Sadly I don’t have R80K to spend on a bicycle right now so I’m hoping brands will catch-up to the likes of Niner and Giant and Specialised and introduce “reasonably” priced softies. These will set you back anything from about R35K to R95K depending on how you choose to trick them out…
I think we can wait at least 2 years before dual suspension 29ers become reasonably priced and we will still be able to get the R90K+ versions. The R&D costs need to be recooperated and we are talking about specs, engineering and the materials used in these machines, those costs can be imense I’m sure!
I guess one of the questions I need to answer is whether the 29er hard-tail behaves at all like a 26 soft-tail, Obviously the soft tail will have the tyre plus the 80mm odd shock travel where the 29er would only have the tyre travel but I would expect a little more flex in the 29er…
I’m very much an average rider, so the additional comfort for me is a welcome luxury (at a price). I’d be looking at an aliminium full susser and i’m hoping that, like the Merida Mission 3000D back in ’08 when I bought mine, it won’t break the bank (relatively speaking to the full carbon) and give a really great ride. Whether that will ever happen, who knows.
So far the manufacturers that have seemed to be in the front in terms of full suspension XC 29ers are the following:
Niner Jet 9 – frame alone is R18,600
Giant Anthem X 29er – no idea on cost
Kona Hei Hei 2-9 – no idea on cost
Specialized Epic – no idea on cost
Trek – Gary Fisher – no idea on cost but depending on the spec anything from R44,700
Pivot Mach 429 – no idea on cost
Santacruz Tallboy – no idea on cost
Titus Rockstar – no idea on cost
I have not listed these on price at all as you see and most come in different component options so I have really just gone for an estimation and on the bikes I like.