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First Ride: 2023 Orbea Oiz consolidates 10kg 120mm XC Race MTB

2023 orbea oiz first ride review technical overview geometry pricing specifications
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The 2023 Orbea Oiz XC Bike may look like a mere refinement of its predecessor, but a closer look reveals a more thorough rework. It still looks like the cross-country racing weapon it is, but the latest evolution comes with some key geometry alterations on a platform that is dedicated to 120mm of rear wheel travel. Aluminum, OMR Carbon and OMX Carbon options deliver a wide price range from € 2,799, right up to €9,999. 

The head angle drops 1 degree to 67° and the bike stretches out accordingly with a 450mm reach in size medium. Despite the boost in travel numbers, the Orbea Oiz still manages to weigh in under 10kg, all while improving stiffness to promote climbing efficiency so you can stay on the gas for longer.

2023 orbea oiz frame details bike check

We were invited to the Basque Country to enjoy two days of flat-out lung-busting riding (ahem, I mean gorgeous, flowing, Spanish singletrack) to see what the 2023 Orbea Oiz is all about. Below, you will find our First Ride Review, as well as a comprehensive overview of the bike’s new frame details, geometry, actual weights, and of course pricing on all eleven new models announced today.

testing 2023 orbea oiz xc race bike basque mtb

All images are credited to Ross Bell

2023 Orbea Oiz

2023 orbea oiz xc mtb 120mm fork 120mm rear wheel travel

Those familiar with the Oiz will recall that a 120mm travel option has been available since 2021; though the previous frame was designed principally around 100mm rear wheel travel, the option remained to run 120mm travel with a longer stroke shock, and a longer travel fork. Indeed, a number of Orbea’s XC athletes preferred having more travel in the rear, including Isla Short who spent a season on the Factory team. 

Listening to feedback from the Orbea KMC Factory Team athletes, Orbea has redesigned the Oiz specifically around 120mm while going to great lengths to limit the weight penatly associated with it. Incredibly, the frame weight hasn’t changed at all; a medium frame made from Orbea’s top-end OMX Carbon weighs 1739.3 g, with the shock. That is the painted weight, but it does not include a rear axle, seat post clamp, headset or bottle bosses, of which there are four because this frame can accomodate two water bottles within the front triangle (hooray).

ander corale weighs 2023 orbea oiz frameset omx carbon
XC Product Manager, Ander Corral, weighs the 2023 Orbea Oiz frame (and shock) in a size medium during his presentation of the new bike

And weight for the complete bike? Well, Product Manager Ander Corall’s bike weighed in at 9.98 kg with pedals, water bottle and computer mount. His is the Orbea Oiz M-LTD with the new Oquo MP30 LTD Carbon Wheelset, which itself weighs just 1,350g with rim tape.

2023 orbea oiz m-ltd size medium actual weight

Here’s the need to know information:

  • Bike: 2023 Orbea Oiz 
  • Intention: XC, Marathon and Light Trail
  • Fork Travel: 120mm
  • Rear Wheel Travel: 120mm
  • Head Angle: 67°
  • Reach: 450mm (Medium)
  • Chainstay Length: 432mm
  • Actual Weight: 9.98 kg (ML-LTD in Medium)
  • Frame Material: OMX Carbon, OMR Carbon or Aluminum
  • Pricing of top-end model: € 9,999 / $10,499 / £10,499 (M-LTD)

2023 Orbea Oiz Geometry

2023 orbea oiz geometry angles printed on downtube

Cross-country mountain biking has not been immune to the long, low, slack geometry treatment that has rolled out almost ubiquitously across off-road categories. The 2023 Orbea Oiz isn’t immune either. While the brand has steered clear of venturing too far into downcountry territory, it has slackened its out-and-out XC bike by a not-insignificant 2°. Now, a 120mm travel fork sits at 67°, paired with an effective seat tube angle of 76.5°.

2023 orbea oiz geometry overview

Reach has grown across the S-XL frame sizes, coming in at 450mm in a size medium; that’s 15mm longer than the previous iteration in its XC configuration (100mm travel), and a whopping 25mm longer than the previous bike in its TR configuration (120mm travel). The chainstay length grows slightly to 432mm, consistent across the frame sizes, and the bottom bracket drops to a height of 333mm.

The Oiz’s stack height is kept to a minimum, coming in at 596mm in a size medium thanks to its 90mm head tube. Minus 10° stems across all sizes and models help keep the rider in that low, head-down racing position with plenty of weight over the front wheel.

