DH is all about speed—that's true whether your aim is to climb the podium or to simply bring home all the bragging rights after a day at the park. If speed is what you're after, the Demo Race 29 is your sled. Everything about this bike is designed to get you from zero to Mach 10: a new frame design, improved kinematics, better braking, big wheels, and all today's newest fancy bits. It's time to get rowdy.
We've refined the Demo's kinematics and suspension design. We had one overriding goal—improve the bike's ability to carry momentum, no matter how technical the terrain. More momentum equals more speed, after all. We began by altering the Demo's axle path, making it more rearward in the initial stages of travel where sensitivity is most critical. The revised axle path reduces hang-up on square-edged bumps and that, in turn, transfers more energy to the suspension and less to you. Now, you finish a day of runs with less fatigue and more control.
Bigger wheels maintain momentum better than smaller ones—particularly over technical terrain. The Demo 29 weds 200 millimeters of suspension travel with bigger wheels in a package that's crazy fast, yet still bike-park playful. While we were at it, we also improved the Demo's suspension performance under braking and added a bit more anti-squat to improve its pedaling performance. Bottom line, the new Demo rolls faster through chunky terrain than its predecessor. Sweet.
The Demo 29's new shock linkage places weight low on the frame, giving the bike a lower center of gravity and an even more confident and planted feel at speed. The new linkage is connected to a Trunnion-mount shock, which provides the Demo with the same 200 millimeters of rear suspension in a smaller (225x75mm) shock package. That smaller shock package helped us build a stiffer front down tube. And what's more, the new Trunnion-mount shock features extra bushing overlap and adds ball bearings at the frame side of the shock, effectively boosting shock durability and making the suspension even smoother.
We've fine-tuned the Demo's geometry, as well. A relatively short (105mm) head tube keeps handlebar height in the right spot with the 29-inch wheels. We also compensated for the increased wheel size at the bottom bracket, keeping it at 350mm, in order to strike a balance between cornering stability and ground clearance. And lastly, the reach was increased by 20mm across the size range, starting at 425mm with the S2.
The devil is in the details, though, and the same rings true for the Demo 29, where we added a bunch of little details that make it easier to live with. A newly designed, ribbed chainstay protector makes chain slap a thing of the past and nearly silences the drivetrain. A molded down tube protector, meanwhile, protects the frame from rocks while a co-molded rear fender protects the shock from mud and debris. Clearance for up to 29x2.6"" tires allows for plenty of traction. And last, but not least, you're going to find 148mm rear-spaced hubs, a threaded 83mm GXP bottom bracket, 200mm available post insertion, and internal and external cable routing options for rear brakes. Add it up and the Demo is as easy to work on as it is to find replacement parts for.
To get your dream build started off right, the frame includes an Öhlins TTX rear shock with 200mm of travel, a 225x75 Trunnion mount, and high- and low-speed compression adjust. Finally, no DH rig would be complete without a Thomson seatpost, so yeah, we threw that in there, too.