Ghost has brought back the popular Riot name for a new alloy full suspension family, a complete overhaul for 2021 with three distinct variants to cover all the mountain bike bases – EN, AM & Trail. Sharing a new TractionLink suspension design ranging from 140-160mm of rear wheel travel, the new alloy enduro, all-mountain & trail bikes take on new progressive geometry to handle all sorts of aggressive off-road riding…
2021 Ghost Riot EN, AM & Trail alloy mountain bikes
The three 2021 Ghost Riots are all-new featuring a characteristically shapely series of hydroformed alloy frames with an all-new for Ghost short-link four-bar virtual pivot point suspension design. Interestingly, the last iteration of the Riot that we rode was a carbon Horst-link bike, but these new bikes aim for more accessible price points and a more aggressive style of riding.
Dubbed TractionLink, Ghost’s new suspension design prioritizes supple rear wheel travel & traction with the new setup, taking advantage of the increased stiffness of a one-piece welded rear triangle that rotates on short one-piece forged alloy lower & rocker links. Ghost says the straight vertical rear axle path hits that Traction sweet spot, while not really sacrificing pedaling efficiency if you stay seated.
Each of the three different Riot models gets discipline specific rear wheel travel – 160mm for enduro, 150mm for all-mountain & 140mm for trail. But there are actually just two different framesets. The EN & AM bikes share the same frame, with shorter shock stroke & forks on the all-mountain bikes, and the Trail bikes get their own separate framesets.
New modern, aggressive EN, AM & Trail geometries
Geometry is quite slack across all three platforms, with the EN & AM getting 64° headtubes & the Trail bikes 66 with long wheelbases and long frame Reach across all sizes for stability at high speed and over technical trails. At the other end, seattubes are a really steep 77° across all disciplines for forward weight balance and climbing efficiency.
Ghost calls their modern aggressive trail geometry SuperFit, meant to fit a wide range of riders with four stock sizes (S-XL) across all three platforms. It’s not a uniform spread of sizing, instead said to more closely mimic collected data of real rider setups. Plus, the smallest bikes all get 27.5″ wheels only to deliver the same ride character for all riders.
EN, AM & Trail bike – Tech details
One of the most interesting technical details is the fully integrated Eightpins dropper seatpost, with a tidy thumb remote that tucks in between your grip & brake lever. But it only come on the top two EN bikes specs, and the top Trail bike. That does mean that all of the bikes feature large diameter 34.9mm droppers, even on the frames that don’t include the 8pins-specific mounting point at the base of the seattube.
With all that is different between travel of the 3 alloy platforms, the new Ghost Riots essentially share much of the same remaining frame tech. Up front, a new full-length protector covers the entire downtube and hides the semi-internal cable routing. Out back, a fit-molded thermoplastic chainstay guards (secured with zip ties?!) eliminates chain slap noise.
The front triangle of all bikes includes one set of bottle bosses (even those with piggyback shocks), which Ghost suggests work great with low-profile Fidlock mounts & bottles. All 1x-specific frames get ISCG05 chain guide tabs, a threaded bottom bracket, UDH hangers, and Boost X12 axles.
A one-piece Disconnect brake mount allows Post Mount 160, 180, 200/203mm brake setup without a secondary adapter for a stiffer, lighter & simply nicer-looking rear brake setup.
Suspension pivots all use the same size sealed cartridge bearings for simplicity & serviceability, and all bikes feature vertical metric trunnion mount shocks of varying length or stroke. The ENduro bikes and the top-spec Trail bike get coil shocks, but all can alternately run air shocks too.
All bikes use one wheelsize, but are ready for Ghost’s moto-inspired MX mullet concept of wider, smaller diameter rear wheels too. And tire clearance is pretty massive, up to 29×2.6″ or 27.5×2.8″, at least for the enduro & all-mountain bikes.
2021 Ghost Riot EN, AM & Trail – Pricing, options & availability
The new Ghost Riot is available in three different spec levels that are alternately available in the three different disciplines.
The top spec Full Party model is offered in EN & Trail models with color coordinated purple Formula forks and brakes.
The 160mm enduro frames get built with 170mm forks, with three Riot EN models offered. The 3500€ Riot EN Full Party is the flagship model with a Selva S fork & Mod coil shock, Formula Cura 4-piston brakes, the Eigthpins dropper, an XT/SLX drivetrain & Syntace V30 wheels.
The 3000€ Riot EN Universal goes with a Marzocchi Bomber Z1 fork & Fox Van performance shock, plus a similar XT/SLX drivetrain.
The entry Riot EN Essential at 2500€ gets RockShox Yari RC/Super Deluxe Coil Select R suspension and a GX Eagle drivetrain.
The 150mm all-mountain bikes get built with 160mm forks in two Riot AM models – without a Full Party offering. The 3000€ Riot AM Universal has a RockShox Lyrik Select+ fork & Super Deluxe Select+ shock, and GX Eagle drivetrain.
The 2500€ Riot AM Essential opts for Fox 36 Float Rhythm & Float DPX2 Performance suspension with an XT/SLX drivetrain.
The 140mm trail bikes get built with 140mm forks, also in two Riot Trail models. But here the trail also gets a 3500€ Riot Trail Full Party model with a shorter travel Selva S fork & Mod coil shock, again with Cura 4-piston brakes, Eigthpins dropper, XT/SLX drivetrain & Syntace V30 wheels.
There’s no mid-spec model, but the 2500€ Riot Trail Essential offers the entry-level build with Fox Float suspension & Deore/SLX/XT mix.