Intense gives the Primer trail bike three wheelsize options

The Primer is the catch-all trail bike from Intense, with 27.5in, 29in and 29/27.5in mullet versions available

Intense Primer pack shot

Intense had a range of four trail bikes in 2019, but for 2020 only one remains — the Primer.

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To make sure there’s something for everyone, though, this 140mm travel trail bike offers versions with both wheel sizes, as well as a ‘mullet bike’ version, the ‘S’ with a 27.5+in rear and 29in front wheel.

In updating the Primer, Intense is dropping the ACV, Recluse and Spider model names, however, these holes are, to some extent, filled by the new range of Primers.

Intense Primer 29 pack
The Intense Primer 29 has big wheels front and back.
Intense

The Primer will come with 140mm of rear wheel travel and 150mm travel forks, regardless of wheel size.

All the bikes will use the same grade of carbon, while there will be three builds for the 29in and 27.5in bikes, and two versions of the ‘S’ bike. You’ll also be able to purchase them all as a frame-only option.

We’ll bring you a first ride report on the Primer in the coming days, but in the meantime, here are the details.

Intense Primer
The Primer S is the mixed wheelsize version of their trail bike.
Intense

Intense Primer frame details

Since shifting to Taiwan for construction, Intense’s range is now focussed on carbon, rather than alloy bikes.

The frame’s monocoque design is built around its JS Link suspension system, which is tuned for the particular needs of each bike. On the Primer, it’s its Trail Link system, built to match the needs of climbing ability with traction rich and controlled descending capability.

Intense Primer
Intense’s Primer 27 with smaller wheels on this model.
Intense

The JS Trail Link tune is new for 2020, with the system giving a similar leverage curve to the Enduro Link. However, there’s a more noticeable initial ramp in the early stroke, giving the suspension more of a stable platform for pedalling performance. In theory, it should pedal better than bikes with the Enduro Link.

As the bike goes deeper through its travel, the suspension becomes softer, giving smoother performance over chatter and square-edge hits.

There’s a flip-chip in the frame to adjust the geometry and suspension feel. The ‘Low’ setting has a slightly more supple start to the suspension’s stroke, with Intense saying that this is the ideal setting for more chunky, technical terrain.

Intense Primer flip chip
The flip chip alters suspension feel and geometry.
Intense

There’s then the ‘Lowest’ setting, which is lower than the Low, with a slightly taughter suspension feel, as well as a lower bottom bracket (BB) and slacker head and seat angles.

This, Intense claims, is better suited to fast, flowy, smoother trails where you’ll be railing turns and pumping through terrain more.

The frames are finished with all the attributes we tend to look for in a frame. The BB shell is threaded, for ease of maintenance, while cables are routed internally for a clean look. The down tube is thicker to protect against rock strikes, and there’s additional protection across the frame, especially down the back of the seat tube.

Intense Primer 27 cable routing
The frames feature internal cable routing, down and seat tube protection and threaded BBs.
Intense

The rear triangle has been stiffened torsionally with double vertical struts linking the chainstays to the upper rocker pivot. Finally, the frames feature titanium hardware.

Intense Primer geometry

These are the key figures for a Large Primer 27.5/29/mullet in its ‘Lower’ setting. The ‘Low’ settings are 0.6 degrees steeper (head and seat angle), 5.9mm longer (reach) and 7.7mm higher (BB)

Intense Primer 27 down tube
Carbon down tubes benefit from extra material to keep them safe from rock strikes.
Intense

Primer 27.5 geometry

  • Head angle: 64.6 degrees
  • Seat angle (effective): 74.2 degrees
  • Reach: 455mm
  • Chainstay length: 433.8mm
  • Seat tube length: 444.3mm

Intense Primer 29 geometry

  • Head angle: 65.3 degrees
  • Seat angle (effective): 74.4 degrees
  • Reach: 462.4mm
  • Chainstay length: 441.5mm
  • Seat tube length: 451mm
Intense Primer S fork
All the Primers have 150mm travel forks and 140mm frame travel.
Intense

Intense Primer S (mullet) geometry

  • Head angle: 64.5 degrees
  • Seat angle (effective): 73.5 degrees
  • Reach: 454.1mm
  • Chainstay length: 441.5mm
  • Seat tube length: 451mm
Intense Primer 29 head badge
There’s a lot of history behind that head badge.
Intense

Intense Primer models

The Primer 27.5 and Primer 29 effectively share the same kit (wheel specific-sized where needed), with identical pricing across the wheel sizes.

