A lot of brands have switched to high-pivot suspension designs lately, adding idler pulleys and more chain to gain improved rearward axle paths. But Greek upstart Aper Bikes is taking it a step further with a sliding linkage that raises higher throughout its travel.
The Aper KOMpace is a 160mm-travel enduro mountain bike with a high pivot design. What makes it unique is that the main pivot sits on a sliding shock mount, which replaces a lower linkage.
How Aper’s Rising Pivot suspension works
Imagine a VPP design, but swap the lower link for a sliding element, and as it slides, it compresses the shock. When you hit a bump, the pivot slides up and back, giving the rear axle path about twice the rearward movement of other designs.
Aper says most high pivot designs have about 25mm rearward path before the arc starts moving straight up, then forward. Their Rising Pivot design, because the pivot point slides upward and backward with the impact, allows up to 45mm of rearward axle “travel”.
The claimed benefit is that the wheel moves backward with the obstacle as it rises over it, so the impact is less abrupt and doesn’t rob your momentum. So, more rearward movement should mean more momentum maintained.
The rising pivot slides on a heavy-duty rail system, and they include grease with it and say it’s easy to maintain lubrication.
All of the suspension’s motion is independent of the pedal position, which they say is another benefit because the rear axle is moving more in sync with the rearward movement of the front axle as the fork compresses. Thus, it keeps things balanced for a more neutral feeling.
Frame details & geometry
The rear triangle is braced by a rocker link on the top tube, ensuring it moves vertically with minimal lateral flex or twisting. Both the front triangle and rear stays are made of CNC’d 7075 aluminum shells welded together into a hollow monocoque structure.
A flip-chip lets you switch between 29er and 27.5″ rear wheels, but it’s designed around a 29er front wheel with 160-170mm forks.
Frames are available for pre-order now for €3,969 with a €500 discount if you book it before December 31, 2023.