Giving us just a few hours notice, Marin have just shocked us with a brand new bike. Bringing back the iconic Wolf Ridge name on the distinctive R3ACT suspension platform. While its looks certainly got our team debating, as always, the truth is in the riding, and it’s here where Marin are making some bold claims. We will bring a review as soon as we can but in the meantime, here’s the news direct from Marin.

The silhouette of the Marin is certainly distinctive, the jury is still out but we cannot wait to ride one.

Marin Mountain Bikes Inc. has announced the debut of the all-new 2018 Wolf Ridge, a bike rooted in the birth of mountain biking, when one bicycle did it all and there were no category-specific machines. Trail riding has evolved since those early days of bombing down Mt. Tam, and your mountain bike experience will never be the same. Welcome to the new way of thinking about the ride, the Marin Wolf Ridge. In development for nearly five years, the Wolf Ridge was designed using biometric data for the perfect rider fit, applied physics for ideal kinematics based on a rider’s centre of gravity, and the desire to create a bike that addresses the holy grail of mountain biking: a full suspension rig that doesn’t make you miss your hardtail on the climbs, and one that you can confidently point towards technical singletrack for the descent. The Wolf Ridge defines a paradigm shift in thinking that will force the rest of the market to take notice:

  • Where travel does not define category
  • Where a bike can climb and descend equally well
  • Where a bike can be at home in any terrain, with any rider – through the fast and flowy, or the rough and tumble
  • Where the mountain bike experience is mind-blowing
“With the Wolf Ridge and the Naild system, a 160mm travel 29er bike can be your everyday ride” claim Marin

Marin has teamed up with Naild® to design, craft and build the Wolf Ridge around their revolutionary R3ACT – 2 Play® system, bringing a mountain bike to market that out-performs all expectations of performance, providing the rider with the best mountain biking experience that is available today.

Naild’s R3ACT – 2 Play system has unique core kinematics which manage the inertia of acceleration loads. The system does not require platform/lockouts from external devices on any travel applications, even the 160mm travel of the Wolf Ridge. A custom kinematic was developed with Naild to ensure that the Wolf Ridge would have the pedaling prowess previously unattainable a long travel bike.

The R3ACT – 2 Play® claims to offer big performance with no penalty when it comes to power delivery.

“I’ve been riding mountain bikes since my first rigid bike in 1983, while the folks at Naild have been in the sport since before aluminum became a frame choice,” says Matt VanEnkevort, CEO of Marin Bikes. “Those of us that have been around this long have watched the evolution from rigid, to front suspension, to full suspension. If you could have more travel, without a lot of extra weight, or negative pedaling effect, why wouldn’t you? Marin and Naild have combined forces, so that you can have it all – without tricky damping, lockout levers and such. All it takes is superior kinematics and vision. I believe the Naild system will forever change the way we look at travel, and the Wolf Ridge is about to become your new favourite bike. With the Wolf Ridge and the Naild system, a 160mm travel 29er bike can be your everyday ride, and I predict you are going to love it.”

“Naild is honored to be working with a legendary brand like Marin,” says Darrell Voss, founder of Naild. “Marin has literally been at the forefront from the onset of the new age of mountain bikes. The technology that Naild is bringing to market after a decade of solitude development has many symbiotic aspects that are in harmony with the passion of Marin’s core values. It’s with much gratitude that Naild was able to work so closely with Marin as we brought the R3ACT – 2 Play technology to life within Marin’s flagship line of bikes.” Matthew Cipes, Mountain Bike Product Manager for Marin adds “It’s amazing having a bike that can climb so well, yet rip downhill better than any bike that I have ever ridden. It’s simply mind-blowing, you have to ride it to fully understand the performance.”

Marin have certainly got a long history with innovative bikes, we are keen to see how this one rides.

Reigning three-time North American Enduro Tour series champion Kyle Warner is looking forward to racing a Wolf Ridge this season. “For me one of the most exciting things about the new Wolf Ridge is how much it will simplify my race weekends from a tuning and bike set up standpoint. For the first time ever, I will be able to focus on setting my bike up to descend as well as possible at a race, without having to make a compromise if there is a significant amount of pedaling involved in some of the stages. The bike is so efficient when pedaling that you can get away with running more of a downhill bias and still know that any energy you put into the pedals is going 100 percent into moving you forward. No more switches, lockouts, or stiff setups for the pedally stages. It’s just set and forget and enjoy every moment of the trails!” The Wolf Ridge will also be piloted by the UK Marin Enduro Team at domestic and Enduro World Series Rounds. The team comprises of Rob Williams, Leigh Johnson, Nikki Whiles, Chris Keeble Smith and Martha Gill.

“Marin The bike is so efficient when pedaling that you can get away with running more of a downhill bias and still know that any energy you put into the pedals is going 100 percent into moving you forward. Wolf Ridge 2017”

Key frame highlights:

  • Full carbon fiber frame, developed with biometric data to localize weight on each size
  • Naild patent-pending R3ACT – 2 Play rear frame member
  • Trail geometry with a low BB height, 66.5° head tube angle, 435mm chainstays
  • 29” wheels, 160mm front and rear travel
  • Exclusively 1x drivetrains

Wolf Ridge Pro

Wolf Ridge Pro
  • SRAM XX-1 Eagle drivetrain
  • Fox 36 Performance Elite & Float X2 suspension
  • E*thirteen TRS Race Carbon wheelset
  • RRP £7750

Wolf Ridge 9

Wolf Ridge 9
  • SRAM X0-1 Eagle drivetrain
  • RockShox Lyric RCT3 & Monarch Debonair R suspension
  • Stan’s NoTubes Flow MK3 wheelset
  • RRP £5750

The Wolf Ridge Pro and Wolf Ridge 9 models will be available worldwide summer 2017. For UK readers, Paligap will be touring the UK with its Wolf Ridge Demo Fleet from late May, for your chance to ride one, please contact your local sales rep.

Learn more about the new Marin here.

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Words: Photos: Marin