scott ransom

All You Need To Know About The 2019 Scott Ransom

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When Scott unveiled the brand new 150mm travel Genius platform last year, there was a suspicious absence of the long travel version. That seemed a little odd, because the Genius LT has been a very popular model for Scott over the past six years. As it turns out though, those sneaky Swiss scoundrels have been busy in the background working on something big to plug that gap.

How big? Well, apparently there’s been a sufficient enough departure from the old bike to warrant a revival of one of Scott’s most iconic model names; the Ransom.

scott ransom
The Scott Ransom is back for 2019!

Debuted in 2006, the original Ransom arrived on the market as a genre-bending, 165mm travel All Mountain bike that featured adjustable travel and Scott’s own Equalizer shock. Alongside bikes such as the Santa Cruz Nomad, the Ransom was one of the early long-travel superbikes. Unlike its American counterpart though, the Ransom was built from carbon fibre, which brought frame weight down to just 3090g (6.8lb) with shock. This was quite unique at the time for such a big travel bike, and combined with its TC handlebar remote system for limiting the rear travel for climbing, the Ransom was a truly radical do-it-all bike – even by today’s standards.

The Ransom enjoyed a pretty good run up until 2010, before it was quietly pushed into the shadows and replaced by the superior Genius LT. For 2019 though, the Ransom is once again ready to step into the limelight.

scott ransom
The Ransom will replace the Genius LT in the Scott full suspension line.

To point out the obvious, this new Ransom looks nothing like the old one. It does, however, share the same spirit of its ancestor. It has a monstrous 170mm of travel at both ends, a custom shock with remote-adjustability, and a high-tech carbon fibre frame that Scott claims is the strongest it has ever produced. As is typical of a modern Scott full suspension bike though, there’s more to this one than first meets the eye.

2019 Scott Ransom Features

  • 170mm travel front & rear
  • Frame accommodates 27.5in or 29in wheels
  • Max tyre clearance: 27.5×2.8in or 29×2.6in
  • Available in carbon and alloy frame options
  • Virtual 4 Link suspension design
  • New Fox NUDE TR EVOL rear shock w/3-position TwinLoc remote & Ramp Adjust
  • Rear travel modes: Descend (170mm), Traction Control (120mm), Lockout
  • Adjustable geometry: Low (29in wheels) and High (27.5+ wheels)
  • Head angle: 64.5° (Low) – 65° (High)
  • Seat angle: 75° (Low) – 75.5° (High)
  • Chainstay length: 438mm (Low) – 436mm (High)
  • PF92 bottom bracket
  • Integrated 1x chainguide
  • 148x12mm rear thru-axle
  • Available sizes: Small, Medium, Large & X-Large
  • RRP: £2,799 – £6,999
scott ransom
With 29in wheels and 170mm of travel front and rear, the Ransom isn’t designed for riding just part of the mountain.

Anyone Need To Lift A Car?

In both function and form, the new Ransom frame shares a lot in common with the latest Genius platform. Scott’s latest full suspension bikes are settling on a homogenous design, with short integrated head tubes, a hockey stick-shaped top tube and a conventional four-bar suspension linkage.

There will be four different spec levels available in the Ransom line-up, with both carbon fibre and alloy frames used throughout. For the top-end 900 Tuned model, you’re looking at a full HMX carbon fibre frame with an alloy rocker link sandwiched in the middle. For this plastic-fantastic frame, Scott has gotten the weight down to just 2650g (claimed) including the rear shock and hardware. That is only 400g heavier than the Genius frame, and is mighty impressive for a carbon frame that Scott says is its strongest yet. According to the engineers, you could actually hang a small car off the bottom bracket shell, which is good news should you ever find yourself in such a scenario.

scott ransom
The Ransom 900 Tuned model on test features a full HMX Carbon Fibre frame that is apparently Scott’s strongest yet.
scott ransom
The Incredible Hulk of bottom bracket junctions!

The bottom bracket area of the frame is colossally overbuilt. There’s a 92mm wide press-fit BB that makes use of SRAM’s new DUB unit, with custom steel bearing races that press directly into the carbon shell. Just above this is the main pivot, which sits right inline with the 32t chainring. The cartridge bearings are spaced nearly 10mm wider than the main pivot on the Genius with the goal of increasing stiffness through the rear end. The frame swallows the rear shock via a wide trunnion mount, though compared to the Genius, there’s a bit more space surrounding the shock body to allow for clearance for a piggyback shock, or even a coil shock should you choose to fit one.

scott ransom chainguide
Main pivot sits right inline with the 32t chainring.

