Since its release in 2013, the modern RockShox Pike has been asked to do many things. For some, it became an overpowered XC fork. Others used it as an everyman’s trail fork or tasked it with enduro race duty. Its plush feel and adjustability meant it wasn’t pigeonholed to any one task. Now, the MY2018 RockShox Pike gets a significant update with a Charger 2 damper and DebonAir spring delivering a renewed focus on the trail and enduro segments. And an all-new everything else, too…
While the current version of the Lyrik grew out of the Pike in 2015 – with the forks sharing tech and design, and differing mostly by travel – these two forks become more refined and purpose-built, each for their own intended use. The Pike is now dedicated to the trail, all mountain & enduro side of things, while the new Lyrik (more on that at bottom) starts at 160mm and up for bigger days and hardcore enduro riding.
The Charger 2 damper builds on the acclaimed sealed bladder cartridge of the original, but provides a wider range of low speed compression adjustments in the Open mode. It also updates the Pedal mode for more support on rolling, flowing trail, and the Firm setting gets a slight retune that makes it firmer with a more controlled blowoff on big hits. And it can now work with the OneLoc for pairing remote lockout with a RockShox Deluxe rear shock.
The inclusion of a DebonAir air spring means higher volume, particularly for the negative air chamber. This translates to a more plush feeling at the beginning of the stroke since less effort is required to start the fork moving. On the flip side is their Rapid Recovery rebound system, which helps keep the fork sitting higher in its travel and bounce back from successive hits more quickly. Bottomless Tokens let you adjust air volume for further tuning. And if you opt for the Dual Air model, you’ll give up the DebonAir, but gain 30mm of on-the-fly travel adjustment.
The chassis is now stiffer and is purpose built for Boost 110mm axle spacing only. That let RockShox optimize the design around a single axle option, so they removed material where it wasn’t needed while beefing up other sections. In particular, the arch shed a few grams, the dropouts angle sharply upward, and the brake mount is designed around 180mm rotors so no adapters are needed. Inside, the new Charger 2 damper is also lighter. All together, the new Pike comes in about 150g lighter than before while being bigger and stronger.
Other exterior features include Torque Cap compatibility (their oversized axle interface design that increases torsional stiffness), printed air pressure guides (which are further optimized for e-mountain bikes, too) and sag gradients on the stanchions.
The new fork will be offered in two models and two wheel sizes – 27.5 and 29er – both fitting 2.8″ tires. The 29er version also fits 27.5×3.0 tires if you wanna go plus plus. The RC/RC Remote model will only come as OEM equipment on complete bikes, so it’s the RCT3 and RCT Remote models you wanna look at for upgrades. Both have external rebound adjustments with either three position (Open/Pedal/Firm) external adjustments on the RCT3 or two position (Open/Firm) with the OneLoc remote. Both also offer a range of low speed compression adjustments in the Open mode.
OK, so two things remain the same. Stanchions are still 35mm, and travel still tops out at 160mm for the new Pike. Travel ranges from 120-160mm for the 27.5″ Pike, and 120-140mm for the 29er size. They’ll start shipping this month, April 2017 with prices from $875-1000 / €970-1100 / £825-940.
Alongside the all-new Pike comes an all-new Revelation, plus updated RS-1, Lyrik, and Yari forks. Put it all together with the new Judy and updated Reba, Recon, and SID and you have a RockShox fork line that’s almost entirely new for 2017/18.