2023 orbea oiz geometry chart all sizes

Eight of the eleven new models announced today are carbon, while the other three rock hydroformed aluminum frames. While their geometries are almost identical, of note is the longer chainstay length of the alloy models; all sizes are 4mm longer in wheelbase due to a 436mm chainstay length.

Oiz Frame Details

2023 orbea oiz omx carbon frame details

Orbea is releasing the 2023 Oiz XC Bike with three different frame types. While they share the same geometry (with the exception of the alloy’s chainstay length), they differ in their materials. The top-end frameset is Orbea’s OMX Carbon featuring Fiberlink technology. In a size medium, with its Fox Float DPS i-Line shock, it weighs 1739.3 g (actual). 

The OMR Carbon frameset with its slightly heavier carbon layup weighs a claimed 1,950 g, while the hydroformed aluminum frame weighs a claimed 2.7 kg. 

2023 orbea oiz old versus new link
Old (right) and new (left) links for the Orbea Oiz

Key updates to the Oiz frame are seen at the link that drives the shock, and in the shape and surface area of the seat stays. The link is revised as it is now driving a longer stroke length shock to deliver 120mm of rear wheel travel, but it is also refined it is shape to improve stiffness without conceding a weight penatly.

2023 orbea oiz seat stay shape surface area increased old versus new 12% stiffer
Old (right) versus new (left) seat stay of the Orbea Oiz

This and the new shape and increased surface area of the Oiz’s seat stays has resulted in a not-insignificant 12% increase in rear-end stiffness. The new design reinforces Orbea’s idea of a “power spine”, wherein translation of the rider’s inputs into forward propulsion are maximized.

2023 orbea oiz i-lone shock fox dps

Sticking with a linkage-driven single-pivot suspension platform with flexing seatstays, Orbea is again leaning on the 3-position Squid Lock remote and i-Line routing to give riders on-the-fly control over how the bike manages its 120mm travel. It is designed to work with Fox push-to-unlock suspension, i.e., forks and shocks that are locked out in their default setting. In the case of the Orbea Oiz, that is the Fox 34 Step-Cast fork with FIT 4 Damper, and the Fox Float DPS i-Line Shock.

2023 orbea oiz sic headset system internal cable routing integrated
The Squid Lock houses the dropper post remote, as well as a remote for switching the suspension between locked-out, trail and open modes

There are two levers (well, three if you count the dropper); the lower one determines the fork and shock setting, while the upper one serves to simply revert all settings back to the firmest setting, with the fork and shock effectively locked out. On the first push of the lower lever, the Squid Lock remote moves the shock from locked-out to trail mode, while opening the compression damping of the fork from locked. Then, on the second push of the lower lever, the Squid Lock remote puts the shock in open mode, while the fork remains in open mode.

2023 orbea oiz i-line cable routing rear shock lock-out
Orbea had a cutaway frame on display at their HQ in Mallabia to give us a closer look at the i-Line cable routing

2023 orbea oiz sic headset system internal cable routing integrated

Though we can’t say we were overjoyed to see the cables routed internally through the headset, we have to admit it does make what-would-be a very cluttered cockpit a whole lot neater and, it does seem to make most sense on a slick-looking cross-country race bike. Also, its design could certainly be a lot worse. The headset spacers are of a two-piece design; they come apart, so don’t need to be slid on or off the steerer when adjusting stack height. That means you don’t need to take the whole thing apart, cutting cables and hoses and re-bleeding brakes for some simple ride-height fettling, or if you want to swap out the stem for something with a more aggressive negative offset.

2023 orbea oix sic system headset cable integration

The cables enter the headset via the uppermost headset spacer where they are routed into the downtube or top tube via custom-made insert.

2023 orbea oiz blocklock headset 164 degree rotation

The custom-made Acros headset, named the SIC System, also incorporates a steering limiter called Block Lock – a feature you may recall from the Alma hardtail. It limits rotation of the bar to a maximum of 164°. If you’re unsure what that means in real terms, know that you’re probably heading out the front door if you ever find yourself turning the bar to that angle on the trail (discount if your name is Danny MacAskill). The purpose of the Block Lock is to prevent damage to the frame’s top tube that could occur if the controls were allowed to smash into it during a crash.

