For now, the new Rockshox Flight Attendant will only come as OEM equipment on complete bikes from a select few brands, but there’s clearly capability for it to move into the aftermarket.
Every piece is self-contained, although the brains of the unit are on the fork, so in it’s current iteration, you’d need a Flight Attendant equipped fork before you could add the FA rear shock. We spotted it on a Specialized Enduro and spoke to Molly, a Rockshox rider, about the system…
Word is there are only about 7-8 bikes in the world with the system currently on it, so don’t expect it to hit stores soon. But it’s worth a look now, because if you’re interested, you’ll wanna start saving those pennies.
The fork’s Flight Attendant module sits low and behind the upper crown, making it unlikely to get in the way or bash a headtube if your bars get spun all the way around.
It, and the rear shock, both use a standard AXS battery. While this may look precarious, we’ve never lost a battery to a wreck, bump, or anything else.
Also new is a two-position AXS remote, which gets a mirror image of the Rocker lever upgrade. While it looks like three buttons, the lower thumb paddle is just an extension of the bottom of the main paddle, giving you two spots to press it.
Within the AXS app, you can customize what button does what, but out of the box it’s likely to use the lower switch to control a Reverb AXS dropper seatpost, and the upper to cycle through the Flight Attendant’s modes.
Which means you can override it by manually with the push of a button. Through the AXS app, you choose whether you want your Override mode to be Open, Pedal, or Lock, and then tapping the button on the remote will switch it to that mode and keep it there until you press the button again.
Or just press the buttons on the fork crown to do it…you won’t need the new AXS remote switch, but if you’re having a hard time giving up complete control to Skynet, you’ll probably want it so you’re not trying to reach down and press these little buttons while riding.
The +/- buttons let you tune your preference toward more open or more closed, but mostly it’s going to try to keep it operating in its algorithmically determined optimized state. Which might be different between fork and shock…
Split State can run different modes for your fork and shock. So, for instance, the fork could stay open to help keep traction on the front while locking out the rear for charging up the climbs.
For now, you’ll need to add the AXS cadence sensor into your crank arms’ spindle. It’s only purpose is to tell the system whether or not your pedaling, and it uses that data to determine the best suspension mode. But we can see them incorporating that data into a powermeter or existing cadence sensor in the future, letting riders with one already on the bike save a bit of weight.
Check out our list of MTBs launching with Flight Attendant, and get the complete tech story here.