EUROBIKE 2015 | Fast but not final: The ROSE Soul Fire 2016
To ensure their long-travel Soul Fire model makes a fittingly high-end entrance into 2016, ROSE have honed and tweaked this bike and given it more modern geometry, 27.5″ wheels and a few fine-tuned technical highlights. We took it out of the trade fair for a proper look and a breath of fresh air.
“It’s just the right spec that hasn’t been finalised,” explain the guys from ROSE from the comfort of their EUROBIKE stand. While the fundamental concept behind the bike has been transferred from its predecessor, everything else has been painstaking upgraded to meet the latest standards. The Soul Fire is still a bike park-orientated bike, but it does now boast 27.5″ wheels, the Boost rear axle standard and a flip-chip travel adjustment system on the rear shock mount.
A closer look reveals that none of the cables are internally routed – this isn’t an homage to the past, however, but a wise design given the limited time spent at bike parks and the consequent need for rapid repairs if any mechanicals occur.
Furthermore the large rolling bearings should result in more rigidity and a gentler response at the rear. Interesting: the bearing at the main pivot point is fixed using a Shimano inner bearing tool. In the times of press-fit bottom brackets, this is a great opportunity to give your old tools a new lease of life.
The rear travel on the Soul Fire can be altered between 180 and 190 mm using the flip-chip on the rear shock mount. The head angle is a slack 64.5°, the bottom bracket height is 355 mm and the reach is 442 mm (size medium), which is a significant 13 mm increase to its predecessor. Despite the bigger wheels, the chainstays have only been lengthened by 4 mm. With a resulting wheelbase of 1,210 mm, the Soul Fire should provide a calmer ride, without necessarily resulting in a loss of agility.
Unfortunately we weren’t able to take a proper look at the Soul Fire’s final spec here at the EUROBIKE stand. However, the catalogue reveals that the bike will come in three build specs and four sizes, each featuring a 1×11 drivetrain and 180 mm front forks.
|SOUL FIRE 1||SRAM GX||RockShox Yari|
|SOUL FIRE 2||Shimano XT||FOX 36|
|SOUL FIRE 3||SRAM X01||RockShox Lyric|
Just like the price, the exact list of parts remains undisclosed. One thing is for sure though: a dropper post does not look like it will feature as standard. But if you’re someone who can’t do without a dropper post even though you’ve got the serious bike park-orientated geometry, there’s no need to worry, as the seat tube holes will allow you to fix a Stealth post at a later date. The frame’s design doesn’t allow for a front derailleur if you were wondering.
More information will soon be available at: rosebikes.de
Words: Daniel Schlicke Pictures: Christoph Bayer