First Look: 2023 Niner RKT 9 RDO - XC Race Ready

Jul 12, 2022 at 13:35
by Mike Kazimer  

The RKT 9 RDO is Niner's dedicated cross-country race bike, a carbon framed machine designed for speed and efficiency above all else. For 2023 it underwent the longer and slacker treatment, although its wheel are still firmly planted on the more traditional cross-country side of the spectrum.

Niner do say that the bike has 'trail-country' (that's their cringe-inducing term, not mine) features like room for 2.5” tires, a flip-chip to slacken the head angle, and a short seat tube that works well with dropper posts. Those are all nice things, but at the end of the day the RKT is an XC bike, with 100mm of travel, fork and shock lockouts, and geometry numbers that make its sharp-handling intentions clear.


RKT 9 RDO Details

• Wheel size: 29"
• Carbon frame
• Rear suspension travel: 100mm
• Fits fork up to 120mm
• 68 or 67.6-degree head tube angle
• 430mm chainstays
• Lifetime warranty
• Price & availability: TBD / September 2022
ninerbikes.com

The RKT uses Niner's CVA suspension design for its 100mm of travel.

Don't worry, that catchphrase on the top tube hasn't gone anywhere.
The RKT can accept up to a 180mm rear rotor.

Frame Details

The shape of the RKT's carbon frame is much sleeker than its predecessor – there's no longer a brace running from the seat tube to the top tube, and it has a more modern, low slung look. It is possible to run a dropper post, but interestingly enough that amenity is only found on Niner's 2-star build kit – all of the other builds use a fixed post. Those higher end builds may not have droppers, but they do have a remote lockout for the fork and shock for riders who want to completely firm up the bike's 100mm of suspension.

There are bottle cage mounting bolts on the top and bottom of the down tube, and two more bolts on the top tube for additional accessories. That's also where you'll find Niner's 'pedal, damn it' slogan printed underneath the clearcoat. I know it's supposed to be inspirational, but all that saying does is inspire me to figure out how to cover it up...

According to Niner, a size medium frame with shock and seat collar (but no axle or headset) is 5 lb (2.27 kg). The complete bike weight for a medium 5-Star XO1 AXS LTD build is said to be around 23.5 lb (10.7 kg).

Other details include a threaded bottom bracket, Enduro MAX Black Oxide pivot bearings, SRAM's universal derailleur hanger, and a sag indicator printed on the rocker link pivot.


Drain holes under the lower shock mount help keep tiny swimming pools from forming.
The RKT uses a trunnion-mounted 160 x 45mm shock. Most build kits come with a remote lockout.



Geometry

With a 100mm fork, the RKT's head angle sits at either 68 or 67.6-degrees depending on the flip chip orientation, which corresponds with a seat tube angle of 75- or 74.6-degrees. It is possible to run a 120mm fork, although that will create an even slacker seat tube angle, which could have riders feeling like they're sitting pretty far over the rear axle. Don't forget, Niner does have the Jet 9 RDO in their lineup, a 120mm trail bike that's longer and slacker than this more puredbred race machine.

Reach numbers range from 405mm on the XS up to 497mm on an XL. The chainstay length is the same on all five frame sizes, at a relatively short 430mm.


Build Kits

There will be a total of six different build kits to choose from, starting with the 2-Star SRAM SX Eagle kit and going all the way up to the 5-Star SRAM XO1 AXS LTD kit. Prices haven't been announced yet, but they're not expected to be dramatically different from 2022's prices. That would put the 2-Star build at $4,399 USD, and the 5-Star AXS as $9,999. The frames and build kits are expected to be available this September.






