OK so it has been asked, and I am bored.
Demo'd a Five 29er black gold (£3000) at Glentress last month and a Gyro Pro (£3200 with suspension upgrades) at Nevis Range on saturday, and was just thinking about how they compare. Oh, I'm going to say 5-29er because it's easier
TL;DR- Gyro very 29erey, didn't like much, quite pointless IMO. 5-29 very Fivey, quite good, not what I expected.
What they both do- they both come with horrible tyres, poor show Orange. Both do that Orange thing of jump-on-and-ride, instantly familiar and comfortable, which is great. Both pretty flexy. Oh and yeah, both too expensive but durr. Neither is a pleasure or a disaster going upwards. Both better going fast than slow.
Ride-wise they're pretty different. Comparison to ST4 and Five is good. Gyro felt like a (failed IMO) attempt at an XC bike, 5-29 felt like a (successful) attempt at a proper 29er trail bike.
5-29 really surprised me. Turned out to jump like a mad thing, absolutely brilliant, agile in the air too- flattered me. Slightly slower to turn but not so much as to be an issue, you just deal with it, it feels really natural to lean it harder than you might a Five. It did smooth out bumps a bit but not drastically- all in all, it didn't feel all that 29ery, which is good and bad.
I couldn't get within miles of its limits though as the OEM tyres are hopeless. I'd like to try it somewhere harsher, with suitable tyres. But maybe this was fairer as the demo bike had the retail-spec parts. If you buy one, replace them, otherwise you might as well not bother IMO. I'd also love to try it on some proper slow tech, none was available for the demo but it'd be interesting to see how it copes.
Gyro is more of an advertising man's 29er, it does feel more ponderous and it doesn't feel as happy in the air and it definitely felt short travel when landing. Bringing it down through the woods at fort william was hard work, it sucked up the roots but it was harder to maneouvre. Ironically it was both hard to change lines, and hard to keep it on the one you'd chosen.
Climbing... Neither is light, and both feel like hard work for slow climbing. Riding them into headwinds was orrible. Get the speed up and both work better- I think maybe most 29ers without light wheels or tyres would feel a bit like this? The difference between the two isn't massive though, especially with propedal on (both had posh CTD kashima shocks) On the twisty climb on the 10UTB route the gyro was a bit truck-like, I don't remember the 5-29er ever feeling harder to manage than my 26 inch bikes.
Both are flexy as built. Despite the piss-poor tyres I still managed to drive the rear tyre into the swingarm on both in corners, bzzzzzz. You can see the swingarm tips bend if you push the wheel despite the maxle, but I think it's mostly the wheels.
Tyre clearance isn't great either even before it all starts moving around. That's a blacker mark for the Five I think, it could benefit from a fat, grippy tyre but I don't think it can carry it too well. Maybe with a better wheel.
The Five came with a Fox 34 but the flexy wheel meant it was a wee bit irrelevant, a bike's as accurate as it's bendiest bit. I didn't find the flex troublesome though, there are pluses as well as minuses- but if you want stiff, they are not.
The other kit is all unremarkable- neither was very well set up, lots of excess cable and hoses everywhere, etc, which I'd expect better at this price.
In the end I just don't see much point to the Gyro, it's not significantly better than the Five at anything, and much more limited. If they still make it in 2 years I'll be surprised. I think if you want an XC/marathon bike there's better options for less, and if you want a more allroundery bike there's little reason not to get the 5-29. It feels every bit like a first attempt.
Meanwhile, the 5-29er is a success. I wouldn't buy one I think but most Five owners will probably like it- it's surprisingly true to the name. People who ride the 26er Five as hard as it can be ridden might not, but for more average use I reckon it's a good option. It's the most 26ish 29er I've tried! With a few spec upgrades it'd be a good contender. I wish I could have ridden it more.
Oh and black gold + kashima = way prettier than my dowdy 224 Must... resist... respray... In medium, both were handsome bikes.