Few hardtails can convincingly make full use of a 160mm fork, but then this Andorran aggro bike is no ordinary steel sled.
Motorsports paint job
The triple-butted (three wall thickness changes per tube) mainframe combines a massive 38mm diameter down tube and 35mm top and seat tubes in an extended seat tube format that gives a standover height of just 675mm. The Shan has ISCG-05 chain guide mounts, replaceable dropouts that let you switch between 142x12mm and 135x10mm rear axles or even fit 26in wheels, and bolt-on cable clips for various routing options.
The head angle is a super slack 65.5 degrees
It’s anti-rust treated internally and externally. Disappointingly there’s no internal dropper post cable/hose routing though. The limited edition Gulf Oil Porsche 917 colour way seen here adds marginally to the price.
Production Privee offers a complete RockShox Pike/SRAM GX/KS dropper post bike, or the rolling chassis seen here, which comes with some of our favourite wheels – Spank Oozy Trail295s, in an orange anodised finish.
We're big fans of these Spank Oozy wheels
Industrial strength steel – can you handle it?
If you’re after a forgiving, flexy, old-school steel whip then stop reading now, because the Shan is a full gas, maximum attack weapon for highly skilled and aggressive riders.
The non-heat treated, flattened-centre stays take some sting out of the back end and define its steel, not alloy, ride quality but you’ll still know exactly where your cleats or pedal pins are as soon as you hit a rocky section. You’ll also need to lift and float the rear end to sustain speed through blunt rock sections and landing smoothness depends entirely on your skill.
The Shan is taut, muscular and compelling on the trail
The Shan accelerates and places its front wheel with a taut muscular feel though, and pops and manuals naturally too. The relatively short 600mm top tube (large size) and the low centre of gravity provided by the dropped top tube mean it twists and turns constantly underneath you. This centres any sense of control and stability wholly in the 780mm wide bar and 50mm stem.
With the semi-slick rear tyre taking half a degree off the already super-slack 65.5-degree head angle and the impressively plush and tunable DVO Diamond fork sucking the tyre onto the ground, you’ve got a massive amount of control to play with. That makes flinging yourself down the trail absolutely flat out and hoping you can outrun the consequences the dangerously addictive default setting of the Shan.
As a result it’s one of the few hardtails we’ve ridden that can genuinely use a 160mm travel fork to full effect, rather than it feeling like way too much for the rest of the bike.