159 Comments

  • 109 8
 Holy mother of slack seat tube. I also like how the linkage does double duty as a bashguard.
  • 28 24
 you mean after you wreck the chainring and crankset or that its never been a problem in about 10years...?
  • 17 2
 @golefty: from what I can see the linkage protrudes further than the chainring.
  • 12 8
 @jaytdubs: only without a rider though, I bet id does not when sagged. And, who needs a bash guard on an XC bike? Mike Levy?
  • 12 1
 ...even more slacked out under sag...
  • 13 0
 @jaytdubs: The bottom link retracts above the chainring under sag.
  • 4 0
 @golefty: Yea it looks like an issue but I had a rip 9 for years and I don't think I ever hit the linkage on anything.
  • 8 1
 @andrewfrauenglass: I gotta question that though, when you are hopping over a rock/root/obstacles you are generally unloading the sus, I'd assume in many cases when you need the clearance the sus will be fully topped out.
  • 2 1
 @RadBartTaylor: so either the bottom link gets the impact or the chainring. As mentioned though, is this a problem on an XC bike? It would be for me.
  • 1 0
 double doodie is right
  • 50 2
 Niner dealer here. Have had to warranty Niners for a whole lot of reasons, breaking lower linkage on rocks has not ever come up on my desk. Peak armchair mechanics.
  • 1 0
 @lkubica: an astute observation, and something I didn't consider. Thanks for pointing out.
  • 1 1
 @sherbet: That's good to know. I certainly don't claim to be a mechanic, and was only making a visual observation, which didn't account for sag under rider weight.
  • 6 5
 I don't think 75 deg is slack butt is pretty steep . Take a look at the bike table specification . It is more optical illusionist but the real angle is measured on the line connecting the BB and the seat clamp. Indeed the real seat tube is slack to have a clearance for the rear tire but this is just frame construction.
  • 3 10
flag RadBartTaylor (Jul 13, 2022 at 9:36) (Below Threshold)
 @sherbet: you can't honestly look at that and think to yourself it wouldn't be a problem...any reasonable person would come to that conclusion, I trust you and realize that it may not be resulting in broken frames, but the real question is does it hit or cause any clearance issues?
  • 12 1
 @RadBartTaylor: Reality trumps online speculation, and of the hundreds of Niners our shop and our sister shop has sold, we haven't encountered that even once. I won't even say Niner is especially reliable, they have had issued product runs in the past, just this isn't one of the issues.

So yes, I can say with fair confidence that what is being brought up here is not an issue in real life.
  • 2 5
 @sherbet: you haven't encountered what once, people complaining they hit / have clearance issues or people breaking the frames? The question is more along the lines of the first, say riding on gnar BC trails, would that linkage hit and get in the way?
  • 1 1
 @Bobanek: from the looks of it, then it slackens out really quickly, which would be my issue with the STA.
  • 1 0
 @lkubica: the bashguard on my xc bike shows quite a lot of use, and I also get farther from the trailhead on the XC bike so a bent chainring would suck more.
  • 1 0
 @jaytdubs: Not when you sit on it.
  • 3 0
 @Bobanek: difference in the actual vs effective. At any sort of reasonable saddle extension it is incredibly slack. Normal measurement is at the point where the Stack intersects the line from the BB to the virtual extended post.

I don't know many (any) people that run their seat that low, especially on an XC bike.
  • 2 3
 @NordicRider: ultimately you are interested of angle between the seat and the BB this is teh STA and it is 75 deg. The BB drop is 35mm so the bike will climb like a goat .. i.e. specialized Epic has STA 74.75 and BB drop 38mm and is a great climber the niner is even more aggressive. Construction ally both bike provide clearance with a slack seat tube but that does not relate to the STA measurement that as I said is between the saddle center and the center of the BB
  • 2 2
 @salespunk: Agree but if you match the frame size to you body you should be fine. I believe Niner designers know what are they doing . Except if you are some sort of orangutan type person with very long legs .Then you should be looking elsewhere Specialized had their Epic with a similar construction and I have not heard anyone complaining
  • 1 2
 @salespunk: It is unfortunate that the review is solely commercial and lack any sort of real world ridding experience test taht you can read here
www.bicycling.com/bikes-gear/mountain-bike/a40592459/niner-rkt-rdo-review
  • 3 0
 @Bobanek: that's the exact measurement I am worried about, because as soon as you raise the seat up above the height they measured at you slacken the effective STA. Given the kink they have in the seattube this effect will be multiplied because it takes such a drastic turn rearwards. So the 75 degrees effective at the saddle height they are measuring at could be much slacker at the saddle height I would be at. There is more to a bike climbing well than a BB drop, that mostly just tells you that you will have a more stable feel vs a higher BB. The Epic and this bike have very different linkages and will have different seating positions, so you can't draw the climb like a goat conclusion from that. It will probably be a good climber, given that it's a "modern" XC bike and most of them climb really well, but it isn't because of a BB drop or because the effective STA is the same as the epic.
  • 4 0
 @Bobanek: as the owner of an Epic Evo I can tell you that the actual SA is nowhere near as slack as this setup. The spec sheet angle of "effective" is not even close to the actual SA in a real world setup on the RKT. Niner need to catch up with modern geometry or suffer the same fate at Turner, Ellsworth, etc.

