Motobecane Fantom XC Full Suspension

DESCRIPTION

  • LX Shifters / FR Derailleur
  • SuperLite 4bar Double-butted Aluminum frame
  • Aerosa BAS Low Pressure Dual Air Fork 89mm
  • RST Chamber X 4" Travel RR
  • Avid SD7 Brakes/Levers
  • M-Wings Team Issue Wheelset

USER REVIEWS

Showing 1-10 of 112  
[Jun 04, 2014]
Koin
Weekend Warrior

OVERALL
RATING
4
VALUE
RATING
5
Strength:

Durable frame
3 travel settings
Great value if you buy stock
Sealed bearings (most bikes have this now though)
Well tested faux-bar suspension
Brake jack makes you descend faster haha

Weakness:

Stock shock was not the best tune for the frame. The frame really needs a med or high tune if you want to run the bike in the 4 or 5in travel position.
Frame is a bit flexy at the rear end when ridden hard. Stock fork is a little flexy with 9mm drop outs and 32mm stancions when ridden hard.
3 travel settings. The different travel settings are nice, but the bike really performs the best in the 3 and 4in travel settings. Many people are putting the bike in the 5in setting, but the stock rear shock is a low tune and the leverage ratio of the 5in setting is very high. I ended up replacing the stock 2012 Rock Shox monarch rt3 low tune with a 2013 Monarch RT3 Med tune and put the bike in the 4in setting. What a difference! To be fair, the 2012 monarch rt3 kinda sucked (according to other reviews and my experience).
Well tested faux-bar suspension. The bike suspension design is outdated (or well proven, however you want to look at it). Flipping the switch on the shock does next to nothing as the suspension design doesn't play well with propedal settings. The suspension is prone to a little bit of bob - not much and I don't even notice it while climbing. It still smooths out the trail and that's what it was meant to do.
Brake Jack - when on the rear brake on a steep rocky descent, the rear suspension stiffens up. It turns the rear end into a boat anchor as you plummet down, bouncing all around. No it's not that bad, and really I just lay off the brakes and do some light feathering. This has allowed me to go faster downhill haha.

Not many size options. Med measures 18.5, I need a 19.5 but this one works with some tweaks. Only comes in 16.5, 18.5, and 21.5.

For reference, I'm 24 year olds and 190 lbs. If you buy this bike, buy it new and have a professional build it up. Don't buy the frame and build it up, unless you have all the parts already and are experienced. Building a bike from the frame up will be MORE expensive than buying it new.

I bought this bike as the frame only and built it up from there. It's a 2011 model and it's my first "real" mountain bike. I can't attest to the long term quality of the bike's stock components. I got the frame as a great deal from someone who robbed all the good stuff off of it. I slowly built it up with my broke college budget with crappy parts that didn't function well, a super heavy FR fork (my bad, didn't know anything about axle to crown lengths at the time of purchase), and a rear shock that was the wrong tune for the frame (that came stock). Now that I've got the bike somewhere near stock - actually a little bit better, I feel like I can write a decent review. At best though, even with the less than perfect parts on it for so long, I can say that I've gotten to know the frame quite well.

My bike set up right now has changed since I first got the frame. It's much better now than it ever has been and a bit better than stock in my opinion. The BB7s I have on it work fantastic (so long as I'm not dragging the brakes for super long periods of time). I'm planning on some XT brakes in the near future though.

This bike is very durable! The rear end feels a bit flexy with 9mm x 135mm drop outs. But if you've never ridden a 12mm x 142mm then you haven't been spoiled and a 135 x 9mm is plenty. I've crashed this thing so many times and had no issues of bent frame, cracks, dents, or anything (knock on wood). The wheels haven't even gone out of true (but these wheels are not what come stock). The front end is still a bit noodlely when pushed hard in corners, but what 120mm travel 32mm stancioned fork isn't? The front thru axle is MUCH stiffer than the 9mm QR that came stock on it though.

Overall I'd say that this bike stock is great value. Sure they cheap out on some of the components such as the crankset, but they make up for it with the shifters and derailleurs. The brakes that come stock are crap. They feel good out of the box but then over time become crap. The rear shock was the wrong tune for the frame unless I kept it in the 3in travel setting. But who would want to keep it there anyways? I think that the stock stem and bar setup is a bit too long and too narrow for my personal tastes. The kenda small block eight tires that come stock are great if you're on smooth hardpack. Superfast tires. For my tastes though I enjoy the grip of the specialized ground control. Then again this bike was intended to be ridden XC. Most of the trails in my area are XC, but some are much more trail oriented. So far it's survived the stress that I've put on it.

