First Ride | DT Swiss OPM 120 LTD Team Edition
Rolex, Omega and Swatch – these watchmakers are each renowned for the finest materials and genuine Swiss precision. Located alongside these premium brands, DT Swiss are also proud to call Biel their home. Internationally recognised as a reputable wheel manufacturer, the company have also been producing forks for a number of years that are able to compete among the best. Now, the Swiss company have launched a new fork, one that has been created with first-rate materials, innovative manufacturing techniques and potentially record-breaking stats.
Based on the DT Swiss OPM ODL NCS 120, the Swiss company have created a limited run of 300 LTD Team Edition forks, which break all the records when it comes to weight. Thanks to the innovative carbon stanchion and carbon crown, they weigh in at a potentially record-breaking low of 1,456 grams (without remote kit, 29er casting). The key factor: the carbon parts haven’t been layered as is the norm; instead the carbon strands have been weaved according to specific standards relating to direction and structure.
Designed primarily for xc racing, the 100 to 120mm travel for 29” and 27.5” forks is pretty much what you’d expect from weight-conscious trail bikes. More suspension variants are in the pipeline, with sights set on up to 150mm. Available for purchase in shops from June, these exclusive carbon forks can be brought with a remote kit for €1,199.
An overview of the technical details:
The sealed air shock O.D.L. can be adjusted using the super ergonomic remote lever, the so-called ‘Two in One Lever’, located on your handlebars. There are three settings to choose from: ‘Open’, ‘Drive’ and ‘Lock’. Just think Fox or RockShox and you’ll get the idea. Using the little blue dial you can fine-tune the open mode to the terrain, and the two other settings are for more specific use like lock-out and climbing.
On the trail — First Ride.
We were lucky enough to have the exclusive opportunity to test-ride these new prototypes from DT Swiss.
As a test bike, we rode the Cube Stereo HPC Pro 29, fully kitted out with DT Swiss suspension.
On the trail the extremely light and rigid forks proved sensitive and responsive. Given their linear characteristics, they rapidly gave a lot of travel in the Open Mode, providing a lot of comfort for the rider. The forks handled big jumps well and rebounded swiftly.
The Drive Mode is definitely well suited to aggressive riders. Here you’re granted significantly more gradual travel, which creates more control and a more defined ride in the fast sections – while still being very responsive. Switching between Open, Drive and Lock proves a simple task with the Two in One remote lever. When it comes to the lever’s functionality and ergonomics, other manufacturers just can’t compete. The same lever also lets you regulate the rear at the same time.
With a 75kg rider on a 29er, we had no issues with rigidity. The forks showed great ability on tight corners and technical terrain.
With the OPM 120 LTD Team Edition, DT Swiss have come up trumps and created an outstanding pair of forks for xc racing and trail riding. Their performance more than matches its rivals while weighing significantly less.
The DT Swiss OPM 120 LTD Team Edition is available for 29“ und 27,5“ with travel of 100 to 120mm. Bigger travel variants are being planned at the moment, up to 150mm. The 300 limited carbon fork editions will be in shops from June, priced at €1,199 including the remote kit.
Words & Photos: Christoph Bayer