Diamondback Mission Pro: 6″ All-Mountain
The Mission Pro was a heavy duty 6″ am bike that felt more at home descending than climbing. It seemed to bob some while pedaling but was very plush and flex-free on the rough Bootleg descents. According to the Diamondback site, “The Knuckle Box is shaped in such a way that the wheel rate starts off linear and finishes slightly progressive. This results in great small bump compliance, more perceived travel and a great bottom out protection.” This sounds about right. The linearity of the initial stroke may be what was responsible for the bob, yet gave it the plush feeling over repeated small to medium sized rocks. Maybe we should’ve tried the propedal switch while climbing, but I think the design is somewhat flawed if you need the propedal to keep the bike from bobbing.
It had an unforgivable amount of chain slap. It seems like manufacturers would have this one figured out by now. No one wants to listen to that racket while descending a fun rocky stretch of singletrack.
The build quality looked to be on par with the Giants and GTs of the bike world but long term testing would be the only way to know how it will hold up.
We really liked the Hayes Prime brakes. Very adjustable with excellent stopping power and feel. The Haven bars and stem were very comfortable and seemed to put us in a good position for AM type bombing.
Having the “Knucklebox” rocker folded up like this looks like it might create a high leverage ratio, but it didn’t feel like it and the low position helps lower the center of gravity. Haven wheels, XO derailleur…. all top shelf stuff.