Unfortunately this bike is less forgiving than other more modern bikes. Sure I can keep up with the rest of them (at the expense of more energy used), but this bike lets you know when you've made a mistake or picked a bad line. It doesn't say "Bro, I've got your back" but rather "You got away with that THIS time" or "Serves you right!" and "That's what you get!" At the end of a long day in the saddle, I feel beat. So beat that I don't want to ride any more (OH NO WHAT A SIN!). Some other bikes I've ridden at demos or borrowed or rented don't beat me up quite as much. Of course there are times when the bike says things like "Great job!" or "That was fking awesome!" and "You've improved so much in your technique". Maybe I'm just hearing things though.

For the price, this bike is AWESOME. BikesDirect has it for around $1700 or so. With that you get XTR shifters, XTR derailleurs, and Avid Elixir brakes. The XTR stuff by itself costs nearly as much as the whole bike. Not to mention that the stock Vuelta wheels spin super smooth (I got the chance to see some, kinda wanted them, but I like the durability of my wheels), but I can't attest to the durability of them.

This bike has taken me all over the place, it has traveled with me on my journeys, sent me flying through the air, smashed into trees and rocks, slid out in fast corners, survived and conquered nasty descents, and has even taken me to school as a daily rider (until I got my road bike). While it sounds like I'm just complaining about this bike, I really do love it. I think I've outgrown it a bit and I want to ride bigger. I'm looking at a new bike possibly a Trek Remedy or Santa Cruz Bronson to replace it. Shh don't tell it that though! I'll keep it around as a loaner for my friends who don't have a mountain bike. I've already converted some of my roadie buddies to mountain bikes!

This bike would be great for someone who is new to the sport and wants a decent bike but not break the bank. While it doesn't have all the fancy bells and whistles, it's a bike that can keep up with the rest of them.

Similar Products Used:

Trek Fuel EX 26 (demoed), Trek Remedy 650b (demoed), Specialized Camber fsr (rented), Specialized Stumpjumper fsr (demoed),
Trek 3700 (owned before this bike)

[May 21, 2014]
wbflyer
All Mountain Rider

OVERALL
RATING
4
VALUE
RATING
5
Strength:

Great XTR components, RockShox setup, frame quality

Weakness:

none really..

I have been riding this bike now for a few weeks. I must say for the mony spent, you will not find a better bike.. period. light, nimble and once you change a few settings, fits perfeclty. I changed the tires, stem and bar and bar height. Once I did this, it filts me perfectly. The Elixir 9 brakes might be changed but not anytime soon. I prefer XT hydros.

I highly recommend it and would buy another one and I will once I wear this one out.

Similar Products Used:

Gary Fisher Sugar 2

[May 01, 2014]
Gruff

OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
Strength:

The components are outstanding for the dollar.

Weakness:

Nothing so far, may be a tad heavy for some but I'm not in the market to pay an extra grand to shave a couple of pounds

Ok so I live with a budget and was checking out the motobcane due to the components and price tag. After reading a few reviews and found only minor complaints about pedals and seat post was set make the purchase. Long story short cash ran out, found a used one online (last years model) for $500 with upgraded stem, pedals, tires and about 25 miles put on, not a scratch. Been riding for couple months and this bike is fantastic!! IT climbs excellent, flying downhill is very comfortable coming from a hardtail. I use this mainly for single track, up, down, any terrain I can run over and have been very pleased. Its shifts great on uphill under full power, and I am finding myself jumping and pushing myself more on this bike. I am not a bike expert and don't swap out bikes often (every decade maybe) but even at full price this is a great bike. If you want a expensive name brand bike go for it but if your on a budget this is it.

[Mar 14, 2013]
Kiko
All Mountain Rider

OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
Strength:

Price
Components

Weakness:

None so far...

Great full suspension bike especially for the cost, components are top notch, frame is durable and preforms well. The bike looks good for an "outdated frame", lots of complements. I would recommend this bike and company to anyone. It would of been nice to have a quick release seat but not a big deal to adjust. Overall great buy!!

[Sep 30, 2012]
packets
Cross Country Rider

OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
Strength:

My first experience with full suspension, hydraulic disk brakes, and clipless pedals which took about 10 rides to get adjusted/tuned and familar with. I currently have 170+ miles of singletrack on this amazing peddler and I've managed to (mostly) stay mounted and unhurt as of late. Other than a few scratches and scrapes the bike continues to be fully on demand. Me on the other hand, well, my first 10 rides found me sore, bruised, and/or bleeding while anticipating my next ride or wondering if I should ride again...at 50 I realized I don't heal/recover as quick as I once did.

