Merida has a solid following on the XC and marathon race circuits of Europe, but it’s still rare to see one of its bikes on the trails here in the UK. With its new One-Forty range targeted squarely at all-mountain riding, the company is primed to change its racing-snake image once and for all. 

Product Overview

Pros:

  • We love the progressive geometry and top - notch shimano XT finishing kit.

Cons:

  • We hate hate that the seatstay bridge is hitting the seat tube on full travel.

Product:

Merida One-Forty-B 1 (2015) review

Manufacturer:

Price as reviewed:

£3,000.00

With the model name spelling out suspension travel and hinting at the 650b wheel size, Merida hasn’t left much to the imagination. What the name doesn’t tell you, however, is that the One-Forty 1-B has a thoroughly modern profile with a slack head angle, rangy front-end and low BB. This contemporary geometry is complemented by a suitably stubby 60mm FSA stem and fairly wide 730mm handlebar.

The Shimano XT groupset is all top-quality kit too. But, given the progressive geometry and attitude, this bike needs the full 125mm drop Reverb seatpost, not the shorter 100mm, and a beefier Fox 34 fork would improve steering precision and boost confidence over the spindly Fox 32 Talas fitted. Also, we weren’t won over by the prickly profile of the Prologo Scratch saddle.

Merida’s twin-link ‘Virtual Pivot Kinematics’ suspension is not dissimilar to the old 26in BMC Trailfox. Setting up the suspension wasn’t anything like as straightforward, however, and I spent a lot of time on the first ride tweaking the shock pressure and fiddling with the dials on the Fox Float CTD shock to iron out some of the wallow and pedal feedback from the rear suspension. It’s definitely one of those linkage designs where you have to find the suspension sweetspot, rather than simply pump it up and go shred. Then, just as I was starting to find my mojo, I sent the Merida off a drop with an almighty clang on landing. The unmistakable sound of metal on metal was caused by the seatstay bridge smashing into the back of the seat tube on full compression of the suspension. So, as it turns out, the Merida shares more than just a similar profile with the old BMC — that bike also had clearance issues.

>>> Click here to find out more about geometry with our handy guide

pic_technology_one-forty--9c787e_223

Verdict

What’s causing the problem? Not a super-short rear-end — plenty of 650b bikes (and even some 29ers) have shorter chainstays than 450mm. Perhaps we just got unlucky and received a bike with a shock that’s at the shorter end of the tolerance range, but it instantly put an end to an otherwise enjoyable first ride.

Details

Frame :Aluminium, 140mm travel
Shock :Fox Performance Series Float
Fork :Fox 32 Talas Performance series, 150mm travel
Wheels :SunRingle Charger Expert, Schwalbe Nobby Nic 2.35in tyres
Brakes :Shimano XT
Drivetrain :Shimano XT 3x10
Components :Prologo Scratch saddle, RockShox Reverb Stealth 100mm dropper seatpost, FSA After Burner bar and stem
Sizes :17, 19in
Weight:13.85kg (30.5lb)
Size ridden :19in
Head angle :67°
Seat angle :74°
BB height :337mm
Chainstay :450mm
Front centre : 747mm
Wheelbase :1,197mm
Down tube :705mm
  • Spyros Vassiliou

    If you are banging your head what should i be doing?You know you are not the only ones that reviewed this bike no one else is saying something like that.How do you know that i have this bike do you spy all of your readers to check their bikes?How do YOU find time to ride , and if i had this bike i would enjoy it no matter what your opinion is ,my opinion is more important than some guy that cant tell the difference between a random problem in a shock ,and a problem at the bike.I am a Merida dealer in Greece and i have ridden a lot of Meridas , i know that this bike is specced with a shock that has a bottom out bumper , to prevent this from happening this is how i know it .But yeah lets agree to disagree.

  • Danny Milner

    This really is turning into a case of banging my head against a brick wall now. Sorry if the bike you bought didn’t get a great review, but if you’re happy, what does it matter? Yes, the bike was new out of a box. Yes the frame and seat stay yoke hit – we didn’t make it up. Yes the shock had a bottom out bumper.
    Finally I am very impressed that you have tried every single bike off the production line. How do you find the time to ride? Anyway I feel we are best agreeing to disagree on this topic.

  • Spyros Vassiliou

    Was this bike from a demo fleet? Or new out of he box ?You do know it is a 2014 model dont you ?Which means , if it is a demo bike that a lot of asses have test it for over a year now.I believe that your reviews are anything but professional , you could contact Merida before posting this review, because i can assure you that this bike does have a bottom out bumper that prevents this from happening.And i mean all of them .

  • Danny Milner

    I’m guessing you think we should have tried a second bike? And then maybe a third bike, because – providing it didn’t happen again – one in two without a problem still isn’t a great ratio. How many would we need to check before the probability of finding the same problem was too small to be a concern?

  • Spyros Vassiliou

    But then i dont think “perhaps” is a good way to “review” a bike!

  • Danny Milner

    Perhaps it was just a tolerance glitch with that particular bike. Perhaps not. For anyone looking to buy one, it would definitely be something I’d check by letting all the air out of the shock and bottoming out the suspension.

  • Spyros Vassiliou

    This bike normally has a bottom out bumber , the problem has to do with THIS specific bike.

  • Danny Milner

    The seat stay yoke contacting the seat tube could be down to the wrong shock stroke, wrong eye 2 eye, or tolerance issues with either frame or shock. Not shock tune. This problem is not bottoming out too easily, it is frame on frame contact at, or before, reaching full travel.

  • Spyros Vassiliou

    Metal with metal can be an issue if you cant set your suspension right ,the average weight for those tunes in the shocks working right is about 85 kg ,anything less than that can feel very soft and blow through it s travel easy at recommended sag.Same thing happened to you(soft rear end i mean) with giant ,canyon etc.Maybe you should consider it.

  • Danny Milner

    The front triangle and swingarm should never touch, metal on metal, with the shock installed. The problem had nothing to do with rider weight or air volume.

  • Spyros Vassiliou

    This was possibly caused because the rider was to light and the shock needed a volume spacer, in any case 2015 model is redesigned and that can not happen.Short it out and repeat the test .