What innovations in Mountainbiking would you like to see in the next decade?

Forums Mountain Bike Forum What innovations in Mountainbiking would you like to see in the next decade?


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    • #293497

      To recap, 2010 to 2019 was a decade of amazing innovations in Mountainbike technology.  Think Fatbikes, Gravel bikes, Plusbikes, 29ers, 27.5ers, Bikepacking bikes, Enduro bikes, etc.  For tires, we got Plus tires, Enduro tires, and tubeless technology.  For wheels, we got 29, 27.5, Boosted hubs, wider rims and tubeless ready rims.  For drivetrains, we got 2×10, then 1×11, and then 1×12.   Brakes got more powerful and suspensions got longer and more refined.  And of course, geometry got more progessive (long, low, and slack).   And don’t forget dropper posts.  Wow!  Just a decade ago we were all riding narrow tires, steep geometry, short-travel, 3×9, 26er’s.  So what’s next?

      What innovations in Mountainbiking would you like to see in the next decade?

      Here are a few innovations I would like to see.

      —That Plusbikes as a category of Mountainbikes goes away and instead that all Trailbikes just come with frame/fork clearance for 2.8 tires.  Let the individual rider have the freedom to decide which tire width they prefer without having to buy a Plus specific bike.  2.8 tires work great on i30-35mm rims which is the rim width that most Trailbikes come with now anyway.

      —That progressive geometry trickles all the way down to the shortest-travel Trail and XC bikes and that we continue to see more refinement of light-weight “Down-country” bikes.  Not everyone wants to ride a heavy long-travel Endurobike but we all want to descend confidently.

      —That we see the continued development of leaf-spring (think Lauf forks) technology, both front and rear, for full-suspension Gravelbikes and very short-travel Mountainbikes.

      —That 1x drivetrains come with even more range but not neccessarily more cogs.  I would love to see a 1×10 or 1×11 drivetrain with a 600% 9-54 cassette.

      Put it all together and this is what I’d like my future bike to be.

      —light-weight “Down-Country”.

      —60mm leaf-spring rear suspension with a 120mm traditional fork.

      —29×2.8 Trail tires on i30mm rims (but I could reasonably use any Mountain tire from 2.2 to 2.8).

      —1x drivetrain with 9-54 cassette.

      —progressive geometry (66 degree head angle, 76 degree seat angle, 40mm stem).

      Quite the mongrel—a cross between a Soft-tail, Trailbike, XC bike, and Plusbike!


      What innovations in Mountainbiking would you like to see in the next decade?



    • #293516

      Beer taps at every trailhead.

      • #293606

        A nice thirst quenching drinkable summer ale at every trailhead would be amazing!!!!

    • #293525

      1) Light CVT gearbox

      2) Airless tires (like some concept cars – honeycomb cushcore shape)

      3) Mud repellent paint / frames

      4) Whistler parks everywhere

    • #293605

      I’m a perennial derailleur destroyer. I’ve been saying this every year and I’m still waiting for it.

      A gearbox that works and is affordable. A Pinion is still slightly out of my price range…

    • #293674

      The demise of single chain rings.

    • #302068

      Lift serve downhill much closer to where the population is. For me living in the SF Bay area my closest lift serve downhill is Northstar which is 3.5 hours away! There is mountains and plenty of elevation a lot closer to the major population centers. Obviously it wouldn’t be as much as Whistler but a lot can be made out of a little (see Spider mountain in Texas), and I know they would get ridden quite a lot year round, considering there is no snow in the lower elevations. Probably not an innovation but still.

    • #302216

      I would like to see:

      More durable front and rear air suspensions or something just as light weight and cushy as air. There is enough high tech materials available that should make annual rebuilds unnecessary.

      Smart bikes that do everything GPS, Fitbits, Gopro, etc. do now except you don’t have to carry a device. Plus you could support semi-auto wireless shifting based on fitness level monitoring, semi-auto  seat height adjustment based upon GPS elevation differentials, real time trail feature warnings based upon skill level and anything else you can think of,  which could run off of small rechargeable batteries and solar power film on the frame. Plus, you could also stream your favorite music or videos to your helmet headset or handlebar display.

      • #302931

        You may be interested to know that this year Rockshox have actually revised their service intervals. The new C1 reverb has a service interval of 300hr (i believe they were previously 100hr) for a full service. The damper service on their new forks and shocks has been revised to 200hr from 100hr and while the 50hr service interval (that is pretty easy for home mechanics) still remains recommended, they have upgraded the dust seals on the forks to SKF? I believe this year, and you don’t necessarily need to change them every time if they look in good shape (I don’t), following a conversation with an extremely experienced SRAM accredited service tech.

        I think it’s worth having the conversation regarding comparing mtb technology to automotive – which I’m assuming is where your comment regarding suspension reliability comes from. While you can go a lot longer without replacing or even touching the suspension on your car for example, this is because it’s pretty low performance, and can be built to be a little more robust because weight isn’t such an important consideration. We wouldn’t put up with lugging around suspension that’s built tough enough to never need servicing. Add to that the fact that the parts inside are manufactured to pretty high tolerance, they’re not too tolerant to mud and dirt themselves. For example a competitive moto rider with high performance suspension will get their suspension torn down multiple times a season, at considerably higher cost.

        This comes from my conversations with the owner of a long-standing suspension servicing/tuning business on the North Shore that specialise in automotive & mtb suspension (Suspensionwerx). James is a super knowledgable guy.

    • #302853

      Bike nerd good question. You have given it some thought and made some good suggestions. I really like the suggestion about the industry standard for frames/forks built with the ability to hold a 2.2-2.8 tire. Let the owner build the bike they want and change as the grow in the sport. I love the idea Kona has with the Unit. A quality basic rigid bike mountain bike with good geometry that a new rider could build up over time as they can afford to.

      I also hope to see dropper post become more reliable and price to drop on a reliable dropper post.

      Other than that I kind of like the idea of being surprised what is next. I am a bit surprised and impressed with the ideas that come out. I love the bikes I have which are just a step above entry level hardtails and they are awesome. It is hard to imagine how they could make bikes much better. Durability and affordability I hope is part of the innovation in the future.

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