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Rocky Mountain Instinct 90 Review

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Rocky Mountain Intuition 90 Evaluate

The Takeaway: a dialed and succesful bike that places the “all” in all-mountain.

  • 140mm/150mm (rear/entrance) with adjustable geometry and shock charge
  • Eight fashions (two aluminum, six carbon) priced $3,129 to $10,499
  • 2021 updates embody modernized geometry and elevated anti-squat
  • Carbon fashions share a body with Rocky’s 160/170mm Altitude

    Value: $9,399 (Intuition Carbon 90 examined)
    Weight: 29.1 lb. (medium)

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    It’s new bike day at Rocky Mountain. The Canadian model is rolling out the newest model of the Intuition—its mid-travel—140mm rear, 150mm entrance—suspension bike constructed for all-mountain and all-trail responsibility. The Intuition is notable not only for its clear traces and easy profile, but in addition for its extremely adjustable suspension and geometry. My trip impressions are under, adopted by a dive into the bike’s options and a breakdown of the eight fashions Rocky provides.

    —Rocky Mountain Intuition Carbon 90 Particulars—

    Rocky Mountain Intuition Experience Impressions

    Numerous the bikes on this class are, just like the Intuition, jacks of all trades, however masters of none. Even so, some stand out for his or her skill to navigate technical terrain (the Pivot Switchblade), or are extra playful than most (Evil Providing), or push the bounds on geometry (Pole Stamina). However the Intuition seems like a middle-of-the-road bike within the middle-of-the-road class. That’s not a nasty factor, nevertheless. Whereas doesn’t break any new floor or scramble class paradigms, it does the whole lot it’s speculated to do, and does it effectively.

    rocky mountain instinct

    The purple and tan colour combo is unconventional, nevertheless it seems nice.

    Matt Phillips

    One of many good issues about this centered nature is that I instantly felt comfy on the Intuition. There’s not a studying curve or any quirks to navigate: simply set sag and ship it. The body is the “proper” quantity of stiff (not below or over stiff); the steering is energetic and impartial; it’s secure however not dead-feeling; the rear suspension is clean and constant. I used to be shocked at how rapidly it disappeared below me on the primary trip—5 minutes in and the Intuition felt as acquainted as a motorbike I’d ridden for 100 hours.

    For all-around path driving, the Intuition is pretty much as good a motorbike because it will get. It may smash chunky trails effectively and dances admirably by tight and techy trails. It’s mild sufficient to convey on all-day rides with epic climbs and succesful sufficient for some mild enduro smashing and bike park partying.

    A few of this versatility is unlocked by benefiting from the Intuition’s suspension and geometry tuning choices. Whereas I performed round with quite a few settings, I spent most of my time with the bike set in “impartial” geometry, with much less progressive rear suspension, and the brief chainstays/wheelbase, which labored effectively for my driving preferences and my ordinary rides.

    race face’s arc 31 rims

    Race Face’s ARC 31 rims are candy.

    Matt Phillips

    That stated, the bike does noticeably change character within the different settings so if you need a bit extra stability for shuttle driving, or a more true monitoring entrance finish for a high-country trip with huge climbs, you simply must spin some wrenches to get them.

    The rear suspension feels tuned extra for sensitivity and traction than pedaling effectivity. On smoother climbs, I flipped the shock’s change to the center or agency mode to get extra help and crispness out of the rear finish. And since I used the shock’s climb change extra usually on this bike, I appreciated having the same adjustment upfront on the Fox 36 with FIT4 damper.

    Whereas it would name for an help from the climb change on smoother climbs, the suspension traced the bottom very effectively on chunky, ledgy, or traction-challenged climbs, even when pushing laborious within the lowest gear. I didn’t really feel any pedal kickback both. And regardless that, in open mode, the rear suspension settles into its journey greater than some bikes on steeper climbs, the Intuition’s steep seat angle helps preserve you on high of the pedals.

    For one more opinion, I gave this bike to Darian—a former professional downhiller, nationwide champion, and ace mechanic—to check in Sedona, Arizona.

    rocky mountain instinct

    The Race Face dropper is similar to the Fox Switch.

    Matt Phillips

    She reported beginning with the Experience 9 within the slackest setting however discovered the entrance finish wandered lots and, “There have been LOTS of pedal strikes. I moved to the center setting and it helped restrict pedal strikes whereas retaining the geometry not too steep.” As soon as she settled on her superb setup, her opinion of the bike modified. “I may climb and descend to my coronary heart’s content material. I cherished this bike.”

    Each Darian and I cherished colour, which is a mix of metallic purple and flat tan which sounds a bit bizarre, nevertheless it seems concurrently enjoyable and fashionable. You can even get the bike in gloss turquoise with matte black.