Even Specialized are behind the times at this point with the Epic and Epic Evo. Take a look at the new Scott Spark if you want to see where things are headed.
  • 2 0
 @sherbet: That's armchair engineer. Get it right! Smile Smile Smile
  • 4 0
 @Bobanek: AT my seat height that's slacker then I want. (cause at my seat height you loose another 1.5 degree's usually) BUT, for sure there are always people out there complaining about those "new fangled steep seat tubes". Smile

So here's a bike for ya...
  • 2 6
flag vegankidd (Jul 13, 2022 at 13:15) (Below Threshold)
 @sherbet: shill
  • 1 2
 @jaytdubs: not when you’re on the bike…
  • 2 3
 @RadBartTaylor: so you’re saying the bike will be weightless but also on the ground with a rider on it. Explain to me where in this Newtonian gravitational system this place is? Sounds like a good place to get away from stupidity
  • 3 2
 @golefty: have you ever unweighted a bike to get over an obstacle? I guess you have flat trails....cool
  • 3 4
 @RadBartTaylor: yes but usually the wheels are off the ground and bashing into the rock I’m flying over isn’t a problem. I do have competency. It’s seems you don’t and need to go back to your trike
  • 4 0
 @dthomp325: great so do not buy a Niner and problem solved. For sure there are places where you need a bash guard, but they are quite rare let alone riding XC there. For 99% of potential customers this does not matter and I am sure it's perfectly ok for Niner. Or maybe you think they are so dumb that they did not take that into account and now they are so grateful for this enlightenment on PB?
  • 7 2
 @RadBartTaylor: I'm not sure how to phrase this more simply. The shop I work at has been with Niner for FIFTEEN YEARS. We've literally never heard of someone damaging a link from rock strike damage. It isn't an issue. I'm unsure of what else could be said?

Can it happen? Sure, and aliens could be real, but right now this isn't a productive or realistic complaint to make.
  • 2 2
 @stiingya: Sorry babe, you got your PhD in that this year didn't you? Fab
  • 4 1
 @salespunk: The idea of all that geometry numbers is fine to certain extend but bike compatibility is more than just those numbers. It is s system of the components and what trails woudl you be riding. At the end of the day it is about how the bike fells and rides and 78 deg STA does not mean that the bike is great or bad . Not many people also climb steep and technical stuff. There are a lot of instances that I would prefer slacker STA just because it gives me more clearance or places me more aggressively on the bike. Steep STA seem like modern trend like the combination Maxxis DHF + DHR2 but does many people need those? I would say no . Niner got several "independent" good reviews after all, so why bitching about the bike based on one feature before ride it?
  • 2 0
 @sherbet: so there are actually people buying those?

Although their product team must been living under a rock since 2012?
  • 2 0
 @golefty: Bottom line is that in theory yes its possible to bash the link off something while the bike is unweighted but you have to be doing something really f*cking weird that would likely never happen in the course of normal riding.

I'm just trying to even picture it. Like jumping and landing with an obstacle directly between the wheels?
  • 2 3
 @sherbet: why do they put a bashguard on some of their models?

I googled "niner RDO review" and one of the first ones that came up:

".....one downside to Niner's CVA suspension design it's that the lower linkage sits below the chainring and can get banged around now and then..."

bikerumor.com/2021-niner-jet-9-rdo-gets-longer-lower-slacker-with-adjustable-geo-stiffer-frame

I didn't say it would break or damage the bike, I was simply asking if it hit....but looks like I got my answer.
  • 2 2
 @golefty: lol - I have a feeling your wheels never leave the ground....
  • 4 2
 @RadBartTaylor: probably because people like you who have never ridden one keep thinking that the link is going to hit something.
  • 3 2
 @salespunk: More people should run their seat lower. Too high a saddle is probably one of the biggest setup issues I see amongst mountain bikers and one of the reasons for the ridiculous 200mm+ dropper post usage.
  • 2 3
 @sino428: they put bashguards on the link because people like me think the link is going to hit? Thats 100% logical, well played.

