Dirt 100 2017 - the best trail mountain bikes - Dirt

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Dirt 100 2017 – the best trail mountain bikes

The do-it-all bikes we love

People ask us all the time: “So, what type of bike should I buy?”. 90 per cent of the time we recommend a trail mountain bike. The simple reason is that they just do everything.

>Dirt 100 2017 – the best enduro bikes
>Dirt 100 2017 – the best downhill bikes

Sitting between 100mm and 150mm of travel they are lithe enough to handle any climbs and, especially with modern suspension, will handle almost any descent in the UK. If you want a bike that you will be able to ride day in/day out while still having tonnes of fun, it has to be one of these.

Don’t be cowed by the shorter travel bikes either. Quite often relying on the bike a bit less can be heaps of fun and really improves your skills. Modern geometry really does make the most of every mm of travel and you get loads of bragging rights over your mates!

In the 2017 Dirt 100 we assembled a fleet of 10 of the world’s best trail mountain bikes, you can read all about our picks here:

Kona Process 111

Don’t be fooled by the Kona Process’ 111 travel moniker – this is a bike that does an awful lot with very little. 100-120mm travel is no longer a travel band exclusively for the XCers, we can now all have loads of fun on short travel rippers.

The Process is a geometry first bike that relies on numbers over burl to get the desired results. The Process 111 is a real ripper of a bike that mixes the urgency of a short travel 29er with the ability of a bike with much longer travel.. You may need a test ride to convince yourself but many doubters have been won over by the way it performs.

Price – £3,499

Konaworld.com


READ THE FULL REVIEW HERE


Calibre Bossnut

Can a bike for under £1,000 be any good? This is the year we can answer that question with an emphatic yes! The Calibre Bossnut is redefining what value is for mountain bikes and should have some big players very worried.

Last year’s Bosnut made it into out 100 but this year’s is even more impressive with better geometry and components. Go grab yourself a bargain while you can. A hugely, hugely important mountain bike.

Price: £1300 (£999 with discount card)

gooutdoors.co.uk


READ THE FULL REVIEW HERE


YT Industries Jeffsy CF Pro 29

The YT Jeffsy is a bike that will look on your riding with disdain. “Is that all you’ve got?” Don’t be fooled by the big wheels and small travel, we’re still struggling to find its limits. This is a bike that picks up speed like a border collie but charges like a rhino. It takes some stopping even on the burliest trails. It’s delicate to the touch as well though, highly strung and always alert to rider input.

 

YT’s march towards global domination continues with the YT Jeffsy, we here at Dirt will be laying out the red carpet in anticipation.

Price: 3,999.00€

yt-industries.com


Read the full review here


Starling Murmur

If there was a bike that surprised us even more than the Bossnut this year, it was the Starling Murmur. Steel is a throwback, right? A material for beardy blokes in sheds that spend an awful lot of time ruminating on real ales? Something best left on clunky hardtails in the 90s?

How wrong we were. This bike is simply brilliant. Quiet, forgiving and oh so fast. We put it back to back with many of the carbon elite and it more than held its own. It has been totally memorable riding this Starling bike. The Murmur is one of the surprises of the year and one of our favourite bikes of the year. Join the queue…

Price: £1,850 (frame only)

starlingcycles.com


Read the full review here


Scott Spark 700 plus tuned

Scott has now put it’s entire weight behind plus bikes and will no longer be selling traditionally sized (minus?) 650b wheels. When you ride the Scott Spark, you soon realise this is no bad thing.

The tuned is modelled on Nino Schurter’s Olympic medal winning bike but has been re-cast for the modern trail riders. Slacker, longer and burlier than Schurter’s but still with plenty of pedalling efficiency, it’s a perfect balance. It’s probably not a perfect bike for everyone, but for a blast round our local trails it will be one of the first bikes that gets brought out of the shed.

