FIRST RIDE IMPRESSIONS: THE ALL-NEW IBIS HD6 – LOVE AT FIRST RIDE
An evolved enduro bike
FIRST RIDE IMPRESSIONS: THE ALL-NEW IBIS HD6
Building on the success of the MOJO HD and Ripmo lines, the new HD6 from Ibis sees an evolution in the world of enduro race bikes. An increase in travel on both ends, a redesigned suspension layout, and mixed wheels make the HD6 a formidable enduro racing weapon.
Designed around a 29″ front wheel and 180mm fork, the HD6 has the ability to plow through and over almost anything. A dedicated 27.5″ rear-end keeps things agile and maneuverable, and the 165mm of dw-link driven suspension is sensitive off the top while providing plenty of progression for bigger hits and impacts. This new frame is compatible with all coil shocks as well, for those who prefer the linear feel of a coil rather than an air shock. Although the suspension layout has a new and different look compared to their previous offerings, it remains dw-link driven and retains the inherent efficiency it is known for, meaning it does not need an overdamped shock to climb well. This off-the-top sensitivity lets the bike feel very planted and gives the confidence to push into corners and through rough sections, yet it climbs like a bike with much less travel.
Engineered with input from the Ibis Enduro World Cup team, the geometry, suspension curve/kinematics, and overall design were defined to provide a balance between stability and agility. The 64-degree head tube angle puts the rider in a comfortable and stable position, while the 435mm chainstays let the 27.5″ rear-wheel hug the ground while staying agile. Although the chainstays remain the same length across all 5 sizes, the seat tube angle increases from 76 degrees to 77.5 degrees between a Size 1 (Small) and Size 5 (XX-Large), giving riders of all sizes a comfortable and ergonomic pedaling position. Since steepening the seat tube angle results in larger jumps in reach as frame size increases, a fifth size was added so that riders can achieve a more precise fit. Geometry numbers between sizes are now closer together, so a rider that is in between frame sizes can achieve the fit and ride that they prefer.
Ibis is shifting their sizing to a numbered system, encouraging their customers to base their frame size on their preferred geometry measurements (mainly reach and top tube numbers) rather than solely on their height. Low standover heights across all 5 sizes and straight seat tubes allow any size dropper post to be used (150mm max on size 1), and a 34.9mm seat tube diameter enhances the stiffness and increases reliability.
Tube-in-tube cable routing makes brake or derailleur changes easy and headache-free, while torque specs laser-etched onto the hardware and UDH compatibility make it simple and straightforward to work on. The combination of lower-link bushings and upper-link hardware reduces wear and the need for yearly bearing overhauls. There is clearance for up to a 2.5″ rear tire, as well as room for a 26 oz bottle (22 oz on size 1) and mounting points on the top tube for tool storage. Frame only w/ a Fox X2 Factory shock are priced at $3,899, while complete builds start at $6,099 and go up to $11,199 for the XX Transmission-equipped model. All bikes receive a lifetime warranty on the frame and wheels, as well as lifetime replacement for the frame bushings.
Check out the video below for our first-ride impressions of the new HD6! If our first thoughts are any indication, we are going to get along with this bike very well. It is extremely stable and planted at speed, but doesn’t feel like a long-travel enduro bike when things get tight and technical.