wmb trail bike of the year…
I’ve had a suspicion that wmb trail bike of the year is a payday for the publishers paid by the highest bidder,I say this because bikes that have won seem to be the “latest thing”.wasn’t it a 29er last year?might seem a bit harsh but they also hype up the comp as if it’s the definitive test of all mtb’s,I get the feeling they’re actually covert salesmenPosted 3 years ago
Bought wmb today as I was bored. I’d highly recommend it for unbiased, carefully thought out reviewing, and their complete disinterest in 650b. Naaat. Lesson learned. My favourite part was where they described a bike’s high point as being light and good value, and its low point as being heavy and overly expensive…Posted 3 years ago
Frankly considering that the entire bike industry’s thrown all of its efforts and r&d into 650b bikes for the last couple of years, it’d be astonishing if the best bikes in the world weren’t 650b, just from sheer weight of numbers. This year’s bikes, by and large, are better than last year’s bikes. Course, that doesn’t mean they’re better because they’ve got marginally bigger wheels, it means they’re better because they’re better.
The advertising claim doesn’t really seem to bear fruit… Because I’m awesome, I spent a little time looking at the mags and it was pretty obvious that advertising wasn’t buying high marks in any of the big 3 mags. There’s room to be suspicious of other things- some brands get more coverage than they seem to “deserve”, the number of planet x products in future mags was massive frinstance and I don’t think it’s any shock that mbr covered orange favourably, outright cheating some of their own tests…Posted 3 years ago
All the mags seem to hate fox these days (I in fact agree on that one, I’ve always preferred the feel of rockshox, but that is personal).
Northwind – I agree with you about advertising, but the 650b thing and the complete nonsense about bikes’ strengths and weaknesses was a bit much. They made out that if a trail bike didn’t have 650b wheels, an exact 67 degree ha and a 10mm stem it was crap. And then went on to award a bike with a rubbish spec (they particularly hated the fox 32 on it) as bike of the year, despite banging on the bike of the year having to be killer value.Posted 3 years agoAlexSimonSubscriber
Then why did they dismiss the frame only options?
If it is a crappy rear mech, stem etc. then sure, but not something as intrinsic to the performance of the bike, not to mention costly to replace, as the forks.
Both valid points 🙂
I guess if they were still faster on that bike, then the fork thing seems a bit odd.Posted 3 years ago
I thought the consensus was that Fox 2014 were perfectly acceptable and it was 2013 that was rubbish.ninfanMember
Seems logical – that the ‘overall package’ is better than the sum of the parts, because it rides and handles really well, even with the crap fork
isn’t how a bike actually rides more important than paper spec? I’ve ridden plenty of bikes that ticked all the bling boxes, but in reality I didn’t like that much!Posted 3 years agoz1ppyMember
philfive – Member
Then why did they dismiss the frame only options?
Haven’t fully read it yet, but the finalist where not to exceed £3K… the F/O options tested (SC 5010 & intense off-hand) cost £2800 & the eventual winner cost £2799. You really wonder why they dismissed the f/o options?
My own personal conspiracy theory with WhatMTB bike of the year, is that they like to spread the wealth around.. as who-ever wins will sell out asap.Posted 3 years ago
I agree with many of the comments above, it was the contradiction of almost everything they said that I found so ridiculous. They banged on about head angles and actually said that 67 was perfect but 68 was rubbish, but then said that their favourite money no object bike was the Santa Cruz 5010 which has, you guessed it, a 68 head angle! Pure drivel. Still it made me laugh.
The fox forks that are regarded as bad are the Evo spec ones as opposed to the better factory ones.Posted 3 years agoRusty SpannerSubscriber
I’ve read two completely patronising articles in WMB, the gist of which that the public was stupid not to be embracing 650B.
After the Plant X/On One/Future fiasco the previous year, I should have realised how flexable the views of our media are when faced with a determined bike industry.
