2022 Predictions from Singletrack – What’s in the future of MTB?

by 83

Every year we play at making like we’ve got our finger on the pulse of the future and have a go at predicting what’s coming in the year ahead. Despite current inclinations to hide under a blanket and not think too much about tomorrow, we’re having a go again, casting our future vision to the sunlit uplands of 2022…

Mystic Mark – Publisher

Since Mark didn’t make any predictions last year (perhaps he saw 2021 coming…) we’ll dive straight into his vision for 2022:

Keeping It Real

I’m coming at this from a publishing perspective and the buzz word of the year will be ‘community’. But don’t worry, it’s still very much relevant to us as mountain bikers – we are already a community after all.

There will be a slow transition away from platform based, so called communities and back towards real, and in many ways more independent platforms out of a realisation that the big tech companies are not in fact there to help us connect, but to exploit us for ad impressions. Not that we weren’t already aware of the controlling tech giants behind our platforms of choice but that slow transition from awareness to action will start to pick up in pace this year.

Influencers will be less influential as everyone realises that a) there’s so many of them and b) they are mostly exploited themselves by corporations and sponsors behind the scenes. Real communities belong to the community and not to the platforms that manipulate them.

To be fair, this is less a prediction and more a continuation of a movement that has already begun (How many of you are planning a social media ‘dry’ period already?). Be ready for a response from the giants though, they are cunning, manipulative and very powerful. There will be resistance. Wolves in sheep’s clothing and all that.

More, Better, Cheaper eBikes

On a specifically more bike related theme I see the evolution of the eBike continuing a pace. They have already dominated the bike buying market for the last few years and their continuing development will continue at an exponential rate in 2022.  Expect more acceptably light offerings as well as options with even greater battery capacity for those consumers attracted to sheer scale of watt hours. I see the next big market move towards ebike offerings at the lower price points – in the next year these bikes won’t actually be very good by our standards but they will increase the thirst in the market for this type of technology and will provide a level of product that the better technology at the top end can drip down to in the years to come.

Crystal Baller Benji – Tech Content Manager

How will our newest addition to Singletrack Towers fare in the soothe-saying stakes? With the number of ideas he has, we think he’s opting for a spread betting approach – something he suggests must come true, right?

A return to the noughties

Sometime in the mid-noughties the bike industry tried to convince us that regular trail bikes should have 150mm of travel. They were right of course but their timing was about 15 years too early. In 2022 we now have the technology and (crucially) the rider attitude and experience to make 150mm travel trail bikes perfectly, well, perfect. From now on trail bikes are going to have as much travel as possible so long as the overall genuine on-trail weight doesn’t stray too far over 16kg. The 30lb barrier has been consigned to the past. Good riddance. Well-designed 16kg trail bikes are much nicer places to be for big days out than anything else.

World Cup DH resumes ruling

The XC bubble is going to burst. There’s only so many times you can watch riders awk their way around a manicured faux-tech course. It’s not like it doesn’t always still come down to whoever is the fittest. If anything XC is selling itself a wrong ’un by trying to up its tech level. Bring back massive climbs please. Downhill is leagues and leagues ahead as a spectator sport. As well as the racing itself, there’s the pre-race behind-the-scenes YouTube gawping and the post-race OTT analysis.

Mo’ electronics, no interest

Bike designers are clearly into microchips and electronic stuff. Which is fine. I’d probably be of the same mindset in their position. But I’m not. I’m just someone who likes mountain bikes. And mountain bikes work incredibly well already. They don’t need computers and chips. Expect more electronic gubbins on suspension units and drivetrain bits. Don’t expect anyone to buy them much. Having said that, this chips-with-everything mentality is already coming unstuck due to the global microchip shortage.

Winter of e-contentment

This is a prediction for this time next year ie. winter 2022. Basically, loads of mountain bikers are going to buy their first ebike. It arguably would have happened this year but supply chain woes and other global things got in the way. Winter 2021 is going to be the last winter that a lot of experienced UK mountain bikers are prepared to take on without assistance.

