The Intense ACV is a new 27.5+ specific bike with agile geometry, incredible traction, and the plush ride quality needed for day-long adventures on and off the trails

Short for 'Air Cushioned Vehicle', the new Intense ACV launches today and marks the Californian brand's first foray into the recently established plus-sized segment. As usual, founder-designer Jeff Steber and his team have created something truly exceptional – a high-grip, big-tyred machine with long-reach, short-chainstay agility, 130mm rear and 150mm front JS Tuned suspension; and grin-inducing cushioned ride.

Steber imagined the bike as an off-the-beaten-trail adventurer, the high-volume tyres giving an extra level of terrain-wrapping traction and cushiness when run at the recommended 16-18 PSI to give a ride like nothing else Intense has ever produced. Saddleback revealed the bike to the UK press at a top secret event in May and from our own experiences with the bike, the ACV has certainly delivered on Steber's aspiration. It's a bike that pedals brilliantly uphill, grips like nothing else and descends extremely well. All the while, the cushioned ride urges you to take the trail less travelled.

Targeted at trail / enduro riders, the ACV features a totally new frame platform designed specifically for 27.5+ with trail-centric long reach, short chainstay geometry. The bike features 130mm rear travel and 150mm at the front, which, in line with other recent Intense launches has been given the JS-Tuned treatment to optimise the ACV for its all-terrain adventures.

The ACV's front and rear triangles are unidirectional carbon monocoques, bridged with an alloy top link, the design future-proofed with 148mm Boost spacing. Internal cable routing keeps things neat and clear of trail debris while the driveside chainstay features a chunky rubberised frame protector. The cockpit uses a 50mm stem combined with 760mm bars and dropper posts come as standard. The ACV is 1x only, with no front derailleur mount.

There are two spec options, both based around the striking matte gold / matte brown colourway seen in our gallery.

The Pro Build features a RockShox Pike RCT3 up front with a Monarch RT3 Debonair shock and Reverb Stealth dropper post topped with a Fabric Scoop Radius Elite saddle. The wheels are DT Swiss M 1600 Spline Two tubeless-ready rims laced to DT Swiss 240 hubs. Maxxis Ikon+ tyres give 2.8 inches of plush traction.

The drivetrain utilises 11-speed SRAM X1 shifters with a 32T Race Face Next crankset, SRAM X01 rear mech and 10-42 SRAM XG-1175 cassette. Up front, there's a 50mm Thomson Elite X4 stem and 760mm Renthal Fatbar. Stopping power comes from SRAM Guide RS brakes – 180mm up front and 160mm out back.

The Foundation Build is specced with a RockShox Pike RC fork and Monarch R Debonair shock. The same RockShox Reverb stealth dropper is present, complete with a WTB Silverado Sport saddle. SUN Duroc 40 tubeless ready rims are laced into Intense Tuned hubs, wrapped in the same Maxxis Ikon+ tyres as the Pro Build.

A 32T Race Face Aeffect crankset is joined by SRAM NX 11-speed shifters and SRAM GX rear mech with SRAM NX 11-42 cassette. The 50mm Intense stem is paired with Intense Recon 760mm bars. The Foundation Build uses Shimano BL M506, 180 / 160mm brakes.

The ACV Pro (£5,399.99) and ACV Foundation (£4,099.99) are available to pre-order now, with stock ready to ship from Mid August 2016. To find your local stockist, use our Intense dealer locator.


Dealer information:

If you are interested in becoming an Intense dealer, please get in touch with your local area sales representative:

South West and Ireland – Oli Hunter – 07917 462225 – oli@saddleback.co.uk

South East – Justin Hoy – 07917 462224 – justin@saddleback.co.uk

The North – Michael Fish – 07917 462223 – michael@saddleback.co.uk