Hope HB160 prototype bike comes to market

Features 160mm travel, 27.5 wheels, custom one-off components

27.5 All Mountain Trail News
Hope HB160

The HB211 was teased at Sea Otter 2016. After more than a year of testing, Hope is finally selling this new bike (now called the HB.160) in limited numbers. Photo courtesy of Hope Technology

The Hope HB 211 started as a concept bike. It was a design exercise, built to showcase the brand’s manufacturing capabilities. Because it was built as a one off, they weren’t constrained by current industry standards.

Learn more about the HB211 Prototype here.

Hope HB.160

Behold the Hope HB.160. Photo courtesy of Hope Technology

Instead, they threw out the rule book and went down their own path, which was only possible because they build every component in house. Among the wildest touches on this 160mm travel 27.5 all mountain steed is the specially dished rear wheel, which uses a 17mm axle and 130mm spacing. There’s also the radial mounted rear brake and custom BB, which relies on 30mm bearings.

While some of you might be apprehensive about this approach, it’s similar to what you’ll find in the motorcycle industry. In that world, industry wide standards don’t exist. With their bike, Hope wasn’t trying to forcibly create new standards, they simply wanted to build the best bike they could. You can learn more about the work that went into building the bike in the video above.

Since the U.K.-based company first teased the project last year at Sea Otter, they’ve decided to produce a limited production run of 500 bikes a year. These bikes, now dubbed the HB.160, will only be sold through 11 U.K. dealers at launch. Next year, Hope plans on replicating that exclusive dealer model in other markets.

If you have to ask how much, this bike probably isn’t for you. We did mention that virtually all components are manufactured in the UK in limited batches, right? If you’re willing to pony up £7,500 (roughly $9600 USD), you’ll be rewarded with one of the most radically designed bikes on the market. We’ve yet to throw a leg over it, but Hope did unleash Adam Brayton into the wild to showcase its abilities. Click on the video above to see it in action.

Learn more at www.hopetechhb.com.

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  • bigcol says:

    I like that they are going with what they feel is optimal in the name of real potential performance gains. Other companies like specialized, cannondale, trek….. have gone their own way and provided us with good innovations, but mostly they’ve just provided compatibility headaches and no long term support. By now, I think we know what works as far as axle standards are concerned. Lots of sizes can work just as well as others. We just need the industry to pick front, rear, BB and stick with it. The fact we still have so many bb and axle standards in 2017 is a joke. The bike industry is a joke. While I’m sure this bike rides like a dream, noway would I buy it considering the poor future support/value this will have in as little as 2 years.

  • Rob Wannabee says:

    Beautiful bike. Brayton rails the trail on it. I’m confident they made decisions based on functionality, not marketing potential. Some of it does seem a bit of a group wank for the engineers however imho. Given bike prices, 10k isn’t unheard of, but being in the US myself – what happens when one of those incredibly proprietary parts goes south? I worked in a Cannondale shop for a while and our biggest headaches were always those things. As far as industry standard setting technology? I’ll predict no-way on the hub, possible on the BB, and probably on the radial brake mount. There ya go: $.02

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