    The Carbon 90 will get a high-performance dream construct, which brings the worth to a reasonably staggering $9,399 (costs begin at $3,129 for the alloy model). Shimano’s XTR shifting is wonderful, and the Race Face carbon rims are an underrated choice with a quick really feel and supple trip. I used to be additionally completely happy that Rocky didn’t get cute with the tires and simply went with the Maxxis DHF/DHR combo outfitted with the extra strong EXO+ casing. This isn’t a light-weight tire combo, nevertheless it’s powerful, dependable, and predictable.

    —Rocky Mountain Intuition Carbon 90 Construct—

    Fork Fox Manufacturing unit 36 Float FIT4, 150mm journey, 44mm offset
    Fox Manufacturing unit DPX2, 210 x 52.5mm
    Race Face Turbine R
    Shimano XTR
    Shimano XTR
    Race Face Subsequent R, 32t ring
    Shimano XTR Path, 180mm rotors
    Race Face ARC Carbon 31 rims, DT-Swiss 350 rear hub, Rock Mountain entrance hub
    Entrance-Maxxis Minion DHF 2.5 WT 3C MaxxTerra EXO+ TR, Rear- Maxxis Minion DHR 2.4 WT 3C MaxxTerra EXO+ TR
    Race Face Subsequent R 780mm
    Rocky Mountain 35 CNC
    WTB Volt Race 142
    Ergon GE1 Evo
    OneUp Elements Prime Information

    I used to be a bit shocked to see the FIT4 damper within the Fox 36 as a substitute of the GRIP2. The GRIP2 is best in demanding terrain, however the FIT4 is lighter and helps Rocky preserve this mannequin’s weight at about 29 kilos—a formidable quantity for a 140/150mm bike with some stable elements. Plus the FIT 4 has a climb change, which fits this bike’s do-it-all character.

    The elements weren’t excellent although. The WTB saddle has chromoly rails, which appears a bit low cost on a motorbike this costly—it must be the titanium-railed model. And although I like the modulation and energy of Shimano’s XTR four-piston brakes, these suffered from the wandering chunk level—which appears extra pronounced in colder climate—and pad rattle: two issues that appear to plague these brakes most of the time. The pad rattle I solved by swapping in aftermarket pads with out cooling fins; the wandering chunk level I, sadly, simply needed to take care of.

    rocky mountain instinct

    Lust-worthy Race Face Subsequent R cranks, and a OneUp high information for additional chain safety.

    Matt Phillips

    These small points apart, the Intuition Carbon 90 is a light-weight and versatile all-mountain bike. It might lack a hook that makes it stand other than a crowded pack of excellent bikes, however I discovered myself appreciating the Intuition’s functionality and intuitive really feel the extra I rode it. Put its wheels on a path, virtually any path, and also you’ll have a ripping good time.

    Rocky Mountain Intuition Fashions and Costs

    Rocky provides the Intuition in two body supplies and eight fashions. Frames are available six sizes—additional small by extra-large.

    The additional-small dimension rolls on 27.5 wheels, whereas the small is rider’s alternative: 29 or 27.5. The medium by extra-large are 29er solely.

    Yow will discover the total construct package breakdown at Rocky’s web site, however there’s a fast rundown of costs, claimed weights (dimension medium) and spec highlights under.

    Two fashions stand out particularly: the Carbon 70 Coil with Cane Creek coil-spring suspension entrance and rear, and the good construct and stable worth supplied by the Alloy 50.

    2021 rocky mountain instinct

    Intuition Carbon 99


    Carbon 99 $10,499

    • 28.8 lb.
    • RockShox Pike Final fork with Tremendous Deluxe Final shock
    • SRAM XX1 Eagle AXS derailleur and Eagle AXS shifter
    • SRAM XX1 crank
    • SRAM G2 Final brakes
    • RockShox Reverb AXS dropper put up
    • Race Face Subsequent R carbon wheelset
      2021 rocky mountain instinct

      Intuition Carbon 90


      Carbon 90 $9,399

      • 30.0 lb.
      • Fox Manufacturing unit 36 FIT4 fork with DPX2 shock
      • Shimano XTR derailleur and shifter
      • Race Face Subsequent R crank
      • Shimano XTR Path brakes
      • Race Face Turbine R dropper put up
      • Race Face ARC Carbon 31 rims with DT-Swiss 350 rear hub
        2021 rocky mountain instinct

        Intuition Carbon 70 Coil


        Carbon 70 Coil $7,629

        • 32.o lb.
        • Cane Creek Helm Coil fork with DB Coil IL shock
        • Shimano XT derailleur, shifter, and crank
        • Shimano XT Path brakes
        • Race Face Turbine R dropper put up
        • Race Face ARC 30 rims with DT-Swiss 350 rear hub
          2021 rocky mountain instinct

