Merida launches UK-influenced 140mm Big Trail Hardtail

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Photos: Ian Lean

RIBs are currently available left, right and center with everything from the 10 Great Special Editions of the Yeti to the Kona Honzo ESD in super soft steel and ready to attack. Merida threw her hat in the ring today with an update to her mid-race hardtail, the Big Trail. Rather than stealing the headlines with a particular issue, Merida’s hardtail seems like an affordable workhorse of a well-thought-out bike for a lower price bracket.

The inspiration for this bike comes from the long-standing UK hardtail scene and Merida did things a little differently when designing this bike. Rather than picking a market segment and letting their engineers focus on the project from the start, they assembled their UK dealer network with one or two Weissbier and asked them what they wanted to see in a rigid inflatable boat. trail. Taking this feedback into account, the engineers of the Taiwanese brand returned to their German R&D base and came back with this new Big Trail frame.

Details of the Great Merida Trail

Framework: Aluminum
To travel: 120-150mm
Wheel size: 29 “
Head angle: 65.5 °
Seat tube angle: 75.5 °
Price: From £ 800 (€ 849) to £ 1,500 (€ 1,599)
More information: merida-bikes.com

Merida’s first change was to reduce the wheel size from 27.5 “to 29” and position the Big Trail as an alternative to the brand’s more XC-focused Big Nine hardtail. The Big Trail comes with a 140mm fork, but has been designed to take anything from a 120mm to 150mm fork, giving you the flexibility to use it for crisp or more rugged purposes. Simplicity and practicality are key with a hardtail and Merida has kept that in mind with a bike that has plenty of water bottle racks, uses SRAM’s UDH mount, and even comes with a hanging multitool on it. the highest options. The bike comes with 2.4 “tires as standard, but a 55mm chainline allows up to 2.5” which should help the bike get through winter mud. There is also room for a 150mm dropper on all sizes except the small ones, which use a 125mm dropper.

The double bottle holders on the down tube are a big win and there is another pair hidden under the top tube for additional storage.

All models are fitted with a 140mm fork as standard but you can go up or down as you wish

Merida aimed for a geometry capable of enduro on the Big Trail. It’s not the most progressive on the market with a 65.5 ° head angle and 75 ° seat tube angle, but it certainly has a dose of thrashability. Interestingly, Merida suggests that a rider can choose their size based on the type of ride they want to do rather than their height, thanks to the low gauge. They say, “The only question is whether you want to go crazy or super agile. If you are looking for increased stability at speed, take the longer (bigger) size, if you are looking for agility, take a size shorter (smaller). ” This means riders would go up to a maximum range of 475mm or scale down for something shorter if they want a different riding feel.

Merida is well aware that hardtails are often the bike of choice for those on a budget and have done a good job putting together a solid package for a new rider. The entire lineup uses features you might expect to see on more expensive bikes, including tubeless ready rims, front and rear boost, and internal cable routing. There are even brackets for packing the bike and a kickstand for added versatility.

The Big Trail’s price reflects this as well with the 200 model at £ 800 / € 849 and the range at £ 1,500 / € 1,599 for the 600 delivered with a Shimano Deore 1×12 groupset and Marzocchi Z2 fork.

More info here.

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