Morpheus Conspiracy carbon DH bike, side shot

If a small company like Morpheus Bikes can put out a premium-build carbon DH bike at $5500, it makes you wonder- Why do some bigger brands’ similar offerings cost $10,000? Are you paying for the brand name, does their expertise justify the extra bucks, or are they just getting greedy? Morpheus’ new Conspiracy DH bike aims to raise some eyebrows with its low price tag and weight, not to mention a sturdy but sleek looking design.

Since the bike is as yet unavailable the one pictured in this article belongs to Morpheus’ Director of Operations Chad Kelly, so be aware the component build is different on the stock bikes. There will be two stock versions available which come out of the box at a very reasonable 34 and 36 lbs. However, the Conspiracy can get even lighter- Kelly has his personal bike at 33 lbs, and one of their team riders has his down to 31!

The brand is hoping to become a serious contender in the carbon scene, and if this bike performs as good as it looks, it could be a breakthrough model for Morpheus Bikes…

Morpheus Conspiracy carbon DH bike, frame close up

The Conspiracy frame has been in development for about two years, and they’ve seen some real-world abuse during that time. The factory team riders are all currently putting them through their paces, and Morpheus’ East Coast US regional teams are racing on them as well.

Morpheus Conspiracy carbon DH bike, down tube Morpheus Conspiracy carbon DH bike, head tube

To keep the frame as light as possible, the carbon layup has been optimized via the same FEA technology used in the development of Formula 1 race cars. With its massive down tube, plump head tube, burly rocker link and shapely tubing the frame looks super stiff.

Morpheus Conspiracy carbon DH bike, routing at head tube Morpheus Conspiracy carbon DH bike, routing at BB

The Conspiracy rolls on 27.5” wheels, the rear end uses a 157x12mm thru-axle, and the head tube is tapered. It also features internal cable routing through the down tube and rear stays to keep things sleek and clean. Frame geometry for all three sizes is shown below-

SIZES: SMALL, MEDIUM, LARGE
TOPTUBE: SMALL 22.83IN/ MEDIUM 23.8IN/ LARGE 24.8IN
REACH: SMALL 15.9IN/ MEDIUM 16.9IN/ LARGE 17.9
CHAIN STAY: 17.16IN
BOTTOM BRACKET HEIGHT: 13.5IN
WHEELBASE: SMALL 47.4IN/ MEDIUM 48.4IN/ LARGE 49.4IN
HEAD TUBE ANGLE: 63* DEGREES
BOTTOM BRACKET: 41MM/BB92
SEAT POST: 30.9MM
SEAT POST CLAMP: 34.9MM

Morpheus Conspiracy carbon DH bike, rear end

The Conspiracy’s rear suspension design is Morpheus’s tweak on the commonly adapted FSR/Horst link concept. Kelly says this platform offers a very progressive spring curve, and provides excellent pedalling performance. The frame boasts a very low center of gravity, and the shock’s bottom eyelet actually sits lower than the BB to further aid pedalling efficiency.

Morpheus Conspiracy carbon DH bike, angle

FRAME COLORS  BLACK  BLACK
WEIGHT  36LBS  34LBS
SHOCK FOX FLOAT X2 AIR FOX FLOAT X2 AIR
FORK SUNTOUR RUX 27.5 FOX 40 FLOAT 27.5 FIT RC2
HEADSET CANE CREEK 40 CANE CREEK 40
F. DERAILLEUR N/A N/A
R. DERAILLEUR SHIMANO ZEE 10SPD SHIMANO SAINT 10SPD
SHIFTER SHIMANO ZEE 10SPD SHIMANO SAINT 10SPD
CHAIN GUIDE E-13 LG1 E-13 LG1
BRAKES SHIMANO ZEE SHIMANO SAINT
CRANKS RACEFACE RESPONDS 165MM RACEFACE SIXC
CHAINRING RACEFACE SINGLE/ N-W 34T RACEFACE SINGLE/ N-W 36T
CASSETTE SHIMANO CS4600 10SPD 11-25 SHIMANO CS4600 10SPD 11-25
B. BRACKET RACEFACE X-TYPE RACEFACE X-TYPE
F. WHEEL DT SWISS CUSTOM DT SWISS CUSTOM
R. WHEEL DT SWISS CUSTOM DT SWISS CUSTOM
F. TIRE SCHWALBE MAGIC MARY SCHWALBE MAGIC MARY
R. TIRE SCHWALBE MAGIC MARY SCHWALBE MAGIC MARY
STEM OPTIONS LEADTEC DM 30-35MM LEADTEC DM 30-35MM
LEADTEC DIRECT MOUNT 31.8MM 45-50MM REACH LEADTEC DIRECT MOUNT 31.8MM 45-50MM REACH
HANDLEBARS RACEFACE RESPOND .5 RISE RACEFACE SIXC
GRIPS RACEFACE HALF NESON RACEFACE SNIPER
SEATPOST RACEFACE RIDE RACEFACE RIDE
SADDLE RACEFACE ATLAS RACEFACE ATLAS
PEDALS N/A  RACEFACE ATLAS (BLACK)
F. ROTOR SHIMANO 200MM SHIMANO 200MM
R. ROTOR SHIMANO 180MM SHIMANO 180MM

