Today big playing suspension brand, RockShox has unveiled Flight Attendant, a new range of suspension components that are designed to listen to the rider, removing complexity and elevating your ride experience. It's a brand new automatic suspension system that uses terrain and rider inputs to anticipate exactly what you need from your suspension at any given moment. There are also heaps of new tech to dive into. Grab a brew, this one's a biggie.
Flight Attendant is RockShox brand new range of suspension components that uses a suite of sensors to read rider and terrain inputs in order to automatically adjust the suspension to work at its best at any given time. To do this, it uses sensors onboard a fork, rear shock, and crankset that work together to detect every bump, pitch, and pedal stroke, promising to truly listen to the rider.
There's also a complex algorithm built into the new tech that's scientifically engineered to do the thinking for you, says the brand. It analyses a constant flow of ever-changing data to anticipate the ideal suspension setting for the rider's and trail's demands.
Flight Attendant is promised to also work to make your big enduro bike much more efficient. It'll firm up when tonnes of suspension travel isn't necessary and when you're wanting to make the most of every pedal stroke but once the chunk rolls in, it'll open up the suspension to work exactly how you would expect.
The fancy new tech comes with four modes, Alt which is essentially Auto mode. In this mode, Flight Attendant will automatically switch between Open, Pedal, and Lock modes, apparently before you've even thought about it.
Of course, we're already used to what the Open, Pedal, and Lock modes mean but for the uninitiated, Open allows your suspension to move throughout its travel, ideal for smashing the downhills. Pedal is a middle setting, offering a stiffer platform and reduced suspension movement or a middle ground between efficiency and comfort/traction. Then Lock locks out the suspension completely, perfect if you're looking for the most efficiency for those long climbs.
Perhaps a saving grace for those out there who are wary of total autonomy, Flight Attendant can be overridden with thanks to Flight Attendant's pairing with SRAM's AXS tech and the Flight Attendant Control Module.
The override mode is supposed to be a shortcut to your desired suspension position. With a press and a hold of the assigned paddle on the bar-mounted AXS controller, you'll turn off Auto mode and will shift the suspension into your designated override mode. This is great for those moments where you know full-well what suspension setting you want without the Auto mode getting in the way. Click that same paddle once again and you're back into Auto mode.
As with the rest of SRAM's AXS range, Flight Attendant does require battery power. That means that it'll run out of power at some point and that's something you don't want halfway through a ride. RockShox has you covered though because Flight Attendant is built with a Safe mode that automatically pops the suspension into the Open mode.
RockShox' new automatic suspension tech also comes with a bias adjust which allows riders to fine-tune how Flight Attendant reacts in Auto mode to your riding style and personal preferences. Out of the box, it comes with zero bias for a balance between all three positions but adjusting the bias will instruct the system to favour the Open or Lock positions.
Biasing the system towards Lock will enhance efficiency, biasing it towards Open means that the system will favour the Open mode more, resulting in a plusher ride.
Adding to the host of cool tech, Flight Attendant comes with a low-speed compression adjustment that can be fettled with via the SRAM AXS App or the Flight Attendant Control Module, which lives on your fork and is what collects data from the sensors.
Flight Attendant will be found featured on three of RockShox' forks, namely the Pike Ultimate, the Lyrik Ultimate and ZEB Ultimate.
Those three forks will also benefit from Buttercups, low amplitude, vibration-reducing pucks that are designed to block 20% of unwanted trail chatter. Inside gold a gold housing at the end of the damper and air spring there are two rubber pucks that absorb those vibrations.
On those very same forks, there's a new version of the Charger damper that allows for the Auto function to work. It also offers 10 clicks of independent low-speed compression and 20 clicks of rebound.
Along with that, the new forks benefit from the new DebonAir+ air spring that's promised to offer butter-like small bump feel, increased support throughout the travel and a higher ride height. You'll also find Pressure Relief Valves, much like what you'll get on the 2021 Fox 26 and 38 forks. These valves release pressure build up in the fork lowers caused by altitude or temperature with the press of a button.
Built into the new range of Flight Attendant forks are Stiffness Reducers. They use torque caps to add an additional 5% of stiffness to the forks. However, they'll also offer the option to run a standard hub cap via a new bolt-in adaptor, ideal for those who choose to go without free stiffness.
It's not all about the forks here though, RockShox Super Deluxe Ultimate also gets the Flight Attendant treatment, acting in the very same way as the forks.
As I've hinted before, Flight Attendant works with a pedal sensor that's built into a SRAM XX1 or XO1 crankset, sending vital info to the fork and shock about your pedalling, as you pedal.
The RockShox Pike Flight Attendant is available in both 650b and 29" wheel sizes with travel from 120mm up to 140mm and with 37mm and 44mm offsets. Then the Lyrik offers the same sizes and offsets but with 140mm up to 160mm of travel. Then, the ZEB comes in 150mm up to 190mm of travel and offers an additional 51mm offset in the 29" wheel size.
As for the Super Delux Ultimate Flight Attendant shock, that comes in a huge range of stroke lengths, a digressive, linear rebound tune, bearing, no bushing, standard and trunnion mounts and there are two air can options.
Finally, the XX1 and XO1 Flight Attendant cranksets come with 165mm, 170mm and 175mm crank lengths, can accommodate 30T to 36T chainrings and is compatible with both 11 and 12-speed drivetrains.
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