In development for five years, the new Diamondback Yowie is a short travel play bike that’s designed to work as well on the trails as on race day. With just 110mm rear travel and a 130mm fork, the geometry is an interesting mix aimed keeping it spritely in no matter which way the trail is headed.
The 29er Yowie has been put through its paces under Eric Porter in the Utah mountains, logging about 1,000 hours of ride time on it with another tester getting about 1,000 more up in the Pacific Northwest. Which is partly why it’s taken so long for the Yowie to come out, but the idea was born from Eric’s time spent coaching his kids’ NICA league.
A lot of kids (because, you know, it’s Utah’s Wasatch Crest area) had longer travel bikes designed for the amazing lift-served trails near Park City. Which is too much for XC racing, but it’s hard to commit to a pure XC race bike when so many big trails are literally out your back door.
So, the Yowie was designed to have just enough travel to keep it fun and playful on many of them, but efficient enough for racing, too.
It helps that XC racing itself has gotten more aggressive, with “downcountry” almost becoming the new “cross country”, and riders looking for bikes that can tackle big rock gardens and mountain resorts. So, the Yowie’s 130mm fork paired with a 110mm rear end makes a lot of sense.
It’s a 29er, so it rolls fast for XC and epic marathon rides, with a 67º head angle sitting squarely at the XC end of the spectrum, and a steeper 75º seat angle and 435mm chainstays put the rider in a good pedaling position.
Their Level Link suspension keeps the lower link in line with the chain throughout its travel, and the upper link is parallel to that at the sag point, keeping it supple over the small stuff while minimizing the impact of pedaling forces.
It’ll come in carbon and alloy models ranging from $3,100 to $5,550, shipping this summer. Read their development story for more details.
The new Diamonback Haanjo upgrades the frame and features to become one family of bikes for almost any rider. Also available in carbon and alloy, spec will range from a very simple, beginner friendly option for just $1,000, up to fully equipped bikes with suspension, droppers, and more topping out at $5,700.
The un-suspended bikes get a new carbon fork with three accessory mounts plus fender/rack mounts, and two models get suspension forks – one with a 40mmm Rockshox Rudy, and the other with a 60mm SR Suntour GVX32 – with geometry designed to work well with those suspension forks.
There’s surprising spec on some models, with dropper seatposts, suspension stems, and even the new WTB Gravelier saddle. More mounts on the seat tube, downtube, top tube, and dropouts add a lot more cargo capacity than the prior model.
Full details on the bikes and models will be released soon, and they’ll start shipping later this year. For now, check out this retro-painted version they had on display at Sea Otter.