          Intuition Carbon 70


          Carbon 70 $6,899

          • 31.3 lb.
          • Fox Efficiency Elite 36 FIT4 fork with DPX2 shock
          • Shimano XT derailleur and SLX shifter
          • Race Face Aeffect crank
          • Shimano XT Path brakes
          • Race Face Turbine R dropper put up
          • Race Face ARC 30 rims with DT-Swiss 370 rear hub
            2021 rocky mountain instinct

            Intuition Carbon 50


            Carbon 50 $5,549

            • 31.1 lb.
            • Fox Efficiency 36 GRIP fork with Float DPS shock
            • Shimano XT derailleur and SLX shifter
            • Shimano XT Path brakes
            • Race Face Aeffect crank
            • Rocky Mountain Toonie dropper put up
            • WTB ST Gentle i30 rims with DT-Swiss 370 rear hub
              2021 rocky mountain instinct

              Intuition Carbon 30


              Carbon 30 $4,499

              • 31.7 lb.
              • RockShox Pike Choose RC fork with Deluxe Choose+ shock
              • Shimano Deore 12-speed derailleur and shifter
              • Shimano Deore crank
              • Shimano MT4120 four-piston brakes
              • Rocky Mountain Toonie dropper put up
              • WTB ST i30 rims with Shimano MT410 hubs
                2021 rocky mountain instinct

                Intuition Alloy 50


                Alloy 50 $4,499

                • 33.7 lb.Fox Efficiency 36 GRIP fork with Float DPX2 shock
                • Shimano XT derailleur and SLX shifter
                • Race Face Experience crank
                • Shimano SLX Path brakes
                • Rocky Mountain Toonie dropper put up
                • WTB ST Gentle i30 rims with DT-Swiss 370 rear hub
                  2021 rocky mountain instinct

                  Intuition Alloy 30


                  Alloy 30 $3,129

                  • 34.7 lb.
                  • Shimano Deore 12-speed derailleur and shifter
                  • Shimano Deore crank
                  • Shimano MT4120 four-piston brakes
                  • Rocky Mountain Toonie dropper put up
                  • RockShox 35 Gold RL fork with Deluxe Choose+ shock
                  • WTB ST i30 rims with Shimano MT410 hubs
                    2021 rocky mountain instinct

                    Intuition Carbon frameset


                    Carbon frameset $3,549

                    • 6.90 lb.
                    • Fox Manufacturing unit DPX2 shock

                      Rocky Mountain Intuition Geometry and Suspension Changes

                      One of many extra intriguing issues in regards to the Intuition is its adjustable geometry. There are two geometry adjustment instruments: Rocky’s Experience 9 system within the rear shock mount, and a chainstay flip-chip.

                      The latter is simple: chips within the chainstays present ± 11mm of size adjustment (437 or 448mm, roughly). This modification additionally alters wheelbase size by ± 11mm. Making the change is a bit much less easy. Flipping the non-driveside chip requires no instruments, however you additionally must take away the derailleur hanger to flip the driveside chip, and in addition take away the brake caliper, flip the adapter, and reinstall and heart the caliper.

                      You may do that trailside when you actually needed to, nevertheless it’s finest finished with the bike within the stand. The process will not be tough—the swap took about 5 minutes on my first attempt to a bit much less time as soon as I used to be accustomed to the method.

                      rocky mountain instinct

                      The chip and the brake caliper adapter each must be flipped to increase the chainstays.

                      Matt Phillips

                      The Experience 9 system is a little more concerned if solely due to all of the accessible choices. A pair of nested chips within the rear shock mount creates 9 doable positions. It’s not as overwhelming as it would sound. It’s really three geometry settings and three shock charge choices: 3×3=9.

                      Rocky calls the three geometry positions slack, impartial, steep. The entire adjustment vary is ± one diploma of head (65.1 to 66.2 levels) and seat angle (76.1 to 77.2 levels adjustment, with ± 15mm of backside bracket peak change (28 to 43mm drop). All dimensions are for a dimension medium body.

                      The three shock charge settings are much less progressive, impartial, and extra progressive. As you’ll be able to guess, they primarily have an effect on the shock’s end-of-travel development. And since most Instincts include an air shock, you could have two instruments for tuning shock development: Experience 9 and shock air-volume spacers.

                      rocky mountain ride 9

                      A breakdown of the Experience 9’s positions


                      Most riders must be coated by the shock’s inventory quantity spacer and the Experience 9’s changes however, if not, swap in a distinct quantity spacer. For those who discover the suspension isn’t progressive sufficient with Experience 9 within the extra progressive setting, transfer up a quantity spacer dimension; if the suspension is just too progressive within the much less progressive setting, drop down a quantity spacer dimension.

