Merida has been busy for 2021, with a host of new machines across the board – from launching a new 29in wheel, trail-ready version of the Big.Trail hardtail mountain bike, to the fourth-generation Reacto aero road bike, updated to be lighter, faster and more comfortable.
With manufacturing based in its own factory in Taiwan, Merida develops all of its bikes at the company’s design centre in Germany. It’s a bike manufacturing powerhouse, founded in 1972 and with bikes across all disciplines, from mountain bikes to pro-level road race machines, and taking in gravel bikes, electric bikes and city bikes along the way.
There’s plenty of interesting tech in its bikes, such as cooling fins on its disc brakes and a multi-tool hidden under its saddles, while each frame comes with a lifetime warranty. Merida also benefits from its sponsorship of numerous athletes, from former cross-country World Cup winner and world champion José Antonio Hermida, to Mark Cavendish’s Bahrain-McLaren team.
There’s plenty to cover in Merida’s 2021 range, so we’ve picked out nine key bikes across the mountain bike, road bike, hybrid bike and ebike line-up. This guide covers the full international range, though the availability of some bikes and models may vary from one region to another.
Merida Big.Trail 500
As its name suggests, it’s a trail hardtail, with 140mm travel. There’s also a 150mm dropper post on all but the small size frame, which gets a 125mm dropper.
Our pick of the bunch is the Big.Trail 500, which sits in the middle of the range.
It’s specced with a RockShox Recon Silver RL fork and the 11-speed Shimano Deore M5100 drivetrain features a 32-tooth chainring paired to an 11-51t cassette. The Big.Trail 500 rides on 2.4in Maxxis Dissector tyres on tubeless-ready Merida rims for all the grip and grunt you could need.
The alloy frame includes mounts for a third water bottle under the top tube as well as hidden rack and mudguard mounts, so the Big.Trail can be set up not just for trail-shredding duties but for a rugged commute to work or a bikepacking trip.
Big.Trail 500 spec
- Frame: Big.Trail TFS alloy
- Fork: RockShox Recon Silver RL 140mm travel
- Gearing: Shimano Deore M5100
- Wheels: Merida Comp TR rims on Shimano Deore hubs
- Brakes: Tektro M275
- Tyres: Maxxis Dissector 2.4in
- Price: £1,250
Merida Big.Nine 60
In the UK, the Big.Nine is Merida’s entry-level recreational/cross-country hardtail, and the mid-range 60 packs a lot of bike for its price tag.
Like the Big.Trail, the alloy frame features a straight top tube and seatstays for a clean look and plenty of standover height. With a shorter top tube and taller head tube, the geometry favours a more relaxed riding position.
There’s a RockShox Judy TK 100mm travel coil spring fork and 2.2in Merida tyres on wheels with Merida rims and Shimano hubs. You also get a two chainring Shimano 9-speed drivetrain with Shimano hydraulic braking.
If you’re after a 27.5in bike, Merida also sells the Big.Seven 60 at the same price and with the same spec but running the smaller wheel size.
In the UK, the Big.Seven and Big.Nine ranges start at £435 and head up to £825, but the full international range includes top spec, race-proven carbon bikes too.
Big.Nine 60 spec
- Frame: Big.Nine TFS III alloy
- Fork: RockShox Judy TK 100mm travel
- Gearing: Shimano M370/M202
- Wheels: Merida CC rims on Shimano TX505 hubs
- Brakes: Shimano EF505
- Tyres: Merida K1080 2.2in
- Price: £650
Merida One-Twenty 700
Let’s move on to Merida’s full-suspension mountain bikes. The One-Twenty is the company’s short-travel trail bike, with a long reach and slack head tube angle designed for assured performance on the trail.
The One-Twenty 700 29er comes with 120mm of bounce thanks to its Float Link rear shock, with a moving lower shock mount for progressive travel. At the front, that’s matched to a 130mm travel Fox Rhythm Float air fork.
There’s a Shimano XT M8100 12-speed mech coupled with a Race Face Aeffect chainset for shifting, while the One-Twenty 700 rolls on Merida rims with Maxxis tyres: a 2.4in Dissector at the front and a 2.3in Minion DHR II out back, for a tubeless-ready setup.
