Overall Thoughts on the Kona Coilair Supreme
The Kona Coilair is not going to be your singletrack all mountain bike that you can play xc with and then take to the downhill course. It is going to lean more towards the downhill end of the spectrum based off of climbing performance and weight. On the flats and slight inclines, the bike has a hard time keeping pace without the aid of gravity to get you going. This is to be expected out of any bike in this rear travel range, so – basically – there is no such thing as a do-it-all bike.
The end result on the trail is a bike that is a slow climbing 6″ travel rig that does not descend as quickly as a dedicated 7.5″. Kona tried to fill a gap in between these two disciplines of mountain biking, but it is my belief after riding this bike for sometime that they are going to have better luck with their new Cadabra that changes from 105mm to 160mm. The needs of a 6″ travel bike and a 7.5″ travel bike are so drastically different that it would be difficult for ANY bike company to marry the two together. What you end up with is a flexy 7.4″ travel descender that has an overly complicated suspension setup…and for most riders out there…it is going to be too much to deal with when they just want to set and forget to ride.
What I liked about the Kona Coilair Supreme
- Great build list for the price
- Front end tracks well and is stiff
- Kona stuck their neck out there and tried something new
- Respectable weight
- Plush suspension
What I didn’t like about the Kona Coilair Supreme
- Not a stiff enough rear end for a 7.4″ travel suspension setup
- Climbs slower than most 6″ travel mountain bikes
- Suspension setup is overly complicated
- Bright orange may put off some riders
- Tapered steerer tube limits fork options
- More pivots and moving parts means more maintenance over time
While I commend Kona for trying out the Magic Link to give riders another option when it comes to park/AM/DH riding, I don’t think they are there yet. They need to make this bike “Kona stiff” before it will be able to tackle the terrain as advertised.
Video Overview of the Kona Coilair Supreme with Suspension Action
Video Shot with a V.I.O POV1.5
Kona Coilair Supreme On The Trail
Video Shot with a VholdR ContourHD