Bold Unplugged bike
(Photo: Tom Richards and Max Barron)

Is This Mountain Bike the Future? Or Just a Gimmick?

Swiss company Bold houses the shock inside the frame of their futuristic new enduro bike. Naturally, we had to test it out.

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Henry Quinney

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Bold is a Swiss brand that’s known for putting its shocks inside its bikes. It’s novel, sure, but the frame of the new Bold Unplugged is radical in its own right. Our tester Henry Quinney has been riding it for the last few months and he has thoughts. Ultimately, the bike has some genuinely clever, pragmatic design features, but is marred by proprietary and convoluted technical features.

  • -Efficient climber
  • -Excellent support through heavy, repeated hits
  • -Integration looks great
  • -The stored repair-kit in the downtube is brilliant
  • -Shines under aggressive riders
  • -Weight only feels centered on steeper terrain
  • -Can feel unwieldy, won’t reward those who don’t commit to the front
  • -Expensive
  • -Working on the shock was frustrating

Tester Quote

“This bike is gorgeous, and once I finally got it set up  properly it felt like it came alive. Although I’m not on board with the internal shock or the remote lockout, I am convinced that Bold has created a genuine work of art that you happen to be able to ride flat out down the gnarliest mountains, and I can’t help but admire that. This bike is for those that can appreciate both demanding riding and the finer things in life, even if it isn’t without compromise.”
—Henry Quinney

Read the full review of the 2023 Bold Unplugged now.

Lead Photo: Tom Richards and Max Barron