Working their way down the spectrum of tire sizes, Salsa Cycles now has a full suspension rig built around 27.5″ wheels and tires. To this point Salsa has offered 29″, 27.5+, and even fat full suspension, but the 27.5″ bike has been missing from the line up. The new Redpoint fills that void while introducing yet another tire option – 26+. We’ve seen a few bikes at various trade shows playing around with the size, and even QBP’s own Surly Bikes has offered the Instigator with 26×2.75″ tires on 50mm rims. Now with more tire manufacturers coming on line with suitable tread options, it looks like 26+ may stretch the build options even further with bikes built around 27.5″ that are also capable of running 26+…
In its stock builds, the Redpoint will be sold as a 27.5″ bike billed as a remote destination trail/backcountry riding/singletrack mountain bike. At 150mm rear, 160mm front travel, that designation is a little different than the typical Enduro classification, but after all this is Salsa that we’re talking about. This is a bike for getting out there, and even when loaded up with gear, it should still provide plenty of confidence on the trail. As Salsa’s engineer Pete Koski put it, “on a recent trip I had the bike fully loaded and I was still able to clear things on the trail that I would have struggled with on other bikes.”
Continuing on with the Split Pivot rear suspension, the rear pivot is concentric with the rear axle. This inspired a Koski special with a pivot wrench stashed on the steerer tube. Since this is designed for remote backcountry riding, you should probably have a few spares on you – like a derailleur hanger. But even if you have that hanger, you probably won’t want to carry a 22mm cone wrench to replace the hanger. So the headset cap includes a 22mm socket that can be used with a 6mm allen wrench for trail side fixes. Brilliant.
Salsa states that the suspension is Trail-specific meaning it offers a more progressive feel than other Salsas allowing better climbing and pedaling than other bikes of this travel. The frame’s 150mm travel can be matched with either a 150mm or 160mm fork depending on the use. Other details include a 148 x 12mm rear axle, PF92 bottom bracket with ISCG05 tabs, a tapered head tube, and full size water bottle capability in the main frame.
Even though Salsa won’t actually sell any bikes set up as 26+, the Redpoint was designed with this wheel size in mind. Specifically, using 45-50mm rims with 26 x 3.0″ tires like the new WTB Rangers that were leaked at the show. According to Koski, the sizing of 27.5″ standard compared to 26+ is actually more similar than that of 27.5+ and 29″ standard tires which should make the swap between sizes even more simple. The reasoning is the same – the frame can be used with standard 27.5″ wheels for a faster overall ride, or you can build it up with 26+ for improved grip and confidence and the same effective diameter. Theoretically, it should also offer the grip and ride of 27.5+ but with less weight (but without the rollover abilities of 29″). Based on what we heard and saw at the show, it won’t be long before 26+ becomes a lot more popular.
In the Redpoint, the 3.0″ tires had plenty of room and apparently don’t change any of the frame’s geometry numbers. Speaking of which, the Redpoint has a modern fit with a frame that is designed to run a short stem and wide bar (50mm and 760mm) with a longer top tube so riders don’t have to size up to run a short stem and have more room for dropper posts. By the numbers the frame has 430mm chainstays, a 66.9º HTA and a 73.5º STA.
Offered in two carbon models and one aluminum, the carbon bikes include a removable front derailleur mount to keep things clean when not in use. The aluminum model ships stock with a SRAM GX 2x1o drivetrain so the front derailleur mount is permanent.
Already available and in shops, the Redpoint carbon will be sold with an X01 build ($5,499.99), GX1 build ($4,499), and a frameset at $2,499.99. The complete aluminum GX 2×10 build will sell for $3,499.99.