For the third generation of Roubion, the savvy engineers and dedicated female riders at Juliana decided to go back to the drawing board, aiming to make the bike more confident while hauling at face-melting speeds and better suited for lift-accessed bike parks. Realizing the need for a more aggressive bike, Juliana redesigned the Roubion Carbon S Complete Mountain Bike with a reconfigured VPP suspension inspired by the Strega, longer 160-millimeter fork, slacker head tube angle with an adjustable flip-chip, and longer reach measurements for a roomier cockpit and better composure on scorching-fast descents.
One of the biggest changes to the third-gen Roubion lies in a longer, slacker geometry that pushes it deeper into the gravity end of the riding spectrum. However, this redesign doesn't significantly alter its all-around versatility, meaning it's still great for the rider that desires the monster truck plushness of a slack, long-travel rig while having fun on trail systems with big climbs and high-speed descents. To be specific, Juliana lengthened the reach by approximately 15 millimeters per size for a more confident, comfortable feel at higher speeds, plus a centimeter lower standover height for a better fit with shorter riders. The head tube angle drops from the previous generation's already slack 66 degrees to an even slacker 65.4 degrees in its highest setting, complete with a flip-chip that slackens it out even further to a bike park-friendly 65.1 degrees. These were numbers that you'd only see on a freeride or mini-DH bike just a few years ago, meaning you'll have tons of confidence bombing those technical descents littered with steep drop-offs and nasty rock sections.
Another significant change to the latest Roubion lies in a reconfigured VPP suspension platform. Instead of relying on upper-link driven design, the third generation Roubion enjoys the increased bump compliance and glued-to-the-trail traction you'll experience with a VPP suspension driven by a lower-link mounted shock that's inspired by the latest Nomad. This lower-link driven VPP suspension platform is something that's reserved exclusively for the Roubion and Strega, seeing the need for increased bump compliance, better support, and higher levels of traction for all-mountain, freeride, and downhill disciplines. To best match the increased performance capabilities of this lower-link driven VPP, Juliana spec'd a Super Deluxe shock for a more supple feel that tracks to the ground noticeably better and resists heating up on those scintillating descents over thousands of vertical feet.
The last major change implemented on the third-gen Roubion is the ability to clear massive 2.8-inch tires if you prefer the voluminous support of plus-sized tires. However, we'd recommend sticking with tires in the range of 2.4 to 2.6 inches, as we find the larger 2.8-inch tires hold back a bike as capable as the Roubion, seeing they squirm under hard cornering and have a tendency to pinch flat while riding at full blast over technical terrain. Juliana specs the Roubion with a 2.5-inch front Maxxis Minion DHF and slightly narrower 2.4-inch Maxxis Minion DHR in the rear for an optimal blend of rock-plowing traction, cornering support, and fast-rolling speed.
Lucky for all of us, one thing that hasn't changed is Juliana's carbon frames, which is a good thing if you're after the legendary strength and unwavering stiffness of their renowned carbon layups. This particular Roubion benefits from a Carbon C layup, which optimizes stiffness and strength, as well as reducing weight over cheaper alloy frames. The frame's impressive stiffness translates to precise handling when you're tossing it into a gnarlier rock gardens, as well as rapid acceleration the instant you place power to the pedals out of corners, up steep climbs, and from a dead stop.
One thing that hasn't changed for 2019 is Juliana's commitment to delivering an optimal fit and riding feel for female riders, thanks to a lighter shock tune that's developed exclusively for females, seeing they're on average 30 pounds lighter. There's an extra-small available for even the shortest of females, meaning you'll finally have a bike that's custom tailored to your shorter stature without having to ride a larger bike and make major compromises. What they haven't done is water down their dialed geometry with a swooping top tube, higher front end, and shorter reach like much of the competition, which only leads to major compromises in ride quality and handling when you're actually riding hard and fast on the trail.
- Juliana's all-mountain machine is more aggressive than ever
- Slacker, longer geometry increases high-speed confidence
- Flip-chip slackens the head tube angle from 65.4° to 65.1°
- 6in of VPP travel smooths out rock gardens and bigger hits
- Revised with lower-link driven air shock inspired by the Strega
- Shock tuned specifically for the needs of lighter female riders
- Carbon C frame is resoundingly stiff and impressively strong
- One centimeter lower standover for better fit with short riders