Despite the suspension gizmos, Scott has done well to keep the Ransom looking clean, with clearance inside the mainframe for a water bottle, and internal cable routing inside the downtube and chainstays. To ease the pain for mechanics, the cables do run externally just above the BB, and there are super tidy cable guides integrated into the main pivot hardware. Unlike the Genius that uses bushings on most of its pivots, the Ransom is decked out with sealed cartridge bearings throughout.

scott ransom
Anti-slap rubber.

The Ransom gets the same adjustable 1x top-guide as the Genius, though perhaps controversially, there are no ISCG tabs for fitting a taco blade or full chain device. Scott has added armour lining the downtube’s belly though, and textured rubber padding is applied to the inside of the drive-side chainstay and seatstay to dampen chain slap.

scott ransom
Four-bar suspension design.

Naked Suspension

With 170mm of travel at both ends, the Ransom is one big ol’ 29er. Most models will come with a Fox 36 fork up front, except for the entry-level model that gets a RockShox Yari.

It’s out back where things get interesting though, with Scott utilising its own shock design called the ‘Nude’. Manufactured by Fox Racing Shox (except on the entry-level model, which is made by X-Fusion), this rear damper is loosely based on Fox’s Float DPS shock, but features a considerably bigger air canister along with an additional positive air chamber. The reason for this extra air chamber is to facilitate the Ransom’s on-the-fly adjustable travel.

scott ransom fox nude shock
New for 2019 is the Fox Nude TR shock with its huge air canister.

Just like the Genius and Spark, the Ransom uses the TwinLoc handlebar remote, which adjusts both the fork and the rear shock to deliver three separate positions;

  1. Descend: Both fork and shock are fully open
  2. Traction Control: Limits rear travel to 120mm & increases fork’s compression damping
  3. Locked: Both fork and shock are locked out

In Traction Control mode, one of the positive air chambers inside the Fox Nude shock is closed off, reducing total volume and making the shock much more progressive. The spring curve becomes so progressive that it actually limits the travel from 170mm to 120mm. As well as improving pedal efficiency, Traction Control mode also lifts the BB height and steepens the angles a touch, which are both useful for climbing.

scott ransom twinloc
The updated TwinLoc remote is much more ergonomic.
scott ransom fox nude shock
The Fox Nude TR shock offers 3 distinct settings.

For 2019, there will actually be three different Nude shocks used throughout the Ransom and Genius lines. The entry-level bikes come with an X-Fusion Nude shock, which features the same 3-position adjustability. Then there is the Fox Nude T and Nude TR.

The Nude TR that comes on the top two Ransom models is distinguished by a small external lever on the shock body, which offers control of a third air chamber. Called ‘Ramp Control’, this lever opens or closes the air chamber to provide Linear and Progressive settings when you’re in the open Descend mode. The effect is similar to adding or removing volume spacers inside the shock’s air can, but now you can do it simply by flicking a lever. According to Scott, the Progressive setting is ideal for riding bikepark-type terrain with bigger jumps and faster hits, whereas the Linear setting is for tackling more natural-type trails where you want a smoother suspension feel for maximum grip.

scott ransom ramp controm fox nude shock
And Ramp Control too.

It’s worth noting that the Nude shock can still be tuned with volume spacers to adjust the feel of the Descend mode even further.

Geometry Highs & Lows

Compared to the current Genius, the Ransom isn’t all that different geometry wise, probably because the Genus is already a very up-to-date bike. In terms of angles, the Ransom is only half a degree slacker in the head tube at 64.5°, and ever-so-slightly steeper in the seat angle at 75°. Due to the kinked seat tube however, the effective seat angle will get slacker as the seatpost is lifted higher out of the frame for those with longer legs.

The rear centre length is the same at 438mm, and the reach is also pretty similar across the four frame sizes (Small: 406mm, Medium: 439mm, Large: 466mm, X-Large: 499mm). The key difference with the Ransom though is in its shorter fork offset. Compared to the 51mm offset used on the Genius, the Ransom gets a 42-44mm offset.

scott ransom fox 36 float fork
The big Fox 36 slider uses a 44mm offset to increase Trail.

The shorter offset has the effect of increasing trail, which – all things being equal – should result in more stability on steep descents and riding at higher speeds, at the expense of increased wheel flop on the flats and climbs while riding at lower speeds.

