Marin Bikes 2012

Revised Quad-Link Design Features Prominently in Marin's Latest Lineup

Marin has entered 2012 with some noteworthy changes, the most key being the latest update to their quad-link suspension design. Quad 3.0, as it’s being called, changes the position of the linkage entirely, allowing for more tuneable leverage ratios and rear-wheel arc throughout the bike’s travel.

Admittedly though, these improvements weren’t exactly the predominant impetus behind Quad 3.0. The repackaged linkage now allows itself to be carried over to 29-inch platforms whereas the previous iterations created some fitment issues in doing so.

Fittingly then, we now see the introduction of the Rift Zone 29er with the revised quad-link design for 2012.

The Rift Zone XC7 features an SLX/XT build and a $2900 price tag.

The Rift Zone packs 100 millimeters of travel front and rear, and will be available in two alloy and two carbon models, ranging from $2,000 for the alloy Rift Zone XC 6 to $5300 for the carbon Rift Zone T3 XC 9. Head angle across the lineup is 70.5 degrees.

Quad 3.0, going where no Marin quad-link has gone before: 29ers.

Marin’s capable 140-millimeter, 67.5-degree head angle “do-anything” bike, the Mount Vision XM, gets the Quad 3.0 treatment as well. A carbon model, the T3 XM 8 is also in the works for early 2012 featuring Marin’s T3 tube-to-tube construction process. The Mount Vision XM starts at $2100 for the XM 6, and climbs up to $4000 for the carbon T3 XM 8, which seems to us a pretty good bargain.

Some food for thought: The longest stem Marin specs on the Mount Vision is 80-millimeters.

We were glad to see that Marin has adopted all stainless steel pivot hardware, and a switch to T-25 means less stripped hardware.

The Quad 3.0 design uses cross braces to preserve the stiffness of the old design.

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  • Paul

    This range looks awesome- but so much like every other bike. I loved my Wolfridge. RIP.

  • Graham

    My 2011 Mount Vision XM9 is an absolutely amazing bike. If this new iteration of Quad Link keeps the same amazing suspension characteristics as mine while reducing weight and price it can only be a good think – except I need one of the new ones now – especially a carbon one!. I might even have to add a 29er to the quiver now too – shucks!

  • Izzy

    So sad to see the original Quad Link go; it was what differentiated Marin from the others.
    Now it’s just another “plain” dual-link fs design. I wonder if this is patent infringement territory (i.e., dw-link)…

  • Mike

    The 29″ concept ruins another perfectly good standard.

  • Squirrel

    Marin said the linkage was changed primarily changed to accommodate big wheels, and the bike was designed to have similar ride characteristics (similar axle path), but have less ramp-up at the end of its travel.

  • Rick

    I agree with Mike, The elevated chain stay design was awesome .My 2010 MV 5.8 is so quiet with no chain slap,I run a 12mm thru axle with two removable dropouts.
    The Quad 3 on the 29″ bike is fine but they didn’t have to kill elevated chain stay design on the 26″ platforms in the process. I love Marin bikes, they fit me and my riding style and have great quality.I will continue to ride their 26″ bikes. Still bummed about the change though.

  • Josh

    The (partial) death of the elevated swingarm on the QL 3 is a big letdown. I loved the way my 2009 MV looked and rode. I am sure the new ones ride great, but they look like every other bike out there! With the old design, Marin had something unique in the market!

  • chris

    I agree,they should have kept the original White design where the could.its just to much like everything else.they still have it on the downhill bikes, maybe it will make a comeback when they realize their mistake lol

  • Erudite1

    Yeah – totally agree with most of the comments here. My ’09 QuadLink Mount Vision is totally badass with complete lateral stiffness – the ONLY full suspension bike I’ve ridden that when I’m mega cranking does not move ONE MM to either side. I’m 235 and hammer bikes – this one takes it and performs amazingly well.

    But they should have stuck with Whyte and modified it – the new design looks like shite and they lost the diferentiation that made them special. For .25-.5 pounds on an incredible XC bike, I like the first two iterations of the QuadLink. Oh well…

    And now we find they’ve been sold to a European conglomerate. Dreams of Mt. Tam in the mist…

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