Propain Bikes has renewed its Tyee Enduro MTB for 2023, improving its versatility while also expanding the size range to suit a wider range of riders. Rear wheel travel is maintained at 160mm, delivered via the PRO10 twin-link suspension platform, with some subtle but sensible changes to the kinematic and overall geometry.
Evolution of the Propain Tyee Enduro MTB sees it go longer and slacker than its predecessor, with more tire clearance and reduced seat tube lengths to allow for the fitment of longer travel dropper seat posts. The changes bring the bike bang up to date, and with AL and CF frames to choose from across eight price points – starting at $3,599 for a complete bike – we have to recommend that anyone forking out for a new enduro bike consider the new Tyee – especially the value-packed aluminum options.
Yes, the CF frame has to run cables through its headset, but aside from that, we’re hard pushed to find legitimate criticisms. Here’s a first look.
2023 Propain Tyee: An Overview
The 2023 Tyee is now available in no fewer than six frame sizes; XS, S, M 275, M 29, L & XL. The XS and Small frames are dedicated to 27.5″ wheels, while there are two distinct frame options for those after a Medium; there’s a Medium dedicated to 27.5″ wheels, or a Medium 29 with a larger swingarm that can be configured with a 27.5″ rear wheel for a mixed-wheel setup, or with a 29″ rear wheel to be a complete 29er. The L & XL frames also have that larger swingarm – they too can be run Mullet or 29er.
- Intention: Enduro Racing
- Fork Travel: 160mm or 170mm
- Rear Wheel Travel: 160mm
- Frame Material: CF or AL
- Frame Sizes: XS, S, M 275, M 29, L & XL
- Wheel Size: XS, S & M – 27.5″; M 29, L & XL – Mixed or 29er
- Starting Price: $3,599 USD AL – $4,199 USD CF – Pricing equivalent in EUR and GBP
- Frame Only Option: No
From a geometry and kinematic perspective, the CF and AL frames are almost identical; the CF offers slightly more standover clearance than the AL. The increased rear-end stiffness brought about by added material and the extra length of the new CF frame make it 100g heavier than the 2022 CF Model, now weighing a claimed 2.9 kg in the M 29.
Meanwhile, the 2023 AL frame is actually 300g lighter than its predecessor, now an impressive 3.4 kg (claimed) in M 29. Both frames are said to be 10% stiffer than their respective outgoing models.
New Frame Geometry
The Propain Tyee sees some key geometry changes for 2023. Up front, we have a 0.5° slacker head angle, now sitting somewhere between 63.2° and 64.1°, dependent on frame size, wheel size and flip-chip orientation. Reach has increased by around 5mm across the board, now at 471mm on the Large. Shorter riders will rejoice at the addition of an XS for this model year; available reach measurements now span a range of 393mm to 496mm. Those numbers pertain to the 2023 Tyee with a 160mm travel fork, in its Low flip-chip position.
The XS, S and M 275 frames are dedicated to 27.5″ wheels; switching out the front wheel for a 29″ option is not recommended, not least because there is insufficient frame clearance. The M 29, L & XL all run a longer swingarm for the capacity to run a 29″ rear wheel.
Indeed, the new Tyee is available with a 160mm or a 170mm fork, customizable by the buyer at check out. That, in addition to the geometry-correcting flip-chip at the swingarm-upper link interface, leave us with four geometry charts to pore over.
On the M 29, L & XL frames, the flip-chip is there to correct for the geometry changes brought about by rear wheel size changes. It is feasible to run those frames with a complete 29″ wheelset in the High flip-chip position, but Propain say this doesn’t deliver any benefit to the rider. On the XS & S frames where wheel size changes aren’t possible, Propain recommend the high setting, but the Low position is also viable. In all scenarios, the High flip-chip position reduces rear wheel travel to 157mm with a concomitant increase in progression.
Importantly, seat tube lengths have shrunk a fair bit, meaning more riders will be able to benefit from longer travel dropper seat posts. The new XS frame option gets an appropriate 380mm seat tube length, while the Large frame’s seat tube is 450mm long – 10mm shorter than that of the previous version.
Chainstay length of the Propain Tyee goes shorter for 2023, now at 445mm on those sizes that can accomodate a 29″ rear wheel. On the bikes dedicated to a 27.5″ rear wheel, the chainstay length is much shorter at 430mm.
2023 Tyee Kinematic
The 2023 Propain Tyee still runs that instantly recognizable PRO10 linkage, a twin-link suspension platform wherein the shock is compressed from both ends as the rear wheel is pushed through its 160mm travel. It does, however, see some kinematic changes for 2023; the pink line in the graphs below pertains to the 2023 Tyee, while the blue line pertains to the previous bike.