Like the review I posted, they agree it hangs down too, one of the first reviews I found.

Somebody had a logical observation, I agreed, I asked a simple question and apparently the woke Niner krew doesn't allow it.

Regardless of what you guys say, I'd buy one, I think they are cool....
  • 1 0
 Much is forward axle path I think
  • 4 0
 @sino428: What about people like me that HAVE ridden them and HAVE smashed that link multiple times?

If you have to deal with technical climbing and chunkier trails, smashing that link is absolutely a problem.
  • 5 2
 @salespunk: I love xc race bikes (Spark RC, Anthem Pro) and I hate stupid steep seat angles on them. They actually suck for pedaling long and fast. This bike looks great for what it is.
  • 2 0
 @gonzocycle: to each their own. I am much more comfortable and faster pedaling for hours on a steeper sta than a slacker one.
  • 2 0
 The actual effective sta is not that bad but visually it looks as slack as my Trek Y bike. Disclaimer: Y bike was fun build. I ride an Ibis.
  • 1 3
 @RadBartTaylor: Now you're moving goalposts. You didn't simply ask if it COULD get hit. Anything CAN happen. You said, to literally quote "you can't honestly look at that and think to yourself it wouldn't be a problem" to which my reply is, it isn't a problem. Simple.
  • 3 2
 @sherbet: I can't help that you're taking my comments out of context....I qualified what I said, very nicely at that:

"I trust you and realize that it may not be resulting in broken frames, but the real question is does it hit or cause any clearance issues?"

You came out of the gate strong with "...we don't see broken frames", nobody said broken, but hitting it on rocks is still a problem in my book.

Maybe it's a non-issue, but the point was based on observation, it does look like it would hit....I was defending the OP vs having a strong opinion of my own and looks like several people agree
  • 2 0
 I ride a WFO and the linkage does work as a bashguard, even when under sag. It doesn't result in any problems with clearance.
  • 2 5
 You make a simple point into a whole conversation, I'll give you that.

If it isn't breaking frames, and sits higher than the chainring under sag, so doesn't make any more contact with the ground than say a chainring, what problem would I be trying to address? I said it isn't an issue. What I mean is; it isn't an issue. You CAN hit it, as I and a few others have said, but it's a non-point in a real world setting.

