Often times when we think of short-travel XC bikes, we have a tendency to think of nothing but long stretches of singletrack, smooth, fast rolling dirt, and quick switchbacks, with riders dressed in lycra, but just because that’s where a cross-country racer might bang out their miles doesn’t mean its where the bike finds its limit. The Pivot Mach 429SL Carbon Mountain Bike has the fast-rolling readiness of the raciest of XC bikes, but is capable enough for long backcountry adventures, exploring the wild beyond of Squamish or Northwest Arkansas where you can roll for days without seeing another human soul.
The 429SL achieves this versatility by combining new-school racing geometry with supple, DW-link suspension to create a bike that’s quick and nimble handling is only rivaled by its supportive, yet plush travel. To keep the geometry so quick-handling, the 429SL has a steep, 70.3-degree head tube angle, and an equally steep 72.9-degree seat tube angle, collectively keeping you centered in the cockpit for maximum control and power. The bike uses a short top tube so you can stay on-top and in your attacking position whether in or out of the saddle, showing the bike who’s boss with quick control through tight switchbacks. This not only keeps you in a great XC-race stance, but also lends to long-ride comfort for endurance racing or long adventures in the backcountry.
On the climbs you benefit from the latest iteration of DW-link suspension that’s paired with a Fox Float DPS Kashima coated shock, fine-tuned specifically for the 429SL to offer unmatched pedaling efficiency that soaks up square edge bumps without bobbing and squatting into the travel. This lends to exceptional traction on steep climbs, and instant acceleration when things open up. The Fox Float DPS shock offers settings that are designed to offer you a plush feel when heading downhill, with control over damping and firm handling when you need to punch up fast climbs. We won’t try to tell you that the 429SL’s 100-millimeters of travel feel like a full blown long-travel bike when you point it downhill, but it does excel and offer more cushion than we’d expect from such short travel, which might have something to do with the 12 x 142mm rear spacing, or the quick rolling tendencies of 29ers.
The Mach 429 SL is made from Pivot’s hollow-core carbon fiber, which is engineered with a layup designed for maximum structural strength, with minimal material use to create a lightweight bike that’s stronger without excess weight. Backed with Pivot’s new 10-year warranty, we think you can delve into the bike with confidence that it is tough enough to stand up to the hardest riding you throw at it. The frame is designed for compatibility with a huge array of components, including routing for an internally routed dropper post, and integrated Shimano Di2 battery and cables for those seeking a top-of-the-line build. If customizing your ride is an important feature, you’ll be glad to see that the frame-protector at the bottom of the down tube is interchangeable to pick what cable routing is the cleanest and most ideal for your current, or future setup needs.
- XC-race inspired bike with a sense of adventure
- Steep angles keep you centered in the cockpit
- 100mm of DW link suspension soaks up bumps
- Quick and efficient pedaling platform propels you
- Hollow-core carbon for stiff and lightweight build
- Internal cable routing with full Di2 compatability