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Norco Fluid FS Carbon Trail Bike Goes 600g Lighter than Alloy Counterpart

2023 norco fluid fs carbon 130mm trail bike
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Norco has introduced a lighter, carbon version of its 130mm all-rounder trail bike; the Norco Fluid FS Carbon. The Canadian brand’s aim was to maintain the ride feel of the acclaimed Fluid FS Alloy bike, with the same proven geometry and suspension kinematic, but in a lighter package for the more weight-conscious trail rider.

The Fluid FS Carbon holds onto a 6061 aluminum rear-end with the now-obligatory UDH hanger-less interface for Transmission compatibility, but the use of a carbon front triangle saves around 600 grams over the complete aluminum frame, a 17% weight reduction. Notable is the absence of the XXL frame size; the Fluid FS Carbon is only available in sizes S-XL.

Here, we have all the details on this new do-it-all trail bike, with full spec lists for the frameset and three complete builds launching today.

2023 norco fluid fs carbon mtb 130mm travel 140mm fork

2023 Norco Fluid FS Carbon

  • Intention: Trail Riding
  • Fork Travel: 140mm
  • Rear Wheel Travel: 130mm
  • Frame Construction: Carbon Front Triangle, 6061 Aluminum Chainstays and Seat Stays
  • Fluid FS Carbon Frame Weight: 2800g for a size Large without rear shock (claimed)
  • Wheel Size: 29″ Only
  • Size Availability: S-XL
  • Starting Price: $4,099 USD // $5,199 CAD (C3 Model)

Poring over geometry charts, the Norco Fluid FS Carbon is entirely equivalent to the Norco Fluid FS Alloy at every single parameter measured. Keeping with their Ride Aligned Design Philosophy, the Fluid FS Carbon sees frame size-specific rear-center lengths and effective seat tube angles, but Norco take this tailored approach one step further with the new carbon front triangle.

2023 norco fluid fs carbon mtb railing corner action shot
Norco say the Fluid FS Carbon XL will fit riders up to 6ft 4″; taller riders should turn to the Fluid FS Alloy for an XXL option.

The brand is also tuning the carbon layup, making it frame size-specific, too. We are told, “Through precise layup schedules and a refined construction process, the carbon frames provide strength and stiffness tuned specifically for every rider on every frame size”.

Key geometry numbers include a 65° head angle paired with a 140mm travel, 44mm offset fork, a 30mm bottom bracket drop, and a reach of 480mm in a size large. Rear-center lengths range from 425mm in Small, increasing in 5mm increments to 440mm in XL. Similarly, the effective seat tube angle ranges from 76° in Small, increasing to 77° on the XL.

Note very short seat tubes that give a low standover height, and allow for long travel dropper posts

This more proportional approach means tall riders don’t end up with their weight severely biased to the rear wheel, something that could prove uncomfortable on long climbs, or even prohibitive on steeper, more technical climbs. It’s not rocket science, but it does increase the cost of production for manufacturers, likely a major factor as to why we don’t see every brand implement it.

Those familiar with the Norco line-up may wonder why the brand offers two distinct bikes with such closely-matched travel and geometry figures. Indeed, the Norco Optic sees has many similarities with the Fluid FS Carbon; despite this, their intentions are quite different.

On this, Norco says, “The Optic’s sharp focus has always been confident high-speed descending capability with geometry, suspension curves, anti-squat and component spec focused on absolute clarity at speed over challenging terrain. The Fluid FS Carbon, however, focuses on more complete, well-rounded performance trail character with suspension and pedaling traits that ensure confidence and efficiency over a wide variety of terrain”.

2023 norco fluid fs carbon custom build of sponsored rider

With that said, the three Norco Fluid FS Carbon builds detailed below shouldn’t leave anyone wanting too badly when it comes to descending, with long-travel droppers, custom-tuned piggyback-equipped shocks and 4-piston brakes seen throughout the line-up.

Key Frame Details:

  • SRAM UDH
  • 2.6″ Maximum tire clearance
  • 210mm x 50mm shock
  • Internal cable routing though front triangle
  • External cable routing along stays
  • 34.9mm internal seat tube diameter
  • All frame sizes fit 750ml bottle
  • Accessory mount
  • Downtube and chainstay protection
  • 73mm Threaded BSA Bottom Bracket
  • 3-Bolt ISCG for bash guard fitment

Pricing & Availability

The Norco Fluid Carbon FS frameset featuring the RockShox Super Deluxe Ultimate air shock is only available in Canada, with a retail price of $3,299 CAD. The following build options are available in the US and Canada, with no info yet provided regarding availability in other markets.

Norco Fluid FS C1 – $5,999 USD // $7,999 CAD

  • RockShox Super Deluxe Ultimate air shock
  • RockShox Pike Ultimate fork, 140mm
  • SRAM Eagle GX Transmission
  • Crankbrothers Synthesis Enduro Alloy Wheelset
  • 2.4″ Vittoria Mazza and 2.35″ Martello Tires, Trail Casing
  • SRAM G2 RSC Brakes with 200mm Rotor (F) and 180mm Rotor (R)
  • SDG Tellis VS Dropper Seat Post
  • 20mm rise OneUp carbon bar

Norco Fluid FS C2 – $4,999 USD // $6,199 CAD

  • RockShox Super Deluxe Select+ air shock
  • RockShox Pike Select+ fork, 140mm
  • SRAM GX Eagle 12 Speed Drivetrain
  • WTB ST Light Rims
  • 2.4″ Vittoria Mazza and 2.5″ Martello Tires, Trail Casing
  • SRAM G2 R Brakes with 200mm Rotor (F) and 180mm Rotor (R)
  • SDG Tellis Dropper Seat Post
  • 25mm rise alloy bar

Norco Fluid FS C3 – $4,099 USD // $5,199 CAD

  • RockShox Super Deluxe Select+ air shock
  • RockShox Pike Select fork, 140mm
  • SRAM Eagle SX/NX 12 Speed Drivetrain w/10-50T cassette
  • WTB ST Rims
  • 2.4″ Vittoria Mazza and 2.35″ Martello Tires, Trail Casing
  • SRAM DB8 Brakes with 200mm Rotor (F) and 180mm Rotor (R)
  • Tranz-X Dropper Seat Post
  • 25mm rise alloy bar

norco.com

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tertius_decimus
tertius_decimus
10 months ago

4 grand for Norco… what a world we’re living in…

Moose
Moose
10 months ago

A world of brand buying

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