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Team Tested: Juliana Furtado Primeiro Women’s Bike Review

“WOW, that’s a beauty! “Exclaims our test rider Lisa as she sees the Juliana Furtado for the first time. The bike named after the two-time world champion in cross country (1990) and Downhill (1992) really convinced us with its awesome looks. But how does this beauty perform on the trail, you’ll find it out here in our review:

Das Juliana Furtado auf den Isartrails in München!

The Juliana Furtado on the Isar Trails in Munich!

Optisch ein Leckerbissen: Das Juliana Furtado

A visual delight: The 12,8kg Juliana Furtado Primeiro is priced at €6,730.

The Frame The elegant Carbon frame with its nice rust-red color, impressed us at first sight with a great finish and good workmanship. The VPP rear suspension features 125mm of travel. The bikes are available with 27.5″ wheels in three sizes (S / M / L). Our test rider Lisa ( at a height of 169cm) chose the medium version of the bike. A real highlight is that Juliana offers a Lifetime Crash Replacement- and Pivot Bearing guarantee.

Von Mädels für Mädels: Das Furtado überzeugt mit schicken Details.

By girls for girls: The Furtado convinced with nice details.

Der VPP-Hinterbau des Juliana Furtado verfügt über 125mm Federweg.

The VPP rear of the Juliana Furtado offers 125mm of travel.

Die Lackierung sowie die Details wissen zu gefallen.

The finish and details of the frame know how to please.

The Specification

The specification of our test bikes looks very solid and effective at first glance. The Shimano XT drivetrain works as expected, and changes gear perfectly and very fast. The ergonomic lever of the XT brake can be well adapted to small hands and are an ideal choice for a womans bike. However, on alpine trails Lisa would like to have a 180mm disc at the rear.
The bike has been optimised for women, especially the handlebars, grips and saddle. The bars comes directly from Juliana and have a special feature: it tapers down again after the brake and shifting levers and allows the installation of ultra-thin grips (also from Juliana). But for Lisa these were too slim and the handlebars at 680mm width were too narrow. Here Juliana have reworked the bike for the upcoming season and offers the handlebars now in 720mm width.

Der Juliana Mountain Sattel punktet mit hohem Komfort.

The Juliana Mountain Saddle scores with high comfort and a chic finish.

Die extradünnen Griffe waren für unseren Geschmack zu schlank.

For Lisa’s taste the extra-thin grips were too slim.

Der Shimano XT Antriebsstrang verrichtet die an ihm gestellten Aufgaben mit Bravour und erledigt Gangwechsel in Windeseile.

The Shimano XT drivetrain performs great and shifted the gears very fast and precisely.

Die Shimano XT Bremse lässt sich nicht nur perfekt dosieren, ihr schlanker Griff lässt sich auch sehr gut an die Wünsche der Fahrerin anpassen.

The Shimano XT brake performed perfectly, the slim grip can also be very well adapted to the wishes of the female rider.

The Suspension

The suspension of the Juliana Furtado Primeiro consists of a high-quality Fox 32 Float Kashima fork with 130mm travel in the front, and a Fox Float Kashima CTD shock at the rear. The most important thing for a women’s bike is that the spring elements are adapted to significantly lower rider weight of women.
Here is the first little disappointment: The shock of the bike was significantly over dampened at the beginning for our 62kg test rider. The result was way to slow a rebound even if it was completely open. On our Inquiry Juliana Bicycles said: That they completely revised the shock for the next season by reducing the air volume and building in a way faster rebound tune. After upgrading to the new shock the problem was significantly decreased, and an adequate setup was possible.

Die Fox 32 Float Factory spricht sehr gut an, gibt auf Grund einer starken Endprogression nie den gesamten Federweg frei.

The Fox 32 Float Factory responds very well, but does not use the full travel because of a strong ending progression.

Erst auf den zweiten Anlauf konnte uns der Hinterbau des Juliana Furtado überzeugen.

Only at the second attempt was the rear of the Juliana Furtado able to convince us, but then it was really good!

The Juliana Furtado on the Trail

Now to the main point: How does the bike perform on the trail:
Once up on the Furtado, Lisa feels right at home. Neither overly stretched, or super compact, the position feels just right. Thanks to the 73 ° seat angle, the position is also centrally located on the bike and so efficient pedaling action is possible. The only things that slows down the uphill performance are the Maxxis High Roller II tires, which in turn convinced at the descent with massive grip – that’s why we gladly accept the slightly higher rolling resistance.

In the downhill the Furtado impressed with very agile and balanced handling. Change of direction sets the bike readily and accurately. The 125mm bike has a good dose of smoothness and stability, and coping well with the rough sections. Only the head angle could be a little bit slacker to offer more security in steep terrain for the taste of our female tester. The high standover height and the great freedom of movement on the bike provide much security.

Egal was der Trail bereithält. Das Furtado meistert sämtliche Situationen.

No matter what the Trail holds. The Furtado masters all situations with confidence.

Fork and dampers show a very similar characteristics and harmonize very well. The rear reacts fine even on small bumps and offers its travel willingly on bigger hits. A effectively ending progression prevents the shock from bottom outs. Also in the open position of the CTD-lever the bike rides in a very neutral manner. But during longer uphills, Lisa still used the climb mode for maximum efficiency.

Egal ob eine lange Tour oder schnelle Runde nach Feierabend - das Furtado ist für alles zu haben.

Whether a long tour or quick after work round – the Furtado is up for anything.

Conclusion

The Juliana Furtado thrilled with a very elegant look and balanced handling characteristics. Criticism are only available for the narrow handlebar and to the shock setup. But both factors, were already revised by Juliana for the coming season. However, this beauty has its price: €6,720 for the bike in the version we tested is not a bargain.

If you would like to learn more about the bikes of Juliana Bicycles visit: www.julianabicycles.com.

Words & Pictures: Christoph Bayer

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