Roubion Carbon S Mountain Bike
Back for bigger hits, berm blasting, and giant ear-to-ear grins, the Juliana Roubion Carbon S Mountain Bike is ready to let the good times roll with its third-generation of geometry that's more eager to please than ever. Keeping with the trends of the industry, the new Roubion stretches things out a bit with long-low-and-slack geometry that feels more capable than previous generations, and also ads in a hit of big-bike inspired linkage with its reconfigured VPP suspension layout, courtesy of the Strega gravity-hungry sled. But differing from the Strega, this all-mountain rig rides lighter and more lively on climbs, giving you the ability to let gravity do its duty on the descent, and turn around to set your quads on fire up steep switchbacks to make that next descent taste that much sweeter. The third-gen Roubion is equipped with a longer, 160-millimeter fork, and longer reach to open up the cockpit, plus an a flip chip that allows you to switch geometry with the turn of a wrench so you can stretch out for lift laps, and tweak things back for pedal-heavy rides.
With the way industry trends have been going, we'd be hard pressed to say we were surprised with the third-gen Roubion's shift to 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.
Staying true to its roots, one thing that's always a constant 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.
- Set yourself free on the trail with Juliana's fully-capable Roubion
- Third-gen updates to longer, slacker geometry for high-speed confidence
- Flip-chip slackens the head tube angle from 65.4° to 65.1°
- 6in of VPP travel chews up and spits 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