Intense Spider 275 C review

Four-cross inspired trail bikes make the best trail bikes

27.5 All Mountain Trail
The 240 degree handlebar clamp of the Renthal Apex stem makes it difficult to swap out or reinstall with a different handlebar.

The 240-degree handlebar clamp of the Renthal Apex stem makes it difficult to swap out or reinstall with a different handlebar (click to enlarge).

There’s also little to fault with component spec. Like the rest of the Intense line up, this bike’s parts reflect some of the best value for the money across all models, yet manages to retain a custom built feel. The only big miss is the Renthal Apex stem, which is not only one of the ugliest on the market, but a pain to install.

The rails of the stock Fabric saddle are fairly tall when compared to offerings from brands like WTB. Swapping out the saddle and seat post collar will help get the saddle a few mm lower when the stock 125mm Reverb is at full extension.

The rails of the stock Fabric saddle are fairly tall when compared to offerings from brands such as WTB. Swapping out the saddle and seatpost collar will help get the saddle lower when the stock 125mm Reverb dropper post is at full extension (click to enlarge).

Sliding further back, we also found that during several test riders on our size medium frame we experienced issues with getting the saddle height low enough with the 125mm RockShox Reverb post at full extension. For those with shorter legs, the only solution short of swapping the dropper for a 100mm unit is to install a slimmer seatpost collar or a saddle with shorter rails.

The Intense Spider is available in four different sizes.

The Intense Spider is available in four sizes (click to enlarge).

In terms of geometry, the Intense has a middle of the road 67-degree headtube angle, standard 23.5” top tube for a size medium, and relatively short 16.5” chainstays. These numbers are similar to several leading competitors and produce a well balanced bike. The one area that really differentiates the Spider is the low standover, which is a boon on steep terrain.

The new Spider is happiest in the air or when manualing through a section of trail.

The new Spider is happiest in the air or when manualing through a section of trail (click to enlarge).

On the trail, there’s little to fault. This bike is an exceptionally efficient climber. What’s surprising is that in addition to being fast uphill, it’s also fun. This is a bike that doesn’t mind racking up air miles. In fact, it prefers to be ridden with one wheel off the ground. You may actually find you spend so much time manualing that your arms grow. While other brands have attempted to create four-cross inspired trail bikes, the Spider actually nails it. This is essentially a carbon slopestyle bike with a slacker head tube angle. It’s too bad dual slalom isn’t more popular these days, because it’s the perfect bike for gate starts and pedaling-heavy enduro races (RIP, Super D).

4x inspired trail bikes make the best trail bikes.

Four-cross inspired trail bikes make the best trail bikes (click to enlarge).

While it does bear a strikingly similarity to the Santa Cruz 5010 in terms of suspension and geometry, the two are entirely different beasts. The 5010 has chain stays that are .2” longer and a more progressive shock tune (especially when you throw in a larger volume spacer). It’s also more of a hard charging trail bike, while I’ve found that the Spider is a more efficient climber that is easier to both manual and bunnyhop.

For those with a heavy BMX background that prefer bikes that are easy to toss around, demo the latest Intense. It’s an easy bike to ride with style and it’s also surprisingly fast in and out of the saddle.

Differences between the standard models and the factory edition we tested include the use of titanium hardware.

Differences between the standard models and the factory edition we tested include the use of titanium hardware (click to enlarge).

The new Spider 275 C is available at four price points. The ultra Factory model we tested retails for $9499, but complete bikes start at $4599. Frame and shock are available for $3199.

For more info visit www.intensecycles.com.


Related Articles


NOTE: There are two ways to comment on our articles: Facebook or Wordpress. Facebook uses your real name and can be posted on your wall while Wordpress uses our login system. Feel free to use either one.

Facebook Comments:



Wordpress Comments:

  • Dan says:

    “Interesting” that the specifications page from the owner manual (shown in the picture) says “4.48 lbs/2490 g” for that SL frame weight (no shock). I guess someone typed a 4 instead of a 5. Hopefully Intense is less sloppy in other areas.

    PF92 is a standout feature… in a negative way.

    Also: minor point but I wouldn’t describe 16.5″ chainstays as “relatively” short. 16.5 is very short for a bike in this class.

    But then you said it has low standover. It has a claimed 31.1″ standover for a medium frame. That is not low at all (the 5010 has 28.31″ for the Large). But the 5010 (large) and Mojo 3 both have taller seat tubes for the same “reach”, but you complain about the tall seat tube…

    I also found it hard to believe the ride “couldn’t be more different” than a 5010, a bike with the same travel and similar geometry and same linkage layout. Would be interesting to compare it to the Mojo 3. The Mojo’s plus-tire compatibility is a pretty interesting perk.

    By the way, the Knolly Endorphin has one of the lowest seat tube lengths for the reach, and the Hightower is close. I wish Knolly would do a carbon/boost Endorphin.

  • Dan says:

    So if you look at the frame weight, the SL with shock is around 6.1 lbs. You can’t really say that is a particularly light weight for a carbon trail bike.

  • Richard Ramos says:

    Hi, nice Bike, great review, excelent site, i follow you from flipboard, i have a kind of diferent question, im been searching for a while on internet but still doesn’t get a good answer, how do you take this stand bike photos without any support, i am an entusiast of the photography and mountain bike, and i wish to take this kind of great photos to my ride, i hope you can enlighten me, Greetings from Colombia.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

*
*


THE SITE

ABOUT MTBR

VISIT US AT

© Copyright 2019 VerticalScope Inc. All rights reserved.