Otso Cycles claim to be inspired by the Northwoods of Minnesota. Which is probably why Otso is a big supporter of the new Northwoods Route—a 600 mile bikepacking loop around Western Lake Superior. Technically, this route could be tackled with many of Otso’s current rigs including the Warakin Ti, Waheela C, or the Voytek with the right wheel and tire package. But we suspected that Otso might have something bikepacking specific in the works, and here’s the proof: the new Otso Fenrir.
Otso Fenrir a Stainless Wonder for bikepacking adventure
Otso Cycles are already incredibly versatile. It’s one of the main traits that I’ve loved in every Otso I’ve ridden. However, the Fenrir claims to be their most versatile bike yet. Which is good news since bikepacking covers incredibly diverse terrain, riders, and setups.
Here, Otso has started with a custom-butted austenitic stainless steel frame that should not only provide a smooth ride, but the raw metal finish should stand up well to constant abuse from bag straps and more.
How a hallmark of Otso frames, the Fenrir includes their Tuning Chip dropout system which allows for tweaks to the bike’s geometry. The three position dropout allows you to change the wheel base by 20mm, the bottom bracket height up to 4mm, and the head tube angle by up to 0.2°.
Given that the frame has clearance for 29 x 2.6″ or 27.5 x 2.8″ tires, you can fine tune the handling based on your preferred tire set up and terrain that will be encountered. Note that the tire clearance depends on the dropout position—at the 420mm chainstay position it will only clear a 29 x 2.3″ tire, but at the 430 and 440mm positions it will clear the full 29 x 2.6″ tire.
Drop Bar or Flat Bar? Yes!
To compensate for the difference in geometry between the bar positions, Otso recommends a 50mm stem for dropbar setups and an 80mm stem for MTB bars. This leads to a ride quality “like a gravel bike with extra helpings of capability and confidence [with drop bars]. With MTB bars, the Fenrir is lively, fast, and rides like a capable 90’s XC bike.”
Offered in five sizes, the Fenrir is based around a 68° head tube angle and a rigid fork with a 495mm axle to crown measurement. When equipped with the stock ENVE Mountain fork, the bike sees 88mm of trail with a 51mm offset. Seat tube angle is a fairly steep 75°, with reach numbers from 387-441mm.
For those that prefer some suspension, the frame will accept a fork up to 100mm of travel.
Fenrir frame Tech Details
Frame details include an opening in the seat tube for an internally routed dropper post, 73mm threaded bottom bracket, clearance for 40t round or 38t oval chainrings thanks to the chainstay plate, a standard 31.6mm seat post, ZS44/EC44 headset, and Boost spacing front and rear.
Naturally, the Fenrir is built to handle cargo and has plenty of braze-ons, though maybe not as many as you’d expect. You’ll find a four-pack mount on the inside of the downtube, a three-pack mount on the bottom of the downtube, and a standard bottle mount on the seat tube.
There’s also rack and fender mounts out back, and the standard three pack mounts on the ENVE fork legs. Notably absent are top tube mounts for ‘gas tank’ style bags, and any braze-ons on the underside of the top tube to allow for custom-fit direct-mount bags.
Otso Fenrir – Pricing & Availability
Offered in complete builds in both drop bar or flat bar spec, complete bike prices start at $3,900. The ongoing parts shortage looks to have forced some creativity with some of the spec including a TRP G-Spec TR12/SRAM GX/KMC flat bar build, but everything looks like a solid choice for the money. You’ll also be able to pick up a frame and fork for $2,400 if you happen to have enough parts on hand to build your next bikepacking rig!
These are available for purchase now and will ship in November, but don’t delay—like everything this holiday season, they probably won’t last long.