More people getting the bike they want

This is a great thing. No one is being limited or forced into buying a mountain bike that doesn’t suit them. The mountain bike media is finally at the age where we’re not recommending bikes based on the likely terrain they’re intended for. Bikes are beyond that. The perfect mountain bike is the 150mm trail bike I mentioned above. But perfection is boring and un-inspiringly sensible. It makes no ‘sense’ to ride a short-travel coil-sprung bike that weighs a ton. Nor does it make sense to ape Nino Schurter’s bike when all you’re doing is riding tepid bridleways. But if you want to do that because it floats your boat. You can do. The bikes are out there.

More stack

Head angles are fine. Reach numbers are fine. Seat angles are fine (in fact they may actually have become too steep but that’s another story). You can even find 165mm cranks on bikes these days. The area that needs attention next is stack. Basically, bikes’ front ends are too low for a lot of riders. We arguably only had low slung front ends to help counter the illness of the other geo numbers on mountain bikes. It’s time to get our grips up and grin again.

Put away the idlers

As a longtime idler-curious person, it comes as something of a sadness to say that high-pivot idler bikes have possibly run their course.

More metal filing cabinets

Now that Specialized and Trek have put down tube storage compartments on their bikes, the rest of the world is sure to follow. I’m not sure I’d buy a bike that didn’t have frame storage. Which sounds like a bonkers thing to say but it’s true. Frame storage is the new bottle bosses.

More diversity

There will be more people in mountain biking who aren’t white men. If you have a problem with that then you have a problem full stop.

Hannah’s Hunches – Managing Editor

Last year I predicted:

  • The resurgence of Shimano
  • Restructured Race Support
  • Waterproof Flat Boots
  • Price Increases

Shimano sold out (but then, so did everyone), the race support thing didn’t really happen, but we did get waterproof flat boots and price rises. We also finally got my prediction for 2019 – the rise of women’s freeride. What do I think the future holds?

Experience over excellence

This might be cheating since I think it’s already happening, but I expect brands to focus their marketing on the experience of mountain biking rather than the ability to go faster and win races. Longer, slacker lighter and stiffer will be usurped by promises of fun, adventure, relaxation and friendships.

Collaborative corporate social responsibility

I think some brands will focus their marketing efforts on projects that give back to the sport, but without the stamp of a proprietary initiative. We’ve seen World Bicycle Relief – initially a mostly Giant and SRAM led project – receive support from across the industry. I expect to see similar support for Trash Free Trails, and perhaps a more cross-brand collaboration on trails maintenance and inclusion initiatives. This may well coalesce around an existing multi destination event, like Crankworx or the EWS.

Elastomers

Have I predicted this before? I feel like I have. Everything comes back around, and they’ve probably figured out how to stop elastomers disintegrating like rubber bands, so it’s time for the resurrection of the elastomer. RevGrips and Fasst handlebars are already in on the act. Expect seatposts for gravel comfort, and just slightly less than rigid forks for bike packing.

The golden age

As riders from the birth of mountain biking hit 50 and more, ebikes continue to make the outdoors more accessible, and people look for covid safe outdoor pastimes, I think we’ll see bike companies target older riders’ disposable incomes. Light weight ebikes, low standover options with electronic droppers for easier mounting, electronic shifting for weakened or arthritic hands, and regular service packages to ensure reliability… your parents and grandparents are going to be spending your inheritance on bikes.

Access and dissent

I think we’ll see more rumblings around access rights, though not all the noise will be coming from mountain bikers. A push for more outdoor access generally will have an overlapping agenda with those who want the right to protest, the right to gather, and the reduction of private interests over public. Whether it’ll all come to anything might well depend on whether there’s an election or leadership battle – and who wins it. Maybe I’m two years early with this one?

