There is no denying that plus sized tires were a big thing at Sea Otter this year. Whether you look at them as an addition to the evolution of mountain bikes or a branch in a new direction that has been growing for a few years now, there were a number of new bikes to check out.
Even though multiple bike manufacturers are exploring plus sized options, how each company is translating that into a finished product turns out to be quite different. While some companies like Trek are sticking with 29+ as their only options, other brands like Airborne are skipping over 29+ and going straight to 27+. As Airborne puts it, the new Griffin was meant to be an aggressive XC hard tail with a bit of BMX influence to create a super fun and capable bike built around the mid-fat wheels and tires…
As one of the first bikes to take advantage of the new Manitou Magnum Plus suspension fork, the Griffin runs 27.5×3.25″ tires with the fork set at 120mm of travel.
Taking advantage of the Boost 12×148 rear spacing and 15×110 front spacing, we’re told that the Griffin is built with enough tire clearance to run 27×3.5” tires whereas most of the other 27+ bikes currently top out around 27.5×3. To accommodate tires of that size the frame includes a 69 degree head angle and 450mm chainstays with massive clearance.
Positioned to be one of the first consumer direct bikes in the 27+ category, the Griffin will be sold direct along with Airborne’s other models. Speced with a SRAM GX1 1×11 drivetrain, Sun Ringle MuleFut 50SL wheels, and the Manitou Magnum Comp suspension fork, and Vee Tire Co. Trax Fatty tires, the Griffin will sell for $1999 complete and will be available in June. Airborne also mentioned that the Enduro bike that we’ve seen in prototype form will be available around Interbike.