First Ride: 2023 Orbea Oiz 

2023 orbea oiz first ride review steep technical climbing

Orbea flew us into Bilbao to test out the 2023 Oiz. Doug, of Basque MTB (a former Bikerumor contributor) led us out of the Arinzano Winery on two 40 km rides through some exquisite Corsican pine forests. Terrain varied from fast-flowing singletrack, to flat-out sections of smooth gravel, to chunky flat-out wide-open descents, as well as steep and narrow ones that required careful consideration. There was a healthy dose of technical climbing on offer, too.

2023 orbea oiz first ride review technical overview geometry pricing specifications

To tackle the lot, I was handed the 2023 Orbea Oiz M-Team. Highlight components include the Fox 34 Step Cast Fork with FIT4 Damper, Fox DPS i-Line Shock (with Squid Lock Remote), a Shimano XTR Group, OC Mountain Performance Carbon Bar, and the Oquo MP30 Team Carbon Wheelset, fitted with Maxxis Rekon Race 2.4″ tires. In its stock configuration, with no bottle bosses, it weighed 10.4 kg.

2023 orbea piz size small fit

The S-XL frame size range accommodates riders from 155cm to 198cm tall. At 163cm, I opted for the small frame with a 425mm reach and a 60mm stem. It gets 170mm cranks and a 760mm bar, and its 380mm seat tube has a 100mm dropper post installed. The fit was great. If it were mine, though, I’d have left the steerer a little longer and increased the ride height with some spacers underneath the stem, and also cut the bar down to 740mm. I like a spot of XC riding but i’m not a racer; I prefer a more upright riding position for more comfort on longer days in the saddle. 

Diego Grasa from Fox was on hand to make some suspension setup suggestions. Sag on the rear shock was set to 26%, with sag on the fork set to 23% with 1 volume spacer. I weigh 60kg in riding kit; it was Diego’s suggestion to run the suspension a little on the softer side to ensure I could squeeze as much travel out of the air springs as possible.

Hurtling out of the winery on a fast gravel road, the photographers and guides who were riding eMTBs had a job to keep pace with our group. In its locked-out position, the bike does indeed ride like a hardtail, and generating and maintaining speed was effortless. Granted, the fast-rolling Maxxis Rekon Race tires may have had something to do with that.

2023 orbea oiz technical climbing

As we were funneled into smooth singletrack and the gradient picked up, I was happy enough to leave the suspension locked-out. As it got steeper and more technical, however, the bike definitely benefited from a less firm setup. The Squid Lock remote offered that at the push of a lever, opening up compression damping on the rear shock to trail mode for improved traction, and unlocking the fork. The major benefit here was the lower ride height that the softer fork permitted, making it much easier to keep the lightweight front end from lifting under power.

Though I might’ve preferred a higher stack height for improved comfort on longer rides, it would’ve done me no favors in technical climbing scenarios. As ever, there is a balance to be struck. The aluminum frame with its slightly longer chainstays would likely better resist front wheel lift on steep and technical climbs.

All that said, the Oiz does pedal very efficiently. It makes you want to push harder and harder, even when you have almost nothing left in the tank. In trail mode, the bike is able to resist squat under power, gratefully translating efforts into meters gained.  

It’s fair to say that a portion of the descending easily fell into the “light trail” category, and use of a much longer travel bike could’ve easily been justified. That said, I was more than happy to charge down most sections throwing little caution to the wind. The 67° head angle is certainly slack for an XC bike, but it was more than welcome on some of the steeper, rockier descents, as I’m sure it would be on the increasingly gnarlier World Cup Cross-Country courses we’re seeing year-on-year.

2023 orbea oiz review descending rocky singletrack
A 100mm travel dropper post offers plenty of clearance for the bike’s intentions

Under braking, the rear-end does have a tendency to skip as the suspension firms up. That said, it posed no real drama on the trail. Its suppleness is very impressive when off the brakes; here, it does have a certain calmness to it, and bestows plenty of confidence to push on at high speeds through flowing sections of trail. It’s not super quiet, though. The chain can be heard slapping off the chainstay protector that seems to offer little in the way of damping. There is no frame protection on the drive-side seat stay, though I saw no evidence of the chain having hit it during riding.

