other than selling it to the few that think its a good idea to carry Snacks for the diabetics(no offense meant)
IMO i believe most rides done by riders with bikes that have storage are short-range, close to car parks etc rendering it useless(pretty much)
But my understanding is having these storage spots cost extra to make and i would 100% rather have a cheaper bike than have inframe storage. OR id would pay more for adjustments like the fuel EX.
- Not have the headset bearings riding on raw carbon causing failures and being extremely torque-sensitive.
- Adjustability to reach and chainstay length.
- More travel.
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