Mystic Chipps – Editor at Large

Chipps says: After 2021 didn’t really go the way that most of us thought/hoped, we seem to be in a similar position to a year ago, so who knows what’s going to happen? With that said, I’ve put my prediction glasses on and I’ll have a go to see what I can see for 2022. 

Here’s what I suggested a year ago:

Events cancelled: I said “I don’t think we’re out of the Covid woods yet and I can still see a few events even going into the summer that’ll be curtailed or cancelled. Can you imagine a spectator-free Fort William DH or Olympic final? It’s unimaginable, but it’s what many football games have been doing for the autumn.”

Mostly right there, I reckon.

“Wireless XTR – Still no sign. However, 2021 is an Olympic year and Shimano’s 100th birthday, so if ever there was a time.”

A solid ‘Wrong!’ there… I also suggested there’d be an unspecified scandal (nothing there either), a move further away from 27.5in wheels by manufacturers (mostly correct, I reckon, unless you count mullet bikes) and ‘Cheaper and more electronics’ – This seems to have been borne out with the launch this spring of SRAM’s GX AXS groupset, a more affordable (though still hardly ‘cheap’) electric, wireless groupset. Nothing yet from the other Big S though. I reckon that’s still a win for that prediction.

So what does Chipps think 2022 has in store?

Solo Longo

On to next year… After two years of travel and social restrictions I think that some riders might just take up other sports. It’s hard to travel, it’s been hard to cram into a pub/cafe after a ride and it’s hard to get hold of bike bits to keep your bike running. I reckon that a small part of the lockdown mountain bikers are going to give up again. However, I also think that the great majority will throw themselves at making the most of what they have – whether that’s an out of date bike, or limited travel opportunities and they’ll just get out there regardless and scour the hillsides for every single trail they can get to. There’ll be more spontaneous riders out on bikepacking adventures (the original socially distant sport) and more riders on longer, solo missions because those are easier to organise and easier to adjust/postpone/cancel than trips away with a bunch of friends.

Shortages

It seems that component and material shortages will continue into 2023, so don’t expect to be able to go into a bike shop and get everything you need every time. Saying that, though, there’ll probably be oddities resulting from over-ordering during the scarce months, so those places that pre-emptively ordered 1000 10-50T cassettes are going to be left wondering if they need to sell them cheaply, expensively, or not at all and to just hang on to them. It’s definitely going to be the year of ‘You like it? Then buy it now, because it won’t be here tomorrow’ impulse buying. Or of not buying at all. 

KIS/SS – Keep It Simple/Single, Stupid

And keeping in that vein. Is it time for the singlespeed to return? Charlie seemed to think so last year. How about a three speed, for those of us with slightly older knees now? 

No problems with FOMO

One thing that the last couple of years has shown is that plans have had to change, trips cancelled and meet ups put on hold. The great thing to come out of that is that, for the most part, no one minded. If you couldn’t get to the ride due to isolating, or if your yearly trip to the Lakes was moved back a year, no one really minded. What really mattered was making the most of things when you got the chance. I think that will continue. If you can’t get to an event, or on a trip, don’t stress. We’ll all get there in the end… 

What do you think? Would you like us to pick your lottery numbers for you? Or would you not even trust us to pick your energy supplier? Head to the comments and let us know what you think is coming!

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Viewing 40 posts - 41 through 80 (of 83 total)
  • 2022 Predictions from Singletrack – What’s in the future of MTB?
  • thegeneralist
    Full Member

    I’m assuming @thegeneralist version of a big day has more miles and climbing but less teeth loosening rocks where 150mm of travel is really needed on day 5 of 5. 😁

    Bit of both really. Yes the 100km+ rides were pretty flat comparatively, but I’d suggest the following have their fair share of dick swinging teeth loosening rocks requiring long travel:


    Semi Walna Scar to Torver. Back to Coniston. Up the Old Man then Swirl How & West Side Edge to Little Langdale. Bits and pieces back to Coniston.