So your point was answered some three posts ago. To put it here as well for you, it isn't a problem.
  • 1 1
 @RadBartTaylor: yaaaaaaay congratulations you have your little club of lower link bashers. Time to celebrate
  • 46 1
 I would most likely believe you if you told me that bike was from 2015.
  • 38 2
 2023 zero1niner OMG BBQ WTF AXS LTD MSRP: TBD
  • 2 0
 YOLO !
  • 3 0
 LMAO
  • 4 0
 I bet a RockShox Super Deluxe Select Premium Ultimate Plus Swank Extreme shock would look nice on this bike.
  • 1 0
 @pdxkid: YODO!
  • 3 0
 What's the point in having press for a bike if you don't know when it will be available or the price?
  • 27 4
 This would have been a great revision about 5 years ago or so, but now it's rather meh. Wonder who the target market is for a bike like that by the time it's actually available.
  • 29 13
 someone who wants a niner XCo race bike maybe....? just a thought
  • 5 0
 @golefty: xco is the new DH they have even been pushing each other off in the woods
  • 5 1
 I could see this being a good XC race bike in some parts of the world. Flat, tight, twisty courses where the slacker seat tube and steeper head tube perform well. Pretty niche market, but it seems pretty common in the mtb world to target a relatively small audience. Either that or dads who decide which bike they want by lifting up each model on the showroom floor.
  • 20 0
 Our local XC courses haven't changed significantly in about a decade. Bikes like this are still wicked fast and agile. They're a looooot of fun on courses around here. I own a Scott Spark of the current gen, and can pretty firmly say it's less fun on a lot of our trails, but more fun on a few of them. I like that it's more lift capable than a bike like this, which is why I went the direction I did, but there's absolutely still a market for this in my area. Unless you're drowning in cool-aid and gotta have what the internet tells you, then of course this bike isn't gnarly radical enough. Obviously.
  • 15 0
 @sherbet: Exactly. Everyone doesn't have the exact same trails as the Pacific Northwest. Longer, lower, slacker doesn't work everywhere. It's nice to see a bike that isn't catering to the endurobro mentality. Agile bikes are so much more fun than slack, strait line smashers.
  • 13 0
 @mrkumro: ^ this. I'd guess that 2015 geometry is better suited than 'modern geo' on approximately 80% of existing singletrack in the United States.
  • 4 0
 @sherbet: Nailed it! I just moved out of a 19' Santa Cruz Blur into a 22 Rocky Mountain Element, but have been riding 100mm travel xc bikes for over a decade. The best way I can describe the ride difference on most of the single track in eastern SD is our single track is like a parking garage, the blur was a 2 door convertible, my element is a suburban. I knew this going into getting the Element, but I now travel quite often and am not as focused on the xc racing anymore so I wanted a rig that is more universal. If cash wasn't a limiting factor I'd still have my Blur to rip around on most of the local single track.
  • 4 3
 Dentists. They don’t ride Yetis. They do ride XC Niners.
  • 4 0
 @sherbet: agreed. I moved to Colorado from kamloops, and at first I couldn’t figure out why everyone had bikes with such short wheelbases and steep head tubes. Then I experienced the trails on my long slack enduro sled and realized that I was the silly one. Horses for courses.
  • 19 2
 I don't get everyone's focus/hatred of seat tubes that are slacker than 90 Degrees. If pedaling hard, XC, is your focus it's a lot easier to dial you position in for efficiency with seat angles closer to the old school. Not every ride involves winching your way slowly up climbs with a buddy. If the only way to climb was with a steep seat tube, you'd probably see roadies messing with special bikes for alpine stages- Those guys are all about seconds and every single watt on the table.
  • 5 2
 IMO, this STA is fine, even with sag. It won't be fine if you over fork it with 120mm travel fork. Which, isn't what this bike design to pair with.
  • 8 1
 Well, road bikes don't have suspension, so their dynamic geo doesn't change as much when going up steep things due to the rearward weight shift. They also need to be able to put down power when the road levels out as well, and in the case of the stage races, do it daily for weeks on end. Triathalon bikes do use crazy seat tube angles, and from what I've heard it's a combo of very high power and _maximum_ aero (no drafting and usually not many climbs in a tri bike segment) at the cost of some comfort (just one race) and control (no pack racing) as well as trying to utilize some different muscles than the run segment will use.

And it's not everyone that is obsessed with steep seat tubes, just the media that only considers the riding in their specific area, which seems to all be winch & plummet style: pedal a long way up a smoothish but steepish climb, descend, repeat. Anyone who has to pedal on level or rolling terrain isn't as insistent on crazy steep seat tubes. For example, here in New England there aren't a ton of super long steep climbs that require long times in the saddle spinning away, but there are plenty of short punchy climbs, so you'll be doing way more climbing out of the saddle and then maybe sit to power along janky rolling traverses to get to the next up & down section. Don't really see the ol' PWN-style saddle slammed all the way forward on the rails, nor are people clamoring for 80 degree actual seat tube angles, here.
  • 2 0
 Think of the stresses on the dropper seat post bushes and slides
  • 1 3
 If you live in the flatlands, you may be right. For those of us mountain biking….in the mountains slack seat angles are awful!!
  • 2 1
 Yes. In the old days, we'd scoot farther forward on the saddle (right on the nose tip where it hurt most) and push down on 600mm handlebars to keep the 26" front wheel weighted, and pray/hope/wince as the bike wound its way up the hill. If the rear wheel let loose, we'd move back again, then repeat the forward motion.

