As new enduro bikes go, the KOMPace ticks a lot of on-trend boxes for 2024. Idler design, check. Machined alloy frame, check. Rearward axle path, check. 29in and MX wheel options, check.
Designed and manufactured in Greece, Aper Bikes also brings something new to the table. Its innovative Rising Pivot suspension configuration uses a rail design to achieve 160mm travel and a really rearward axle path.
Need to know
- CNC-machined 7075-T6 aluminium frame
- Rising Pivot integrated with a robust rail system
- Rear travel 160mm
- Front travel 160-180mm options
- 3 sizes – S1, S2, S3
- Internal cable routing
- BB-type: 68mm BSA, ISCG 05 mount
- SRAM UDH
How rearward? 45mm to be precise. To put that into perspective, the chainstay growth on the Forbidden Dreadnought (one of the best enduro bikes on the market) – which is 100% rearward – is ‘only’ 31mm.
So why has Aper gone so far? In short, it wanted the rear axle path to better match how rearward the axle path of the fork is, typically 70mm on a modern enduro bike. Also most modern high-pivot bikes have an axle path that is most rearward at sag and almost vertical at bottom out. The Aper design looks to be more consistently rearward through the full 160mm travel.
To achieve the desired axle path, the lower pivot on the KOMPace actually moves up and backwards as the suspension compresses – the rear shock and main pivot mounted on a sliding rail. We’ve also seen the ARC8 Evolve FS use a similar rail system, where the sliding rail acts like a really long link. Using the rail also means there’s zero rotation of the shock. And it’s the combination of the rail angle and the linkage on the top tube that generates the extended rearward axle path.
With such a rearward axle path, Aper has to use an idler to reduce chain growth and the associated pedal kickback. There are currently no numbers available for anti-squat and anti-rise, so it’s hard to tell how the KOMPace stacks up against the growing number of idler bikes.
What we do know is the geometry of the KOMPace and it looks sorted. There are three sizes, S1 to S3, and built with a 170mm travel fork the smallest S1 has a 476mm reach, 430mm chainstay and a 63.6º head angle. Obviously the chainstay length will grow at sag, which is probably why the bikes are pretty long, to help balance the weight distribution front to rear. They also have short seat tubes, 418mm on the S1, which makes upsizing super easy.
We’ve not had a chance to throw a leg over the KOMPace yet, so how all of these numbers and that mega rearward axle path translate to ride feel remains to be seen. Still, it’s really cool to see a small European brand like Aper Bikes producing a genuinely interesting and innovative design.