Weakness:

None, but the rider. It’s not that I don’t have the nerve to attempt the deep dips, steep climbs, quick swoops, tight corners, long drops, and unending rocks, roots, mud, water, and dirt at speeds probably beyond me, because it’s all I want to do. This bike continues to cause me to ride dangerously above my ability and I'm lovin it! Knee and shin pads quickly became my favorite safety equipment and I don't leave the house without them! :-)

The Motobecane 2013 Fantom Comp DS is a very well made full suspension bike with solid components. I wouldn't hesitate to recommend or purchase another online (http://tinyurl.com/8un82o6)

Similar Products Used:

N/A

[May 29, 2012]
brf4n
Weekend Warrior

OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
Strength:

Everything

Weakness:

Avid Brakes - replace them ASAP!

After six hundred miles and two crashes, I can say I am thoroughly amazed with this bike. I cannot say enough good things about it. One thing though - sell the Elixirs that come with it and buy Shimano XTs. Other than that, like another reviewer said, BUY THIS BIKE!

[Apr 12, 2012]
Hugh

OVERALL
RATING
3
VALUE
RATING
4
Strength:

Component set is outstanding for the price. You can't buy these components separately for what the whole bike sells for.

Weakness:

Bob on rear shock-minimized with set-up to shortest travel and new RT3 Monarch.
Very light on the front end for climbing.

It is a very nice bike, with excellent components. I'm 6'2" and 225lbs. I found the bike to be very light on the front-end and during very steep climbs it was very difficult to keep the front wheel planted. This is probably due to the short-wheelbase and the change from 100mm to 120mm front fork.
Bought a Pivot Mach 4 frame and took the parts I could from this bike (rear derailleur, wheels, crank, brakes, shifters, fork, bar) and put them on the Pivot. Had to buy a new front derailleur and rear shock plus some adapter parts. No comparison now. Pivot steers much better, no pedal bob and the front end stays planted. Granted the frame and shock cost more than the whole Motobecane did.

[Mar 26, 2012]
itsadamb
Cross Country Rider

OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
Strength:

Amazing bike! Granted this is my first full suspension but i've ridden some of my friends $2-3,000 Trek and Specialized bikes and can't say they feel any better than this bike. The componenets are all pretty top of the line and i did a lot of shopping at the local bike shops and nothing could compete for less than $1,800-2,000! So i took a risk after reading some of the good reviews online and must say this bike is amazing!

Weakness:

Non-Name brand frame but its for me and i love it!

If you dont absolutely need to have the newest and name brand products you will definitely get your money's worth out of this bike! and no... i don't work fo them! I'm just a very happy customer!

[Mar 06, 2012]
Fullermechanical
Weekend Warrior

OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
Strength:

Top of the line products that are found on $5000. And up bikes , very light, great geometry
And beutiful aluminum welds

Weakness:

Stock tires are too thin and handle bars are a little too narrow ( I'm used to wide motorcycle bars )

I've owned three high end cannondales ( which I loved ) , one specialized and one giant . I raced world cup in 2001 , napa valley dirt classic , downievill downhill , many cycle cross and billy goat races . Every time I would bye a new bike I would end up spending more Money upgrading to my liking. I stumbled across motobecane by accident while searching for a new bike , I was very hesitant at first ,but after doing a little research I figured I would order a 2012 fantom team full suspension 30 speed. The bike arrived in 3 days so I called a buddy who owned a specialized / trek shop in napa to come over and take a look. He was impressed and said I couldn't have built myself for that price. I've rode it three times so far and I'm glad to say that it feels like a high end bike ( because it is ) . I' m not one to be brand favorite and I've never owned anything that I thought was flawless , but for the money and the quality the motobecane is close

[Feb 26, 2012]
Maine_Guy
Cross Country Rider

OVERALL
RATING
4
VALUE
RATING
4
Strength:

Update to previous review. Almost two years of winter and summer riding since I bought this bike. Bikesdirect has been good to work with. Not like having a LBS - but they have responded to requests reasonably. Kudos for that.


The bike has been flawless - nearly. Normal wear and adjustments, that is a great strength. Still a light, responsive and durable bike.. so far.

Weakness:

I've broken stuff - mostly normal wear and abuse related - bashed chain-ring, pushloc broke.

Bleeding brakes is a pain. Getting the squeek out of these avid elixir brakes is tricky - but can be done (has nothing to do with bleeding - but do not get brake fluid on your pads). Vibration usually indicates a loose bolt, or improperly aligned pads. Both in my case... + found a hidden, loose bolt.

Still enjoying my bike,

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