More fun than a barrel of monkeys?
Affordable 120mm travel single pivoting machine with impressively modern looking geometry. “Keep it simple and have fun” they say.
Need to know
- 120mm rear travel, 130mm fork
- 67° head angle
- 440mm reach on the Medium
- Boost front and rear
- Concept Drop dropper post
- Prices start from £1,399
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The common perception of Focus is that of a fairly sensible down-the-line bike company. Nothing wacky. Nothing particularly eyebrow raising. Just sensible bikes at attractive prices.
But Focus do have something of a hidden streak. The Focus SAM has been their curveball of recent years. A big travel enduro rig with some very progressive geometry numbers.
The SAM has clearly allowed the Focus designers to get down and funky with the new VICE. And it’s not just confined to the glorious Miami Vice-tastic marketing material.
The numbers look good
The intended use of the Focus VICE is apparently, “trail riding / generating massive fun”. Alrighty then.
In some ways it’s often hard to see why bike companies don’t all just make bikes like this. Good geometry should be price agnostic. It shouldn’t cost more to make a bike the right numbers and angles.
The suspension is nothing pioneering or tricksy. Good ol’ single pivot. With an oversized main pivot.
Single pivot simplicity
The single pivot is paired up with a Boost back end which should make for a stiffer handling rear end; often the achilles heel of budget single pivot bikes.
Hopefully Focus has nailed the location of the rear shock points to deliver a suspension handling that can back up the impressive looking geometry numbers.
About that geometry then. 67° head angle isn’t crazy OTT these but it’s still a rare enough sight on a bike with modest 120mm rear travel.
The 75° seat angle and 440mm reach (on a Medium frame) are arguably the more pleasing numbers – both are a sign that the designers have thought about overall handling both up and down.
Other encouraging stuff: 50mm stem, 1x specific, 25mm BB drop, 420mm chain stays, circa 30lbs claimed weight.
While Focus have been a bit zingy with the geometry it’s reassuring to see that they’ve still kept a reign on the budgets. There’ll be three builds of VICE and the cheapest one (VICE Pro) will be £1,399.
The VICE Pro comes with SRAM NX 1×11, RockShox Sektor, Concept Drop SL dropper post, Shimano M396 disc brakes and a custom-tuned RockShox Deluxe R shock.
The VICE SL will be £1,699 and appears to come with much of the same build as the VICE Pro. The brakes are upgraded to Shimano M615. We only have a brief spec list at the mo so we don’t know what else is upgraded – there must be something else!
The top end VICE Factory will be £2,199 and comes with SRAM NX 1×11, RockShox Yari RC, Concept Drop SL dropper post, SRAM Guide R disc brakes, RockShox Super Deluxe R rear shock.