DMR’s Bolt began life as a slopestyle-come-freeride full susser. But now, thanks to a longer front end and taller seat tube option, it’s turning its aspirations to a more all-mountain/enduro lifestyle.
Ride & handling: Fast and fun play bike
The steel frame construction feels taught under power and despite its relative girth the bolt accelerates well. In fact, it has a lot in common with the UK brand’s acclaimed hardtails – it’s snappy yet stable, responsive yet planted.
The X-Fusion suspension units do an admirable job of taming the bumps – they take the edge off as opposed to wallowing into their travel and are happier set up towards the firmer end of things. The long and low angles of the Bolt can easily deceive you that you’re on a lot bigger bike when descending. Properly big, fast hits can lead to the realisation of the bike’s limits, but you’ll be too busy smiling to care.
The best thing about the Bolt is its refusal to ‘conform’. If you enjoy nothing better than pouring over suspension curves and geometry charts then this probably isn’t for you. The Bolt flies and is all about fun. It’s a ‘woods’ bike built for going fast down hills, hitting jumps and railing corners. In many ways, it’s all the downhill bike most of us will probably ever need, and with the correct setup it will pedal back up again happily.
The seat tube is still fairly short and the short-ish dropper post will limit its appeal for tall riders doing all-day missions but that is not really the point of the Bolt [Long]. It’s a fantastic value play bike, especially with a £899 version (with X-Fusion O2 RL shock) available.
Frame & equipment: Steel strength with good value test spec
Full-suspension frames crafted from steel are relatively rare things but that’s not to say that the Bolt lacks detail. DMR have stuck to what they know best by using 4130 chromoly steel for long-lasting strength. There’s a tapered head tube for added stiffness, ISCG 05 chain device mounts and, thanks to the concentric bottom bracket pivot, the bike can easily be run as a singlespeed.
You also get DMR’s clever Swopout dropouts to accommodate a variety of axle standards and high-load spherical bearings. The 68-degree head angle keeps things snappy in the turns and the 1,147mm wheelbase adds to stability. It offers 125mm (4.9in) of rear travel and is designed to accommodate forks right up to 150mm (5.9in) travel.
DMR’s own-branded parts ruled the roost on our custom Bolt and rightfully so – their hard-hitting, high quality attributes mirror the frame’s intended use perfectly.
Our bike came specced with the 35mm diameter Wingbars, which stiffened up the front end without feeling like a scaffolding pole. We reckon that the low standover and skinny, straight seat tube is better matched to a solid post and quick-release collar combo to reflect the Bolt’s craving for downhill/sessioning action though.
- Wheels: DMR PRo
- Fork: X-Fusion Vengeance HLR Air, 150mm (5.9in) travel
- Shock: X-Fusion Vector Air HLR, 125mm (4.9in) travel
- Drivetrain: Shimano Zee
- Brakes: Shimano Zee
- Handlebar: DMR Wingbar 35mm prototype
- Stem: Defy 35mm prototype
- Seatpost: X-Fusion Hilo
- Saddle: Oval R700
- Weight (without pedals): 15.4kg (33.95lb)
This article was originally published in Mountain Biking UK magazine, available on Apple Newsstand and Zinio.