Cotic's fastest hardtail just got faster

The flagship hardtail Cotic SolarisMAX gets the Longshot geometry treatment as well as some impeccably thought out build kit options.

>>> Hardtail of the Year 2017: best mountain bike under £500, £750 and £1000

Cotic SolarisMAX need to know

  • Big wheel or big rubber steel hardtail AKA 29in or 27.5+ wheels
  • Reynolds 853 steel
  • 120-140mm suspension fork
  • New Cotic Longshot progressive geometry
  • 30-45mm stems
  • Two sets of bottle bosses
  • Full builds from £1,799
  • Frame only £599

cotic solarismax

cotic solarismax

Direct from Cy at Cotic HQ…

The SolarisMAX is our 29er/27.5 Plus hardtail. It uses our premium Reynolds 853 based tubeset, with Boost spacing and massive tyre clearance.

As with the rest of the range, the new SolarisMAX has adopted Longshot geometry. It followed on from the work I did on the recent Gen5 BFe and Soul bikes, as well as the droplink bikes, so let me tell a bit more about the development ideas behind this new bike.

One of the questions we are most often asked is about fitting longer forks to the SolarisMAX, or asking for a longer travel 29er hardtail. There is clearly a demand for slightly more fork capability, so I tweaked the structure of the new bike so it is now designed to run 120mm-140mm forks. With 140mm forks fitted this bike is so capable I just don’t see a separate long travel 29er hardtail being justified, so hopefully this will be good news to those of you looking for a full speed trail slayer!

On the flipside of that, the SolarisMAX has always had that other, more long distance side to it’s personality too, and we haven’t sacrificed this at all in the search for MOOOAAAARR speed 😉 With 120mm forks it’s lovely through the singletrack, and with it’s big wheel, big tyre capability it’s still a real smoothie for big miles. For this generation we have added an extra set of bottle bosses to the down tube, so you can either carry two bottles, or the lower sets is right down by the cranks so you can run one bottle and a frame bag. The Longshot geometry is just a suited to long rides in the hills as it is to picking apart a tech descent. The space in the cockpit keeps you nice and comfy, and the slacker head angle to go with the short stem means it’s nicely stable for long haul trucking.

With all this in mind, last summer I ordered myself a Longshot FlareMAX shaped hardtail. Roughly speaking it was same as the 2017 SolarisMAX from BB rearwards – same BB height, same chainstay length, same big clearance stays and Boost148 spacing – but with a new FlareMAX shape for the front triangle. Another change was the seat angle. Compared to the previous versions it’s now a little steeper to position your weight more central in the bike to go with the Longshot geometry. It’s not crazy steep – 74 deg with rider on board on the 120mm fork. We have tried super steep seat angles and we just don’t get on with it. It’s a preference thing, and most of us run our saddle in the middle or towards of the rear of the rails on the new bikes anyway, so if you do want to be a little further forward I definitely see that as an option within the adjustment you have on the saddle rails.

The bike was an absolute blast to ride! Plenty of space to move, lively and fun, but so confidence inspiring at speed. The sharp steering you get from the short stem balances the slacker head angle, so it’s still a It’s completely ridonculous what you can get away with on this bike with big 29er or 275 Plus tyres installed. With a couple of small tweaks, what I was riding then is what you see now in production.

I guess you want to know what colours they are now, don’t you?




As usual we have brought in a handful of frames for sale right now, and once they go we have orders open for delivery in mid-June.

All the info and specifications about the new bike and all the details are over on the product page.

You can order the new SolarisMAX now. Frames are £599, and bikes start from £1799. We ship worldwide from our base in the beautiful Peak District.