Following up on the introduction of their new 27.5+ Slide+ and revamped Skeen alloy full-suspension trail bikes just a couple of weeks back, Radon has officially unveiled their new top-level cross country race bike – the all-new, all-carbon Passion hardtail. Taking the top spot from their Black Sin carbon hardtail 29er, we caught a glimpse of the new bike racing the World Cups culminating in last month’s XCO World Championships. But now with a more official release we’ve got the details to share on what looks to be a solid race-ready value from the German consumer-direct company…
Looking to update their current carbon cross country hardtail, Radon saw all of the recently updated standards as a chance to essentially start from the ground up on a new bike design. The resulting Jealous hardtail builds in Boost spacing, 1x optimization, and the option for electronic shifting. Plus with race courses getting more technical the new 29er benefits from stiffer wheels, longer 100mm travel XC race forks, wider bars, and wider tires for more race confidence and predictable trail handling.
The Jealous gets a big weight reduction, dropping 130g off the current Black Sin down to just 890g for a medium 16″ frame. The new bike uses new bigger tube shapes and improved high-modulus lay-up, which led to a stiffer bottom bracket & headtube for improved race-worthy handling. Overall Radon claims a 34% improvement in the stiffness of the bike’s backbone from headtube to BB to the dropouts.
New chainstays get an all-new taller, beefier asymmetric layout with integrated alloy plates to prevent any damage from chainsuck. The new frame design drops the brake mount to the chainstay to allow more flex in the seatstays for improved comfort at the same time as drivetrain stiffness goes up.
With the new frame design the main triangle also gets size-specific tubing, and Radon even adds 1 more frame size to better fit a wider range of riders.
The Jealous gets built with a slackened headtube to 69.5° and a longer frame reach to bring it up to the modern trail bike geometry standards, giving the race bike the versatility to tackle more aggressive cross country courses, but also the flexibility to serve as more of an everyday trail bike. At the same time as the front end got longer, Boost spacing helped Radon trim the chainstays down to a very short for a 29er 432.5mm.
The Jealous uses a combination of internal and external routing, with the rear derailleur routed internally to keep cables protected from contamination, while brake hoses are external for ease of setup. The option for a stealth dropper post gets a mix itself, with a cable port in the seattube for an easy swap between a dropper or lighter standard post depending on course needs. Modular stops make either mechanical or electronic drivetrain setups possible. What you don’t see is accommodation for a front derailleur in this SL frame. Radon sees the lighter Jealous SL frame as a bike dedicated for speed, and dropped the option for multiple chainrings in exchange for shorter stays and better tire clearance. That said a more affordable non-SL version of the frame will keep all of the rest of the updates, but add front derailleur mounting and internal routing.
The new Jealous will be available direct from Radon starting in December 2016 in seven build options from 2000€-5000€. The top two 10.0 SL & 9.0 SL get the lightest carbon layups and 1×12 & 1×11 drivetrains respectively.
Coming down from there, models 9.0-6.0 will use a slightly heavier layup that helps keep prices down, and get double chainring builds for more trail riding versatility.