    Supposedly the top 10 descents in the Peak: Cavedale, Derwent Edge, Blackamoor, Stanage plantation, the Beast, Toboggan Run, Potato Alley, Rowarth, Hollins Cross


    You’re right that the Back of Skiddaw and Mungrisdale don’t have much rocks, but I feel that the addition of Glenderatera then Skiddaw followed by Ullock Pike rescues it somewhat?

    OK, so a ride that starts at quarter to six in the evening could never be described as a big day out, but 53km & 1600m including Jacobs Ladder, Hollins Cross, Edale Skyline, Roman Road, Winn Hill cheeky, Derwent Edge. Actually you’re right that wasn’t particularly rocky for 🤔its length.


    Morrone at Ballater is a fairly rocky ride. And if you then add on 5 Munros with a finale from the summit of Sagairt Mor to Loch Callater then I do feel it belongs in the rocky category.


    Lakes 4 passes. OK it’s not long, but I still put it in the big day out category as it has one or two rocky sections.


    Likewise Lakes 3 passes. If you replace the rubbish Gatesgarth descent with a nip over Harter Fell then I reckon it just fits in the rocky gnarr category. And if you add in a few diversions in Kentmere then it becomes a full day out 😉


    Whaddabout Helvellyn? Fair enough the Sticks pass descent is a bit blown out, but if you then ascend all the way back up Keppel and then descend Birkside, Shirley that fulfils the rocky criteria.


    Cairngorm doesn’t make it onto the list cause it’s such a short ride, but I reckon 5 pinch flats in 2km suggests it’s quite lumpy. That or my family need to learn how to ride bloody bikes.:-)

    I like long rides. I really like long rocky rides, but they tend to be restricted by how far I can go ( as do yours). The weight of the bike plays a huge part in that and this idea that 16kg monstrosities will become the norm is worrying, as they suck the joy out of anything bar downhill, restrict the distance you can go and everyone will end up on a bloody ebike as a consequence 🙂

    thegeneralist
    Full Member

    Where are you riding that gives you such a lot more rocks per km Ta11pau1?

    I want to move there.

    Paul
    Full Member

    Very similar rides to you actually, I’ve done quite a few of the same rides in the lakes and peaks, not so much in Scotland but it’s on the list.

    Anyway, to get off this tangent – I don’t think an upper limit of 16kg ready to ride on a long travel trail bike is bad personally, you obviously prefer a lighter sightly shorter travel bike for the similar rides. A stronger, fitter version of me might well prefer something lighter with less travel but in my current state I’ll take a bit extra comfort over losing a kg or 2 (my backpack must be several kg on a big day anyway!!). 🙂

    Choice is a great thing!

    tomparkin
    Full Member

    I read the “16kg” thing as being a rule-of-thumb upper limit for actual trailside bike weight (i.e with pedals, tools, water bottle, etc).

    And that really in the context of not stressing overly about bike weight. Bikes have become bigger, wheels are bigger, suspension has become bigger, decent tyres weigh a bit. It’s not that much of a bother, and probably for a lot of people something a bit bigger and tougher is going to give a better day out than something built with too much of an eye on the scales.

    Of course, it’s different strokes for different folks in the end, and if you prefer a lighter bike for what you ride then that’s grand. But I don’t think a 16kg upper limit is unreasonable 🤷‍♂️

    mrmo
    Free Member

    Really starting to wonder if Shimano is abandoning di2 on MTBs

    robertajobb
    Full Member

    Be careful Wheelsonfire1. I was shouted down for the heresy of pointing out 1x is a bad expensing solution to a problem that didn’t exist (’emperor’s new clothes’ really).

    cookeaa
    Full Member

    Really starting to wonder if Shimano is abandoning di2 on MTBs

    I very much doubt it “trickle down” is their preferred phrase, it just means you won’t see it bellow XT for a while, I mean us plebs have got 12 cogs available on Deore already, can we really afford chips with that as well?

    andyspaceman
    Full Member

    Another +1 for stack height. But 40mm rise bars (mine are from USE) do a great job.