There are three models: Elite, Pro and Expert.

The Primer S gets Pro and Expert builds, and all three will be available as frame only.

Intense Primer 27 and Primer 29 Elite key spec

Intense Primer 29 Elite
The Elite builds get Fox Factory suspension and SRAM X01 drivetrains.
Intense
  • £6,499 / $6,999
  • Fox Factory 34 150mm fork
  • Fox Factory DPX2 shock
  • SRAM X01 Eagle drivetrain (GX Eagle chain)
  • Truvative Stylo Carbon cranks
  • Shimano XT brakes — four-pot front, two-pot rear, 180mm rotors
  • Fox Factory Transfer dropper — 125mm (S), 150mm (M, L)
  • E13 LG1 Enduro Race Carbon wheelset with Maxxis 2.5in High Roller II front and 2.3in Aggressor rear tyres
  • Intense Recon Carbon bar (780mm) and Recon Elite stem (50mm)
  • Fabric Scoop Radius Elite saddle

Intense Primer 27 and Primer 29 Pro key spec

Intense Primer Intense Primer 29 Pro
Pro builds are similar to Elite, but without carbon wheels or cranks.
Intense
  • £5,599 / $5,699
  • Fox Factory 34 150mm fork
  • Fox Factory DPX2 shock
  • SRAM GX / X01 Eagle drivetrain
  • Truvative Stylo alloy cranks
  • Shimano XT brakes — four-pot front, two-pot rear, 180mm rotors
  • Fox Factory Transfer dropper — 125mm (S), 150mm (M, L)
  • E13 LG1 Enduro Race wheelset with Maxxis 2.5in High Roller II front and 2.3in Aggressor rear tyres
  • Intense Recon Carbon bar (780mm) and Recon Elite stem (50mm)
  • Fabric Scoop Radius Elite saddle

Intense Primer 27 and Primer 29 Expert key spec

Intense Primer 29 Expert
Performance level suspension sits on the Expert level bikes.
Intense
  • £3,699 / $3,799
  • Fox Performance 34 150mm fork
  • Fox Performance DPX2 shock
  • SRAM NX Eagle drivetrain including cranks
  • Shimano M520 front, M500 rear brakes — four-pot front, two-pot rear, 180mm rotors
  • Intense Recon dropper — 125mm (S), 150mm (M, L), 175mm (XL)
  • E13 LG1 Enduro Race wheelset with Maxxis 2.5in High Roller II front and 2.3in Aggressor rear tyres
  • Intense Recon Alloy bar (780mm) and Recon stem (45mm)
  • WTB Silverado Sport saddle

Intense Primer S Pro key spec

Intense Primer S Pro
A 29 x 2.6in wheel sits and the front with 27.5×2.8″ at the back.
Intense
  • £5,699 / $5,799
  • Fox Factory 36 150mm fork
  • Fox Factory DPX2 shock
  • SRAM GX / X01 Eagle drivetrain
  • Truvative Descendant Carbon cranks
  • Shimano XT brakes — four-pot front, two-pot rear, 180mm rotors
  • Fox Factory Transfer dropper — 125mm (S), 150mm (M, L), 175mm (XL)
  • E13 LG1 Enduro Race wheelset with Maxxis 2.6in Minion DHR II front and 2.8in Rekon+ rear tyres
  • Intense Recon Carbon bar (780mm) and Recon Elite stem (50mm)
  • Fabric Scoop Radius Elite saddle

Intense Primer S Expert key spec

Intense Primer S Expert
The Primer S is the ‘mullet’ bike in the family.
Intense
  • £3,699 / $3,899
  • Fox Performance 36 150mm fork
  • Fox Performance DPX2 shock
  • SRAM NX Eagle drivetrain including cranks
  • Shimano M520 front, M500 rear brakes — four-pot front, two-pot rear, 180mm rotors
  • Intense Recon dropper — 125mm (S), 150mm (M, L), 175mm (XL)
  • E13 LG1 Enduro Race wheelset with Maxxis 2.5i High Roller II front and 2.3in Aggressor rear tyres
  • Intense Recon Alloy bar (780mm) and Recon stem (45mm)
  • WTB Silverado Sport saddle

Intense Primer 27.5 / 29 / S frame-only key spec

  • £2,599 / $2,999
  • 140mm travel
  • Carbon lay-up
  • Fox Factory DPX2 shock
  • S, M, L, XL
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Bikes are due to arrive in October, available from Intese Cycles.