The ride: The “5 inch travel segment covers some pretty broad territory. You have bikes from 4.75 to almost 6 falling within the realm and ride goals that are even more varied. This is the category where bike companies are trying to design the “one bike that can do it all. Unfortunately, you can’t do it all.
To us, a 5 travel bike that is super plush kills off the entire epic, long ride, go anywhere focus of what a 5 travel bike should be. If you lean towards the ski resort/north shore/ more extreme type of riding, then get a 6 travel bike and build it up light. The Mach 5 has 140mm (5.5) of travel and is meant to cover the spectrum of 24 hour racing, all day in the saddle rides, with the ability to devour technical descents. This bike doesn’t bob under power and it isn’t real squishy feeling (we like highly technical terms like squishy).
What you can’t tell in a parking lot is that the Mach 5 absolutely comes alive at speed (even in rock gardens which we have tons of in AZ). We have tested this bike from South Mountain’s National Trail to Moab’s Porcupine Rim. There are certainly longer travel bikes that are plusher, but it’s all about controlled travel. The Mach 5 holds its line at speed and always seems to have extra travel in reserve for big hits, big drops, and even the occasional big jump.
The head angle with the fork at 140mm travel is 69 degrees. This is a nice stable number for handling very technical terrain. Additionally, with the DW Link and the shock we are using (2.25 stroke on a medium frame), it is imperative to run 30% sag (.675). Most people are used to running less because other bikes need to have more air to keep from bobbing. NOT THIS ONE! The Mach 5 is all about achieving a balance in what we believe to be the perfect combination of incredible pedaling efficiency and frame stiffness with a controlled feel throughout the stroke and enough travel to keep our customers grinning from ear to ear in even some of the most technical terrain.