I believe the official term for this technique is "monkey humping a football".
  • 3 0
 @wyorider:I disagree. I live in CO and this geo is perfect for 90% of what we ride. I have a bigger bike for when it isn't.
  • 18 0
 where's the Kirt Voreis in spandex video at?
  • 20 0
 Haha, I'm too reckless for spandex!
  • 2 0
 @Voreis: you've done crazier in spandex during the 90's!
  • 16 2
 I thought the slacker-seatube-than-headtube trend was done.
  • 13 4
 I love how people complain about a slack seat tube without realizing its benefits. For me vertical seat tubes make it a little harder to control your bike. When your seat drops from your perfect pedal position for a decent on a straight seat tube, the seat drops straight down behind your knees a bit more compared to a slacked tube that puts the seat more forward between your knees. I don't know about you but I control a lot of my bike's side to side action with my knees and thighs pressing against side of seat. With a straight seat tube lowered, the front tip of seat barely touches my thigh which make it harder to stabilize my bike in corners and control side to side movements though tech. Not even gonna talk about rolling of a small drops and seat is further back for you to maneuver between legs. Too slack is def not good either but some slack is needed for maximum bike control. No matter what the angle, when your seat is lowered pedaling its gonna feel awkward. Why make the decent award too? Vertical seat tubes make the ride feel like they look, haha!
  • 3 8
flag wyorider (Jul 13, 2022 at 12:31) (Below Threshold)
 2002 called and wants their (unsafe and incorrect) descending skills back.
  • 5 0
 @wyorider: Unsafe? Hit me up on my insta and I will send you a proper corner vid. @kirtvoreis_allride
  • 5 0
 @wyorider: heres a quick explanation. I use the seat to keep my bike stable and to direct where it goes. I go from wide legs to pinched together knees, what ever the balance at the moment needs and what ever direction i want my bike to go. I steer/transfer weight with my knees more than I actually steer the bike with hands to get to where i want to go. I'm saying the seat is further back at its low point than traditional slack seat tube, which make me ride more to back of bike and not in a neutral position.
  • 3 0
 @wyorider: You have to be either the biggest troll on this website or the best example of Dunning-Kruger I have ever seen.
  • 11 3
 Ellsworth called... they said they still have IP for the color scheme... I'm sure it rides very nice, but it just looks outdated... and it's not even on sale yet
  • 3 2
 The paint totally reminded of Ellsworth as well
  • 5 0
 I like Ellsworth paint. Very pretty elegant.
  • 7 0
 I love this paint.
  • 3 0
 Paint schemes might be the only thing Ellsworth gets right these days.
  • 15 5
 wow. I always thought Niner bikes were ugly, but this is a new low.
  • 13 4
 2009 called and want their seat tube geometry back.
  • 3 0
 The 24 p**nking is about to make a comeback
  • 7 0
 The sharp-eyed will notice Syd and Macky testing this for the past 5 months. Looks like a fantastic all-day do-everything rig.
  • 14 5
 Niner? Hardly know er!
  • 9 3
 I thought this was 2022. This is 2016 geometry, headtube a degree too steep while the actual seattube is slacker than the grim donut headtube angle… cmon niner
  • 8 1
 it's a welcome update to their 2012 geometry of last years model however.
  • 5 4
 Key words "XC Race Ready"
  • 6 4
 @in2falling: plenty of xc race bikes have figured it out. Scott spark, spec epic, even cannondale. And that’s with a 100mm fork, imagine this niner seattube with a 120mm. What a fail
  • 9 1
 @avg-roadie: Why is it a fail? Because it's not "on trend"? Why does an XC bike need a super steep seat-tube? They're not running super long droppers, if any drop at all, so slacker actual seat tube can help that short dropper get the saddle further out of the way.
  • 4 2
 @justinfoil: xc bikes dont need to be super steep but the second you climb this bike up a 10% pitch your weight is so far back and even if the saddle is all the way forward and you are on the nose your weight is still over the back wheel, causing the front to lift. If their seattube angle actual was 76 it would be fine, but its effective at wherever they make that measurement from is 76, actual is more like 66 or slacker. There is a reason the trend is steeper, its almost always better to have an actual steep seat tube angle
  • 5 2
 @avg-roadie: "but its effective at wherever they make that measurement from is 76"

And that's what matters, the effective. True we don't know the height they measured from, but actual is less important than effective. Also true that slack actuals mean riders on the tall side of each size end up with slacker effectives.