                      Between the keep chips and Experience 9, the rider has a whole lot of management of the general really feel of the bike. The good factor is, there’s no unhealthy setting, so riders can discover the vary of doable choices with out concern of screwing something up. Most riders will probably discover a setting they like and depart it there. However when you’re the type who makes journeys to the bike park or street journeys to areas with terrain that’s totally different from what you sometimes trip, the Intuition’s tuning instruments make an already versatile bike much more so.

                      Rocky Mountain Intuition Suspension and Geometry Updates

                      Rocky’s acquainted four-bar design with swing hyperlink carries over from the earlier Intuition. The brand new mannequin will get extra anti-squat total, however, even so anti-squat by no means exceeds 100-percent and hovers round 90-percent at sag. This implies it must be a extra supple and delicate bike even when climbing laborious within the lowest gear. However it additionally signifies that effectivity nerds will wish to use the shock’s climbing change extra on this bike than a motorbike with greater ranges—100-percent plus—of anti-squat.

                      2020 vs 2021 instinct suspension details

                      2020 vs. 2021 Intuition suspension particulars.


                      The bike’s rear journey stays 140mm, however entrance journey bumps up 10mm to 150mm, and geometry is longified and slackified, in fact. A dimension medium (within the impartial setting) will get a couple of diploma slacker (now 65.7 levels) on the headtube and attain grows a whopping 25mm (437 to 462mm). Its high tube size grows a couple of centimeter, and the wheelbase stretches 30mm (now 1,209mm). Seat tube angles crank ahead virtually two levels (now 76.7 levels), whereas the underside bracket sits about 6 millimeters decrease. Rocky did shorten the pinnacle tube size barely.

                      Rocky additionally lower seat tube lengths to supply extra clearance for longer journey droppers. A dimension medium measures 420mm (down from 432), whereas the massive and XL sizes get a 25mm discount (now 445 and 480mm respectively).

                      instinct geometry table

                      A geometry desk!


                      Dimension-Particular Suspension Tunes

                      Additional-small and small Instincts get a number of size-specific particulars that differentiate these frames from the bigger sizes. A kinked high tube gives extra standover clearance—bigger sizes have a straight high tube.

                      instinct carbon 27point5

                      A 27.5 Intuition Carbon 90 with kinked high tube


                      The XS and S frames additionally run a shorter-stroke shock however obtain the identical 140mm of rear journey. This implies smaller frames have extra mechanical benefit on the shock, and, theoretically anyway, means extra optimum suspension efficiency for lighter riders.

                      Rocky Mountain Intuition Body Particulars

                      Most manufacturers have signature design particulars that they carry by their fashions. So that you may not be shocked that the brand new Intuition seems lots just like the Altitude, Rocky’s 16o/170mm (rear/entrance) enduro bike.

                      However the Intuition Carbon and Altitude Carbon don’t simply look alike—they share the identical body. The ahead shock mount on the carbon frames is modular so Rocky could make one body do double responsibility by equipping every mannequin with a novel shock mount, and a distinct size and stroke shock. These modifications, plus distinct construct kits, lead to two totally different bikes with distinctive geometry.

                      rocky mountain altitude

                      The Intuition shares its body with the 2021 Altitude (proven).

                      Matt Phillips

                      I’ve ridden the brand new Altitude Carbon and regardless of sharing a body it’s a noticeably totally different bike than the Intuition. So totally different that I did not even notice they shared a body till Rocky pointed it out.

                      This highlights one other characteristic of the Intuition Carbon: you’ll be able to flip it right into a longer-travel Altitude. It received’t be an affordable course of—you may want the ahead shock mount, a brand new shock, and a journey package for the fork—however you’ll wind up with a distinct bike with out screwing up the geometry or kinematics. You can even purchase the Altitude Carbon and shorten it into an Intuition when you needed.

                      rocky mountain instinct

                      The Intuition’s modular shock mount.

                      Matt Phillips

                      Other than the modular, ahead shock mount, the Intuition Carbon has a typical listing of options. Amongst them: Enhance 148 rear spacing, ISCG05 tabs, tunneled hose and housing routing with clamping ports (right-hand entrance brake pleasant), press-fit 92 backside bracket, down-tube safety, 2.6-inch tire clearance, and room for a water bottle contained in the entrance triangle.

                      Intuition Alloy frames should not have the modular shock mount and are subsequently devoted to their inventory journey. The Alloy frames additionally lack inside tunnels for the hose and housing, so routing takes a bit extra effort.


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