By Seb Kemp
Moots is renowned for its exquisite, meticulously crafted bicycles. Handmade in Steamboat Springs, Colorado, from US-made titanium tubing, the MX Divide is a curious creature. Previously, Moots' full-suspension duties were handled by the YBB model and by in-house designed models such as the Smoothie. For the MX Divide, the company enlisted the technical expertise of respected suspension firm, the Sotto Group, whose members were responsible for the Switch
design that Yeti now uses, as well as pioneering the VPP platform at Santa Cruz.
The Fusion Link system is a single-pivot-linkage design that testers found to be very plush, offering an excellent
balance of comfort and efficiency with dollops of climbing traction. However, it was not as brisk a pedaler as the BMC or the Niner and required the Fox Float RP23 rear shock to be put into the ProPedal mode to maximize ground speed.
The bike also lacked front-end rigidity. The bike swayed about in G-outs and when pushed hard through turns, rather than seeking out purespeed. Thus, we think anyone buying this bike for its performance alone would have to be as crazy as a sack of mice. But obviously, speed isn't the be-all-and-end-all of a bike like this.
While we understand that titanium is Moots' stock-in-trade—and a huge part of the bike's allure—we still wonder whether it is the best material for this application. The MX Divide's design is good enough to merit a frame that
rides with more confidence-inspiring stiffness.Despite these reservations, most of our testers were almost willing to forgive the MX Divide and some even fell in love with it. This bike has soulfulness that many other bikes lack.
If you buy a Moots, it is for more than just performance. You buy one for its elegance and Made-in-America craftsmanship. Case in point, which other bike in this lineup could make an appearance at the North American Handmade Bicycle Show?