Merida introduce new hardtails: the Big.Nine / Big.Seven and Big.Trail

Following last year’s presentation of the NINETY.SIX full suspension XC bike at the sidelines of the UCI World Cup in Albstadt, this year's event was all about three exciting new hardtails – two focusing on modern XC racing and one on hardtail trail riding.

BIG.NINE / BIG.SEVEN


Merida Big.Nine Big.Seven 2.jpg

 

Development Focus


A combination of low weight, attractive design and the requirements of our MULTIVAN MERIDA BIKING TEAM were the focus in the development of our new BIG.NINE/BIG.SEVEN. We have spent lots of time on getting the geometry, the comfort and the stiffness perfectly right. The leaf spring like FLEXSTAY chain and seat stays increase the riding comfort as well as take the sting out of rougher descents. To give the rider another small advantage over the competition we have given the new bikes an aerodynamic downtube. Its profile was heavily influenced by our award winning SCULTURA road bike.

 

Merida Big.Nine Big.Seven 3.jpg


Merida Big.Nine Big.Seven 6.jpg

Merida Big.Nine Big.Seven 4.jpg


Purpose


Our new BIG.NINE/BIG.SEVEN is clearly focused on cross country racing and that’s not just due to the close involvement of our MULTIVAN MERIDA BIKING TEAM. In particular our range leading CF5 frame is laid out for 1 x drivetrains but that doesn’t mean it would not feel at home at marathon races and long endurance events. The FLEXSTAY chain and seat stays paired with the S-Flex seatpost make the BIG.NINE/BIG.SEVEN one of the most comfortable hardtails in its class and therefore the perfect partner for long endurance events.

 


Merida Big.Nine Big.Seven 5.jpg

Merida Big.Nine Big.Seven 9.jpg


Weight, material and stiffness


Merida CF5 weight.jpg
The BIG.NINE/BIG.SEVEN frames will be available in two carbon frames: CF5 and CF3 as well as the aluminium Lite model. The range topping CF5 used by the MULTIVAN MERIDA BIKING TEAM is very much focused on super low weight and stiffness. In comparison to the CF3 the following changes have been made to achieve the super low weight:
  • High end fibres
  • Weight optimised carbon layup – layup development takes almost twice as long as the layup of the CF3 frame
  • EPS core
  • 1 x only – pretty much all racers have changed to 1 x drivetrains
  • Integrated headset cups
  • Weight of the BIG.NINE TEAM is around 8,5 kg

Interfaces


Headset
  • CF5 = integrated headset cups (lighter)
  • CF3 & LITE = semi integrated
Front Derailleur
  • CF5 = 1 x specific
  • CF3 & LITE = low direct mount for side swing derailleur
Cable Exits on Chain Stays (CF5 & CF3 Frames)
  • cleaner
  • less dirt and mud sticks to the frame
  • cables/hoses are better protected
  • cables get clamped inside the frame (bottom bracket area) to avoid rattling
  • on the LITE version cables exit the frame in front of the bottom bracket
  • same system as currently used on our full suspension bikes
Interfaces CF5, CF3 & Lite have in common
  • Boost rear wheel standard to increase rear wheel stiffness
  • Smart entry
  • Perfectly fitted and super light chain stay and down tube protectors + 30.9mm seatpost
    • greater longevity and is less prone to split
    • dropper post size
  • Post mount rear disc attachment + DI2 ready
  • BB92 bottom bracket
Merida Big.Nine Big.Seven 1.jpg

 

Geometry


The head tube was shorted by 1cm to put more weight on the front wheel for super aggressive cornering and further improved climbing ability. Furthermore, the chain stays were shortened by 7mm to make the chassis even more agile out on the trail. Completely new in 2017 is the increased reach by 25mm. This in combination with a shorter stem (José Hermida rides a 80mm stem / it used to be 110mm) places the rider more ‘in’ the bike which improves handling. The geometry on the CF5, CF3 and LITE
is identical.

