The Element has been a lightweight cross-country race bike in Rocky Mountain’s lineup for some 25 years now. But like other modern XC bikes, the latest generation has been completely redesigned to push further into the trail bike category. And you guessed it, Rocky Mountain claims that this has been accomplished without sacrificing its primary XC characteristics. In short, the 2022 Rocky Mountain Element is designed to hit the sweet spot between a lightweight cross country bike and short travel trail bike.
To accomplish this, Rocky Mountain made some major geometry changes. The 2022 Element’s head tube is around 4° slacker than the previous generation (65.5° in the neutral shock position). The reach numbers across all sizes are substantially longer (up to 38mm on the XL). The seat tube angle has been steepened to around 76.5° to compensate for the longer front end. And the wheelbase has been lengthened, too. By just looking at these changes in the geometry chart, it’s pretty clear that the latest Element is more of a ride-all-day short travel trail bike than a full blown XC race machine.
The Element is now based around a 130mm travel fork and 120mm rear shock, and uses Rocky’s Ride-4 geometry adjustment that provides four different ride position that can change the head tube and effective seat tube angle by almost a full degree. It has a massive front triangle that can now accept two full sized water bottles on all sizes but the 27.5″ equipped extra-small, and looks like a great contender for a bolt-on custom frame bag. All models are kitted out with frame protection on the downtube and chainstays, use a SRAM universal derailleur hanger, and have clearance for up to 2.6″ tires. It looks like all complete builds come specced with fast rolling 29 or 27.5 x 2.4″ tires straight from Rocky.
Complete builds range from $2,559 to $4,049 USD with an alloy frame, and from $4,259 to $9,589 USD for the carbon version. All models are based around wide-range 1×11 or 1×12 drivetrains, 130mm of front travel, and hydraulic brakes. The 2022 Rocky Mountain Element carbon frameset is also available for $3,199. Find a model breakdown below, including which colorways are offered for each.
- Element Alloy 10: $2,559 USD (Grey/Black)
- Element Alloy 30: $3,089 USD (Red/Orange)
- Element Alloy 50: $4,049 USD (Grey/Black & Red/Orange)
- Element Carbon 30: $4,259 USD (Grey/Black)
- Element Carbon 50: $4,899 USD (Grey/Black & Red/Orange)
- Element Carbon 70: $6,819 USD (Grey/Black & Red/Orange)
- Element Carbon 90: $9,589 USD (Grey/Black)
- Element Carbon Frameset: $3,199 USD (Grey/Black)
At first glance it looks like the 2022 Element has a lot of potential as a lightweight, full-squish bikepacking rig, and we’ll do our best to get our hands on one for a closer look. Until then, head over to Bikes.com to see more.
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