Scott Genius 40 Review
The Scott Genius 40 is a mountain bike designed for blazing smoothly across the toughest trails thanks to its full suspension setup and well balanced geometry which helps to compliment the natural abilities of a rider. Last year Scott hit new highs in terms of responsiveness and smooth shock action and it is hoping to taking things even further with the 2012 iteration of this popular model.
The custom butted, hydroformed tubes of the Genius Alloy 6061 frame gives great clearance and are surprisingly light given that this bike is designed to offer a full 150mm of travel. It can match up to many 120mm travel trail bikes in terms of nimbleness, which is largely thanks to the adaptability of its shocks. Overall weight is 12.5kg which is pretty much the same as the Genius 20 & 30, slightly more than the Genius 10 but 0.4kg lighter than the Genius 50.
At the rear you get the Scott Equalizer 2 which has three distinct modes that can be selected using the handlebar mounted TwistLoc lever. You can flick between the modes without having to loosen your grip on the bike and you can choose to fully lock out the shock, change it to Traction Mode in which you have 95mm of travel at your disposal or go all out for the Full Travel setting where all 150mm is available. In lockout mode the front fork with its Fox 32 Talas FIT shock is also stiffened up and overall it is a definite boon to hand to any rider who wants on the fly switching for ultimate control.
One of the key tricks which Scott is repeating this year is the sheer smoothness of this shock setup, even if it is relying on slightly different companies to provide the key components. The Equalizer 2 is a shock designed with multiple chambers so that even when full travel is enabled it will move slickly and responsively, adapting to the terrain and giving you just as much absorption as is required without ever feeling flaccid or flappy. I really like the 2012 Genius range.
The rest of the Scott Genius 40 is kitted out with reliable components from big name manufacturers. The drive-train consists of a good selection of Shimano gear; Shimano SLX at the front and Shimano XT Shadow is used for the rear derailleur, with Shimano SLX Rapidfire shifters completing the set. The front and rear disc brakes are Avid Elixir 5S carbon options with 180mm HS1 rotors on each for excellent stopping power and precision. The DT Swiss 465d rims and Schwalbe Nobby Nic EVO tyres complement the trail-friendly setup of this bike and are meaty enough to absorb the punishment that will invariably be thrown their way without bringing excessively weight to the detriment of the bike’s speed.
A silver frame with red detailing helps to showcase the geometry which can look quite outlandish and exciting from certain angles. You will definitely notice the specialist nature of the rear shock at a glance and the Scott Genius 40 does not seem to make too many compromises, despite the fact that it sits towards the more affordable end of its particular family of mountain bikes. It is certainly designed with serious riders in mind, but its features are intended to give you an experience which is fun rather than hair-raising.