The Saracen Ariel

by Sim 24

More in from Saracen…

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Saracen have been doing extensive testing on a prototype 140mm full suspension bike, the Ariel. The above shot was taken in Hawaii where the Ariel had just completed a descent from the top of a volcano finishing in a tinsel factory on the beach.
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When asked how the Ariel had performed the rider was only able to utter the word 'Rad!', and perform the above ninja dance move.
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Big headtube, bolt-thru forks, uppy-downy seatpost, 140mm of travel, looks fun to us.
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A custom tuned Fox Float RP23

More Ariel ‘facts’ as they are drip fed to us…

Comments (24)

  1. Hubba! (bike not stoked bloke)

  2. I think that’s fantastic.

  3. Fair play that’s a nice looking bike. It looks like a in front of the BB single pivot, with a linkage driven shock.

    Unlike other designs though that attach the shock to the top tube, that should have a lower centre of gravity and therefore better handling/balance. It seems a very effective, simple design to me.

    I wonder how much they are going to knock them out for.

  4. lower centre of gravity and therefore better handling/balance

    But what about the big fat bloke waggling around on top of it several foot up, how does that affect the handling and balance? Honestly, do you think a couple of pounds of metal and shock a few inches lower will make much difference?

    Anyhow, bike looks nice, bloke looks like a dork 😉

  5. The love child of a Five and a Meta 5 – no? Of course that may not be a bad thing…

  6. Saracen seem to have picked themselves up. The Kili flyer, Kili flyer ti and now this!

  7. oh no i think i like it …………… but its a sarecen….. must resist………..

  8. Interesting… I hope they get the geometry right.

  9. If that wasn’t a Saracen, it would be nice

  10. “Honestly, do you think a couple of pounds of metal and shock a few inches lower will make much difference?”

    It all depends if the “the big fat bloke waggling around on top of it several foot up” stays seated the entire time or actually stands over the saddle and leans the bike into corners and so on, ‘working’ the bike surely

  11. “actually stands over the saddle and leans the bike into corners and so on, ‘working’ the bike surely”………….and what %tage of buyers are likely to notice?
    Sorry James but the “ordinary” punter buying a bike is unlikely to be standing there, in a shop, thinking, “wonder where the centre of gravity will be”
    I am one of those lardy blokes cheekymonkey mentions! I bought a Kona Dawg vs some it`s lighter competion for that very reason, it is solid!!!!

    Looks nice btw, bit of speccy, trek, santa cruz, can`t go wrong

  12. “It all depends if the “the big fat bloke waggling around on top of it several foot up” stays seated the entire time or actually stands over the saddle and leans the bike into corners and so on, ‘working’ the bike surely”

    Absolutely, I agree a rider shifting their weight around will make a big difference to the ride. What won’t (IMO) is whether a relatively minor amount of weight just a tiddly bit lower in the frame will do so, which was what I was commenting on.

    Hey ho :-8

  13. “a rider shifting their weight around will make a big difference to the ride. What won’t (IMO) is whether a relatively minor amount of weight just a tiddly bit lower in the frame will do so”

    Still thinking aloud, surely as the rider is so much heavier than the bike, the rider is more shifting the bike around (granted the wheels are on the ground, but the relative masses/speeds of the rider/bike mean that the rider is shifting the bike around to alarge degree) rather than just moving their weight about on the bike, so the centre of gravity of the bike in relation to the wheels must have some effect to its handling, however small a difference it could be
    Panniers are always loaded as low as possible surely for similar reasoning?

  14. “however small a difference it could be”

    Small difference indeed, probably nothing noticable. Which is what I was commenting on, to paraphrase “it’s a lovely design with a low cofg thanks to that low shock” Whereas I don’t reckon the change in cofg thanks to the shock position will matter a toss when you’re riding.

  15. i’m sorry but that looks good for a saracen! props to the designer!

  16. Cool. Cheers for the feedback.
    Just back from Hawaii.
    We’re still in testing mode to make sure everythings right before production.
    Looking at 3 models – starting at 1600 bananas for a Fox RP23/vanilla 140RL/Deore level build.
    And then around £2k For the SLX version with Float 140 RL 15QR taper steerer and 12mm rear axle.
    Range tops out around £3K with the XT version, Maxle rear, FIT damping Float.
    Prices are vauge at the moment as were still tweaking specs!
    Details will be confirmed in due course and we’ll be keeping the blog updated with the progress with a view to the bikes going on sale in Feb 2010
    Cheers
    Simon

  17. Interesting!

    What is the maximum fork length? work with a 160mm fork?

    Frame only option?

    Sizes? – how small does it go?

  18. I’d go for no more than 160mm as it will slacken things off too much. With 160 you could build a mini-mega bike by putting the ISCG mounts to good use.
    Sizes – 15″ 17″ 19″…
    Frame only – maybe and its only a mybe at present!

  19. hmm, very interesting

    be interested to see final prices, options and sizing (Centre to Top?) when its all confirmed…

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