Part two of our Enduro Bike Test feature sees Lapierre, Norco, Kona and YT Industries making the cut…
DIRT ISSUE 146 – APRIL 2014
Words by Steve Jones. Photos by Steve Jones, Andy Lloyd, Jane Bentley & Johan Hjord
What an incredible year of development. The progression, particularly in bikes around the 150mm mark, has been immense. Enduro, both in competitive terms and as a philosophy of riding, has fuelled this there can be no doubt. But it’s taken almost ten years with the Specialized Enduro (very much a benchmark of new style riding at the time) to get bikes under the thirty pound marker. Finally true all–round big hitters are here.
For the best part of the last decade enduro/all mountain style bikes have been too much bike, largely because they’ve been too heavy. It’s something that has stuck real fast with most people who have opted for a ‘trail’ bracketed bike rather than ‘enduro’. However the current batch of enduro bikes are about the same weight as many trail bikes and when they offer so much more then why not? It seems that everyone wants one.
What follows are the current facts on the ground of bike availability in and around the 160mm mark. They are the very best of what is available, a year when RockShox forks (the Pike) became the best of the bunch, when 160mm became genuinely sub 30lb and carbon the material of choice. During this test we have found something even more significant than wheel size, that being the new possibilities of long travel.>>