Callum Philpott recently went out to Commencal Bikes’ HQ in Andorra to try out the new and improved Meta AM V4.2.
Words: Callum Philpott Photos: Nicolas Brizin
Commencal often come up with some interesting looks for their bikes, and the 2017 Meta V4.2 is no exception. The previous V4, one of the bikes in the 2016 Dirt 100, looks similar but they’ve updated this new bike, giving it a more progressive feel in comparison. The Andorran crew have slackened the head angle, introduced more travel and now use a metric sized shock as standard. The top tube has been redesigned in the process so now a standard shock will fit, without the limitations of the 2016 frame.
Shape and purpose
This new Meta is now equipped with a 170mm fork making it very capable even on the rougher downhill tracks; this being a significant difference to the 150/160mm travel set up on the current 2016 bike which is already a favourite of ours. Although Commencal haven’t changed the shape compared to the previous Meta V4 it has changed slightly in feel, having slackened the head angle by a half of a degree (now 65.5º) and making it slightly longer in the wheelbase, this gives it a more aggressive feel on the trail.
I found that I was able to throw it down all the full–on downhill tracks out in Andorra and it was able to hold its own, in part due to that reasonably long wheelbase (1205mm for size L) which makes it longer than bikes such as the YT Capra, although slightly shorter than the Radon Swoop. The bottom bracket is a good height maintaining its -12mm drop, just as on the current shorter travel version.