    Agree re. 150mm for trail bikes. Ibis Ripmo is a great example, super on a big day out in the hills, although wheel & tyre choice is key. It’s a very different bike running a fasttrack/ground control combination on light wheels than it is running an Assegai/Dissector combo on 35mm wide rims.
    More people running 2 or 3 wheel/tyre sets would be my accompanying prediction.

    And I reckon the return of singlespeed would be great (although it’s already back for some of us). Would love to see a boost/disk brake version of the Sturmey Archer 3-speed hub available, or their kick-shift 2-speed. Love my SS but my knees aren’t getting any younger.

    thegeneralist
    Full Member

    I read the “16kg” thing as being a rule-of-thumb upper limit for actual trailside bike weight (i.e with pedals, tools, water bottle, etc).

    You read it as the weight of the bike, and water bottle, and tools, and other stuff…

    Why?

    tomparkin
    Full Member

    From now on trail bikes are going to have as much travel as possible so long as the overall genuine on-trail weight doesn’t stray too far over 16kg.

    It was the phrase “on-trail weight” which made me think that. The weight of the actual bike you’ll be riding. I may be reading too much into it 🤷‍♂️

    tomparkin
    Full Member

    More people running 2 or 3 wheel/tyre sets would be my accompanying prediction.

    Multiple wheelsets was always the theory with frames which can work as 650b+ or 29er. I wonder how many people actually ran bikes like that in reality?

    +1 for multiple tyres, although I suspect most people tend to fall into either a serial-tyre-swapper or one-set-and-done camp.

    thegeneralist
    Full Member

    You may be right. I just read it as weight with pedals ( and gloop and inserts if you use thhem)

    God I’m so bored and irritable after 6 weeks sat around doing fuck all. Sorry.

    Mr Tetchy

    mrmo
    Free Member

    I very much doubt it “trickle down” is their preferred phrase, it just means you won’t see it bellow XT for a while, I mean us plebs have got 12 cogs available on Deore already, can we really afford chips with that as well?

    But it’s stuck on 11spd, and has been for a few years now despite 12spd trickling down to Deore.

    garethjw
    Full Member

    New wheel standard for 2022. It’s been too long without a new one. 675B?

    tomparkin
    Full Member

    God I’m so bored and irritable after 6 weeks sat around doing **** all. Sorry.

    No apologies necessary if you’re aiming them at me, and I hope you are able to get out soon 👍

    tails
    Free Member

    https://www.pinkbike.com/news/shimano-granted-fcc-wireless-approval-for-another-derailleur-and-control.html

    Shimano are still working on it.what about electric hub gears.

    I’d like better stock! I like all this on bike storage and some legs that don’t turn to jelly.

    walleater
    Full Member

    @rootes1, I’m not really surprised that you want more stack height 😉

    I remember an old workmate owning a 26″ wheeled DH bike, with a slammed stem and an 800mm flat bar! The things people do for fashion. Although I’m sure it was partly due to the bikes being short back then and you needed a low front end in order to weight the front wheel on corners.
    Now, with loooooong bikes with long rear-centers, you need a higher bar in order to get the front wheel off the ground…..

    Can we not transfer this to the bike forum where it belongs and make it bigger than the rich energy vs whyte post. It would be interesting to see everybodys opinion on what the next new standard or product we never knew we couldn’t ride without will be, or what’s on your wish list.

    billoddie
    Full Member

    ok i wood like to see back some good hardtails from bc likes of chromag and covebikes back and much more xc raceing in south wales and more some help with trail building in afan and afan bike shed is haveing a new building at last.

    Cove bikes are no longer a thing but Chromag are going very very strong!
    Have a chat to Pedals Eco bike centre in Edinburgh as they bring them in.

    footflaps
    Full Member

    As riders from the birth of mountain biking hit 50 and more,

    Surely they’d all be mid 50s now. MTBs became commercially available mid 80s eg Rally Maverick (1985), Muddy Fox Explorer, Ridge Backs etc. If you bought a Rally Meverick, at say 15, in 1985 you’d be 52 this year. If you were in on the real birth, before you could just buy one in the LBS, you’d be even older.