But if you slam the saddle forward, and ride the nose, on a 76 degree effective SA, that's a pretty decently steep/forward seating position relative to the BB, and much of any front-wheel unweighting is going to be from the relatively short chainstays on the larger sizes. On the smaller sizes, especially riders on the short end of each size, it's unlikely to be an issue at all.
  • 2 3
 @justinfoil: It could be 100% avoided if the actual was steeper and effective was listed where its measured. The Trek that came out yesterday said effective at a certain saddle height, extremely clear and how it should be. This is garbage.

Plus if brands would finally do size specific chainstays it would help that, but on an xc bike you don't want much longer than 440 on any size, therefor a large or xl would still have some front wheel lifting with this 58 degree seattube angle
  • 4 1
 @avg-roadie: More unbacked statements... Why "on an xc bike you don't want much longer than 440 on any size"?

If I'm tall enough to feel comfortable with, say, a 500+mm reach and the respective front-center, why the hell wouldn't I want long enough chain-stays to keep the front-wheel planted and allow railing turns?

Note: turning and steering are different. The steepish head angle and smaller ground trail of an XC bike is going to maintain the quick steering that people like to dodge other riders and obstacles, but it's front-center to rear-center balance that helps make it easier to rail turns for maximum exit speed vs slashing turns and bleeding speed.
  • 1 2
 @justinfoil: not running a dropper, crap geometry, eye watering price.

Yeah-sign me up!!
  • 4 0
 Geo could be a little more modern but not far off for a true XC race bike which tend to stay conservative. I like the direction they are going with looks; the way the top tube lines are flowing are great.

The Rip RDO top tube and downtubes were a big turnoff IMO.
  • 7 0
 Trail country....excellent.
  • 6 0
 I would love to know what the real world STA is on this bike. It looks at an actual saddle height that it's about 34*...
  • 4 0
 It seems that a lot of WC racers are running 120 forks theaey days.

Pinkbike check that out for us. What geo is the norm? From slackest to steepes 100-120 mm forks even rear travel.. c
  • 8 1
 I wonder if anyone complaining about the geometry actually races XC.
  • 6 0
 Twelve comments when I showed up. All negative. Wow.
  • 6 1
 How about a real-world measurement of the actual STA with a 150mm dropper post… if it even fits.
  • 2 0
 Looks good, for those questioning, yes the lower linkage can act as a bash guard, no I haven't damaged mine on either of the rip 9's I have owned. Regarding the geometry, it's very similar to the geometry of a Trek Super Caliber. Which is a cross country race bike as well. Differences on include the Niner having a slacker head tube angle and a longer reach for the same size. Niner appears to have done their homework on this one.
  • 5 1
 I'd wager most people would have a hard time getting a decent length dropper to work with that bend in the seat tube.
  • 1 0
 For sure. It may have a short seat tube, but that tube "ends" pretty high, kinda negating the shortness a bit.
  • 1 0
 4 inches of front center change through the size range. Wow. 4 inches of wheelbase change drastically changes a bike's feel, and if it's all in the front, that changes it even more. These sizes are going to ride so differently... do they think only short riders like to rail turns, and all tall riders only slash turns?
  • 1 0
 "Drain holes under the lower shock mount help keep tiny swimming pools from forming."

Wow, something a ton of bikes have and have had for a long time. How about that slick variable-position hose-guide there at the bottom of the seat tube. Now that's worth mentioning.
  • 4 3
 For a company based in FoCo, not speccing a dropper on a mountain bike is ridiculous.

Lory and Bobcat Ridge are both warrant one.

Virtually every pro XC rider these days uses one.

Also, Niner ain’t Yeti or Santa Cruz. Drop the outrageous pricing.
  • 2 1
 Another gripe-the way setback seat angle means taller or longer legged riders will be way off the back of the bike. Companies like Giant do a better job of providing deep insertion depth (AND a stock dropper) without such an aggress kink in the seat tube.

Ibis makes their seat tube a straight shot, also on a dual link frame ensuring consistent saddle setback.

Considering Niner’s ambitious pricing, basic ergonomic concerns should have been a priority in redesigning for this model.