Also like the Genius, the Ransom is designed to accommodate both 29in or 27.5in wheels in the one chassis. To accommodate wheelsize swapping, there is a small flip-chip in the upper shock mount that offers High and Low geometry positions, with High being recommended for 27.5in wheels, and Low being recommended for 29in wheels. To maintain the correct ride height though, Scott recommends running 2.4-2.6in wide tyres for the 29er setup, and 2.6-2.8in wide tyres for the 27.5in setup.

scott ransom
Two-position geometry chip offers dual wheelsize compatibility.
scott ransom maxxis minion 29x2.6in dhf
The ‘9’ series bikes come with 29×2.6in Maxxis Minion DHF tyres as standard.

Build Kits

As a bike that’s designed to thrive on high alpine singletrack and in a bikepark environment, the Ransom features a few key spec differences to give it a bit more muscle over the Genius. Most notably are the tyres, which are burly Maxxis Minion DHF’s fitted on every model. Additionally, there are wider 780mm bars and more powerful brakes with larger rotors.

scott ransom sram code rsc rotor
Powerful brakes and larger rotors come on all Ransom models.
scott ransom sram x01 eagle
As do SRAM 1×12 drivetrains.

You’ll find SRAM 1×12 drivetrains on all Ransom models, as well as 30mm wide tubeless rims and 150mm travel dropper posts (except for Small sizes, which come with a 125mm dropper). And as you’d expect, Syncros components feature heavily throughout the range.

scott ransom
The top-end 900 Tuned model comes bursting with bling.

2019 Scott Ransom 900/700 Tuned

  • Frame // HMX Carbon Fibre, 170mm Travel
  • Fork // Fox 36 Float Factory FIT4, 170mm Travel, 44mm Offset
  • Shock // Fox Nude TR EVOL w/3-Position TwinLoc Remote & Ramp Adjust
  • Wheels // Syncros Revelstoke 1.5, 30mm Internal Width
  • Tyres // Maxxis Minion DHF 3C MaxxTerra EXO Front & EXO+ Rear (29×2.6in or 27.5×2.8in)
  • Drivetrain // SRAM X01 Eagle 1×12
  • Brakes // SRAM Code RSC
  • Price // £6,999

scott ransom
All-black Fox suspension and a SRAM GX Eagle drivetrain adorns the Ransom 910.

2019 Scott Ransom 910

  • Frame // HMX Carbon Fibre Mainframe, 6011 Alloy Swingarm, 170mm Travel
  • Fork // Fox 36 Float Performance FIT4, 170mm Travel, 44mm Offset
  • Shock // Fox Nude TR EVOL w/3-Position TwinLoc Remote & Ramp Adjust
  • Wheels // Syncros Revelstoke 2.0, 30mm Internal Width
  • Tyres // Maxxis Minion DHF 3C MaxxTerra 2.6in EXO Front & EXO+ Rear
  • Drivetrain // SRAM GX Eagle 1×12
  • Brakes // Shimano Deore XT 4-Piston
  • Price // £5,099

scott ransom
Available with 29in or 27.5+ setups, the Ransom 920/720 models come with an alloy frame, a Fox 36 fork and SRAM NX Eagle 1×12.

2019 Scott Ransom 920/720

  • Frame // Alloy SL 6011, 170mm Travel
  • Fork // Fox 36 Float Performance FIT4, 170mm Travel, 44mm Offset
  • Shock // Fox Nude T EVOL w/3-Position TwinLoc Remote
  • Wheels // Syncros Revelstoke 2.5, 30mm Internal Width
  • Tyres // Maxxis Minion DHF 3C MaxxTerra EXO Front & EXO+ Rear (29×2.6in or 27.5×2.8in)
  • Drivetrain // SRAM NX Eagle 1×12
  • Brakes // Shimano MT520 4-Piston
  • Price // £3,599

scott ransom
You can get into Ransomania for less than £3k with the alloy-framed Ransom 930.

2019 Scott Ransom 930

  • Frame // Alloy SL 6011, 170mm Travel
  • Fork // RockShox Yari RL, 170mm Travel, 42mm Offset
  • Shock // X-Fusion O2 Nude w/3-Position TwinLoc Remote
  • Wheels // Formula CL Hubs & Syncros X-30S Rims, 30mm Internal Width
  • Tyres // Maxxis Minion DHF 2.6in EXO Front & Rear
  • Drivetrain // SRAM NX Eagle 1×12
  • Brakes // Shimano MT500
  • Price // £2,799

Want to know how the new Ransom rides? I’ve been testing one for the past month, and you can read my early ride review here.

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