    My first MTB was a Ridgeback 601 in maybe 87/88 and I’d already spent several years being very jealous of friends with Muddy Fox Couriers / Raleigh Mavericks…

    HoratioHufnagel
    Free Member

    ebike developers are chasing more power and less weight.

    IMO what they really need to do is make the motors serviceable. Chucking away a 1k motor and buying another if its not covered by warranty is crazy.

    I own a Shimano powered one, but I’m buying another until then!

    thegeneralist
    Full Member

    Surely they’d all be mid 50s now. MTBs became commercially available mid 80s eg Rally Maverick (1985)

    ‘Scuse me!
    I’m only 49 thanks very much.

    Red Raleigh Maverick with sidepull brakes and steel rims.

    nickc
    Full Member

    and they’ll start questioning the extremely fast wear rate of 1X

    Not in my experience. My 12sp GX/XO1 mix is proving pretty indestructible. just changed a chain at 3 years and roughly 1800mils and it had less than .25% wear.

    What utter garbage, really really really.

    Can’t argue with such a well reasoned and thought through position as that

    nickc
    Full Member

    Really starting to wonder if Shimano is abandoning di2 on MTBs

    My prediction is that we’ll see something new from Shimano electronically, but it won’t be a straight copy of of SRAM’s wireless AXS (Shimano don’t/won’t do that) I reckon it’ll be some half-way house of wired/wireless combo.

    My Predictions

    E-Bikes will sell more than regular bikes in wealthy western countries like UK, Germany etc.

    XC racing will not die a death. Not with riders like Van Art, Pidcock in the men’s happy to race everything.

    EWS will die a death as it currently operates. (not sustainable)

    POV MTB YouTube channels will die.

    ayjaydoubleyou
    Full Member

    The XC bubble is going to burst

    I would guess the reverse. With the evolution of world cup courses seemingly now favouring a 120mm full squish, and said bikes climbing so well that they dont give anything up – or even add benefit, despite the weight penalty – on climbs.
    Its close to the point where only the tyres differentiate a pro’s race weapon from the ideal <toungue in cheek> trail centre destroyer.

    Downhill is getting more and more niche with many recreational riders picking enduro bikes.
    Enduro race bikes have upped their game due to the above so it isn’t “trail bike racing” any more.

    XC will catch up to “downcountry” <shudders> as the do it all machine.
    I’ll still be keeping my bigger travel coil sprung skills compensator too mind.

    thisisnotaspoon
    Full Member

    My predictions, unfortunately, no return to simpler bikes.

    Supply issues mean there’s little or no point in manufacturers making anything other than making the greatest profit per unit, and that’s going to mean prioritizing their expensive models. Brands offering only budget-friendly models are going to struggle to get production slots or parts to build them, again.

    The bursting of the review-based media bubble.

    As a consequence of that I predict manufacturers feel less need to feed the media hype machines. Why fly journos out to Moab to ride your latest 2022 electric everything dandyhorse when you’re already selling out the 2024 stock? Or gamble on a grouptest when the best-case scenario is you win, but have already sold out.

    Singlespeeds to make a resurgence. New bikes from Singular and Stooge. On-One finally come out with something to replace the SS Inbred.

    nickc
    Full Member

    Oh yeah, and the introduction of an E-Bike based race. I reckon it’ll either be a part of EWS, and will grow so huge that EWS will effectively become an E-Bike series, or an E-bike version of it that will attract more money and support from manufacturers

    cookeaa
    Full Member

    But it’s stuck on 11spd, and has been for a few years now despite 12spd trickling down to Deore.

    Shoving an extra sprocket on a cassette and a click on a shifter is pretty easy mechanically, and that was done to attract the OEMs, but it’s probably even easier on Di2, just a firmware update, except how do they derive much extra income from that? Di2 is very much at the “Premium” end of things for them still.

