The YT Izzo just might be the missing link from the YT family. Here's how it fits in.
When the YT Izzo was launched earlier this month, the 130mm travel 29er trail bike landed on the dirt as a sharp handling trail weapon. In this sense, it follows in the footsteps of the Norco Optic or Transition Smuggler, and even a bike like the Forbidden Bike Co. Druid. While more travel can be good, so can the speed and agility of a shorter travel trail bike. And that's what YT wanted to add to their gravity-centric range. The Izzo is no XC race bike, but it's certainly a new take for YT. And their launch video is suitably kooky!
A closer look at the YT Izzo
YT's marketing states that the YT Izzo is fast, agile and sharp, hence the fight sequence above, and the samurai sword. YT worked to make a bike that would reward you on the climbs as well as descents, combining smart geometry with low weight. The Pro Race model is claimed to come in at 12.1kg!
There's a 4-bar linkage out the back, and crazy steep 77 degree seat angles. This can be 77.5 degrees using a flip chip that also raises the BB 5mm. The head angle is 66 degrees or 66.5 if run steeper. So if you're on rockier but flatter terrain you might like the steeper option. The reach is long, at 472mm on a large.
Chainstays are short, running from 432mm to 437mm across the S-XXL size range, and YT state that they wanted to make sure the bike remained 'playful'. What's playful mean, anyway? Well usually it means it responds to rider input really well, and remains agile and doesn't get bogged down in its suspension travel.
"We created the Izzo for people that love to ride mountain bikes in the original spirit of mountain biking," said Chris HIlton, YT's chief tech guru. "Get out there, go far, go hard, go long, and get lost. It’s a lightweight, great pedaling bike that encourages you to just go. While it is light and efficient, it’s still a ton of fun on DH and tech sections. We wanted to build a bike that was just as fun and capable on climbs and flats as it is on downhills. A lot of riders love to push their limits and endurance, explore new trails, and ride all day. We built this bike for those riders. And for ourselves.”
To that end, the riding all day part, you can actually fit a water bottle! But there are other cool YT design features like having all suspension and pivot hardware accesible from one side. You can take a closer look at the Izzo models on the YT website.
We're yet to throw a leg over the YT Izzo, but we have tested just about all their other bikes.
The YT Izzo really does stand apart from the Jeffsy, Capra, Decoy and Tues, extending their range to create a true all-day trail bike that should thrive on all-day adventures, instead of just surviving them. Does that mean there is no room for further growth? Of course not! Mountain bikes continue to evolve, and we would be surprised if an all-mountain hardtail doesn't find a place in their line up.