DV9 XX1 Eagle Complete Mountain Bike
It's been quite a while since we've seen a mountain hardtail from Ibis. Their previous hardtail the Tranny was a sweet rig, but as you probably know the mountain bike world is constantly evolving as new standards, geometry, and technology are realized, so the Tranny fell out of production. Fortunately for all of us, Ibis hasn't forgotten the elegant simplicity and pure fun factor of a good hardtail, so they created the DV9—a lightweight carbon hardtail built to do-anything and go-anywhere. With progressive geometry and massive tire clearance, you can rip a training loop Friday, race Saturday, and hit the backcountry on Sunday for a scenic recovery ride—all on the same bike. This particular bike, the DV9 XX1 Eagle Complete Mountain Bike, comes with Ibis' top of the line build kit featuring SRAM's flagship XX1 Eagle drivetrain, a lightweight Fox 32 Step Cast fork, Ibis carbon rims laced to revered Industry Nine Torch hubs, and a carbon cockpit from ENVE. While this featherweight build is certainly focused on cross country racing, the do-it-all nature of the DV9 is happy to get rowdy on a variety of technical trails, too.
The inspiration for the DV9 came from Ibis' CEO Hans Heim, who wanted to create a versatile frame for his high school XC-racing daughter Lili. Lili is an active racer, so it needed the rolling benefits of 29-inch wheels, and be affordable and versatile out of necessity as well. And while we'll be the first to admit this XX1 build is not a cheap bike, if you look closely at the components you'll see it's actually packed with a lot of value considering this is a no-holds-barred, race-ready rig. A carbon hardtail from other boutique brands outfitted with this level of componentry would be considerably more expensive, and part of that is due to the affordability of the DV9 frame.
Ibis gives the DV9 modern features such as internal dropper post routing, a tapered head tube, Boost rear axle spacing, and an in-house favorite, a creak-free threaded bottom bracket. The big story with the DV9, however, is its ability to be competitive on the race course as well as a capable trail bike when you just want to have fun. This is afforded by its progressive, slack geometry that Ibis appropriately refers to as "down-country." Of course, the carbon construction keeps things light and stiff (the frame comes in at 1210g) and since it lacks any damping at the rear end, you'll appreciate the vibration cancellation afforded by the composite layup.
Compared to Ibis' previous hardtail the Tranny, the reach numbers on the DV9 grew by 20 to 24mm depending on the size. The head tube also slackens from an XC dedicated 71-degrees to an all-around capable 68.5-degrees with this 100mm Step Cast fork. These numbers encourage you to charge hard regardless of whether you're pushing towards the front of the pack at your local race series, or chasing your friends down some raw singletrack on a long backcountry epic. Its low bottom bracket keeps it planted when railing berms, while its 17.3-inch chainstays enhance its responsive, lively feel.
The frame's carbon construction is everything we expect from Ibis with a nod towards optimized torsional stiffness and the ability to soak up trail chatter. It receives styling cues from other frames in the lineup visually with its angular contours as well as with its tapered headtube and versatile cable ports. Out back, burly chainstays ensure crisp response under hard pedaling while the thin seatstays impart some give so jolts aren't sent directly to your backside.
As mentioned above, this bike comes with a first-rate build kit, and after scouring over the parts list there's really nothing we'd want to change. SRAM's XX1 Eagle drivetrain delivers crisp, consistent shifting across the 500% gear range while keeping the overall weight down. The Step Cast 32 fork is among Fox's lightest offerings, and comes with their proven FIT4 damper complete with low-friction Kashima stanchions and intuitive adjustments. Ibis uses their in-house 935 carbon rims laced to beautifully-machined, USA-made Industry Nine hubs that provide near instantaneous 3-degree engagement for a quick pedal response when you're ratcheting through technical terrain or cranking back up to speed after a corner. Braking duties are handled by the newest version of Shimano's XTR Race hydraulic disc brakes, which need no introduction. Ibis rounds out the build with a carbon cockpit from ENVE, a company that makes some of the best carbon bars, stems, and seatposts on the market.
- Ibis' new versatile carbon hardtail with a race-ready build kit
- Carbon frame is light, stiff, and surprisingly comfortable
- Progressive "down-country" geo balances stability and nimbleness
- Compliant seatstays absorb trail chatter without losing efficiency
- Boost axle spacing increases the stiffness of the 29in wheels
- Internal cable routing for clean lines throughout the frame
- Threaded BB eliminates creaks and provides hassle-free maintenance
- Premium build includes XX1 Eagle drivetrain, Fox Step Cast fork, XTR brakes, and Ibis carbon rims with Industry Nine hubs