Not bought WMB since, won’t be buying it or MBUK again.Posted 3 years agomaxtorqueMember
The problem for “review” type mags is that there really aren’t any actually crap bikes any more. Just like in the automotive world with modern cars, the objective differences between bikes is now so vanishingly small it becomes a subjective review by large. As such you get all sorts of mumbo jumbo like “makes the impossible, possible” and such, which really means absolutely nothing.
Hence, the reviews only really make sense in two areas:
1) value for money (how much stuff you get for your cash
2) subjective, bang-on-trend, (ie “enduro etc) responses not based on any facts. ie, they like the shape of the frame, or it’s colour, or those are my fav handlebars etcPosted 3 years agoNobeerinthefridgeSubscriber
What exactly is a ‘trail’ bike, and how do you define the best out of all of them?.
Pile of shite. We were talking on the way home from Fort William on the train at the weekend about how surprising it was to see the new YT Capra getting 10/10 on test,
Then noticed the full page YT ad inside the back page.Posted 3 years ago
Nobeerinthefridge – Member
We were talking on the way home from Fort William on the train at the weekend about how surprising it was to see the new YT Capra getting 10/10 on test,
Why is that surprising though? Are you saying that no review can be trusted if the company also advertises in the mag? Considering that advertising’s what keeps print media alive, that’s tricky.Posted 3 years agoandyl46Member
What got me was the same forks on the bike that won were touted as the bit that ruined every other bike with them fitted. That simply doesn’t make sense. (I haven’t the article to hand but the very first and lowest scoring bike reviewed had this “issue” I think, yet it didn’t seem to matter somehow with the winner’s geometry.
Oh and one last thing; don’t give away the bloody winner in an article before the actual shootout. Really annoyed me that. Rather than letting me read through, wondering who won, working my way down the list to the final winner with a bit of suspense, it stuck in a piece having to defend their ludicrous decision before they told you who had won. Just smacked of people covering their own arses because they couldn’t actually justify all the guff they had written IMO.Posted 3 years ago
@teadrinker- Future pulled a review of a PX bike (Dirty Harry?) from a grouptest because another brand that advertised more had a bike they wanted in the same test. People took that as being “advertising buys test wins” but we never knew whether the other brand one, or whether the PX bike was in the running at all. But still pretty dubious.
But, when you took a step back and discovered that PX were one of the most reviewed brands in the mags, it looked a bit less grim- despite the grumping, PX seem to get more attention than you might reasonably expect (more than high advertisers Orange and Boardman, frinstance)Posted 3 years agoChrisLSubscriber
The way I read the article, the bumpf at the start was them saying “if we had to predict what sort of bike would win the best beforehand, we’d say 67 degree head angle, these bits, these wheels, etc.” That a bike that didn’t fit that prediction won the test could be seen as a good thing – at least it proves that they gave the bikes a proper test, rather than just checking their spec sheets and giving each a ride round the car park.
In the Mondraker review I like that they acknowledged the bike’s shortcomings then stated that they didn’t hold the bike back, rather than just glossing over them and leaving the reader scratching their head as to why the Evo fork was mentioned as a problem on other bikes but not that one.
On the other hand the extent of their conversion to 650b is a bit wearing. It is particularly irritating that for the last few years they told us that the geometry for 29ers was totally sorted and problems like poor low speed handling had been completely fixed yet now 650b is here they say it’s solved all those problems that 29ers apparently no longer had!Posted 3 years ago
I think whotsisname, Jon Whitehouse is it? His article earlier in the mag showed a bit of kool-aid drinking… Meanwhile Matt is GO 29ERZ
Just reading the big test now, it does feel like they worked from the ride backwards, rather than from the spec forwards. Which, I dunno, I can see the reasoning behind but it does make things very subjective. There’s still a couple of oddities, like the Kona- “We think another bike in their range is better”. TEST THAT ONE THEN.Posted 3 years ago
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