Design & Technology

A really good bike doesn’t happen by accident.

It’s the result of a principled design process that combines decades of experience with a keen eye toward the future. Here’s how our design and engineering team approaches every bike (yes, even kids bikes), and how every bicycle from Rocky Mountain comes into existence.

Design principles

Design for durability

Visit a packed bike park like Whistler, and you’ll see more than a few well-worn and well-loved Rocky Mountain’s out there on the trail. We’re proud of that, because we design and build bikes to last for the long haul. Full transparency, that means our bikes are not always the lightest. We think it’s worth it—total confidence that your bike will last in the long-term is way better than a few shaved grams.

Design principles

Focus on function

We always think and design from function first standpoint, and don’t get caught up with unnecessary aesthetics. Don’t get us wrong—we’ll always make paint choices to make our bikes look rad as hell. But we never let design and aesthetics get in the way of long-term function and durability.

Design principles

Hit the sweet spot

We design bikes with our racing in mind. But we also design with an eye towards “the rest of us.” We always aim for the sweet spot between race-ready and everyday ride-ready. Creating a super-specific, race-only bike usually results in a bike that is simply no fun to ride in 95% of situations. Every bike from Rocky Mountain has to be intuitive, fun to ride, immediately familiar to any rider, but also ready to tear it up at the start line.

Design principles

Be accessible

We make meaningful component and material choices for every bike build, at a vartiety of price points. We think deeply from the customer’s perspective and needs, and build from there. Every bike from Rocky Mountain has to work really, really well—and that goes for any model at any price point (and that includes kids bikes).

Design principles

Optimize for ride feel

Engineering and design can come up with the best theoretical bike in the history of bikes, but if it’s no fun to ride, it’s no good. So, we make insanely sure that every bike we build has good ride feel—that means tireless feedback from our athletes, friends, and the staff who work here.

Design principles

Be honest

Sometimes things go wrong. Recalls happen to every bike company, and they have happened to us in the past. But we never place blame or make excuses. If we make a mistake, we take responsibility and tackle the problem head on. If something happens and we don’t have the answers yet, we tell people that and do the work to find out what went wrong. Trust us to be honest, transparent, and responsible at every and any touchpoint.

A short pedal from the Mount Seymour trailhead, Rocky Mountain’s Development Center is nestled at the foot of Vancouver’s North Shore Mountains.

It’s here that our engineers take full advantage of our prototype frame shop and testing facility to develop our world renowned bikes. This facility and our proximity to some of the world’s most rugged and versatile terrain provides us with a very short product feedback loop - an idea can be born over an early coffee meeting, computer modeled throughout the day, and come out of the CNC machine in time to hit the trails by dusk.

Electric ecosystem


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LC2R™ suspension

LC2R™ (Low Centre Counter Rotating) is our unique take on a virtual pivot suspension design, delivering a smooth and predictable ride on challenging terrain.

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SMOOTHLINK™ suspension

Smoothlink suspension is efficient yet supple when you’re on the pedals and across a wide range of gears. It features a controlled end-stroke and a rate-curve that feels more capable than the travel would suggest.

RIDE-9™ adjustment system

The RIDE-9 adjustment system allows riders to quickly fine-tune their geometry and suspension with a single Allen key. Nine configurations are possible thanks to two interlocking chips.

RIDE-4™ adjustment system

The RIDE-4 adjustment system allows riders to quickly fine-tune their geometry with a single Allen key. Four configurations are possible thanks to one rotating chip.

Two position axle

The Altitude, Instinct, and Slayer frames, in both alloy and carbon, are equipped with a two-position axle dropout.

Reach adjust headsets

Latest Instinct models now come with reach adjust headsets allowing riders to fine tune their reach with center, +/- 5mm offset options.

PenaltyBox™ 2.0

Latest Instinct carbon models now come with our new PenaltyBox™ 2.0 downtube storage that includes generous capacity, custom tool wrap and our rock-solid hinged door system that doubles down as a water bottle mount and built-in concealed AirTag/Tile compartment.


Latest Slayer carbon models now come with our new PenaltyBox™ downtube storage, including a custom storage solution for both a tube and tools.

Size Specific Tune

Size Specific Tune ensures that riders of all sizes get the right balance of small-bump compliance, mid-stroke support, and end-stroke progressiveness. Our design team does custom shock tunes based on real world field testing, and adjusts each tune for specific frame sizes.


Smoothwall carbon uses one of the world’s most sophisticated carbon processes to deliver industry leading stiffness-to-weight, ride quality, and durability.

FORM™ Alloy

FORM™ tubesets utilize premium materials to meet our strict requirements. Each FORM™ tube that we create is engineered for its specific purpose within the frame, ensuring optimized strength, weight, and ride quality.