Cotic has given the much-loved RocketMAX an update for 2022. This time around, the bike benefits from a new sizing system, a tweaked geometry to suit longer and fatter forks, and the bike's seat angles are adjusted for a rider's height.
[Images courtesy of Darren Ellis/Cotic]
Back in 2020, we had the Gen3 RocketMAX in for testing and we liked it so much that we awarded it the 2020 Mountain Bike of the Year. Now for the Gen 4 iteration, Cotic has taken the RocketMAX back to the drawing board, tweaking it to become a more capable enduro monster.
Kicking things of, the RocketMAX Gen4 introduces Cotic's new C-Sizing, now offering five sizes instead of four as we've seen previously. This has allowed the brand to reduce the steps in reach measurements to 19mm. That's not all, as this has resulted in shorter seat tubes and more standover for the C2, C3, and C4 sizes compared to the old medium and large sizes. The C1 is said to be sized similarly to Cotic's usual small size but the C5 increases the reach over the previous Extra-large to 520mm.
The brand says that the dynamic bottom bracket is a bit lower for this bike but it's not pedal strikingly low and the seat tube angles get steeper as the bike's frame gets larger with the aim of maintaining the same 76° effective seat tube angle across the size range.
As for the frame itself, the RocketMAX Gen4 is graced with an all-new downtube made using an 853 steel that's exclusive to Cotic. The addition of the refined tube is said to increase strength and stiffness. As a brand renowned for its dedicated use of steel, Cotic doesn't need to justify its choices towards the material but it's been employed here because the brand can make use of steel's flex characteristic to enhance any grip on offer while improving performance.
The bike's geometry has then been tweaked to take full advantage of the new wave of 38mm stanchioned forks on the market. With a 170mm fork, the head angle sits at 63.5° as we've seen on the Gen3 bike, as Cotic believes that it's simply the sweet spot on thisbike. Of course, the RocketMAX is built with Longshot geometry which is paired with a 35mm stem on each frame. This allows the bike to be stable at speed, but manageable and responsive when cornering, says the brand.
On a C3 frame, the bike sees a 482mm reach, and an actual seat angle of 76.2° with the saddle 720mm above the bottom bracket.
As before, the RocketMAX Gen4 gets 160mm of suspension at the rear wheel but its leverage ratio has been reduced and the droplink has been revised. This means the bike can accommodate both air and coil shocks. Speaking of the droplink, it gets a new design that's seen only on the RocketMAX Gen which keys the links to the axles and is said to eliminate any twist or flex that can be found within the linkage.
The bike can be converted to a mullet setup if that's your thing and that's done by using an angleset to correct the geometry.
Moving onto the bike's spec and there have been changes made to the fork and as you may have guessed, models now come with RockShox ZEB Ultimate and Fox Factory 38 fork options. There's also a Cane Creek Kitsuma Coil as the coil option. Drivetrains come in the form of Shimano SLX and SRAM GX AXS as a couple of examples. Later in the year, there will also be the option of RockShox Yari forks and Super Deluxe Ultimate shocks. We're told that those choices will be due in July.
Prices start at £2,100 for a frame only with a rolling chassis available from £3,250. Complete bikes start at £4,000 with prices topping out at £6,500.
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