In the UK, the 700 is priced at £2,700 and is top of the One-Twenty range, with £1,700 and £2,100 options also available. Internationally there are carbon-framed bikes in the line-up too.
The One-Twenty sits alongside Merida’s longer-travel One-Forty and One-Sixty bikes, again with carbon and alloy options, and a broad range of specs.
One-Twenty 700 spec
- Frame: One-Twenty Lite alloy, 120mm travel
- Fork: Fox Rhythm 34 Float 130mm travel
- Gearing: Race Face Aeffect chainset, Shimano XT M8100 Shadow+ mech
- Wheels: Merida Expert TR rims on Shimano SLX hubs
- Brakes: Shimano SLX M7120
- Tyres: Front – Maxxis Dissector 2.4in / Rear – Maxxis Minion DHR II 2.3in
- Price: £2,700
Merida Scultura Endurance 6000
It’s not just on the mountain bike side that Merida has been busy, with the Scultura Endurance also recently launched as part of the road range.
It’s mid-range between the Shimano 105-equipped Scultura Endurance 4000 and the 7000-E model, which has electronic Ultegra Di2 shifting. The Scultura Endurance 5000 is also Ultegra equipped, but isn’t imported into the UK.
For a clean look, cables on the Scultura Endurance range run into the top of the head tube and there’s a hidden seatpost clamp. As with many of its other bikes, Merida has a multi-tool stowed under the saddle for convenient on-the-road fettling.
The Fulcrum Racing 700 DB wheels on the 6000 spec can be set up tubeless for comfort and puncture protection, though the tyres supplied as standard aren’t tubeless.
With a 50/34t compact chainset and 11-34t cassette, the Scultura Endurance 6000 has the gearing to take you onto light off-road trails, along with the high-end gear ratios to keep you moving fast on tarmac. You can also fit mudguards to see you through the winter.
Scultura Endurance 6000 spec
- Frame: Scultura Endurance CF3 carbon
- Fork: Scultura Endurance CF3 Disc carbon
- Gearing: Shimano Ultegra 50/34t chainset, 11-34t cassette
- Wheels: Fulcrum Racing 700 DB
- Brakes: Shimano Ultegra disc
- Tyres: Maxxis Detonator 32mm
- Price: £2,500
Merida Reacto 5000 Bahrain McLaren
Merida’s Reacto aero road bike has had a makeover too, fine-tuning its aerodynamics, upping its ride comfort and lowering its weight.
Like the Scultura Endurance, the frame features a very short run of external cables, which are routed into the top of the headset. Merida has increased the tyre clearance, so you can fit 30mm wide tyres, although the Reacto 5000 comes with 25mm Continental Ultra Sport III rubber.
This Shimano Ultegra spec comes with a 52/36t semi-compact chainset and 11-30t cassette, along with Shimano’s excellent hydraulic disc brakes. Merida says that its disc cooling fins reduce rotor temperature by up to 30ºC on long descents. Claimed weight for this spec is 8.6kg.
The Reacto 5000 has a UK price tag of £2,450 and comes painted in the same Bahrain McLaren colours as the £9,000, range-topping Reacto Team-E ridden by the pro team. The Reacto range starts with the 4000, priced in the UK at £2,250.
Reacto 5000 spec
- Frame: Reacto CF3 IV carbon
- Fork: Reacto CF3 IV Disc carbon
- Gearing: Shimano Ultegra 52/36 chainset, 11-30t cassette
- Wheels: Merida Expert CW rims on VP hubs
- Brakes: Shimano Ultegra disc
- Tyres: Continental Ultra Sport III 25mm
- Price: £2,450
Merida Speeder 300
Another bike recently redesigned, the Speeder flat-bar fitness bike is now more sporty, with a longer top tube, a longer wheelbase and slightly slacker front end, for greater stability at speed.
The Speeder 300 has a neatly-welded aluminium frame, while Merida fits an all-carbon fork for a complete bike claimed weight of 9.9kg. There’s internal cable routing that gives the Speeder a clean look.
That’s coupled with 32mm Maxxis Detonator tyres and hydraulic disc brakes, with room to fit mudguards. Forego the ‘guards and you can fit 37mm-wide tyres. Ten-speed shifting comes via a Shimano Tiagra groupset with a 50/34t chainset and 11-32t cassette.
