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First Look | The New Orange Five – The legend gets a makeover

It is rare to find something truly new at a UK bike show, most brands hold out until the mighty Eurobike before unleashing their new bikes on the greedy media. However, the quintessentially British brand Orange had a nice surprise in store for those walking the halls of the ‘Bike Place’ show in Silverstone, the long serving and well loved Orange Five had received a makeover, and boy did they do well- welcome to the new Five.


The High Five has a new poise, with its strong lines it now looks fast standing still.
The new Five has a new poise, with its strong lines it now looks fast standing still.

The ‘old’ five had a lot of fans, and is certainly a great bike, but the new one looks simply amazing in the metal. It’s not just an aesthetic makeover either, 10mm longer in the toptube, stiffer (15%) and a little slacker (0.5°) mean the new Five will be a riotously fun bike to ride. There can be no doubt it’s a meaner, more trimmed down bike, but still undeniably a Five. Still 140 mm of travel, still hand-built in Britain, still single-pivot and we imagine that it will still be a blast out on the trail.

The new refinements bring a longer wheelbase, improving climbing capability, and providing maximum stability on the descents
The new refinements bring a longer wheelbase, improving climbing capability, and providing maximum stability on the descents
A new lighter shock mount has been designed to improve stress dispersal through the downtube
A new lighter shock mount has been designed to improve stress dispersal through the downtube
Refined drop-outs are mated to more rigid arms improving rear stiffness
Refined drop-outs are mated to more rigid arms improving rear stiffness
The new top tube is aggressive and more angular, more stealth bomber than garden gate
The new top tube is aggressive and more angular, more stealth bomber than garden gate
It is hard to see here but the new swing arm features extra folds
It is hard to see here but the new swing arm features extra folds
The new Five will be available in three spec levels, and there will be a Renthal and ENVE pack for those with deep pockets
The new Five will be available in three spec levels, and there will be a Renthal and ENVE pack for those with deep pockets

For full information and specifications check out the Orange website

Our Impressions

There was a lot of love in the UK for the old Five and we can see the new version selling well; the subtle tweaks have really improved the look, and the slight lengthening and the slacker head angle put it right on point with the current ‘sweet spot’ geometry without being extreme. There is a brutal honesty to this bike, those sleek lines and simple pivot make you want to take it away for a dirty weekend in the woods. It looks to be the sort of bike that will happily take you to the limit, and occasional kick you right over it. We cannot wait to test one.

Words and photos: Trev Worsey