I’ve been riding the 2013 Foxy XR a hell of a lot recently, with the Forward Geometry – and have now received the 2014 model for First Ride review in the magazine…
I’ve only been out a few times in anger so far, but will be out all weekend on it in a few locations, and hope to do some back to back runs against my 2013 model – mostly to see if the bigger 650b wheels are in fact faster. Initially I was skeptical as to how the bike would feel as the 26in wheels on mine feel incredibly nimble – but with the insanely long wheelbase feel just right.
Surely a bigger wheel would ruin this?
I’m all for 29in on the right bike, but like many people out there I need to be proven wrong about the new mid-size wheel – as being only an inch bigger than 26in wheels, rather than the 27.5in they’re being dubbed to simplify things, they surely wouldn’t be too much different. Just heavier, and thus losing that nimble feel that 26in offers.
I’ve deliberately not measured the geometry on this bike compared to mine – except the wheelbase at the request of fellow Forward Geometry fan, Chris Porter from Mojo suspension – as I want to just get on and feel what’s different.
At a glance, the new frame does have a few differences – it uses the DT bolt through system instead of Rockshox Maxle previously; is 142mm out back now instead of 135mm; uses a joined rocker instead of twin plates and has a different front end with less of a hydro-forming look, and a nice line of the top tube merging in to the seat stays.
Please bear in mind my test bike is a enormous XL, with a 49in wheelbase, and towering seat tube – so it will never look as clean as the smaller frames. Which do look far nicer.
So, this bike is heavier than mine and does take a little more effort to get up to speed – but it actually feels a little more agile. I suspect the head tube angle is fractionally steeper to account for the slightly slower response of the wheels – but more on that when I’ve ridden it more and measured it all up properly.
It also feels stiffer out back, by a noticeable amount.
It doesn’t feel faster on the trail, but bigger bumps do feel slightly rounder – understandably with the wheels being slightly bigger.
I’m out on it tonight and all weekend, so keep an eye out for tweets on both @mbukmagazine and @doddstar79 if you’re interested in how it fairs. Feel free to drop me a line if you’re interested in Mondraker ’s Forward Geometry…
Over and out, Doddy.