2023 orbea oiz chainstay protector

The (effective) 485mm reach (425mm + 60mm stem) made for a nice, central feeling while descending, giving me confidence to get off the brakes and let the suspension do its thing. It came alive on the smoother, flow sections and was a pure joy to ride. For me, the bike’s descending capabilities were held back not by the frame’s geometry or travel numbers, but by the power of the Shimano XTR 2-piston brakes (I am more accustomed to the late braking permitted by 4-piston brakes).

The Rekon Race tires were appropriate for the dry and dusty singletrack of the Basque Country, though i’d recommend folk riding and racing in wetter parts of the world to take advantage of the option to upgrade to the Maxxis Dissector/Rekon pairing offered by Orbea.

Over the course of or two day’s riding I did alter the bike’s setup slightly. Having descended some fast and rough tracks, I was yet to make full use of the fork’s 120mm travel. I removed its single volume spacer in a bid to access the final 20mm of travel, but ended up having to drop the pressure by 4 PSI. Even then I was missing out on usable travel, and likely would have benefited from dropping the pressure even further.

2023 orbea oiz pre-hop into singletrack descent

On the rear, I was able to push through almost all of shock’s stroke length to access the bike’s 120mm of rear wheel travel. Judging by the o-ring I had approached bottom-out, but having not felt any metal-on-metal collisions, I reckon I never quite made it.

2023 orbea oiz linkage driven single pivot link carbon

Nearing the end of the second day’s riding, I (unwittingly) got to test out the Oiz’s Block Lock for real. I dropped into a singletrack descent having unknowingly flicked the Squid Lock remote back into Lock-Out mode. This realization came mere moments before washing the front wheel on a loose flat turn, resulting in my hitting the deck fairly hard. I was fine, and so was the bike; the bar had rotated during the crash, but it had maxed out at the 164° permitted by the Block Lock.

Actual Weight of 2023 Orbea Oiz M-Team in Size Small

10.4 kg!

2023 orbea oiz m-team size small actual weight 10.4 kg

Pricing & Availability

2023 orbea oiz m-ltd 120mm travel xc race bike
The Orbea Oiz M-LTD retail at € 9,999; highlights include the OMX Carbon frame, Oquo MP30 LTD Carbon Wheels, SRAM XX1 Eagle AXS Drivetrain, Fox Transfer SL Dropper Post and Factory Level Fox Suspension components.


2023 orbea oiz m-team
The Orbea Oiz M-Team retails at € 7,999; highlights include the OMX Carbon frame, Oquo MP30 Team Carbon Wheelset and a Shimano XTR Groupset, Fox Transfer SL Dropper Post and Factory Level Fox Suspension components.


2023 orbea oiz m-pro
The Orbea Oiz M-Pro retails at € 6,299; highlights include the OMX Carbon frame, Oquo MP30 Team Carbon Wheels, a Shimano XT/XTR Groupset, Factory Level Fox Suspension components and an OC Mountain Control Dropper Post. There is also an M-PRO AXS model retailing at € 6,999 that runs a SRAM GX Eagle AXS Drivetrain.


2023 orbea oiz m10
The Orbea Oiz M10 retails at € 5,699; highlights include an OMR Carbon frame, Factory Level Fox Suspension components, a Shimano XT Groupset, Oquo MP30 Team Carbon Wheelset and an OC Mountain Control dropper post.


2023 orbea oiz m11-axs
The Orbea Oiz M11-AXS retails at € 5,499; highlights include the OMR Carbon frame, Fox Performance Level Fox Suspension components, a SRAM GX Eagle AXS Drivetrain, Oquo MP28 PRO Alloy Wheelset and an OC Mountain Control Dropper Post.


2023 orbea oiz m20
The Orbea Oiz M20 retails at €4,799; highlights include the OMR Carbon frame, Oquo MP28 PRO Alloy Wheelset, Fox Performance Level Fox Suspension components, a SRAM GX Eagle Drivetrain, Shimano M6100 brakes and an OC Mountain Control Dropper Post.


2023 orbea oix m30
The Orbea Oiz M30 retails at € 3,999; highlights include the OMR Carbon frame, Fox DPS Performance Level Suspension, an aluminum wheelset, a Shimano XT/SLX Drivetrain and a OC Mountain Performance dropper post.


2023 orbea oiz h10
The Orbea Oiz H10 retails at € 3,699; highlights include a hydroformed aluminum frame, Fox Performance Level Suspension, a Shimano XT Drivetrain, a Race Face AR30c Wheelset, and an OC Mountain Control Dropper Seat Post.


