By Adam Newman
I didn’t have much warning when I found out the Moots demo truck was going to be in our neck of the woods this week, but luckily for me, riding bikes is kinda part of my job. So on Tuesday I rolled over to Pittsburgh’s popular North Park to find the big, blue and white Moots Sprinter van ready and waiting.
Moots has built suspension bikes before, but for the Divide (26-inch) and MX Divide (29er), they started with a clean slate, partnering with The Sotto Group, a design and engineering firm, to develop its own single-pivot Fusion Link design. The frame is naturally made in-house in Steamboat Springs, Colo., with a carbon-fiber link made by the same folks who make Moots’ carbon forks and an aluminum chainstay assembly made by Zen Fabrication in Portland. The bike packs all the latest fittings that you’d expect: 44mm headtube, PF30 bottom bracket, and 142mm rear thru-axle. It’s built around 100mm of travel front and rear and comes with a Fox RP23 shock.
So enough about all of that. How does it ride? I was pretty happy to be able to flog this thing on my favorite hometown trail, and it didn’t disappoint. In fact, it may have been the fastest bike I’ve ridden there. I certainly felt like it. It feels long and stable, perfectly suited for quick climbs and long days in the saddle. The longish 17.8-inch chainstays keep things planted while climbing and the front wheel stuck to the ground. It’s not a twitchy race bike or a playful bike—it has more of a gentlemanly character. It did take a bit of muscle to get the front wheel up over logs, but I didn’t have time to play with the fork’s rebound setting to help much.
Pedaling efficiency is extremely stable, too. I left the Pro Pedal off on the shock and could easily stand and mash up climbs without any bob. Some fast, downhill rock gardens were enough to really push the limits of available travel, but the stout rear end never felt out of sorts.
Only a few production bikes have been put together so far, but Moots said they have 85 pre-orders for the $4,995 frame and they’re building them as fast as they can. Better get in line now if you want to enjoy one this summer. We’re hoping to get one for a long-term review soon, so keep an eye out in a future issue.
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