The mtb scene has alot going for it, and the evolution of gear has never been as fast and rapid as it is right now. Its a great time to be a mountain biker, I love gear, so I salute it all.
2014 is going to offer alot of new interesting product; a new body-armor company (7IDP) two brand new AM forks from DVO and Manitou and a few things based on the rumor mill as well.
I took a look at whats interesting for 2014, and why you should keep an eye on it. Its also a list of whats WANTED for 2014, take a look;
Whats not to like about the Evil Uprising? Very low, and ultra slack, strong, ISCG tabs, lightweight, adjustable and stiff. This is definitely a frame I would feel at home at. But wait! Its not 27.5" you say!
You are damn right its not. Its 26 inches of EVIL.
(Evil is also working on a new bike called Insurgent, its a 170mm'ish AM bike, but I'm afraid we are talking 2015/2016. You read it here first!)
Doing things differently are one of the things that made me celebrate the body armor products of POC, a few months back. 7IDP is doing exactly the same; thinking outside the box, innovating, using exotic materials, and THINKING. They are not new to mtb products either, so this is definitely a brand you should be watching.
Next Gen AM forks
Oh, I'm not talking about the pike, I'm way ahead of the Pike actually. What catches my interest, is the next generation of AM forks from people with big ambitions. Forget Rockshox and FOX for a while. Take a look at DVO and their Diamond fork, or the Manitou Mattoc, or the CaneCreek AM-Fork (yes, its existence is actually confirmed in an interview). These forks will be tailored for aggressive riding, and DVO and Manitou already confirmed that they will be sharing a very strong genetic with their DH forks. This might open up for a new kind of performance, where mid-travel, sticktion, end-travel control, and overall damping will be the pinnacle of importance for these manufactures. Bring it, and change the way AM forks are performing.
Yet another excuse to visit the Vancouver area, again. Ill keep it short; The Coast Gravity Park is being built by one of the most experienced crews in the mtb world. And if you recognize any of these guys, you are sure to be exited as well. I don't expect to hit it in 2014, but man, it sure is on my wishlish for the future!