Dirt Rag Magazine

Inside Line: Kona previews 2015 lineup, including new 26-inch bikes

2015-kona-process_167

Gotta say, we didn’t see that coming.

Kona has been a strong supporter of 27.5 wheels for a few years now, and we thought we had seen the last of the new 26-inch bikes from major brands. But today we got a sneak peek at the 2015 lineup and there are two new bikes with the classic wheel size.

The Process range is expanded to include the new 167 model (pictured above), a bike park/freeride/hardcore enduro platform that offers (naturally) 167mm of rear wheel travel paired to a 170mm RockShox Lyric fork. Kona is never willing to sacrifice it’s geometry requirements to cram in a wheel size (thus the unusual travel numbers) and says the 167 was designed to be as low and tight as possible. With a RockShox Vivid Air RC2 shock, SRAM X1 11-speed kit, KS Integra dropper post and Maxxis DH casing tires it will retail for $4,999.

2015-kona-precept_200

The Precept line of trail bikes also expands to fill the needs of the up-and-coming gravity rider with the Precept 200. It also has 26-inch wheels and uses a coil-shock version of the Kona Swing Link suspension. Its geometry matches up closely with the more expensive Operator cousin, and comes equipped with a RockShox Domain dual crown fork, SRAM Code R brakes and Maxxis Minion DHF tires for $2,999.

2015-kona-process_134_se

Other tweaks in the lineup include the Process 111 dropping from two models to one (check out our review in Issue #178) and the Process 134 adds a third spec level, the 134 SE, pictured here ($3,999)

2015-kona-esatto_ddl

Beyond mountain bikes, watch for a disc-brake endurance “road” bike, the Esatto DDL ($1,799) with a Scandium frame, Shimano 11-speed drivetrain and mechanical TRP Sprye road disc brakes.

2015-kona-rove_al

2015-kona-big_rove

We reviewed the Rove last year in our sister magazine, Bicycle Times, and loved it. For 2015 Kona will offer it in a less-expensive aluminum version ($899), as well as what looks like a super-fun flat-bar Big Rove variant with 2.0 Schwalbe Big Apple tires ($1,199).

2015-kona-wo

The Wo fat bike ($1,899) returns for 2015 with a new spec and sheds a whopping four pounds off the 2014 edition. It is now equipped with 190mm sliding dropouts too to clear the 26×4.5 Vee Rubber Snowshoe tires.

2015-kona-humuhumu

Another fun bike is the return of the Humuhumu, a 29-inch wheeled retro BMX-style cruiser. It’s got disc brakes, two color options and tons of rack mounts. For $899 this could be a super-rad city bike.

2015-kona-minute

Finally, we’ll see the return of the Minute, a city and cargo bike that has the attributes of a long-tail design but in a shorter, less cumbersome package ($1,399). The full-size Ute long-tail is retired.

Watch for more details of the 2015 Kona lineup on its website next week.

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