The old 456 was our long travel hardtail. It dates back to a
not-that-long-ago era where such bikes were called hardcore hardtails.
This all sounds a bit quaint these days now that we're all used to 5in+
forks. 'Fun-for-ragging' bikes sounds a bit more like it. Anyhow, the
456 EVO, as the name suggests, is the latest evolution of this much
A few things have stayed the same, but not many. The old 456 was -
and remains - a great bike. But technology and riders change. The 456
EVO is not just a case of a new lick of paint. The name 456 comes from
the bike's ability to be built up with either a 4in, 5in or 6in travel
fork. We suspect not many people ever build up a 456 with a 4in fork
these days. You don't buy a chainsaw for pruning the rose garden. The
29er movement has been justifiably pressganging riders who are better
served by shorter travel.
But if your trails - and your riding - is more fun with a healthy
amount of fork travel up front then the 456 is the On One for you.
The frame is still made from our tough-as-hell EN-proven DN6 tubeset.
Double butted 4130 cromoly steel is not just an economical material to
build 456 frames with, it's actually a great tool for the job in its own
right regardless of cost. It's not flexy. It's stiff, responsive and
'pointy'. And for bikes that are hopefully going to be used and abused
within an inch of their lives, DN6 offers a unique kind of muted
kickback when you're out and about clouting it here, there and
everywhere. Your longer travel suspension fork and fat tyres can deal
with the comfort issues, the 456 EVO's frame mutes any residual sting,
leaving you on track and pinning it for as many hours as you're allowed
out of the house.
The fact that using this great frame material also results in an
unbeatable price tag (frame only 199, full bike 749) is the icing on the
So what exactly is evolutionary about the 456 EVO?
The geometry is completely new. It isn't just a case of slackening
the head angle and leaving the rest. Sure, the head angle has been
slackened - and how! - but the rest of the frame has been tweaked too.
Bike geometry is a formula, a melting pot, a system. Changing something
will have a knock-on effect on several other things. It's why you can't
just bung a 6in fork in your old XC bike and expect it not to ride like a
bag of dung. The new 456 EVO is at the bleeding-edge of hardtail frame
geometry. It's not afraid of a slack head angle. It's not afraid of a
low slung BB. Neither does it neglect a roomy cockpit for all-day-play
potential. It knows the important stuff that helps with climbing back
The 456 EVO has all the geometry stuff to make the slogging stuff
more bearable - enjoyable even. It also has all the numbers to make this
bike one of the most capable hardtails currently available anywhere.
If you know your numbers, you'll like this next sentence...
With a sagged 150mm fork up front the head angle is 67.3 degrees, the seat angle is 72.8 degrees and the BB drop is 11mm.
If you don't know your numbers, here's Brant to explain...
"A slacker head angle gives better high speed control. A lower BB
means climbing on is less aggravating and you're more planted through
corners. A steeper seat angle keeps you forward on the bike. And the
larger bikes also have longer chainstays - virtually unheard of on
frames at this price - to keep you planted when things get steep even if
you've got a lot of seatpost hanging out."
One final great thing - it still looks like an On One. Simple lines. Low and long. No-nonsense decent finish. Versatile. Fun.
Headset :: 1.125in EC34 external conventional headset
BB :: 73mm conventional English threaded BB.
Seattube - 29.8mm clamp, 27.2mm seatpost, 28.6mm front mech.
Bottle boss :: 1 set