Diamondback's collection of 29in-wheeled mountain bikes will continue to grow for MY2014, with two new platforms: the race-ready Overdrive Carbon built around a claimed 1kg (2.2lb) frame and a new 140mm travel Mason FS for riders who want to have a little more fun on the way down.
Diamondback impressed us in last year's 'Best mountain bikes under US$1,000' round-up with its Overdrive Comp – a bike that offered tremendous value and good handling but with a bit of a dull feel given its heavy aluminum frame and chunky wheels.
The new Overdrive Carbon models, however, look to retain that excellent value but with a new carbon fiber frame that supposedly weighs just 1kg (2.2lb) thanks to molding technology borrowed from the road-going Podium 7.
Frame shaping is straightforward, with roundish tubes throughout – an increasing number of companies are finding them to offer the most efficient use of material in terms of balancing weight and stiffness.
The tapered 1 1/8in to 1 1/2in head tube and PF30 bottom bracket shells are standard fare at this point, but kudos to Diamondback for including thru-axles front and rear.
Diamondback will offer the new Overdrive Carbon in three models, all using the same frame.
The Pro will have a SRAM X0 group, a 100mm travel Fox 32 Float CTD Factory Series fork with remote lever, Easton EA90 XC tubeless wheels, and Easton carbon cockpit components.
The Expert will have SRAM X7/X9, a Fox 32 Float CTD Evolution series fork with remote lever, WTB wheels, and Easton aluminum cockpit components. Lastly, the standard Overdrive Carbon will have SRAM X5/X7, the same fork but with a crown-mounted CTD dial, WTB wheels, and house brand finishing kit.
Post-mount rear caliper tabs are spaced for 160mm rotors
Expected availability is later this fall.
At the other end of the spectrum lies Diamondback's new aluminum Mason FS, the full-suspension analogue of the company's fun-loving Mason 29er hardtail. As with the original bike, the new FS will sport a slack geometry (including a 66.5-degree head tube angle) to aid high-speed stability, but with 140mm travel front and rear courtesy of the company's long-standing Knucklebox swingarm design and a Fox 34 Float CTD fork.
Diamondback has supposedly stiffened up the rear end, too, with a stouter rear triangle and a forward linkage pivot that's now integrated into the sides of the down tube.
The new Mason FS
Additional features include thru-axles front and rear, a tapered 1 1/8in to 1 1/2in head tube, a direct-mount front derailleur, and a threaded bottom bracket shell coupled with ISCG05 tabs for maximum crankset and chain guide compatibility.
Diamondback will offer the Mason FS in two flavors: the Pro, with a Kashima-coated Fox 34 Float 140 CTD fork, SRAM X0 group, Easton Haven wheels, a CrankBros Kronolog dropper post, and RaceFace Atlas finishing kit; and the standard Mason FS with SRAM X7/X9, RaceFace aluminum cranks, house brand wheels, and Easton finishing kit (including a fixed EA50 seatpost).
The top-end Mason FS features carbon cranks from RaceFace
As with the Overdrive Carbon, expected availability is later this fall. Retail prices for both the Overdrive Carbon and Mason FS are still being finalized.
For more information see www.diamondback.com.