Last week Rod and I made the trip up to Rotorua to check out the new range of 2015 Giant bikes in the flesh. We were pretty damn hyped on what we were going to see, especially the new Reign, but the rest of the bikes have all had subtle changes that will make the Giant package harder to say no to. And we were surprised by a couple of bikes, especially their new Stance price-point full suspension rig.
First up where these two beauties that you've no doubt read about on this site already. It's Giant's new 27.5" wheeled Reign. The first time you see this bike you are just drawn to it. Giant's solid Enduro team of Adam Craig, Josh Carlson and Yohan Barelli have obviously had huge input because every aspect of this bike is well thought out. The blue one above is the Reign Advanced Team, which will be retailing in New Zealand for the sum of $7999. That's with SRAM's XX1 drivetrain, SRAM Guide RSC brakes, DT Swiss carbon hoops, a 125mm Reverb and Rock Shox Monarch Plus for the rear and a Pike up front. This thing will have you Rotorua EWS race-ready the moment you roll it out the shop door.
And wait till you get a load of the model down, the Reign Advanced. It still sports a carbon front triangle and alloy rear like its big Advanced brother, but you'll be taking this thing home for the paltry sum of $4999. That's with Pikes and a Monarch Plus Debonair rear shock. The bike is dressed in an assortment of Shimano SLX bits and pieces but still finds room in the budget for the details like a 125mm drop Reverb.
As we said in our initial Reign post a few weeks back, OverDrive 2 is gone, and plain old OverDrive 1 is back. You may know OverDrive as a plain old tapered steerer, it means WAY more headset and stem options for the Reign than in the last few years!
If you've been following the EWS races and bike setup of the pros, you'll have noticed that even with SRAM's 1x11 drivetrains many pros are still running guides, and the Reign Advanced Team comes with this sweet MRP carbon backplated AMG.
Line extensions (colour-matched components) have been just going off this year. The Santa Cruz Nomad took them to extremes but this year's entire Giant range is colour matched up the wazoo. It looks fresh but you'll have to look after that custom coloured SRAM Type 2 derailleur cos' you won't be getting another blue one!
The Reign Advanced also gets the RockShox Monarch Plus treatment but the RT model keeps the price down, and you still get the new Debonair features. The 1x setup found on the Team model is replaced with the always bulletproof SLX 2x 24/38 setup.
And the coolest thing about dropper posts, you don't need QRs any more and Giant know it and have spec'd this cool little seatpost clamp!Then there's this all alloy bad boy that we predict will be clogging mountain bike car parks around the country. For $5999 you'll be rocking a mixture of SRAM's latest 1x11 X1 drivetrain with XO1. There's Guide RS brakes, dual-position Pikes, and a RC3 Debonair Rock Shox Monarch Plus and some Spine One DT Swiss wheels. This thing is packing heat.
Protection is usually reserved for carbon frames but Giant have extended it to the alloy models.No words needed here. Oh wait, 160mm of Maestro travel should do the trick. I should have mentioned this before, but if you buy a medium, large or XL Reign you'll get a 125mm Reverb; buy the small, get a 100mm version. Giant have done their homework!Even the alloy models get the internal cable routing treatment.
DT Swiss 1501 Spline 1 radness, that's a 22.5mm beadwidth if you're asking. Spoke hearts SRAM's Guide Brakes, you will too... The Reign 1 uses a X1 crankset with a 32t ring mated to a XO1 rear mech and shifter, it's a smart mix.Do I need to remind you again, OverDrive 1 is back! Rounding out the package again is the MRP AM guide. There's no doubt that this a massive amount of bike for your buck, and again it's race ready out the door, in fact I think it even comes with a 50mm stem so there's nothing you need to change!
Now I know we show a lot of bling here at Spoke; we like our advertisers to put their best foot forward and usually they want to as well. But one of the bikes that really caught Rod's and my attention was this brand new model, the Stance, and it's definitely not bling. The Stance is a full suspension bike but unlike all the others in the Giant lineup it doesn't feature their much acclaimed Maestro linkage. It is in fact rocking Giant's new Flexpoint Suspension system and the entry level price tag of $1799. Yup, you read that right!
With the Flexpoint, the rocker at the top is similar to Maestro but the floating link at the base is gone and replaced with a single pivot. Where does it flex then?
