2018 Rocky Mountain Vertex debuts

Flagship XC-race hardtail gets lighter, more aggressive

29er Cross Country News
2018 Rocky Mountain Vertex

Meet the newest Rocky Mountain Vertex. Photo by Dennis Stratmann

Rocky Mountain has updated the Vertex, its flagship XC-race hardtail. According to the accompanying PR material, its lightweight frame provides stiffness and rolling speed, while its modern, aggressive geometry inspires confidence – even in technical corners and on descents.

To do this Rocky Mountain lengthened the reach, slackened the head angle to 69.5 degrees, and shortened the wheelbase (1127mm size L), maintaining rear end compliance and a comfortable ride. Other features include tooled axles, boost spacing, and Di2 and dropper post compatibility.

2018 Rocky Mountain Vertex

The top of the line Vertex C90.

It’s also now available in Smoothwall HBO carbon layup for even lighter weight. By incorporating premium 40-ton carbon fiber sheets into their Vertex Carbon 90 and Vertex Carbon frameset, Rocky was able to eliminate more resin than what is usually left from their traditional Smoothwall construction. This process allowed them to incorporate desirable frame features, increase durability, and maintain the ride performance the bike is known for.

The standard Smoothwall layup that can be found on the Vertex Carbon 70 and Vertex Carbon 50 remains a good option, without resorting to cost cutting by integrating fiberglass. Smoothwall carbon also uses a sophisticated carbon processes to deliver stiffness-to-weight, ride quality, and durability. They eliminate excess resin and fibers by using rigid internal molds instead of traditional air bladders, and then utilize different types of carbon in specific frame areas to maximize stiffness and impact resistance while minimizing overall weight.

2018 Rocky Mountain Vertex

Photo by Dennis Stratmann

Key Details
  • 29er and 27.5+ compatible
  • Max tire clearance is 29 x 2.3 and 27.5 x 2.8
  • Lighter, tooled rear axle with an updated axle nut for more intuitive assembly
  • Improved cable management including large head tube and down tube access ports, full-length shift housing, and internally routed shift housing and brake lines the front triangle
  • Both Di2 and dropper post compatibility
  • 27.2mm seatpost allows for extra ride comfort while seated
  • Droppers available from most major brands
  • Rubberized chainstay protector for increased frame protection
  • Front derailleur compatible
  • Modern parts compatibility (boost spacing, post-mount 180mm brakes, etc.)
  • Sizes: S-XL
2018 Rocky Mountain Vertex

The top of the line Vertex C90.

Claimed Weights and Pricing
  • Vertex Carbon frameset: 2.68lbs, size medium
  • Vertex Carbon 90: 21.4lbs, size medium
  • Vertex Carbon 70: 22lbs, size medium
  • Vertex Carbon 50: 24.5lbs, size medium
  • Vertex Carbon 90: $5169
  • Vertex Carbon 90 frameset: $1599
  • Vertex Carbon 70: $3399
  • Vertex Carbon 50: $2899
Vertex Geometry Chart

2018 Rocky Mountain Vertex
2018 Rocky Mountain Vertex

To learn more, please visit www.bikes.com.

Photo Thumbnails (click to enlarge)

About the author: Mtbr

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