By choosing the component spec carefully (and with great support from those vendors, says Kelly) Morpheus has come out with pretty attractive price tags for the Conspiracy. Complete bikes will retail at $4195 USD for the 36 lbs. Standard build or $5500 for the 34 lbs. Premium model . The Conspiracy is also available as a frameset (with Fox X2 rear shock) which weighs in at 7.9 Lbs. and costs $2795. Believe it or not, the Conspiracy will be a reality by September.

morpheusbikes.com

12 COMMENTS

  1. You pay more for other (big) brands because they have:
    Big costly structure that 80% does not even touch the product, like:
    CEO
    CFO
    VP operation and his/her team
    VP logistics and his/her team
    VP bla…bla…bla…and his/her team
    You then have marketing…distribution network…maybe even stores!
    Then you have subcontractors that work with batch order (some huge batch)…and “someone” has to pay the risk!
    All this cost money…. a LOT!

    Small bike brands have smaller structure, 100% focus on product and if they build in house, they do it in JIT.
    Warranty and customer service sometimes can be left over, but reality has tolded us that it is not true.

    So… 10.000 USD in Sep/2016… that it will be…. -20/30% next year due to the “new” year model 2017!

    Bikes are becoming worse than computers some years ago!
    But maybe it is worth 10k and the poor brand is just earning their small profit……..

  2. It’s hardly something new. YT offers Tues CF Pro with even better specs for 5000€ with German VAT (18%).
    Yoi can get big brands for similar amount of money if you ask. My Spec dealer offers 30-40% off MSRP and will still profit.

    • Dentists, dude. They meant affordable for dentists.

      All joking aside, I’m right there with ya. The bike industry was down 25-30% across the board for 2016 model stuff. There’s a lot of factors that go into a down year, but a big part of it is pricing. Just how many $4K+ bikes does a manufacturer think a person can buy in a decade? And then to have bikes drop 20-30% the following year without ever having been ridden really drives home the fact that they are overpriced to begin with.. I can appreciate technological advancement, but I think the industry needs to bring prices down a bit, or at least the ones that want to keep selling bikes will. Spoiler alert: The most popular sale at any shop for the next 10 months is going to be that trail hardtail around $1000-1500. Kona Honzo, Salsa Timberjack, Trek whatever.. wait and see.

    • Raw materials and labour costs don’t really change across industries, that’s why the prices are comparable. Carbon for the frame and all the other little bits needed to create a complete functioning bicycle don’t become cheaper, just because it’s a bicycle. You COULD spend $5500 on so many things that would seem ridiculous, that the comparison becomes irrelevant…

  3. The person wielding the FEA software is just as important as the software itself. So unless they hired the guys that do layup optimization for F1 cars, calling it the same is just marketing.

  4. I have watched the head tube shear off of several carbon Morpheus downhill bikes in the past. Just watch Rampage from the past few years, Mitch Chuby hasn’t made it down the hill on a Morpheus yet. Hopefully they didn’t save too much money by short cutting the design/testing phase.

    • These bikes you speak of where all Proto types. Since then we have made BIG changes. There were many other bikes at rampage that had FAILED and they were in production.
      (Crickets)

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