 

Merida Big.Nine Geometry.jpg

 

Parts Highlights


Merida Team Grips
  • Pair weighs only 27g
  • Offer great comfort despite the super low weight
Merida Team S-Flex Seatpost
  • Extra comfort due to increased vertical flex
  • Weight 190g
  • TEAM version – all carbon
  • EXPERT version – clamp is aluminium
Merida Team Handlebar
  • Flatbar
  • 720mm wide
  • 130g
Axles 9000 & Team Models
  • DT Swiss custom axle – removable 6mm allen key which can also be used for the through axle of the suspension fork
  • Weight without allen key = 48g
Merida Expert CC Rims
  • 405g 29er
  • 395g 27.5”
  • Inner bead width: 22.8mm
  • Tubeless ready
  • Hook-less
  • Sleeved rim
  • lighter and works better with tubeless than pin joined rims
  • mounted on BIG.NINE / BiG.SEVEN 6000, XT, 5000, 4000, 900 and 800

BIG.TRAIL


Merida Big.Trail 2.jpg
When we started thinking about the BIG.TRAIL we would always come back to the point that our main focus has to be to create a hardtail that puts the fun factor as well as safety out on the trail first. These are the main reasons that geometry as well as specification differs from the classic hardtail. Our geometry and the 130mm suspension fork give the bike a real downhill focus putting the BIG.TRAIL far more in line with a full suspension trail bike than a cross country hardtail.

 

Another argument in favour for this new category is the simplicity and therefore longevity which shows itself for example in the robust yet lightweight construction of the frame. The playfulness of the geometry paired with a functional specification is of particular interest to the customers who are looking for a low maintenance machine that has real trail hunger.

 


Merida Big.Trail 7.jpg

Merida Big.Trail 4.jpg


The thought of re-introducing a real trail hardtail has been going around MERIDA’s R&D department for a long time and now due to the introduction of the new PLUS size tyres the time was right to bring the BIG.TRAIL to market. The new PLUS size tyres offer extra traction and safety out on the trail – both aspects which mirror more the riding characteristics of a full suspension bike than a hardtail. So it was clear our new MERIDA trail hardtail had to be a PLUS size bike.

 

Purpose


The purpose of our new BIG.TRAIL is obvious – trail riding! In particular on your local trails the BIG.TRAIL is going to show its strength and prob- ably will be able to keep up with your full suspension bike. Furthermore, our new trail hardtail will feel very much at home at ‘trail parks’ and on flow trails in bike parks.

 

Merida Big.Trail 1.jpg

 

Weight, material, and stiffness


Frame weight: 1965 g 1965 +/- 3% (size M)
Smart entry: 16g
Derailleur hanger: 16g
Through axle: 79g
Seat clamp: 20g
Chain stay protector: 6g
Down tube protector: 15g
Over all weight: 2101 g

 

To give the bike the super low standover height you expect from a trail bike we used hydroforming to produce the top tube. Another worth mentioning details is the bottom bracket area of the BIG.TRAIL which is forged and has integrated ISCG 05 mounts. Normally these are welded to the frame, adding further welds as well as not looking as clean as our BIG.TRAIL solution.

 

Geometry


Long, at and low. These three words describe our BIG.TRAIL geometry best. The geometry has more similarities to full suspension trail bikes than to classic hardtails. The steering angle is very aggressive for a B+ bike with 67.5°. To maintain the playfulness we have managed to make the chain stays super short, coming in at just 427.5mm. All frame sizes come equipped with a 35mm stem (3) which works perfectly with the long top tube.

 

Merida Big.Trail geometry.jpg

 

Parts Highlights


Merida Expert Handlebar
  • 760mm aluminium handlebar + 270g
  • 20mm rise
  • 35mm clamp diameter
Merida Big.Trail 3.jpg

 

Merida Expert TP Rims

  • 520g 27.5”
  • Inner bead width: 35mm
  • Tubeless ready
  • Hook-less
  • Sleeved rim
  • lighter and works better with tubeless than pin joined rims + mounted on BIG.TRAIL 800 & 600

Merida Big.Trail 6.jpg

Merida Big.Trail 8.jpg






8 Comments

Odinson, May 24 2016 01:55

That Big.Trail ain't bad for a Me(h)rida.

 

Looks like a lekker Gauteng do-it-all bike.

Hairy, May 24 2016 03:04

Hello BIG. TRAIL!

Andrew Steer, May 24 2016 03:38

Their hardtails this year are stupid sexy for me: http://www.merida-bi...-9000-4324.html

FCH, May 24 2016 05:01

Whats the damage?? $$

Iwan Kemp, May 25 2016 08:08

Big.Trail looks mighty fine

Brawler, May 25 2016 08:25

Big Trail type bike will be my next.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

gummibear, May 25 2016 08:34

Big.Trail looks mighty fine


What he said^^^^[emoji106]

Piston ZA, May 25 2016 08:43

Whats the damage?? $$

1500, 1900 and 3500 Euros depending on spec