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Trail and Enduro Bikes

First Look – Merida One-Sixty 8000

A full makeover for this 160mm travel hard hitter

With the Merida EOne-Sixty e-mtb taking a place in the 2017 Dirt 100 we felt the need to try their fully loaded BUT non-assisted 160mm travel bike. HOW DOES the One-Sixty 8000 STACK UP AGAINST THE BEST IN THIS CATEGORY?

The 160mm travel market is packed with loads of choice. Well-executed examples, with thoroughly sorted geometry, proven suspension layouts and robust components are available starting at keener than ever price points. The Merida One-Sixty, with a 170mm fork and 27.5” wheels goes right up against Dirt 100 favourites such as the Orange Alpine 6, Radon Swoop and the ever-popular YT Capra.

FRAME AND SUSPENSION:

It’s a full frame makeover for the Merida One-Sixty. The previous version used Merida’s VPK (Virtual Pivot Kinematics) suspension layout, which is now only used on their 140mm travel bikes (but it looks like these change for 2018). This new frame sports a ‘Float Link’ design (with an aluminium upper shock link) and has similarities to Trek’s Full Floater design, as per the 2017 Remedy. A metric shock is used along with Boost 148mm hub spacing and the rear brake is now mounted inboard on the chainstay. Cable routing is well though out and there is a down tube frame protector as standard kit. It’s all up to date, lower in weight and with a more pedal efficient suspension system.

GEOMETRY AND SIZING:

Not only has this 160mm travel Merida shed some weight, it’s had some revisions to the dimensions too. A slacker heading angle of 65.3 degrees sits well with the 170mm travel Lyrik fork. Chainstays are 10mm shorter than the previous frame design at 430mm too.

With only three frame sizes to choose from we’ll take a look at the ‘Large’ – the biggest of the trio. Here we see a lengthy but not extreme reach measurement of 475mm and a wheelbase of 1237mm. Promising figures, and when combined with a shortish seat tube of 470mm (18.5”) allows for a longer stroke 150mm+ dropper post.

So, the size ‘Large’ Merida is a big bike. Compared to a size ‘XL’ YT Capra the One-Sixty has a longer reach (by 17mm) and wheelbase (also by 17mm) but a shorter head tube and lower seat tube.

SPECIFICATION:

With a ‘single chainring specific’ specific frame design, SRAM’s 1×12 Eagle transmission fits the bill well on the One-Sixty. XO1 and carbon SRAM Descendent cranks are standard on this 8000 series model. SRAM also supply the Guide brakes. RockShox suspension is up to date with a Metric rear shock and a burly Lyrik fork (RCT3 spec) with Boost spacing and 170mm of travel. DT Swiss Spline wheels are a light, strong and rebuildable choice but the 25mm rim width feels a touch narrow for this bike and its intended use.

FRAME: 160mm CFA Carbon with 6013 Aluminium swingarm

FORK: RockShox Lyrik RCT3 170mm Boost

REAR SHOCK: RockShox Super Deluxe RC3 Metric

TRANSMISSION: SRAM X01 Eagle 12 speed

CRANKSET: SRAM Descendant carbon Eagle 32 tooth

BRAKES: SRAM Guide RS 200/180mm rotors

WHEELSET: DT Swiss Spline EX 1501 ONE 25, Boost

TYRES: Continental Der Baron Projekt 2.4

HANDLEBAR: Merida Expert D/B 6061 aluminium, 760mm

STEM: Merida Expert 6061 aluminium, 35mm

SADDLE: Prologo Nago Evo X15

SEATPOST: RockShox Reverb Stealth

PRICE: £5500

merida-bikes.com

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