First Ride: Polygon’s $3,299 Colossus N9

Polygon’s new Collosus N9 first emerged in all its city camo painted glory at Sea Otter this yr, full with the IFS suspension format first seen on the Mt. Bromo eMTB. The bike has 29″ wheels entrance and rear (it isn’t mixed-wheel suitable), and 170mm of journey. After a season of enduro racing and refining it is now out there, with an aluminum body and a $3,299 price ticket that stands out in stark distinction to the ultra-expensive carbon machines which were launched not too long ago.

For the value, Polygon have put collectively an amazing elements package deal. Suspension is dealt with by a Fox 38 Performance fork with a Grip damper, and a 230 x 65mm Float X2 shock. SRAM Code R brakes with 200mm rotors assist maintain speeds in examine, and Shimano takes care of the shifting by way of an XT derailleur, SLX cassette, and XT cranks. Unfortunately, these cranks are 175mm lengthy, which is probably not excellent for riders in rockier terrain. 2.6” extensive Schwalbe Magic Mary tires are mounted onto Entity rims which have a 35mm inner width.

Colossus N9 Details

• Wheel measurement: 29″
• Travel: 170 mm
• Aluminum body
• 63.5º head angle
• 77º seat tube angle
• 435 mm chainstays
• Sizes: S – XL
• Weight: 39.25 lb / 17.8 kg (measurement L)
• Price: $3,299 USD
• polygonbikes.com

All of that provides as much as a not-insignificant 39.25 kilos (17.8 kg) – Collosus looks like a really becoming identify given these numbers.
Frame Details

The Collosus’ body is visibly stout; every little thing from the ahead shock mount to the double-braced swingarm makes it appear to be it was constructed to take a beating. All of these hyperlinks and the shock place do take up some valuable water bottle actual property, which implies that solely a ‘common’ sized bottle will match within the entrance triangle. Still, it is higher than nothing. There’s additionally no in-frame storage or any accent mounts to be seen. Another function that is lacking is a common derailleur hanger, one thing that is prone to turn into extra of a ‘should have’ if the rumors about SRAM’s subsequent era drivetrain are true.

There is a ribbed chainstay protector, though it is a bit of quick – additional protection in the direction of the entrance of the chainstay would assist maintain the paint from being chipped by the chain. The brake, derailleur, and dropper strains are routed internally, though there is not actually something contained in the body to maintain them from rattling round – fortunately, I did not discover an excessive amount of noise on my check bike.

It is good to see that the Collosus is spec’d with a sequence information and a bash guard, since crunching a chainring is an effective approach to put a damper on a race run. There’s additionally body safety on the underside of the downtube to maintain it protected from flying rocks or truck tailgates.

Geometry

Most of the Collosus’ geometry numbers are proper according to what’s turn into the norm for this class. The head angle sits at a slack, 63.5-degrees with a 170mm fork, the attain is 480mm for a measurement giant, and the seat tube angle is 77-degrees. The chainstays are on the shorter facet at 435mm throughout the board – they do not change with every measurement, a observe that an increasing number of firms are adopting.

Suspension Design

Polygon appears to have an affinity for suspension designs which might be a bit of completely different from the norm – there was the wild-looking floating dual-link FS3 design again in 2014, and the much more out-there aesthetic of the SquareOne EX9 with its R3ACT suspension in 2017. The Collosus retains the development alive, though the general look most likely will not be as polarizing as these different two examples.

It makes use of a model of the IFS (Independent Floating Suspension) design first seen on Polygon’s Mt. Bromo eMTB. The idea is that the 2 decrease counter-rotating quick hyperlinks can be utilized to dictate the axle path, whereas the seatstays and rocker hyperlink are used to regulate the leverage curve, or how a lot development there’s. All these hyperlinks might make it simpler for designers to attain the suspension traits they need, but it surely additionally means there are 16 cartridge bearings to maintain observe of, and the lowermost set of bearings are immediately in entrance of the rear wheel, proper the place mud and grime will find yourself on a sloppy trip.

The anti-squat percentages are pretty excessive, sitting round 121% at sag earlier than regularly dropping off because the bike goes by way of its journey. The scaling of the chart makes the development look pretty excessive, however in actuality it is round 19%, which is pretty typical for an extended journey enduro bike.

Ride Impressions

To anybody who says that weight does not matter, I encourage you to take the Collosus out for a spin. I’ve spent loads of time – years, actually – pedaling round bikes within the 40-pound vary, and I’m removed from being a weight weenie, however I’ll admit that it is a bit of more durable to muster up the motivation to get out on a protracted pedal on a motorcycle this heavy. Who is aware of, perhaps I’m simply getting delicate.

Yes, I understand the Collosus is not some loopy costly, carbon fiber marvel bike, and I’m prepared to chop it a bit of slack within the weight division contemplating its price ticket and strong elements package, however 39 kilos continues to be fairly chunky. I can not assist however marvel how a lot weight and complication would have been saved by going with a tried-and-true Horst Link format, fairly than sticking on the hyperlinks required for the IFS suspension format?

Weight apart, the Colossus does pedal effectively, particularly for a motorcycle with 170mm of journey. The suspension is calm sufficient that I did not really feel the necessity to flip the Float X2’s climb swap, and even on longer fireplace street grinds I used to be completely content material protecting it within the open place. The chainstays are on the shorter facet of the spectrum, however the steep seat angle and slack head angle work collectively to assist maintain the bike from feeling prefer it needs to loop out on steep climbs. Even although it is a pretty substantial, slack bike, I did not discover it to be overly tough to maneuver by way of tighter switchbacks or extra technical sections – it is actually the gradual rolling tires and total heft that give it a extra subdued really feel when heading uphill.

When it comes time to descend, the Collosus is not the quickest out of the gate, but it surely feels very strong and prepared for something as soon as it is on top of things. The again finish is sort of stiff, and that trait mixed with the shorter chainstays makes it straightforward to snap the rear wheel out and in of tight turns, though that does include barely lowered traction and stability – at instances it felt just like the Collosus’ rear wheel was extra prone to slide by way of a flip fairly than carve a clear arc. It additionally does not have the plushest, most fluttery suspension really feel; it will take the sting off the tough stuff, it simply does not erase these larger hits in the identical manner that another bikes on this journey bracket do.

Overall, the Collosus N9 delivers an amazing worth in relation to the elements spec, and the geometry is not going to carry it again so long as you retain it pointed down steeper, extra technical trails. The weight is the most important draw back, though which may not be a lot of a priority for riders who spend most of their time climbing inside a shuttle automobile or sitting on a chairlift.


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