2023 orbea oiz h20
The Orbea Oiz H20 retails at € 3,299; highlights include a hydroformed aluminum frame, Fox DPS Performance Shock, Fox 32 Float Rythm fork, SRAM GX/NX Drivetrain and an OC Mountain Performance Dropper.


2023 orbea oiz h30
The Orbea Oiz H30 retails at € 2,799; highlights include a hydroformed aluminum frame, a Fox Performance Level shock and Fox 32 Float Rythm fork, a Shimano Deore Drivetrain, an aluminum wheelset and a fixed seat post.

Exciting for any prospective Orbea customer is the customization to be had under the MyO program. At no extra cost, one can tailor the colorway of their new Oiz, selecting a primary and secondary color for the frame, and a color for the Orbea decals. You can even add some text on the drive-side seat stay, sending a little message to whoever you’ve just passed on the trail. Orbea don’t censor it either, so be as creative as you like.

The new Oiz models will be on sale from the end of the year, but riders can already reserve their new bike using Orbea’s Rider Connect service now. Full details on pricing and spec lists, head to the Orbea website.

2023 Orbea Oiz Model Euro (€) USD ($) GBP (£)
M-LTD 9,999 10,499 10,499
M-Team 7,999 8,599 8,399
M-PRO AXS 6,999 7,399 7,299
M-PRO 6,299 6,799 6,599
M-10 5,699 5,999 5,999
M11-AXS 5,499 5,699 5,799
M20 4,799 4,999 4,999
M30 3,999 4,399 4,399
Hydroformed Aluminum      
H10 3,699 3,999 3,999
H20 3,299 3,599 3,499
H30 2,799 3,299 2,999


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1 year ago

Need to correct. 120mm version to 120mm version the new Oiz is only 1 degree more slack in the Headangle. Not 2 as mentioned in the article. The seat angle gets steeper like a trail bike too.

1 year ago

2 bottles even on the small frames? I know they only had 2 bottles on mediums and up in the last generation.

1 year ago
Reply to  Rincoln

Yep, 2 bottles in S size for the new model

1 year ago

It looks like you still can’t fit a non-remote fox rear shock on the frame (some of us hate lock outs). How about bottom bracket type? Please say BSA!

1 year ago
Reply to  Pete

Yes it’s a BSA

Deputy Dawg
Deputy Dawg
1 year ago

Looks like a DC bike that is decidedly on the XC end of things, which is great.

Push to unlock?! Kind of the Shimano Rapid Rise of the suspension world.

Better off going non-remote, once you get below the LTD model, IMO.

1 year ago
Reply to  Deputy Dawg

Push to Unlock. I agree this is such a weird choice. My son races the 2021 Oiz Pro. I am always worried that the cable or remote will break and then he will be stuck in the lock out position. Other than the push to unlock this is a great bike. We are very tempted to get the new 2023.

1 year ago
Reply to  Ben

If he races he will love the push to unlock. I have had push to lock and push to unlock. And pushing to lock has way more friction since you have shock and fork forces to compete with the lockout. And it’s way faster when you have milliseconds to push it on a dead sprint for the finish. Trust me it’s way better.

1 year ago
Reply to  Deputy Dawg

I have a ’22 M10, with 1,100 miles, and Push to Unlock hasn’t been an issue. The cable routing is smooth so, I don’t suspect there to be an issue of cable breakage.

1 year ago
Reply to  WannaBeSTi

How do you like the ‘22 M10? I’m considering it, vs waiting on the 23. The cable routing and geometry being the main changes, correct?

5 months ago

Hello, at 5’7 and seat height 70cm about, do you think a small still would fit well? Thanks!

2 months ago

Being on a small frame, how did the large wheel in the back feel? I am 5’2″ with a 28.5″ inseam and quite an advanced rider. I have demoed so many full 29ers and have not found a single one that I like and would want to buy. It’s not even matter of the lack of butt-to-tire clearance on the spicy lines, but I often scrub my butt on the rear wheel when sitting on the seat to lower it before a descent. I don’t want to use a seat post with shorter travel to mitigate this, as then it sticks out of the bike more and I lose that clearance. I’ve also found that having two large wheels on a small frame feels like it perches the bike frame (and the rider) up so high over the wheels, that it just doesn’t feel as stable as with a smaller wheel in the back. I’m really wanting to add a shorter travel bike to my stable but refuse to buy a full 29er. Any ideas?

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