Electronic circuits and computer wizardry are taking the mountain bike world by storm, and Magura isn’t immune to the techno bike fever. I had a chance to chat with Magura at Interbike this year, and discovered that not only are they offering electronic suspension control, but they’ve automated the process.
Magura’s new top-of-the-line electronic fork, the eLECT, features an electronic damper cartridge with a completely internal battery and computer circuit. If you don’t look closely, you may have no idea what kind of wizardry these fork stanchions are hiding!
Chargeable via USB, this fork automatically controls your compression and lockout on the fly, based on preprogrammed responses. When you begin your ride, you manually set what “level” is. If you want a racier experience, tilt the front end of the bike up a bit when you level it. Thanks to an accelerometer in the fork (like what’s in a smartphone), the fork will respond to different changes as you’re riding. If the front end is tipped up, the fork automatically locks out for climbing efficiency. If the front end is tipped down, it opens up for descending. Additionally, if the bike goes into freefall, the fork opens up completely within a hundredth of a second to absorb the shock. If you sprint out of the saddle, the fork automatically locks out for six seconds.
Magura also offers an electronic rear shock that syncs up automatically with the fork, and then follows exactly what the fork does at exactly the same time. Due to the positioning of the rear shock, the automatic responses wouldn’t work with the sensors in the shock, so the automatic electronic compression control only works when the shock is paired with the corresponding eLECT fork.
While this sounds pretty complicated, the Magura rep assured me that once you’ve set it, you can just forget it and the suspension will do its job. Add in the fact that even with batteries and circuits the high-end eLECT fork is lighter than the lower end Magura forks, and I was having a hard time thinking of a complaint against this innovation–save from my luddite anti-electronic tendencies.
Magura also offers other non-electronic suspension forks, as well as OEM shocks, that feature Magura’s signature dual arches and a unique through axle design with built in torx wrench.
If you’re looking to put as many batteries on your mountain bike as possible, the Magura eLECT system is a must!