Sometimes you need to go back to where you were, to truly examine where you’ve come. While I’ll admit we had initially been interested in the more modern themed version of this bike, the Patrol, we also couldn’t resist the allure of seeing if the fuss over the mid-size wheel has really been worth it. Enter Transition Bikes’ homage to the modern 26” wheeled, ahem, enduro, bike. The Suppressor sports very en vogue numbers; a slack 65 degree head angle, 1181mm (46.4”) Wheelbase, and a relatively low bottom bracket height of 339mm (13.3”). Thankfully the suppressor also features a nice upright seat tube angle of 75.4 degrees which helps level a bit of control over the very downhill geometry when things get climby.
The Transition Suppressor only comes as a frame with RockShox Monarch Plus RC3 Debonair shock, so you can kind of ignore the parts spec. It’s solid mid-range fare, form over fashion but high in functionality and reputation. At $1999 USD, the frameset doesn’t totally blow the budget compared to some other brands. No, it isn’t carbon, but that’s okay.
The front pivot is pretty much inline with the 32t chainring, minimizing any potential pedal feedback, especially when used without a granny gear. The integrated chainstay pretector helps keep things quiet on the chain rattle front. Anodized hardware and a brushed aluminum frame really stand out without too much graphic flare to distract you from the clean lines.
The modified horst link “giddy up’ edition moves the rear pivot more inline with the dropouts, compared to the more traditional Specialized or Norco position which is dropped lower of the dropout. The Syntace X12 bolt on rear axle, in 142mm spacing, provides a solid, stiff, interface, although the need to pull out a multitool to remove the rear wheel is kind of inconvenient.
Front derailleur E2 low direct mount for those that aren’t afraid of technology that improves your gear range and versatility, or you can run it 1x and have an insane amount of clearance. It’s nice to see companies still offering consumers a choice in drivetrain considerations.
Chunky welds on the bottom bracket and shock mount area of the bike. Also hiding back there is an ISCG05 chainguide mount if you require reliable chain retention.
More solid welds on the head tube area. Also we see the cable port for the internal cable routing, which is all the rage these days but in some cases results in cable slap inside the frame. Time will tell.
While this test bike did not come with a dropper post (the horror!) the frame does feature a stealth post cable port.
Plenty of clearance in the bottom bracket area makes for easy cleaning after dirty rides.
Nice straight lines, no nonsense colour scheme, progressive geometry, and a fresh take on an old suspension design standard; when mated with the sport’s original wheel size it adds up to an interesting package. How does it stack up against its bigger wheeled brethren? Stay tuned for a full review coming soon.
Would you still buy a twenty six inch-wheeled bike?