    Just look at Road Di2 if you want to see how shimano tend to operate with leccy shifting, they used Firmware to prevent backwards compatibility between 10 and 11 speed Ultegra Di2. The last thing they wanted was punters buying a couple of extra parts to get that extra cog, rather than needing a whole new Groupset/bike…

    If you’re a company flogging complete bikes, you’ll shift a lot more units with 12 Deore or NX clicks than 11 or 12 XTR/X01 leccy gears, expensive bikes actually make less money so why rush to replace your flagship product early?

    I don’t doubt current generation 11 speed Di2 could be made to work with a 12 sprocket cassette, but it’s not in shimano’s interests to do it straight away, it’ll come with the next facelift…

    Oh yeah, and the introduction of an E-Bike based race. I reckon it’ll either be a part of EWS, and will grow so huge that EWS will effectively become an E-Bike series, or an E-bike version of it that will attract more money and support from manufacturers

    Haven’t a few e-bike events been tried already?
    I don’t doubt it will come eventually, but it’s still not really proper bicycle racing is it.
    The problem any E-bike racing format faces right now though is, where does the Grass roots of the sport come from?
    I’m sure you could rustle up some willing pros to race a their sponsors bike, but for any sport to have “legitimacy” (IMO) you need to be getting kids/young adults involved and the cost of a competitive E-bike is still going to be pretty prohibitive (how many people under 40 with an ‘Average’ income buy them currently?). XC/4X/BMX/CX/Trials, even DH and Enduro, all have “E-bike racing” beat on basic cost of entry as things stand today…

    With everyone’s cost of living rising I really can’t see “E-bike Enduro” taking off before 2024…

    weeksy
    Full Member

    Haven’t a few e-bike events been tried already?
    I don’t doubt it will come eventually, but it’s still not really proper bicycle racing is it.
    The problem any E-bike racing format faces right now though is, where does the Grass roots of the sport come from?
    I’m sure you could rustle up some willing pros to race a their sponsors bike, but for any sport to have “legitimacy” (IMO) you need to be getting kids/young adults involved and the cost of a competitive E-bike is still going to be pretty prohibitive (how many people under 40 with an ‘Average’ income buy them currently?). XC/4X/BMX/CX/Trials, even DH and Enduro, all have “E-bike racing” beat on basic cost of entry as things stand today…

    With everyone’s cost of living rising I really can’t see “E-bike Enduro” taking off before 2024

    You clearly don’t go to many events in the UK, the Enduro races are rammed with ebikes… and i do mean pretty well rammed. Cannock is rammed with Ebikes, so is 417, Forest of Dean, even Rogate had a fair few last week.
    There’s many many many many e-bikes out there now and plenty of them are also racing them.

    cookeaa
    Full Member

    You clearly don’t go to many events in the UK, the Enduro races are rammed with ebikes… and i do mean pretty well rammed. Cannock is rammed with Ebikes, so is 417, Forest of Dean, even Rogate had a fair few last week.
    There’s many many many many e-bikes out there now and plenty of them are also racing them.

    That’s probably a fair criticism, I’ve not been going to any Events for the last couple of years (Family/Work/Covid excuses)…

    Either way though it can’t be kids rolling about on them is it? Surely it’s middle-aged, middle income bracket blokes No? People already into MTBing, and with the necessary disposable income for an electro-Dandyhorse…

    We’ll see I suppose, I just don’t see the most expensive possible flavour of bicycle taking off as a viable competitive format at all levels.

    weeksy
    Full Member

    Oh I’m not saying it’ll dominate at all levels, but there’s enough about to be a decent series or 3. Sure you couldn’t fill a 400 bike event purely with ebikes, but if you’ve got a 400 bike event you’ll add another 100 in ebikes.

