2013 Norco Range and Sight 650b Bikes

27.5 All Mountain Trail Enduro

Update: Here’s an excellent video overview provided to us by Dušan Mihalečko of http://cameride.cz/
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Norco Bikes is going ‘all in’ on the 650b movement.  On Jan, 2012, upon hearing news that Fox and Rockshox were producing forks for the new platform, Norco gathered up the key decision makers in the company and decided to fully commit and build bikes for this new wheel platform this year. This meant that other key projects in the company would have to be de-prioritized if Norco was  to meet their goal of having bikes ready in about 8 months for Eurobike and Interbike.  Turning on a dime is not difficult for a small bike company that manufactures most of the frame themselves. But for a company like Norco which has 176 bike models, this was a big decision.

So it’s no surprise that the Norco crew beamed with pride as they unveiled their creations.  They showed us a bunch of other bikes at the media launch but it was obvious that the everybody’s attention was on the 650b bikes. The two bikes are the Norco Range Killer B and the Norco Sight Killer B.

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The Norco Range 650b is a 160mm travel bike with a Fox 160mm Talas CTD fork.  It sports a 66.5 degree head angle, a 13.54 inch BB height and 16.8 inch chainstay length in medium.

The Norco Sight 650b is a 140mm travel bike with a Rockshox Revelation 140 mm fork. It has a 67.5 degree head angle, a 13.3 inch BB height and 16.8 inch stays as well in medium.

Each bike will be available in three spec models, the 1, 2 and 3 with 1 as the highest level spec. The Range will cost between $5,850 and $2,900. The two higher-end models come with Fox 34 Talas 160 mm forks and Fox CTD rear shocks. The lower cost Range 3 will have has X-Fusion suspension. All three come with a 2×10 drivetrain and 180mm rotors. The Range 1 will come equipped with a RockShox Reverb dropper post.

The 140mm travel Sight comes in three models, ranging between  $5,400 and $2,700 . The Sight 1 and Sight 2 models feature RockShox’s Revelation fork and anti-chainslap derailleurs from Shimano.  The Bionicon chain retention device is also included to to keep the chain in place without the use of a full chain guide system.

Norco will also continue selling a 26-inch version of the Sight to appease the fans of this model who are not ready to commit to the new wheel size.

So let us learn about the new 650b wheel size.  Mtbr did a detailed article on it a few months ago and we firmly believe that it will be a huge growth market.  PJ Hunton of Norco will go through a detailed comparison of the wheel sizes in the video below.

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How does it ride?

Flip to the next page and find out.

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About the author: Francis Cebedo

The founder of mtbr and roadbikereview, Francis Cebedo believes that every cyclist has a lot to teach and a lot to learn. "Our websites are communal hubs for sharing cycling experiences, trading adventure stories, and passing along product information and opinions." Francis' favorite bike is the last bike he rode, whether it's a dirt jumper, singlespeed, trail bike, lugged commuter or ultralight carbon road steed. Indeed, Francis loves cycling in all its forms and is happiest when infecting others with that same passion. Francis also believes that IPA will save America.



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  • madsedan says:

    Sexy, love the Sight killer B

  • Michael Jordan says:

    I’ve been riding a fantastic Jamis 650b for all of 2012 and it’s great to see more new bikes to choose from. The stoke of the testers is great to hear. 650b is a great platform and it lives up to the hype in my experience. The Norco bikes look extremely well thought out and well equipped. Can’t wait for my first demo ride.

  • Michael9218 says:

    I’ve been riding with a 650b on the front of my Ellsworth Truth for a couple years now in a B6 configuration (650b front and 26 rear). I really like the 650b wheel size. It really is just right. I’m encouraged to see more bike manufacturers embracing the size. I’d like to see more development on asymmetrical wheel sizes. You get front wheel rollover with rear wheel acceleration.

  • gurthang says:

    Regardless of the wheel size, the important point here is trying to tune the length of all the parts of the frame to the different rider sizes.

  • RoDe says:

    I was never hooked on this 29″ wheel size. 650B I think is the way to go for me.

  • JeffO says:

    I recently went from a Scott 26 al to a Moto Ti 29er. At 6′/195lb., it works well for me and much more enjoyable than was the Scott 26er. It may not be a good comparison given the Ti 29er is 12 lbs. lighter than the Scott 26.

    I think the 650B is probably way more suitable for anyone 5’8″ and below to be sure. And for the bike industry, this is a huge boom for the growing audience but even mire so formthe millions of enthusiasts; who are comfortable where they are on the 26er rides they have and likely wouldn’t be a new customer for many years. Probably 50%of them if not more will purchase a 650B years before they otherwise would have bought a new ride.

  • Izzy says:

    I’d looove to see a Sight 650B vs. Altitude 7X0 shootout ;-)

  • Pepe Lepau says:

    What really bothers me is the abuse of the manufactures in terms of pricing. Now that riders interest on 650b’s is booming, the prices on new 27.5 bikes are ridiculous. Even Jamis with a low end components is charging well above $2000 for their bikes.
    Same happened with 29ers, they were very exclusive and now you can even get them on Walmart.

  • Paul says:

    We need a back to back comparison from someone who can throw down on a 180mm+ FR bike, dirt jumper, has ridden a 29er downhill bike (like a Lenz or WFO), and can compare the wagon wheels to the tweener.

    I’m glad to read reviewers from folks of a different perspective, but it seems like those who have been riding the 650B wheels are usually XC riders, not downhill guys. If I’m a downhill guy looking for a new AM/Enduro rig, I want to hear if downsizing from 29 to 650 will be worth it.

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