Defying the norm.
Within the last couple of years, longer and lower geometries have become synonymous with long-travel sleds, making them ride more like mini downhill bruisers than aggressive bikes for all-mountain pursuits. That being said, there's still a few holdouts not convinced that longer and lower is better, especially if you're seeking to clean tight sections of trail without dismounting in shame. The Pivot Mach 6 Carbon XT/XTR Pro 1x Complete Mountain Bike falls in the later category, preferring a bit more agility in a long-travel platform.
The Mach 6 Carbon is quite slack with a 66-degree head tube angle, but it's significantly shorter in both reach and wheelbase figures than many of its enduro brethren. This shorter length injects playfulness and cornering prowess into the Mach 6's personality, making it more of a precision instrument than many long-travel bikes. Looking at its other geometry figures, you'll find its 13.6in bottom bracket is higher than many bikes in this category, which is a refreshing departure for those of us who've become resigned to pedal strikes in rocky terrain. Another figure to note is the class-leading standover clearance, which accommodates shorter riders down to just under five feet with the availability of an extra-small frame.
Since it's designed for conquering formidable alpine terrain and desert landscapes, the Mach 6 Carbon gives you plenty of reserve for the biggest hits and chunkiest rock gardens with its 6in of DW-Link suspension paired with a slightly longer Fox 36 Factory Fork. The DW-Link suspension platform retains its famed anti-squat capabilities for a pleasingly efficient pedaling feel when you're muscling up punchy climbs with rocks and roots. When it's time to unleash the Mach 6 Carbon on the descent, DW-Link is extremely plush, soaking up square-edge hits and larger drops without ever feeling harsh. For even greater stiffness of the suspension's links, it's updated with Enduro Max cartridge bearings, which have 30 to 40 percent greater load capacity when you're pushing the bike to the absolute limit.
Delving into the construction of the Mach 6 Carbon's frame, you'll find it benefit's from Pivot's hollow-core molding process for a uniform thickness of the carbon fiber lay-up, resulting in increased structural integrity while reducing weight in areas not critical to durability. The frame's cable routing is tidier than earlier iterations for a cleaner aesthetic and it's fully compatible with Shimano Di2 electronic drivetrains for futureproof necessity. Moreover, the frame's PF92 bottom bracket gives you a resoundingly stiff pedaling platform with its wider pivots, complemented with updated Boost rear spacing for a stiffer wheel build and ample clearance of wider tires.
Looking at the XT/XTR build of this particular Mach 6 Carbon, you'll be pleased to find a simplified 1x11 drivetrain with Shimano's 11-46t cassette delivering plenty of range for pedaling up and charging down anything on the trail. The Fox Float X2 rear shock features Evol technology, which increases the sensitivity of the shock when you're pedaling over small impediments, such as bumpy rocks and roots. The build is finished with DT XM Series 25mm rims laced to DT Swiss hubs with their famed 36t star ratchet, whose virtually instantaneous response, long-term reliability, and signature buzz make them a classic for a reason.
- Pivot's flagship enduro bike is aggressive yet remains playful
- 6.1in of DW-Link travel climbs responsively and descends plushly
- Hollow-core carbon molding process for structural integrity
- Enduro Max cartridge linkage bearings for increased stiffness
- 66-degree head tube maintains composure on steep, gnarly descents
- Shorter wheelbase and chainstay figures make for snappy cornering
- Shimano XT/XTR 1x11 drivetrain provides plentiful gear range
- Choice of FOX Kashima or Performance Float X2 shock