Going on Patrol with a mullet bike

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If you look closely, you'll notice the front wheel is bigger, making this a 'mullet' bike (Photo: Transition)
If you look closely, you'll notice the front wheel is bigger, making this a 'mullet' bike (Photo: Transition)
  • Mixed wheel sizes are a new trend in mountain biking
  • This configuration is mostly targeted at more daring riders, who love the downhill segments
  • Transition's new Patrol is the latest bike model to go 'mullet'

Transition is a rider owned bike brand from the Pacific Northwest. Known for its trail, enduro and downhill bikes, Transition is a brand for riders that eschew lycra for looser activewear.

With company owners who are mountain bike obsessed, Transition is capable of rapidly reacting to trends. It was one of the pioneers of long-slack-low (LSL) geometry and metric shocks.

For this riding season, Transition’s new offering is an updated version of the Patrol model. Designed as an enduro bike, the Patrol has always appealed to those mountain bikers who gain greater reward from rushing the descents than pedalling uphill.

mountain bikes
Hannah Bergemann is a Transition team rider. You can tell why they pay her (Photo: Transition)

Why use different wheels sizes on one bike?

The 2021 Transition Patrol differs from its predecessor, by adopting the mullet wheel configuration: with a larger front wheel. Evolving the Patrol platform to a mullet bike, gives it a 29er front wheel, trailed by a 27.5” rear wheel.

Suspension travel is significant, with 160mm of damping at either end of the bike. The mullet mixed wheel size concept has been proven in downhill racing and is now gaining popularity amongst enduro mountain bikers.

What are the benefits? With a 29er front wheel, you gain all the obstacle rollover required to retain stability through technical rock gardens. And that smaller 27.5” wheel at the rear? Well, it makes a mullet bike more agile when trying to lean and flick through tight corners.

mullet bike
Hannah shows the Patrol can be balanced down steep terrain (Photo: Transition)

Not carbon-fibre, but it doesn't matter

Although the Transition Patrol has been available in a choice of aluminium or carbon-fibre for many years, this new mullet version launches as an alloy bike.

Mixed wheel size mountain bikes aren’t for everyone. The benefit is most pronounced in steep terrain, with adventurous downhill and enduro riders being the target market.

Does this new Transition Patrol mullet concept work? Well, team rider Hannah Bergemann certainly isn’t struggling on her one.

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