Pivot have laid down the gauntlet with the latest generation of the Mach 4 Carbon, declaring ‘Performance Redefined.’ Back at the Design & Innovation Award 2015, the bike had no issues in winning over the jury, so we’re even more excited to see how the Pivot Mach 4 Carbon will fare in this tough head-to-head group test.

Pivot Mach 4 Carbon | € 4,999 | 11.62 kg | Travel (front/rear) 120/115 mm
Pivot Mach 4 Carbon | € 4,999 | 11.62 kg | Travel (front/rear) 120/115 mm
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A real jar of marmite, the Pivot Mach 4 has one of those truly field-splitting looks with its buttery-soft curvy frame. But love it or hate it, the bike knows how to be ridden! As the top tube drops so low, there’s tons of room for maneuvering on the Mach 4, and the riding position is mega-comfortable with a light stretch out to the bars, making it ideal for long days in the saddle.

Pivot Mach 4 Carbon Review Action Shot 1

Add in the outstanding rear end with dw-link suspension design and the level of comfort shoots into space. Even without activating the rear shock platform damping, the Pivot charges forward and shells out masses on traction when you need it most on technical ups. At 428 mm, the Mach 4 has the shortest chainstays on test, and they’re to thank (along with the slack 68.2° head angle) for the satisfyingly smooth and agile handling package. The FOX suspension, with 115 mm at the rear and 120 mm at the front, manages to take all sizes of hits in its stride, recovering rapidly and delivering great feedback. The super-precise handling is down to the FOX 34 fork as well as the rigid frame and well-designed cockpit. The harder-packed, drier trails are where the stock MAXXIS Ardent Race tyres deliver a ton of traction, but they’re decent whatever the scenario.

Pivot Mach 4 Carbon Review Action Shot 2

The stock sag indicator helps to simplify the set-up at the rear, and you can choose between a firmer, more charge-orientated set-up, or a softer, comfier trail set-up. We settled on a compromise between the two, setting the sag in the wonderful middle ground. Despite the lower price-point discs, the SRAM Guide brakes serve up sufficient braking power, and the SRAM X1 groupset shifts rapidly and reliably. If we were forced to whine and moan, it’d be about the lack of dropper post and the pretty steep price tag.

Details of the Pivot Mach 4 Carbon

Pivot Mach 4 Carbon Review Detail Shot 1
Nicely done: The Pivot Mach 4’s carbon frame displays a high-quality finish, and just check out at those clean-looking cable ports!
Pivot Mach 4 Carbon Review Detail Shot 2
Full control: Ergonomic and with the measurements to match, the Pivot Mach 4’s cockpit has a 60 mm stem and 740 mm bar width.
Pivot Mach 4 Carbon Review Detail Shot 3
Sensitive: Whatever the trail throws at it, the FOX 34 fork gobbles it up, treading the fine line between sensitivity, feedback, and rigidity – and this is an XC bike, remember!
Pivot Mach 4 Carbon Review Detail Shot 4
The cream on the cake: The dw-link rear suspension design is one of the market’s best setups, providing sensitivity, masses of traction, and a real urge to charge.

Specification of the Pivot Mach 4 Carbon

  • Fork: FOX 34 Performance 120 mm
  • Shock: FOX Float DPS Kashima
  • Drivetrain: SRAM X1
  • Brakes: SRAM Guide R
  • Seatpost: Phoenix Sport Alloy
  • Stem: Phoenix Race 60 mm
  • Handlebars: Race Face Ride 740 mm
  • Tyres: Maxxis Ardent Race 2,2
  • Wheelsize: 27,5″
  • Wheels: DT Swiss Spline Two 1700 / Sun Ringle Charger Comp
  • Weight: 11.62 kg
  • Price: € 4,999
Geometry of the Pivot Mach 4 Carbon
Geometry of the Pivot Mach 4 Carbon


Not just marketing hype, Pivot’s revamped Mach 4 Carbon does have the skills to redefine XC performance. An efficient climber, it left the field for dead on the descents and dominated the test. A well-deserved winner!


  • Playful and smooth
  • Outstanding suspension
  • Super high-quality finish


  • Price
  • Lack of dropper post

More information on the bike can be found on the Pivot Website.


About the XC Bike Group Test 2016

Just outside the sprawl of Barcelona, we took out the test fleet onto the varied trails, confronting them with everything from frighteningly steep climbs to challenging descents. All of this occurred with the backdrop and climate of the Mediterranean Sea – and despite it being February, the conditions couldn’t have been better. The test team consisted of four riders, each with their own nuances when it comes to mountain biking, but all with years of experience when it comes to testing bikes.

For an overview of the test fleet head to the main article: XC Bikes Group Test 2016

All bikes in test: Canyon Lux CF 9.9 Race | Giant Anthem SX Advanced | Pivot Mach 4 Carbon | ROSE THRILL HILL 3 27,5″ 2016 | ROTWILD R.R2 FS 29 Evo | SCOTT Spark 710 | Specialized Epic Elite Carbon 29 World Cup | Trek Top Fuel 9.8 SL

Words & Photos: Christoph Bayer

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