RockShox Totem Air fork review£954.99

Slightly lighter but not as smooth as coil option

BikeRadar score4/5

Swapping coil springs for air saves serious weight from the Totem freeride fork, but at the expense of some smoothness.

The actual structure of the Totem Air is exactly the same as the Coil, which means you get the same Maxle axle and Speed Lube features plus an uber-stiff 1.5in steerer option. Unlike the coil fork, though, you can also chock the travel down to 150mm with plastic spacers.

Mission Control damping is as consistent and controlled as on the Coil, but the air spring feels comparatively dead in the mid stroke, with faster hand fatigue on long runs.

Even with 200g saved by switching to air springs, it’s still a damn heavy fork, so we’d recommend the smoother coil version for almost every application.

Guy Kesteven

Freelance Writer, UK
Guy started filling his brain with cycle stats and steaming up bike shop windows back in 1980. He worked the other side of those windows from '89 while getting a degree in “describing broken things covered in mud" (archaeology). Dug historical holes in the ground through the early '90s, then became a pro bike tester in '97. Guy has ridden thousands of bikes and even more components the world over since then and can remember them all in vivid, haunting detail. Can't remember where the car keys are, though.
  • Age: 45
  • Height: 180cm / 5' 11"
  • Weight: 68kg / 150lb
  • Waist: 76cm / 30in
  • Chest: 91cm / 36in
  • Discipline: Strict sadomasochist
  • Preferred Terrain: Technical off-piste singletrack and twisted back roads. Up, down, along — so long as it's faster than the last time he did it he's happy.
  • Current Bikes: An ever changing herd of test machines from Tri bikes to fat bikes and everything in between.
  • Dream Bike: His Nicolai Helius AM custom tandem
  • Beer of Choice: Theakston's Old Peculier (not Peculiar)
  • Location: Yorkshire, UK

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