We recently got ahold of Banshee’s new flagship long-travel 29er enduro bike, the Titan. While the full review won’t be ready for a couple of months, we wanted to give readers a quick overview of the bike and a taste of what’s to come.
Born on Vancouver’s North Shore many years ago, Banshee is a brand with a long-earned reputation for building absolutely badass, bombproof, and game-changing bikes. Back when it was all about wheelie-dropping off six-foot-high skinnies to flat, bikes like the Banshee Scream ruled the roost, and for good reason. They were well built, they were plush, and they had the steep head angle and high bottom bracket that those crazy slow speed North Shore stunts necessitated.
Wind the clock forward a few years and the game has changed considerably. The trails are faster and a little smoother, with fewer wheelie drops and more flowy features. There’s still plenty of gnar, don’t get me wrong. Thankfully, the bikes have changed too, and Banshee’s new Titan enduro bike is here to keep the brand up to date with the latest geometry.
The Banshee Titan is available as a frame only in sizes M-XL, runs on 29″ wheels and 155mm of travel in the rear, and it’s recommended to be paired with a 160mm to 180mm fork. The Titan uses Banshee’s latest KS2 linkage design, which is a virtual pivot type linkage with a progressive leverage curve, utilizing a Fox Float X2 shock. Banshee is sticking to their roots and only producing the Titan in aluminum, as they have always done, and do they ever know how to make a beautiful aluminum frame. It’s available in three finishes: matte anodized black, clear gloss lacquer, and gloss red. All of this adds up to be a pretty burly bike, with a frame weight of around 3.95kg for a medium.
My test bike is a size large and should suit riders from 5’11”-6’4″. I’m six feet tall on the nose. The geometry on the new Titan is pretty well in line with its competitors. That is to say that it’s long, low, and slack. Reach on the large is 470mm with a 644mm stack and a lengthy 1265mm wheelbase. Chain stays are 452mm long across the board. The dropouts have a flip-chip that enables riders to choose from 2 settings: “neutral” and “low”. The bottom bracket drop measures 17mm and 25mm, the head tube angle is 65º and 64.5º, and the effective seat tube angle is 77.25º and 76.75º, respectively. Nice and steep then.
The Titan is Banshee’s first attempt at a big travel 29er enduro sled, and it has some pretty big boots to fill if it wants to go toe to toe with the competition. At first glance, everything appears to be in the right place and Banshee’s revised frame designs across the board look modern and aggressive. Dare I say it, but it’s been a little while coming. I have a soft spot for the brand admittedly, their heritage speaks volumes to me, and I love the way they’ve incorporated design elements that harken back to their roots in North Shore mountain biking. I can’t wait to put their latest machine through its paces on the very same mountains that inspired those first machines. Stay tuned for the full report.