Scott Genius 700 tuned - Dirt

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Trail and Enduro Bikes

Scott Genius 700 tuned

The world's lightest long travel trail bike?

Another long travel trail bike with a four bar rocker linkage, same old, same old you’re probably thinking. Well, not quite. The new Scott Genius is a wolf in sheep’s clothing. A radical bike hidden in the guise of a carbon copy. There’s a lot going on here.

Shape and Purpose

The 2018 Genius represents a complete overhaul of the long-standing range. The old one, with the shock mounted to the top tube and questionable suspension performance (something even Scott admitted in their presentation) is long forgotten. Now, hoping to piggyback on the success of the Spark, the Genius has thrown itself right into the long travel trail scrap.

The bike is available with 27.5+ or 29 inch wheels. Scott has jumped in feet first at the deep end with plus wheels and will now only be speccing its entry level bikes with standard 27.5 tyres – every other bike gets plus. You’re looking at 2.8” tyres in 27.5 or 2.6″ in 29 here, both interchangeable thanks to a flip chip in the frame.

Full carbon, Scott reckons this is the lightest trail frame on the market. The frame, shock and hardware all come in at 2,249 grams (about the same as a four pint milk bottle). Scott’s figures mark this significantly lighter than any other frame out there. Put it this way, putting a full water bottle onto the frame increased the weight by nearly a third. This thing really is feather weight.

Tim Stevens, Scott’s engineer, holding up a display frame that actually comes in under weight

It was possible to do this thanks to a totally redesigned suspension layout. They have moved to a four bar rocker with a trunnion mount on the downtube. This means the top tube no longer has to be so reinforced and weight can be shaved. On top of this new lay ups and carbon know how have shaved further grams.

Scott were happy to show off a cutaway frame with the carbon layup on display

We’re not convinced here at Dirt that lighter is always better, especially when you start pointing the thing downhill, but Scott would argue that lightness keeps the bike poppy and agile. If nothing else, it’s a marketing open goal.

Suspension

Fox front and rear across all models of the Genius to allow Scott’s Twinloc to be integrated. 150mm travel is a lot for a 29/27.5+ trail bike but Scott were adamant this is not an enduro bike. With no LT version of this bike that leaves a bit of a gap in their range, maybe something to look out for in future.

The integrated mud guard is a nice touch

The suspension curve has been completely overhauled from the regressive Genius of days gone by and you now have an identical curve to the Spark that graced the Dirt 100 this year.

The Twin Loc is probably one of the easier on-the-fly adjustment systems we’ve used (it certainly requires a lot less input than Shapeshifter) but this bike pedals efficiently enough that we’re not really sure the Gordian knot of cables add a great deal for UK riding.

Gears, two brakes, a dropper and Twin Loc makes for a lot of wires

Components

Most striking is the Syncros one-piece bar and stem that is specced on the Tuned and Ultimate models. Syncros believes that the 90-degree angle between a traditional bar and stem is unfriendly on the carbon so the integration allows for an apparently lighter, stronger and stiffer unit.

The tech is carried over from their road bike range, which is why it has the aero sweep that will certainly take a bit of getting used to. The Genius comes with 760mm wide bars that have a ‘virtual’ stem length of 50mm.

The Syncros bar/stem is a definite eye-catcher

The rest of the finishing kit is Syncros with DT Swiss Wheels and an Eagle groupset.

Feeling

One thing Scott is keeping quiet about is how radical the geometry on this bike is. A reach of 472mm in large puts it 12mm longer than a Nukeproof Mega 290 and a Trek Slash and 17mm longer than a YT Industries Jeffsy. A 65° head angle makes it slacker than all of the above too.

Ph: Mick Ross

It’s a capable bike but then if you recognise the silhouette from the Spark you probably knew that already. The same pedalling efficiency is imbued in the frame but the extra 30mm of travel really allows you to push it further. We were hitting 2,000m descents so fast our ears were popping and the bike was comfortably giving back.

So, light, truly long and truly slack – we’re itching to get a test bike in to give it a proper shakedown against the trail bike elite.

Price: TBC
More info: Scott Sports

Thanks to Aosta Valley Freeride

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