Industry insiders are predicting a surge in the number of 29in-wheeled mountain bikes on display at this year's Eurobike trade show, to be held once again in Friedrichshafen, Germany from 31 August to 3 September.
So-called 29ers are hugely popular in the US, where they dominate the hardtail (no rear suspension) market. It's taken time for them to gain a foothold elsewhere, but that looks to be changing.
“Nearly every manufacturer will be participating in this trend at the upcoming bicycle trade show,” said Doris Klytta from tyre manufacturers Schwalbe. “We’re forecasting that the number of offerings in the 29er segment will also grow considerably in the coming sales year in Germany.”
And big-wheelers won’t just remain a phenomenon in the hardtail market, according to Specialized’s country manager for Germany, Sebastian Maag. “In 2012 there will be new 29ers in the full-suspension segment up to 120mm of spring travel," he said. He also predicted that longer-travel bikes will increasingly be offered with 29in wheels.