    Youngsters, yup I see plenty of them on ebikes too. Plenty.

    kernduro
    Full Member

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    <div class=”bbp-reply-author d-flex align-items-center flex-wrap”>Premier Icon<span class=”bbp-author-name”>nickc</span>
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    Oh yeah, and the introduction of an E-Bike based race. I reckon it’ll either be a part of EWS, and will grow so huge that EWS will effectively become an E-Bike series, or an E-bike version of it that will attract more money and support from manufacturers

    E-EWS began in 2020 IIRC

    Edit (multiple edits in fact): additional 2022 prediction – this forum will continue to vomit HTML code in replies when I attempt to use the quote function!

    James
    Full Member

    Weight is no big deal. I’ve pedaled heavier than 16kg bikes on some big days out in big mountains, enjoyed it too. Value for weight is the point I think.

    Mainstream MTB will be a powered sport soon enough, that was my take on MTB’s future a while back and I’m more convinced of that now. People who ride non-e bikes will be part of an XC KIS sort of niche that I think will grow as bikepacking, gravel and non-race XC MTB attitudes continue to merge.

    I reckon 22′ will see more “utility” bikes, based on MTBs

    Yes – e-bike SUVs. City e-bikes with skinny tyres are a daft idea.

    ScotRoutes
    Full Member

    Mainstream MTB will be a powered sport soon enough

    I haven’t seen updated figures but a couple of years ago the average amount paid for a bike in the UK was £350. When ebikes come down to that sort of cost, they’ll be mainstream. Until then they will remain the preserve of a wealthy minority.

    P-Jay
    Free Member

    Anyone else predicting a return to an abundance of Shimano consumables, because my cassette is gopping.

    mrlebowski
    Full Member

    XC won’t die despite what the haterz wish.

    More lightweight emtbs for sale.

    Nobeerinthefridge
    Free Member

    I haven’t seen updated figures but a couple of years ago the average amount paid for a bike in the UK was £350. When ebikes come down to that sort of cost, they’ll be mainstream. Until then they will remain the preserve of a wealthy minority.

    Whilst I don’t think that’ll happen, tbf he’s quoting MTB whereas, and correct me if I’m wrong, you’re quoting cycling as a whole?. There is definitely a greater percentage of powered MTBs being sold, but nowhere near a majority mind.

    nickc
    Full Member

    The problem any E-bike racing format faces right now though is, where does the Grass roots of the sport come from?

    I think if you launched an e-bike based enduro event (or series) in the UK now, you’d fill it with no worries…

     but a couple of years ago the average amount paid for a bike in the UK was £350.

    For a bike maybe, for a proper reactional mountain bike used as a hobby (what we’re discussing), I think the vast majority of sales will be powered (if they’re not already).

    thegeneralist
    Full Member

    Weight is no big deal. I’ve pedaled heavier than 16kg bikes on some big days out in big mountains, enjoyed it too.

    OK (assuming we have a similar definition of big daybout)

    But if that is the case then why do you think the following?

    Mainstream MTB will be a powered sport soon enough, that was my take on MTB’s

    Seems a bit contradictory

    nickc
    Full Member

    Seems a bit contradictory

    I don’t think it necessarily is. personally I don’t think the barrier to MTB is money I think it’s fitness. Mountain biking is hugely enjoyable to lots of folks, but a hard sport to do well at. It takes a certain level of fitness that many haven’t got the time to keep up with. Once you’ve got it, a 16kg bike isn’t really much of hinderance. Lose it however, and it soon becomes a slog.

    The other part of this is the thought that lots have on here and other sites that e-bikes are prohibitively expensive. They’re not. The £10K plus normal bike has been with us for what? A decade, maybe more, and every year there’s more and more of them. Specialized sell every single S-Works bike they make, and the £8-10K market is bigger again. E-Bike have two major advantages…They’re affordable as a MTB in the same way the 5 years ago you couldn’t move for Bronsons and Nomads, and you don’t have to be (as) fit. For the aging demographic in recreational MTB, these bikes are perfect.

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