Spanish bike maker MMR’s factory racing team did pretty well in the first World Cup of the season with David Valero riding their current full-suspension Kenta 29 to a second place. But interestingly enough the Kenta didn’t make it into MMR’s 2017 catalog, and now we know why. Some other members of the team were racing a camouflaged carbon frame that is slated to replace the Kenta. The new bike gets a completely new design, dropping the Horst link 4-bar for something simpler and lighter. Take a closer look with us at the prototype’s details…
The new bike drops the additional pivot points of the current Kenta 29 for a high, single-pivot design driving a shock mounted under the toptube. That leaves a one-piece rear end that relies on a bit of carbon seatstay flex to push the top-tube mounted linkage.
The simplified and slightly asymmetric one-piece rear end should drop significant weight over the existing Horst-link design. The bike also is likely to decrease travel closer to a more XC standard 100mm. The marathon-focused current Kenta 29 offers 120mm of rear wheel travel, although curiously the bike Valero rode to 2nd place had a special upper link labeled for 130mm.
The front triangle gets lightened up as well with more boxy tubing shapes from the tapered headtube back, and a new shock mount that is more integrated into the toptube rather than just tacked on. It also gets rid of the seattube strut in favor of a simpler, reinforced seat cluster. The new frame also gets full internal cable routing, including for the remote on the masked shorter bodied RockShox Deluxe RL. Whether or not this is a team-only feature, but the upper pivot hardware is all titanium here. Besides fitting a bottle into the front triangle with a side-access cage, MMR also has put a second bottle cage mount under the downtube.
Mounted onto the main pivot, we can see an E2-type direct mount that for the MMR team serves to mount a small chain guide for their 1x drivetrain setups. But paired with the SideSwing cable exit port on the side of the downtube the bike will also offer front derailleur compatibility as well. There also is a masked grommet just above the pivot for a Di2 front mech wire as well. We can also see a large cable routing port under the bottom bracket where the rear derailleur cable exits to make the move back into the driveside chainstay. Braking out back is handled with a post mount caliper for 160mm brakes. The bottom bracket gets wide PressFit bearings. And a simple bolt on thru-axle hold the replaceable derailleur hanger in place.