Bikes that can convert from one use to another already exist, but few do it as nimbly as the Canyon Strive; this bike requires nothing more than the flick of a lever to instantly convert from a 150mm downhill dweller to a 135mm XC racer.

Sounds too good to be true, but Canyon put in the work to make sure this is more than a gimmick; the Strive utilizes a redesigned version of their Shapeshifter rearshock – (produced with the help of Fox). The Shapeshifter boasts a gas spring that, when activated via the lever positioned neatly on the handlebar, repositions the rear shock linkage to give the bike an entirely new geometry and suspension.  The suspension stiffens or loosens as needed, and allows for an extra 1.5 degrees on the steering and seat angles when switching between modes. At the same time, the suspension is never actually turned off or locked – it stays completely active in both modes, all the time, keeping your ride smooth and cushioned all the time.

We think that’s pretty sweet – but it’s not all the Canyon Strive offers. As previously mentioned, you can choose from the regular full-carbon frame or the CFR option, which shaves off a further 300g without compromising stiffness or handling. The wheels are technically-oriented 29’ers with knobby tires, and a triple phase suspension provides the best compromise between sensitivity, stability and speed; and your choice of 36mm stanchion forks with 160mm-170mm of travel, from Fox or RockShox – it’s your choice. We also like the tapered head tube, which adds stiffness and precision for both steering and braking.

So if you enjoy tackling all-mountain terrain as much as you do bombing downhill and don’t want to have to commit to one over the other  – in your garage or for a day on the trail – you’re in luck; the Canyon Strive ’29 should earn a place in your garage.

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