Devinci hasn’t had a 29er trail bike in their lineup for a few years (since the Atlas was discontinued). But in a smart move by Devinci, the Django is now available with both 29” and 27.5” wheels.
Devinci released the 27.5” wheeled Django this past spring to enthusiastic reviews, and for good reason — it took the same basic frame layout that made the Devinci Troy a success, but reduced the travel and weight a bit to make the bike more appealing for all-around trail duties. With 120 mm travel in the rear, the Django 27.5 had enough cush to tackle rough trails, but not so much that it sapped efficiency for longer, more pedal-heavy rides.
But for a bike with 120 mm travel, a lot of people (myself included) prefer a 29er. The big wheels roll over obstacles more efficiently, and they tend to carry speed really well. While the big wheels slow down the handling a bit, in a shorter travel bike like the Django, the geometry keeps steering reasonably quick even in tight spots.
I haven’t had the opportunity to ride the new Django just yet, but I have a lot of time on other Devinci bikes, and there’s no doubt in my mind that the Django 29 will be consistent with the rest of their lineup. That means a stout frame that can take abuse; a Split Pivot rear suspension design that’s an efficient pedaler that also retains excellent small bump sensitivity; and geometry numbers that are progressive without going overboard.
A few things stand out right away:
The carbon version of the frame comes in at 6.75 lbs, while the aluminum comes in at 8.07 lbs. Neither of those weights are setting any records, but they’re not overly heavy, either. (At that weight, a nice build on the carbon frame would likely come in around 28 lbs without pedals.)
And I’ll go out on a limb and say that, like pretty much all of Devinci’s other bikes, the frames will be very stiff, willing to take a lot of abuse, and they’ll be backed up by a lifetime warranty.
A 68° head angle is at the steep end of “progressive” short-travel 29ers, but with Devinci’s new FRG headset cup, the head angle can be reduced to 67.5°. Combined with the steep 74.5° seat tube angle, the Django 29 should be pretty comfortable on steep climbs, while maintaining its stability on the way down.
434 mm chainstays are a touch longer than many of the other options on the market right now, and I think that’s a good thing — slightly longer stays help make the bike feel more balanced, and help keep the front wheel hooked up in corners. And speaking of cornering, the Django 29 is advertised as having a 320 mm bottom bracket height. Assuming that’s not a typo, that’s really low — about 11 mm lower than the already-very-low Evil Following. Pedal strikes might be an issue on the Django 29, but it’ll certainly rail corners.
Sizing on the Django 29 is right in line with the Django 27.5 and Troy. A Medium frame has a 440 mm reach, which puts it at the long end of bikes in this class without being ridiculously long like the new Konas. That extra length will likely make the bike feel a bit more stable at speed.
We’ll see how all of that plays out once I get a chance to swing a leg over one, but this certainly looks like it’ll be a great addition to the Devinci lineup. In the meantime, here’s a video of Devinci’s Mark Wallace ripping the shit out of the new bike: