When Whistler Bike Park opens, it’s time for me to pull out the downhill bike. This year I’ve put the first few days on my pass aboard a 2014 Lapierre DH 722.
Sitting pretty with 220mm of rear travel, it is one big bike. So far it has happily gobbled up all the gnarly single track I’ve thrown it onto, but I’ll get further into that in my ride review. For now, check out the photos below for a detailed description of the spec, and my opinion on it.
The Lapierre DH 722 features a multi-link suspension platform. Minimal marketing hype leaves me with very little information, but I can say that it makes for a hit gobbling 220mm of travel. A Fox DHX RC2 Performance shock sits in the more affordable model being tested.
The lower links in the suspension platform are pictured here with a “floating” press-fit bottom bracket. Also in frame is the carbon rear triangle.
Lapierre gives the option to run the brake cables internally or externally dependent on preference.
I’m an external routing type of guy.
Formula The One S brakes appear to be The One calipers paired with RX lever-bodies and levers. While the adjustment screw is easily accessible and not overly inconvenient for those that ride with tools, I would like a pad or lever adjustment knob.
Integration with the Sram X7 shifter keeps things clean.
A Sram PG 1030 10 Speed 11-26T cassette with an Sram X9 DH Short Cage derailleur makes for a bunch of gears out back – possibly more than necessary on a DH bike.
A Rockshox Boxxer Race keeps things simple up front.
My test rig was also equipped Maxxis Minion DHF 60a tires wrapped around Alex FR32 wheels and inflated by 437g tubes. The hard compound tires prevented me from really trusting the DH 722. 3C tires (and lighter tubes) were installed and increased my confidence immensely. Fortunately, this bike is meant to come with Schwalbe Muddy Mary tires (and possibly lighter tubes) so others may not need to make this switch.
750mm wide, 20mm rise Easton Havoc handlebar and Easton Havoc Stem with 45mm, 50mm, and 55mm length options and a -5 degree rise make up the cockpit. These low components combined with a 120mm headtube length mean you might need a bit of steerer tube to get your bar height right. This bike came to me with the steerer cut quite short, so I opted for a higher rise bar.
Since it is adjustable, though, the Havoc makes for good stock spec.
Tall riders will need to look at the Lapierre’s Zesty and Spicy frames for XL offerings. An additional number that has been of interest in the past is the amount of seatpost the frame will accommodate. The medium sized DH 722 will accommodate 145mm of post, which could come in handy if you tend to pedal your DH bike.
Although the integrated seatclamp did create some oh sh*t moments trying to get the post back in after I had pulled it all the way out.
The Lapierre DH 722 comes in at an MSRP of $4900 CAD. Claimed weight with Schwalbe Muddy Mary’s is 37.5lbs (17.0kg), but the weight of the size medium bike I received is 42.5lbs (19.3kg) with crazy heavy tubes. With lighter tubes and different tires I got it down to 40.5lbs (18.4kg).
The 2014 Lapierre DH 722.
It’s a downhill bike with a bit of zest and spice…