The new Tyee has a less progressive leverage curve than its predecessor, with a notably lower starting ratio. At no point is the curve regressive, and the end stroke ratio is slightly higher. In the climbing gears, anti-squat is a touch lower at sag but still remains well above 100%. The shock will still have a slight tendency to extend under pedal-induced accelerations, but this should be less noticeable as compared to the 2020 Tyee. Axle path is similar, but does result in a greater loss of rear-center length at bottom-out.
Key Frame Details
It’s no major surprise to see cables running through the headset on the 2023 Tyee; Propain is just another brand in a long line of brands to have partnered with Acros on a custom integrated solution of their own. Here, Propain also worked with Sixpack Components to create a custom cnc-machined stem, the underside of which has a shape complementary to the top composite spacer of the Acros headset. The cables are routed through this top spacer before entering the headset and then the frame. Propain tell us this allows the stem to be switched effortlessly if necessary and the stem height can be adjusted by clip-in spacers without having to remove it at all.
“When Acros approached us with their ICR headset, we were initially, to put it mildly, skeptical. But after the first test ride it was clear to us, that if we properly think it through, this concept is superior to classic cable routing in all aspects” – Propain Bikes.
Inside that headset are stainless steel bearings from Acros. Beyond the headset, cables and hoses are routed internally to their respective positions, with the rear brake hose and gear cable popping out of the downtube near the base of the shock. That routing is not guided, but cables are wrapped in foam tubing to reduce noise from rattling. On the AL frames, cables and hoses are guided externally along the stays, while the CF swingarms have entry ports to continue the internal routing along the stays.
Moving on: the Tyee can take a 180mm or 200mm rear brake rotor. It runs a custom post-mount that is integrated with the frame, tucked inboard of the swingarm. We are told this design delivers improved transfer of braking forces.
The 2023 Tyee gets one set of bottle bosses located inside the front triangle, as well as a secure mounting point for tools and spares on the underside of the top tube. ISCG 05 tabs on the BB shell allow for fitment of a top guide and bash guard for the purposes of chain retention and chainring protection. Soft plastic frame protection is seen on the drive-side swingarm, as well as on the underside of the downtube.
All frame bearings are double-sealed offerings from Acros, too, and all have the added protection of Propain’s Dirt Shield washers as part of the pivot hardware.
Pricing & Availability
The 2023 Propain Tyee is available in a monstrously large number of builds, customizable by the buyer at checkout. However, to keep things straight forward for those who don’t want to be faced with that many decisions, Propain have come up with four builds for both the CF and AL frames. All get a Schwalbe Magic Mary / Big Betty pairing, and a finishing kit from Sixpack components, but differ on almost everything else. For the moment, there is no frame only option.
Note: The AL bikes are sold with a 3-year warranty, while the CF bikes are sold with a 5-year warranty.
2023 Propain Tyee – Price2Ride
Propain’s entry-level model of the 2023 Tyee is referred to as the Price2Ride. It really does look to be excellent bang for your buck, boasting a Formula Selva S Fork and MOD Coil Shock, both of which benefit from Formula’s CTS damper tuning. The Cura 4 Piston Brakes are also from Formula. Other highlights include the Newmen Performance 30 Wheelset, BikeYoke Divine Dropper, and a SRAM GX Eagle 12-Speed Mechanical Drivetrain.
AL: €/$/£ 3,599
CF: €/$/£ 4,199
2023 Propain Tyee – SHRED²
Next up the ladder is the Tyee SHRED² model, rocking a 170mm travel Rockshox ZEB Ultimate and Super Deluxe Ultimate Coil Shock. Other highlights include a SRAM GX Eagle 12-Speed Mechanical Drivetrain, Newmen EG30 Wheelset and SRAM Code R Brakes.
AL: €/$/£ 4,484
CF: €/$/£ 5,084
2023 Propain Tyee – Phantom
The Tyee Phantom boasts a RockShox Lyrik Ultimate RC2 Fork and Super Deluxe Ultimate Air Shock, Newmen Evolution SL A.30 Wheelset, SRAM Code RSC Brakes and AXS X0 Transmission.
AL: €/$/£ 6,109
CF: €/$/£ 6,709
2023 Propain Tyee – Goldrush
Top of the crop is the Tyee Goldrush model. It benefits from a Fox 36 Factory Fork, Float X Factory Shock, Magura MT7 Brakes, a Crankbrothers Synthesis Carbon Wheelset, and the AXS XX Transmission.
AL: €/$/£ 7,644
CF: €/$/£ 8,244