Ellsworth Moment MK3 – First Ride review

Versatile big-hit trail bike

GBP £3,200.00 RRP | USD $4,457.28

Our review

One of the very best hard-riding all-rounders available
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We’ve always liked the ride characteristics of Ellsworth’s ‘Instant Centre Tracking’ four-bar linkage frames. They’re distinctively different to, and in most cases better than, other chainstay linkage designs, combining well controlled and super-plush bump responses with resistance to the weight shift wallow that afflicts some longer travel four-bar bikes.


With Ellsworth frames you rarely feel the need to rely on platform damping or lockouts to extract maximum performance. Like the Mk1 and Mk2 Moment, the 6in travel Mk3 is a stable trail platform that’s happy on both high speed cross-country and radical downhill terrain.

Ride & handling: One of the most adaptable big-hit trail bikes on the market

While the Moment looks like a big-hit bike, especially when set up with a 160mm travel fork, its ride will pleasantly surprise and thoroughly appeal to cross-country trail riders too. 

The long top tube reach is a blessing on climbs and pedally trails. The rear suspension remains remarkably stable under heavy pedal loads yet offers superbly controlled responses on both big hard-edged bumps and the smaller stuff. 

The full 160mm length of the Fox 36 fork sets the geometry up perfectly for downhill action, while a quick drop to less travel creates climbing prowess, assisted by a build weighing just under 29lb despite a bunch of fairly hard hitting componentry.

There aren’t many frames on the market adaptable enough to create a competitive downhill bike as well as a competitive cross-country bike. This is one of them. It’s superb.

triangle is mated to the tried and trusted rear end: triangle is mated to the tried and trusted rear end
Jonny Gawler

Frame: Unusual finish and sleek looks set the Moment apart from the crowd

The Moment’s 7.5lb frame is blessed with sleek looks, with gracefully formed rocker arms, new curvy top tube and down tube profiles for improved strength and stiffness, more mud and crank clearance, an extra Ellsworth logo engraved into the U-bend at the top of the ‘seatstays’ and an unusual anodised finish on the mainframe.

The geometry is designed around a long (23.75in on the medium frame) top tube to extract maximum body efficiency on trails that rely on pedal power. The head angle varies by nearly 3 degrees depending on how much fork travel you select. The Fox DHX3 air shock gives 150mm (5.9in) of rear wheel travel.

Equipment: Fox 36 is ideal fork, and light wheels boost all-rounder potential

You can get Ellsworth’s UK distributor Freeborn to build the Moment in any way you like, but its all-rounder potential gets a boost by fitting light but strong wheels like the Stans Flow rimmed tubeless hoops here. 


The Fox 36 TALAS 100/130/160mm fork fitted to our test bike was ideal, giving firm climbing credentials on 100mm and a more laidback descending character on 160mm. 

Big travel comes via the versatile and tuneable fox dhx3 air shock: big travel comes via the versatile and tuneable fox dhx3 air shock
Jonny Gawler

Product Specifications


Name Moment Mk 3 (Custom Build)
Brand Ellsworth

Description Frame/Shock Only from - £1549
Available Colours Black Blue Green Grey
Available Sizes 15 Inches 17 Inches 19 Inches
Brakes Avid Juicy Seven
Cranks Shimano XT Cranks/e13 guard
Fork Fox 36 TALAS 100/130/160mm through axle
Frame Material Ellsworth US aluminium
Handlebar Easton EA70
Rear Derailleur SRAM X9
Saddle Ellsworth
Shifters SRAM X9
Stem Thomson