Price: £6,499

scott-sports.com


Read the full review here


Trek Fuel EX29 – 9.8 Project One

The Trek Fuel is a trail hammering speed machine – lightweight, incredibly well built and so beautifully constructed. As you would expect from Trek, the carbon weave is spot on, it’s on the stiff side but not too fatiguing as we’ve found from other short travel frames.

On top of this, you get all of Trek’s latest technologies and Trek’s unique Project One programme lets you custom spec your Fuel Ex 9.8 or 9.9 on their website and purchase it through one of their P1 authorised dealers. Paint and decal colour choice is huge – with thousands of combinations available, you’ll be riding a ‘one off’ version of the bike and built to your spec. This carbon Fuel EX is a great example of a trail bike where the quality, design and finish reflect the price tag.

Price: 9.8 P1 from £4,400 // 9.9 P1 from £6400

trekbikes.com


Read the full review here


Whyte T-129

Whyte’s trail bikes have raided this year’s 100 like the Vikings in Lindisfarne and pillaged two coveted top spots. First up is the Whyte T-129 – a120mm 29er. The big wheels make the modest travel go a long way, this is a trail bike that is fast, very capable, and a hoot to ride in the rough.

We’ve been running a 2016 T-129S test bike over the last year here at Dirt and it has proven to be a winner. All the changes we’ve made to the spec of ours have been addressed for 2017. A finely tuned trail bike gets even better.

Price: £2,450

whyte.bike


READ THE FULL REVIEW HERE


Whyte T-130

The second of Whyte’s inclusions is the 130mm 650b Whyte T-130. ‘Progressive geometry’ is a phrase thrown around repeatedly at the moment but there really are only a few brands that have instilled this thinking throughout their range – not just on the longer travel bikes. The T-130 trail bikes are a great example of this and really are an exceptional design.

This all-aluminium bike doesn’t mind a touch of abuse – and why not? That’s what’s it made for after all. Yet again we see Whyte pushing to the front of what’s happening not just in the UK but worldwide. The T-130 is a truly brilliant trail bike.

Price: £2,999 (RS) // £2,550 (S)

whyte.bike


Read the full review here


Trek Remedy 9.9 Race Shop limited

Retuning for yet another year in the Dirt 100s Trek’s premiere 27.5 inch bike, the Trek Remedy. 150mm of travel front and rear will put it in the crosshairs of any potential buyers in the UK and with a 477mm reach, 1231mm wheelbase, 65.5 head angle and 339mm bottom bracket the numbers are bang on too.

If you asked us to pick between this and the Trek Slash we really would struggle. For pure speed in UK conditions we love the 29 inch wheels but as an easy-to-ride, upbeat and very capable bike you can’t go far wrong with the Remedy.

Price: £6,000

trekbikes.com


Read the full review here


Commencal Meta Trail

The enduro version of this bike made it into the 2017s 100s and so did this one – basically, Commencal have got this platform bang on. The Meta has long been a popular trail bike model and this year’s incarnation is another winner.

Commencal may falter a bit on the value offered by their German competitors, but the ride quality is right up there. Clean lines, contemporary geometry and a good range of sizes sit well with an excellent spec for the price. If you’re happy to buy direct then the Commencal Meta TR V4.2 should be on your list without question.

Price: €2349

commencal-store.co.uk


Read the full review here


Orange Stage 5

Of course, Orange’s platforms have been around for donkeys’ but the injection of energy from a new owner has seen them come out with some real, world beating platforms in the past 18 months. The Stage bikes see Orange fully embracing 29ers and boy have they done it right.

Light on its feet, with a more nimble feel, this latest 29er from Orange really feels like the years of refinement have paid off. The correct geometry, mated with three realistic sizes and the right choice of fork has resulted in a really versatile trail bike – one that we feel may well give their Segment and bigger hitting Stage 6 a run for their money.

Price: £5,500

orangebikes.co.uk


Read the Full review here


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