Review: 2023 Merida One-Sixty: Enduro’s easy-to-use bike

Frame details The main talking point for the frame is certainly the flex pivot on the seatpost, eliminating parts, weight and service requirements. Merida couldn’t say exactly how much weight but having four fewer bearings to change (compared to most modern bikes) is a nice bonus. This design is ubiquitous on modern XC bikes but is rarely seen with such heavy travel. Most unusual, they made it work with both carbon and alloy frames. By aligning the rocker link vertically, the angle at which the seatpost bends during suspension pressure is reduced to the point where it flexes less than on its 100mm XC wheelbarrow. As a result, Merida claims that its fatigue life is effectively indeterminate, and independent of substances.

The tire also passes Zedler’s Class 5 fatigue tests (usually for park and DH bikes). This means that the five-year warranty on the One-Sixty covers you for any amount of theme park cycling, although the One-Forty lifetime warranty is Category 4 (excluding theme park cycling), due to components used only. A double crown fork is not recommended due to the lack of reinforcements where the fork fenders hit the side of the frame. But luckily it will take a 180mm fork, and with 171mm of travel in a mullet setting, it could be a great park bike.

The seat tube is short, straight, and uninterrupted, which helps riders raise or lower the volume with its wide dropper travel and depth of entry. The carbon frame is compatible with the Integrated Eightpins dropper shaft (which is significantly lighter), but for now, all bikes (XS to XL) get a more traditional Merida-developed dropper post, which offers up to 230mm of incredibly adjustable travel ultimate .

A service port under the downtube allows access to cables for the mount, and can also be used to store a (narrow) tool roll in the carbon version, which can store a small pump and tire jacks or a handful of Curlywurlys. The metal frame ‘door’ is too small for generous snack storage.

The cables pass through internal guides in the carbon frame or foam tubes in the alloy version. It also goes through the main pivot hub, which reduces cable stretching during suspension cycles, but that means you’ll have to remove the cables before removing the pivot bolt when it’s time to change the bearings. The cables also run through the top headphone bearing. Merida claims that it’s not more difficult to remove the fork or install a cable than any other internally oriented frame, but it will make it difficult to swap out the headphone bearing.
There is a tool/tube mounting plate in front of the shock, and the carbon bikes come with a Fidlock bottle mount. The plastic fender above the chainstay is a permanent part of the frame, preventing debris from collecting over the main axle. There is also an optional flap that bolts over the seat post to protect the passenger and seat post from mud.

The claimed frame weight is 2,460 grams of carbon or 3,660 grams of aluminum. Those numbers relate to a midsize, with no shock, hub, frame guards, saddle clip, hangers, headphone bearings, or cable guides. This doesn’t sound like a very useful frame to me, but this is a standard way of weighing things in the bike industry and the number for the carbon version is competitive.

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