Forest of Dean, 2017 bikes and the best day's weather in March. Welcome to MBR's Demo Day.
I'm not going to pretend I'm a mountain bike reviewer, so this will be a short and sweet article covering the bikes I rode, and what score I gave them. Putting that aside for a second, can I just say how good this event was. Minimal waiting time, maximum fun, and crucially you weren't sold to by the brands - just, "wonna try this mate?". The red trail, my brother and I rode most was a corker too. I believe it was a previous enduro stage and you could tell. Naturally loamy and rooty routes heading straight down the tree crowded hillside. Bang on.
So bike number one. Canyon Neuron. 6/10
This was box fresh, so took a while to bed in, however, if you're looking for an XC machine that "could" handle the rough stuff, then this performed very well indeed, though I found the geometry to be too front heavy focused. P.S looks lovely!
Onto bike number two. Canyon Spectral CF. 10/10
Playful, light, and confidence inspiring. This for me was the cross between by DH Canyon Torque in regards to confidence and grip, but even better than my Trek Cobia hardtail's pedalling ability. This is all the bike you need. Curious now what the Strive would be like...
Three is the magic number - ROSE Root Miller 9/10 (27.5+ & 29)
I freely admit it, I was drawn to this bike because of the frame. It looks sweeeet! There were also two, one 27.5+ and a 29er, with the same frame. So my brother and I took both of them to do a back to back test. More for our own understanding regarding plus tyres. Before getting onto the wheel side, the Root Miller was awesome. Not quite as gratifying as the Canyon, but not far behind. I would say the 27.5+ was more fun on the descents than the Spectral, but not as much going up. But what about 27.5+ vs 29er. Well, it comes down to your riding spots. For me the faster rolling, more efficient 29er took top place due to the places I ride it, however, if I lived in a less flat environment the 27.5+ would take it easy - twice as confidence inspiring on the descents as the 29er.
The final countdown - Trek E-Bike 9/10
We had spent about 3 hours in the saddle, half of which had been going uphill. Our last bike of the day was going to have to be an E-Bike or we were out. Luckily the super friendly Trek stand was here to help. I've ridden an E-Bike before at the NEC Bike Show and thought they were gimmicky - this time round I thought they were awesome. Why? Because after my legs had pretty much given up the ghost, the E-Bike gave me new legs. My riding day had just been extended! So what's it like? Well, there are no hills (well sorta) and the descents are ploughed through, due to its weights and plus sized tyres. Think of this has a Bugatti Veryon. Not much fun in the corners, but point it straight up or downhill and it's super stable and very quick. Would I buy one? Absolutely, just as a second bike, not my primary.
So MBR. Whens your next Demo Day?