As is, this brings nothing to the table compared to the big 3, let alone other small bike brands. These will have slow turnover and then get dumped at Jenson and Backcountry-while still being a lousy deal even at $500-1000 off.
  • 1 0
 'XC', 'Trail-Country', 'Down-Country' - we've probably reached the point where we need very specific definitions of what these terms mean. Maybe they could depend on the rock size or trail steepness a particular bike can handle. OTOH I do see an opening for a new term to fill in any gaps - 'Country-Trail'.
  • 1 0
 @mikekazimer: For the love of God, or any other supernatural being, please include in reviews or first looks of bikes the actual STA. Especially on a bike like this.
Also, short seat tubes are only good for long droppers if they are straight. Looking at the saddle position on the bike pictured here, a dropper long enough to need this seat tube, would not be able to insert.
  • 6 1
 THE ALL NEW DAD BIKE!
  • 4 0
 The ONLY thing cool about Niner is Kirt Voreis.
  • 1 0
 You mean the guy they made a NOT twenty-NINER for?
  • 2 0
 Can someone inform bike designers that by tucking the rear brake caliper between the seat stays and wheel, it severely limits the brakes that can be used.
  • 1 0
 Rear suspension travel: 100mm. no thanks. give me 110 at least, 115 minimum for a "trail-country" bike as they call it. Also looks heavy for an "XC Race bike". Niner makes duds.
  • 5 1
 Free bash guard too lol
  • 3 1
 The seat tube... really? 100mm travel doesn't justify a weird bent seat tube unless you're just trying to be different.
  • 4 1
 Beautiful bike. I love Niner's rear suspension feel for XC.
  • 4 1
 Are they about to go out of business again?
  • 2 0
 Besides the top tube bosses, I don’t see any meaningful difference to a 2018 blur
  • 3 1
 Something looks off but I can't put my finger on it.
  • 3 1
 Do niners still crack if you look at them funny?
  • 3 2
 Pretty candid blogvertisement post. I wish specialized and sram got this sort of treatment.
  • 5 0
 Specialized and SRAM get plenty of "First Look" posts, in fact, most companies do. I don't see what you find different with this one.
  • 3 1
 @cgreaseman: "their cringeworthy name, not mine" & "only thing the phrase on the toptube inspires me to do is cover it up"
  • 3 0
 Seriously!? Specialized doesn't get treated fairly by Pinkbike? It's never even mentioned as a Con that their trail bikes are shock-killers, even though that's pretty common knowledge at this point, and a pretty big PITA for most riders who don't work in the industry.
  • 2 1
 I've always thought Niner has drawn their aesthetic inspiration from the Pontiac Aztec. Glad to see that trend continue.
  • 2 2
 I get that it's an XC bike, but is it actually a mountain bike if there's no dropper post on it?

When I see rigid post I think "FS gravel bike with flat bars"
  • 3 1
 Aw dang they made it look bad again
  • 3 1
 Holy seat post
  • 1 0
 “Trail Country”…send in the drones.
  • 2 1
 Makes Canyon Geo look progressive....
  • 1 0
 I hit the link on my wfo many times
  • 1 0
 Oh yeah that’s a good place for the rear brake caliper. Peeeerfect…
  • 2 0
 SX build for $4399. wow
  • 1 0
 Fugly. 2009 called, they want their geometry back.
  • 2 2
 The year 2012 called. It wants its design back.
  • 1 0
 Ha ha, I just wrote nearly the same post and then saw yours!
  • 1 1
 That STA is a Dropper Killer, thats why they didn't installed one on it.
  • 1 0
 looks new and outdated
  • 1 1
 Dub BB? Not interested.
  • 1 3
 Why would you do a press release without knowing the price?
  • 1 4
 Why show your cards now, when inflation may rise by the time this is available. Price has no correlation to cost of MFG anymore. Everything goes by the arbritrary going rate these days. But I agree, it is impossible to ascertain the value of a bike without price. With prices as high as they are these days, and so many brands out there, knowing the price of a bike is important. It is weird to see a company release something a month and a half before they've worked out the price.
  • 1 2
 This is a joke right?
Below threshold threads are hidden





You must login to Pinkbike.
Don't have an account? Sign up

Join Pinkbike  Login
Copyright © 2000 - 2022. Pinkbike.com. All rights reserved.
dv42 0.018504
Mobile Version of Website