Norco 2012 mountain and road bikes – First look
By BikeRadar, UK | Friday, August 12, 2011 10.15am
Evans Cycles have announced that they're now the exclusive UK distributors of Norco bikes – so what better time to have a look at some highlights of the Canadian company's 2012 range?
The 140mm-travel Sight is a new bike "designed for UK trails by a UK designer" – Owen Pemberton. It uses the ART (Advanced Ride Technology) suspension platform introduced on the Phaser, Range and Shinobi last year, which is based on Specialized's four-bar FSR design.
Other features shared with the rest of the 2012 full-suspension range include a one-piece forged aluminium bottom bracket area – including the ISCG tabs, lower pivot mount and main pivot clevis – and (on most models) a Syntace 142x12 bolt-through rear end.
The Sight replaces the Fluid and addresses our main criticisms of that bike by way of a lower bottom bracket and slacker head angle. Evans say it'll let you "charge descents" but also ride all day thanks to a rear end that "feels so supple and really smoothes out every bit of trail chatter".
The new Revolver is billed as a "trail-inspired 29er that will carry you over and down the roughest of trails without any hesitation". Travel is limited to 100mm but this is no twitchy cross-country race rig – the short stem, 12mm rear end, through-axle fork and short (100mm) head tube should hopefully give excellent singletrack handling manners. According to Evans: "29ers just got fun."
At the burlier end of things, the Aurum is Norco's new downhill bike, tested on the World Cup circuit. It features size-specific geometry – pivot placement and rear centre length (the distance from the bottom bracket to the rear axle) changes according to rider height, as well as the size of the front triangle – and uses a "tweaked" version of the ART system.
Evans say: "Never has a bike pedalled so hard but been so supple on small bumps. With minimal rearward wheel travel, you never feel like the bike is getting hung up or falters from accelerating or maintaining warp speed." Four different builds will be offered, as well as a team replica frame.
On the drop-bar side of things, the Threshold cyclo-crosser could make an ideal winter commuter thanks to its neat swappable dropouts, which mean it can be run geared, singlespeed or with a belt drive, and hidden rear mudguard mount. There's a tapered head tube up front for steering precision and a BB30 bottom bracket for powerful pedalling.
Norco do road bikes too. Pictured below is the aluminium Valence with its vibration-damping ARC (Applied Road Compliance) seatstays and beginner-friendly upright ride position – one for the sportive crowd? They've also refined their hybrid range for 2012.
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Norco are Canada's biggest bike manufacturers and this is reflected in the size of their range – 160 models in total. Evans will only be bringing in selected bikes to start with, but are planning to expand the line-up over time. As well as selling the bikes through their stores and website, they'll be distributing them to other dealers.
UK availability is slated for "early in the New Year". Pricing is still to be confirmed – we'll bring you more info as soon as we get it. For now, check out Evans Cycles' blog.
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