Formula Introduces The Brand New Selva Enduro Fork

by
August 12, 2016

As one of the first brands to introduce a complete hydraulic disc brake system back in 1993, Italian company Formula is likely best known to mountain bikers for its extensive line of disc brakes. In recent years however, Formula has drawn on its extensive experience of manufacturing motorbike suspension to present a growing range of mountain bike suspension forks. Those include various iterations of the ’33’ and the ’35’ forks, which have emerged as niche alternatives to the likes of RockShox and Fox.

formula suspension selva fork enduro mountain bike
All-new chassis, all-new name, and all-new logo. Does the Selva signal the start of more new fork options from Formula?

Earlier this year, we brought you a review of the 160mm travel Formula 35 fork, which earned our praise for its buttery-smooth performance and ease of setup. Looking to build upon the strengths of the existing 35 fork, Formula has just unveiled its latest fork called the Selva. In essence, the Selva is a BOOST version of the 35. It uses fundamentally the same design as the 35 fork, but employs a beefier chassis to accommodate the wider hub spacing. One thing to note is that the Selva is the first fork in the Formula lineup not to use a numbered name, which suggests that it may be a sign of more things to come…

formula suspension selva fork enduro mountain bike

Here’s the company line from Formula’s shiny press release:

“The pinnacle of Enduro fork performance is now available in a Boost version. The exclusive Internal Floating Technology (IFT) gives the fork a previously unachievable level of smooth function while the Compression Tuning System (CTS) gives the rider a greater level of compression adjustment. The Remote Cartridge Control (RCC) puts the high speed compression control on the handlebars with its 13 positions from completely open to fully locked. The stanchions use the Hexagon Design making the Selva stiff and reactive, creating huge gains in riding precision and reliability. A strong fork, unequalled in its sensitivity for even the smallest bumps is available in 27,5”, 27,5” Plus and 29” with 120 – 180mm travel. The Selva is the sum of all our suspension knowledge and your definitive weapon for Enduro.”

formula suspension selva fork enduro mountain bike

The Formula Selva Fork features:

  • Designed for all mountain riding and enduro racing
  • Travel: 120-160mm (170-180mm on the ‘Extended’ 27.5in version)
  • Stanchions: 35mm hard anodized alloy
  • Spring: Hybrid air/coil
  • Internal Floating Technology
  • Damper: Drop-in cartridge
  • Adjustments: Spring pressure, spring volume, low-speed compression, high-speed compression, rebound, lockout
  • BOOST hub spacing only
  • Available in 29in, 27.5in, and 27.5+ versions
  • Claimed weight: 1940 – 1980 grams
  • RRP: €988- €1033

formula suspension selva fork enduro mountain bike

In order to clarify some details on the new Selva fork, we got in touch with Vittorio Platania from Formula in order to find out exactly what’s what:

ST: Is the Selva a replacement for the 35?
No, it is not a replacement. Selva is our BOOST enduro fork. It has the same spring and hydraulics of the 35, but with a new lower and the Hexagon Design to improve stiffness. The 35 will not be discontinued since standard hubs are still the vast majority. On the other side we hardly believe that boost will be THE standard in the future.

formula suspension selva fork enduro mountain bike

ST: I see that the Selva is heavier than the 35 fork. Is it simply the chassis that is different?
It’s heavier due to different lower and different crown. The internal is the same. Still very light if you compare it with other BOOST forks. The Selva is a super robust fork for enduro racing and aggressive all mountain, since you have the option of 180mm travel and 20mm thru-axle.

formula suspension selva fork enduro mountain bike

ST: What other differences are there between the 35 and the Selva?
As I said, just lower legs and crown. But this is not a small difference. The new lowers change a bit the stiffness of the fork. Our 35 is a perfect balance and so is the Selva, but maybe a little bit more ready for aggressive use. We prevent the “flexy issue” that more of the BOOST forks have with our Hexagon Design of the lowers.

formula suspension selva fork enduro mountain bike

ST: The blue compression adjuster dial; is this for adjusting high or low-speed compression?
The blue knob is low-speed compression. The heads you can change with CTS affects the high compression. On top of that you can play with compression also on the air side. Instead of token we used oil, you can put there anything in between 5cc and 25cc. So you can work better than tokens on compression cause you don’t have the steps of a piece of plastic. Let’s say that this is more like a fine tuning with the oil.