Well, right here! Flex has been programmed into these rear seatstays. The system provides the Stance with 120mm of rear travel. Matched with the intended rider, the Stance features a 3x Alivio setup for the drivetrain... And a RockShox Monarch R rear shock.RockShox forks are also found up front. With the tapered 30 fork it's pretty basic, but like the rear, they feature 120mm of travel as well as a lockout.Shimano M355 hydraulic brakes (180mm front, 160mm). Reliable is an understatement. And as a bike that knows that you might one day upgrade it, cable routing for a dropper is even in the mix. With more and more kids starting to ride and most full suspension bikes being out of their reach financially, this bike is amazing value and could even be paid for on a circular delivery wage, or maybe with a bit of pocket money! But it's a game changer that's for sure!
And the poor old Trance SX. What? Wasn't this bike new last year? Didn't we just review it in Issue 57 and LOVE it? Yup. But we're guessing that Giant are seeing the Reign eating up most of the Trance SX customers, so much so in fact that you won't even be able to buy this bike in Aussie. But luckily for you it will be making it to New Zealand shores, and if you had your eye on one last year, Giant have gone and made it pretty much impossible for you to not shell out your hard-earned Pacific pesos! Looking at the picture, would you believe me if I told you it'll only cost you $4599? Now that's with SRAM's XO1 1x11 drivetrain, Guide R brakes and a dual-position Pike. So you're saving $200 off last year's price but getting some definite upgrades in the parts department. I'm sure there's a bunch of Giant dealers that will take your money over the phone for this 140mm travel weapon right now!The Trance SX will only be available in this one model, and unlike the picture it will be rocking a RockShox Monarch Plus Debonair RT.
A 170mm rotor will handle the rear while a 180 looks after the other end.The same attention to detail as the new Reigns when it comes to cable routing.And a nice short 6omm Truvativ stem. This bike is built for having fun on!More internal madness.This would have to be one of the few standard colour bits on this bike. SRAM's XO1 is just waiting to keep that chain on for you! We still heart Guide brakes even when they only contain 1 of the possible 3 letters after the name.
Are you still with me? There were a tonne of bikes on display but this standard Trance Advanced is the last mountain bike that really got us going. At 140mm of travel the Trance has been a bit of a genre-defying trail bike, I mean this thing is easily capable of comfortably piloting you around a race like the Whaka 100 and pinning it in an All-Duro race. The 1º steeper head angle over the Trance SX and the shorter travel fork give it a snappy, livelier feel for those long days, and like most of the Giant bikes it's 2015 upgrades kick off with a new RockShox Monarch RT3 and some very sexy Guide RSC brakes.
And we are back to bling, colour matched XX1 no less. Should you want to ever add one of those front mech things, you can... or a bottle opener!It's like an old friend, the Trance is one capable rig...
With an OverDrive 1 tapered steerer, internal routing......and 120/140 dual position Revelation forks.Not too sure about that stem though, on an otherwise perfectly spec'd bike. Despite the RockShox Reverb showing up on the Reigns, Giant's 100mm Contact SL post is still kicking round.
We did want to bring you a good look at the new 140mm travel women's Intrigue model, but thanks to some shipping hassles it didn't make it on time. The Lust is nothing new for the ladies and from what we hear from our female readers, the Intrigue is what they're about, albeit with specs that match the top men's bikes! Anyhow we thought we'd take this moment to let you know that the Liv Giant brand is no more. Huh?As you can see from this head tube Liv have dropped the Giant logos completely and have kind of stepped out on their own. You'll still find them on the Giant website, but it looks like they are working pretty hard to build the Liv brand as a fully stand-alone line of bikes. We'd really love to get our hands on the new Intrigue and give it a test. Fingers crossed we can bring you more info on that bike soon.
Now I know nothing about 'Cross, but what I do know is when we were leaving the display room this thing caught our eye. Is it sexy or what? I want one so bad that I tried to find a gravel road that I could commute on the moment we got home. I did manage to get chased by the farmer but it was worth it. I have a route, now I just have to start saving for this Giant TCX Advanced Pro 1.Um. I don't think this needs words...
Well that's it. There were plenty more bikes on show, but these seven were the standouts for us. Did you want to see the new Glory or is All-Duro really the new DH? And what about the Anthems, do you even care about XC? Let us know if we screwed up!