Look at our most recent Field Test from Bellingham, which was filled with the latest and greatest enduro bikes. I wouldn’t say the geometry was the same because there were one or two outliers, but the numbers throughout the test bikes were very, very close.
Secondly, the worldwide pandemic slowed down the production of components, mainly drivetrain parts, which meant that bike brands were/are caught in a stalemate. They sat eagerly waiting for the parts to catch up in order to launch a new bike.
Santa Cruz V10
Aside from a few tweaks to the kinematics and geometry via machined alloy components, the carbon frame members haven’t undergone any changes since then. It’s not like either bike has slowed down their riders, though, with Jackson Goldstone grabbing multiple first-place finishes. Even so, don’t be surprised to see Santa Cruz release a new-ish V10 soon.
Commencal Meta P003.1 and Flame (?)
Considering that Commencal just released the mixed-wheeled Meta SX, it’s unclear how that line will evolve since no statistics on the prototype have been shared. The Andorran brand only builds their frames with aluminum tubing, meaning their turnaround time from paper to production could be much shorter than carbon competitors, but I wouldn’t be surprised to see both layouts in the program for 2023.
Specialized Demo, Enduro, and Kenevo
Likewise, their Enduro model could be in line for an update as well. We don’t expect too many changes there, though, since it uses a finely tuned suspension layout and already has a SWAT box, but it could take on more geometry adjustments like its sibling with a motor, the Kenevo SL.
Speaking of eMTBs, the full-powered Kenevo has also been around since 2019. A carbon version of this monster e-bike with an updated motor and battery system would surely shed some weight.
Currently, the Canadian brand makes the aluminum frame components of the Wilson in their Quebec factory, but that 29er-only bike hasn’t seen a product revision since launching in 2019.
Norco Aurum, and Sight
Norco’s popular 150mm-travel Sight could also be going under the knife to see some changes. The mid-travel enduro bike’s capabilities are hard to fault, but if it did receive and update it’s not hard to imagine it going through a high-pivot transformation like the Range did.
Scott Gambler and Ransom
Where do you go from there? The Gambler already has two sets of flip-chips that let you run either rear wheel size and change the suspension’s progression. We’ve seen Scott play around with pulleys and high pivots at the start of that trend, but it’s doubtful much more weight could be shed.
Another model due which has remained the same since 2020 is their 170mm travel Ransom. One way this svelte-looking, long-travel enduro bike could change would be more integration. Scott pulled that move with their cross-country bike, the Spark, by hiding the rear shock in the seat tube/bottom bracket junction – fellow Pinkbike tech editor and PBR mechanic, Henry Quinney, would love nothing more.
As it sits now, Pivot’s downhill rig is the last in their family to receive a new suspension layout. The sizing also tops out at a 485mm reach on the extra-large, which lines up with most manufacturers’ large frames now.
I would have guessed the second version of the SB150 would use the impressive 6-bar suspension found on the 160E eMTB, but I’ve been wrong before. Whatever the moniker is on this new Yeti, it still uses the Switch Infinity system.
With stand-out, seasoned veterans like Rémi Thirion, Giant isn’t sitting still though – just taking their time. Downhill is only a drop in the bucket compared to the number of units sold in other segments, so I wouldn’t expect to see the investment in a carbon frame. Clearly, the prototypes Thirion has been racing were updated since that 2018 model and 2023 could bring along a new kind of Glory.