The New Ibis Ripley: First Impressions

The all-new Ibis Ripley has been released into the world today, and we had a chance to spend a day riding one on its home turf in Santa Cruz. So what’s new with the latest version of the Ripley? Everything according to Ibis. The bike has undergone a whole new redesign inspired by its longer travel sibling the Ripmo. The all-new Ripley has moved away from its double eccentric design to mimic the chassis of the Ripmo. This allows the Ripley to not only drop weight but to use the same bearing and bushing system that the Ripmo does, which extends maintenance intervals and increases frame stiffness due to the more durable nature of the bushings.

Keeping up with current trends the new Ripley is indeed longer and slacker by a degree in comparison to the older model, and the rear end has been tightened up by a full 12mm. If Ibis was aiming for a playful trail bike in the bigger wheel size, it seems that they have nailed it with Ripley V.4. In the steep and twisty terrain in the mountains of Santa Cruz, the Ripley was a breeze to maneuver. On the steep slopes, the shortened chainstays really helped in getting the front end up while navigating log overs and drops. With a 66.5˚ headtube angle and 44m offset Fox Float Factory 34 with 130mm of travel, carving the Ripley through loamy Redwood forests was an absolute 2-wheeled pleasure.

For our experience with the Ripley, we were put on top tier XTR build, completed with i9 hubs and Ibis’ own carbon rims. To say this bike felt lite for a trail bike is a mild understatement. Coming in at 25lbs, I think the whole group let out a collective “oh” upon picking up their demo for the day. Climbing felt responsive and stable even as pitches kicked up into the teens, in fact pedaling, in general, felt great on the Ripley.

One thing I would note on the new version of the Ripley is that even with the increased reach the size large I was on felt a little short. I am 6’1,” so I may have been pushing the envelope on the size large and maybe should have ridden an XL. Perhaps with a little bit of personal set up, longer stem, saddle fore, and aft I could have gotten the Large dialed in perfectly. That being said the Ripley was an absolute pleasure to ride, and I would love to spend some more time on our home trails to get a better sense of how this bike rides. Be sure that the latest version of the Ripley will undoubtedly be in the discussion of mid travel 29er supremacy.

The new Ripley will be available starting today from Ibis. Frames are $2999 and complete builds begin at $4099. See more of the bike and all of the technical specs below.

It also comes in black.