In the UK, the new Speeder range starts at £475 with the Speeder 20D, while the top-spec Speeder 900 boasts Shimano Ultegra shifting and is priced at £1,400.
Speeder 300 spec
- Frame: Speeder Lite II alloy
- Fork: Speeder CF2 carbon
- Gearing: Shimano Tiagra 50/34, 11-32
- Wheels: Merida Comp SL rims on Joytech hubs
- Brakes: Tektro M275 disc
- Tyres: Maxxis Detonator 32mm
- Price: £875
Merida Crossway 100
The Crossway hybrid bike range looks to take you from city streets to weekend leisure rides, with the Crossway 100 offering a suspension fork with 63mm travel and a suspension seatpost that provides 40mm of cushioning.
You can still fit mudguards to keep you drier if you want to use the Crossway as a commuting bike, and the 40mm-wide Maxxis Overdrive Excel tyres feature reflective sidewalls to up your on-road visibility.
The triple-ring chainset, paired with an 11-34t 9-speed cassette and Shimano Alivio shifting, gives loads of range for off-road detours, while hydraulic disc brakes should help ensure safe stopping whatever the weather.
The Crossway 100 is priced at £650 and sits in a UK range starting at £400 and priced up to £750, with a women’s-specific version with a step-through frame also available. Internationally, the Crossway range runs to 14 models in total.
Crossway 100 spec
- Frame: Crossway TFS II alloy
- Fork: Suntour Nex HLO 63mm travel
- Gearing: Shimano Altus/Alivio, Samox chainset
- Wheels: Merida Comp SK rims on Shimano TX505 hubs
- Brakes: Tektro M275 disc
- Tyres: Maxxis Overdrive Excel 40mm
- Price: £650
Merida eOne-Sixty 700
Merida calls the eOne-Sixty an SUV electric bike. Redesigned for 2020, its geometry, spec and 160mm travel mark it out for enduro riding, but it should be equally at home on less demanding trails.
The eOne-Sixty 700 is the top spec alloy bike; there are three models with a carbon frame and alloy rear triangle, and another two all-aluminium options in the range. It’s powered by Shimano’s latest lighter, stronger EP8 motor with 85Nm torque to get you up the steepest climbs, while the option of a 630Wh or 504Wh internal battery will help ensure you don’t run out of juice.
The eOne-Sixty 700 rides on 29in front and 27.5in rear wheels with 2.5in-wide Maxxis tyres, while 12-speed shifting comes from Shimano XT.
Merida says the old eOne-Sixty was the most decorated, awarded and tested bike in its history. The latest updates bring it up-to-date with the latest e-enduro trends.
eONE-SIXTY 700 spec
- Frame: e160 Lite III alloy
- Fork: Marzocchi Z1 Ebike+ 160mm travel
- Motor: Shimano EP8
- Gearing: Shimano Deore/XT
- Wheels: Merida Expert TR rims, 29in front, 27.5in rear on Shimano SLX hubs
- Brakes: Shimano SLX disc
- Tyres: Front – Maxxis Assegai 2.5in / Rear – Maxxis Aggressor 2.5in
- Price: £5,300
Merida eSpresso 500 EQ
The eSpresso 500 EQ is part of a 25-bike range of electric urban hybrids and e-trekking bikes, offering models with a crossbar and step-through frames, and internal or external batteries.
All the eSpresso bikes come with mudguards, lights, a rear rack, lock and kickstand for loads of versatility. They’re rugged too, designed for a combined weight of bike, rider and kit of up to 140kg.
The eSpresso 500 comes with a 63mm travel Suntour fork and a 60Nm Shimano Steps E6100 motor and a large capacity 630Wh battery for plenty of staying power.
It rolls on 50mm tyres with reflective sidewalls, mounted on 700c wheels, for the versatility to tackle country trails as well as city riding.
eSPRESSO 500 EQ spec
- Frame: eSPRESSO Lite III alloy
- Fork: Suntour Nex E25 63mm travel
- Motor: Shimano E6100
- Gearing: Shimano Deore
- Wheels: Merida Comp TK rims on Shimano TX505/MT400 hubs
- Brakes: Shimano MT-200 disc
- Tyres: Continental Ride Cruiser 50mm
- Price: £3,000