With the cross-country season ahead and the Olympics on the horizon, it seems that plenty of brands are updating their cross-country bike ranges to suit the rigours of modern racing. Focus is no exception, reworking the Focus Raven hardtail with modern geometry, a longer reach, more travel and internal frame storage…and it’s no longer just aimed at XC.

Need to know:

  • Travel boosted to 120mm
  • Internal frame storage
  • Updated geometry
  • 29er wheelsize
  • Integrated cockpit design
  • S, M, L, XL
Man jumping the Focus Raven hardtail mountain bike

This is definitely not an XC race

However, Focus no longer describe this bike as an out-and-out cross-country race bike; in its own words, Focus stats that the Raven ‘connects the mountain bike world with the fast gravel world’.

So are we likely to see the Raven tackling some of the more technical gravel races out there? Maybe. And with it’s modern geometry its certainly moved towards the more downcountry end of the spectrum, a development that’s been prompted partly by market demand and also the increasing technicality of World Cup cross-country courses.

A lot of the imagery Focus used to promote the new Raven is around adventure and exploration, which suggests that the brand also see the Raven as an adventure bike for longer, off-road bikepacking trips.

Focus Raven action shot

Trail, adventure, downcountry – the new focus for the Raven hardtail

Frame and geometry

There are three models of the new Focus Raven, and all three are built around the same carbon frame that has been extensively updated. Dropped seatstays add more compliance at the rear end, and the reach has been extended with it coming in at 440mm on the size medium, with a top tube length of 621.

Focus Raven frame detail

Geometry is adjustable by rotating the headset cups, which will change the head angle between 66.5° and 67.5°. Seat tube angle is 74°. All but the base model are fitted with dropper seat posts, and there’s room for two water bottles within the fram – or bikepacking bags if that’s more your style.

And finally, Focus have joined the frame storage party by including an internal compartment in the downtube.

Focus Raven bottle cages

More travel, bigger wheels

Focus has boosted the travel up to 120mm, with travel on the range-topping Focus Raven 8.9 supplied by Rock Shox SID Select 29. And in line with the majority of cross-country hardtails, wheels are now 29er, with most of the range fitted with XC and trail-ready Maxxis Rekon or Rekon Race tyres.

Focus Raven integrated headset

Another new development is the C.I.S or Cockpit Integration System. This is an integrated cockpit design which routes cables from the handlebars through and down the stem for a clean front end.

Focus Raven hardtail range

There are three bikes in the Focus Raven range, available now via Focus or Focus-affiliated retailers.

Focus Raven 8.9 hardtail mountain bike

Focus 8.9

  • Price: €3,599 / £3,499
  • Frame: Carbon technology frame
  • Forks: Rock Shox SID Select 29, 110×15 mm, 44mm rake
  • Drivetrain:  SRAM GX Eagle & XG, 12-speed, SRAM Level TLM brakes
  • Components: Selle Royal Groove saddle with Post Moderne dropper post, Aluminium handlebars 760 mm
  • Wheelset: DT Swiss X1900 with Maxxis Rekon Race tyres

Focus Raven 8.8 hardtail mountain bike

Focus 8.8

  • Price: €2,799 / £2,799
  • Frame: Carbon technology frame
  • Forks:  FOX 34 Float Rhythm 29, Grip, Sweep-Adj., 110×15 mm,
    44 mm rake
  • Drivetrain: Shimano Deore XT, 12-speed with Shimano SLX M7100 brakes
  • Components: Selle Royal Groove saddle with Post Moderne dropper post, Aluminium, 760 mm handlebars
  • Wheelset: RaceFace ARC27 rims with Novatec hubs and Maxxis Rekon tyres

Focus Raven 8.7 hardtail mountain bike

Focus 8.7

  • Price: €2,199 / £2,199
  • Frame: Carbon technology frame
  • Forks: Rock Shox Judy Silver TK 29, 110×15 mm, 46 mm rake, 120 mm
  • Drivetrain: SRAM SX Eagle, 12-speed with SRAM Level brakes
  • Components: Selle Royal Groove saddle with aluminium seatpost, and Aluminium 760 mm handlebars
  • Wheelset: RODI TRYP25 rims with Novatec hubs and Maxxis Rekon tyres