This is Orbea’s second-tier Oiz, yet it comes very much ready for the race course, with some seriously fast components fitted as standard.
What’s not standard, though, is the inclusion of a dropper post, and this seriously eye-catching paintjob. These both come as extras through Orbea’s MyO program, which allows for some componentry swaps (at a cost) and a custom paintjob (free, but it’ll take a few weeks longer to arrive).
My gold-coloured Oiz certainly caught people’s attention and received almost universal praise.
- Mountain bike groupsets: everything you need to know
- Best mountain bikes: how to choose the right one for you
Orbea Oiz M-Team frame and kit
The latest-generation Oiz gets a new recipe of carbon, in the form of its OMX weave. This uses higher-modulus carbon fibre, which is placed into the mould with less overlap between sheets, contributing to a 250g weight reduction over the OMR carbon Oiz (which now sits below the OMX).
The new Oiz also has slightly shorter stays and a flat-mount brake mount, further cutting weight.
Geometry is relatively conservative, with a reach of 456mm on the large size, combined with 430mm chainstays, a 69-degree head angle and 75-degree seat angle.
Orbea’s three-position Squidlock lever gives you finer control over the Oiz’s 100mm of travel than on the other bikes that were also on test.
The M-Team comes equipped with a Factory-level Fox 32 Step-Cast fork and DPS shock, Shimano XTR drivetrain and DT Swiss XRC 1501 wheels wrapped in voluminous Maxxis Rekon Race tyres.
A 125mm-drop Fox Transfer post (£219 extra) rounded off the spec on my build. You can also swap forks, tyres and select other components.
Orbea Oiz M-Team geometry
|Seat angle (degrees)||75||75||75||75|
|Head angle (degrees)||69||69||69||69|
|Seat tube (cm)||40.5||43.2||47||52|
|Top tube (cm)||56.4||59.3||61.7||64.1|
|Head tube (cm)||9||9.5||10.5||12|
|Fork offset (cm)||4.4||4.4||4.4||4.4|
|Bottom bracket drop (cm)||4.7||4.7||4.7||4.7|
|Bottom bracket height (cm)||32.7||32.7||32.7||32.7|
Orbea Oiz M-Team ride impressions
Were it not for the Squidlock, I’d question whether the Oiz would be a smart choice, certainly for pedally tracks. The suspension is fairly active under pedalling, unless you pump the shock up harder than you might otherwise.
This is fine on rough, loose climbs because it helps keep the rear wheel stuck to the ground, but it’d be a drag on the smooth stuff. Fortunately, the Squidlock is the best on-bar lockout I’ve used.
The dual levers are easy to reach, and the ability to toggle smoothly from firm to medium to open mode, and back again, in single steps, on both the fork and shock, means you can have the suspension doing just the right thing at the right time.
On smooth climbs, the suspension is almost rigid when locked out, with just a bit of compliance. In medium mode there’s enough give to keep the bike feeling efficient, while still allowing you to keep pedalling and flowing over chunky climbs or flatter trails.
Switch to open mode, and the suspension is incredibly smooth and composed. If anything, Id like a little more support in the mid and latter parts of the stroke, as I did find myself getting towards the end of the travel fairly quickly on fast, rocky descents.
On smooth flow trails I tended to keep the bike in medium mode because there’s enough support through the compression circuit to allow the bike to be effectively pumped and prevent it getting too deep in its travel.
While you don’t have extra frame length adding stability on the Oiz, the decent tyre volume (thanks to relatively wide rims) and grippier Rekon Race tread (which has a touch more shoulder than the Ikon) give more confidence than I’d expected in looser and more technical sections.
In fact, these tyres became my favourites in this test. They roll as fast as the Ikons, but the addition of a little extra shoulder tread means that on fine-gravel trail centre tracks or in muddy loam, there’s just that extra bit of bite.
As a result, I could lean the Oiz into corners with confidence. With the light rim and tyre combo, as well as efficient suspension (in medium mode), the bike has lots of reactivity when hammering the pedals, too.
The XTR groupset works very well, giving smooth, reliable shifting in all conditions, making it my mechanical groupset of choice on test too, and the Fox Transfer post is also a top performer, and worth the extra outlay.
How we tested
We put four high-end XC race bikes to the test, which were tested on all day epics, bar-chewing, on-the-limit evening blasts and back-to-back comparative loops.
This way, not only could we be sure they can go the distance, but also that we’ve revealed their every nuance has been revealed.
Other bikes on test:
|Price||AUD $11408.00EUR €7072.00GBP £6518.00USD $7808.00|
|Weight||10.2kg (L) – without pedals|
|Available sizes||S, M, L, XL|
|Tyres||Maxxis Rekon Race EXO TR 29x2.35in|
|Shifter||Shimano XTR M9100 (1x12)|
|Seatpost||Fox Transfer Factory 125mm dropper|
|Saddle||Selle Italia SLR Boost|
|Rear Shocks||Fox Float DPS Factory|
|Rear derailleur||Shimano XTR M9100|
|Handlebar||OC3 Carbon Flat, 760mm|
|Bottom bracket||Shimano XTR|
|Frame||OMX carbon fibre, 100mm (3.9in) travel|
|Fork||Fox 32 Float Step-Cast Factory FIT4, 100mm (3.9in) travel|
|Cranks||Shimano XTR M9100, 34t|
|Chain||Shimano XTR M9100|
|Cassette||Shimano XTR M9100|
|Brakes||Shimano XTR M9100, 180mm/160mm rotors|
|Wheels||DT Swiss XRC 1501 Spline One 30 rims on DT Swiss 240 hubs|