formula suspension selva fork enduro mountain bike
The Selva is a long-travel suspension fork that Formula have built for enduro racing and hard-hitting all mountain riding. It’s available in 29/27.5/27.5+ options, and with 120-160mm of travel. There’s also an ‘Extended’ version that pumps up travel to 170-180mm.
formula suspension selva fork enduro mountain bike
The new Selva features a redesigned chassis that is beefier than the existing Formula 35 fork. It doesn’t replace the 35, but is rather an additional option to the range to accommodate new BOOST front wheels and wider tyres.
formula suspension selva fork enduro mountain bike
There’s almost 200 grams of extra mass in the Selva, which Formula claims has added the necessary strength and stiffness to handle the wider BOOST hub spacing. Formula have gone to some lengths not to make the Selva too stiff however. They claim they’ve done this with their new Hexagon Design, which uses externally-shaped lowers to control unwanted flex.
formula suspension selva fork enduro mountain bike
The machined alloy crown is beefier than that found on the 35. The Selva is only available with a tapered 1.5in steerer tube.
formula suspension selva fork enduro mountain bike
A unique hybrid air/coil spring system is used to control the Selva’s travel. Just like the 33 and 35 forks, the Selva has a primary air spring, a coil negative spring, and a coil ‘starter’ spring, which helps ease the fork into its travel. Having ridden Formula’s existing forks, we can confirm that they are uber-smooth.
formula suspension selva fork enduro mountain bike
Not to be confused with Internal Floating Piston (IFP), the Internal Floating Technology (IFT) simply refers to the integration of the air spring with the Selva’s chassis. A ball joint on the end of the main seal for the air spring means that lateral loading on the fork doesn’t affect the suspension feel due to flex of the internals.
formula suspension selva fork enduro mountain bike
More dials than an F-11 cockpit. Well, maybe not quite that many. Just three really. The gold lever is an on/off lockout, the blue dial is for adjusting low-speed compression, and the black adjuster (2.5mm hex key) is for adjusting the lockout threshold.
formula suspension selva fork enduro mountain bike
External rebound adjustment is made via the red dial at the base of the right fork leg.
formula suspension selva fork enduro mountain bike
AFA: Another Fancy Acronym. Ok, so this one is kind of neat. It’s the lever for the thru-axle, which can be set at any angle after you’ve tightened it up. Formula call it (*sigh*) Integrated Locking System, or ILS for short.
formula suspension selva fork enduro mountain bike
Pretty simple. The end of the lever uses a 5mm hex key to lock into the axle for tightening or loosening. Worried about precious grams on your race run? Then you can ditch the lever. When you re-install, the lever ‘pops’ into place thanks to a small rubber O-ring that avoids self-ejection on the trail.
formula suspension selva fork enduro mountain bike
Available aftermarket for €13 is this alternative to the ILS lever. It’s basically a L-shaped hex tool with a 5mm end for the axle, and a 2.5mm tip for adjusting the lockout threshold dial at the top of the fork. If you’re a gram counter, you’ll be thrilled to know that this is lighter that the ILS lever. How much lighter? We’re not sure, but it’s probably like 3x jelly snakes.
formula suspension selva fork enduro mountain bike
Love to fiddle and fidget? For €62 you can adjust low-speed compression damping via this RCC hydraulic remote that sits on your bars. RCC effectively combines the lockout and low-speed compression damping into the one lever. It’s indexed with 13 notches to give you heaps of adjustment between wide-open and fully locked.
formula suspension selva fork enduro mountain bike
Ok, we got AFA for you: the Compression Tuning System (CTS) provides you with three high-speed compression shim stack modules. This valve head sits underneath the blue external compression adjuster, and the CTS dealio means you can easily swap in a different module to alter the high-speed compression feel. You’ll have to pay to play however, with the CTS kit (including the blue tool) selling for €99.
formula suspension selva fork enduro mountain bike
Did we mention that the Selva comes IN FREAKIN’ PURPLE?!

And there you have it: Formula’s new Selva enduro fork, in all its colourful BOOST’d glory. Formula will begin shipping the new Selva fork in September this year. As for other new stuff from Formula? We’ll just have to wait and see…

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