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There's a lot of sense in modularity of frames, if it lines up with what engineers and product managers are trying to achieve. I don't believe manufacturers are trying to pull some proverbial wool over your eyes when they use the same architecture for different models. Sure, the RM Instinct and Altitude share the same frame, but the shock mount is different, as is stroke length. This makes them completely different rides - minute pivot location changes many geometry values: travel, progressivity, leverage ratio, anti-squat...the list goes on.
Sure, the Ride-9 offers perhaps too many variables, but if I went to the East Coast and was riding more flat jank, I'd throw the Altitude in 7/8/9 for a higher BB, longer reach, and more open suspension. I think you'd be hard pressed to see ANYONE upset with the current Altitude - that thing fucking rips, is reliable, with significant attention to detail for frame features. Perfect? No, but evolution is continuous and manufacturers are cognizant of that.
Guerilla Gravity and the beloved WAO Arrival also share modular frame systems, switching links and shocks out to achieve vastly different ride characteristics.
Turns out some dickhead put Impreza struts on my Forester. I really like it. Would I rather have stock ride height? Yeah, but it's been fun to hoon the hell out of corners with the current setup.
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