Slow but sure, the Taiwan's manufacturer, Giant change the trends of the 26 inch wheel in their bikes, and slowly turn into 27,5 inch for most their high level bike products, exclude the Giant Reign X and Giant Glory which still use 26 inch wheel. This alteration will be started on the next session on racing bikes, and will be applied for their most bikes in full suspension all mountain and cross country bike. This is such a big courage for Giant, because the 26 inch wheel has its own market, and maybe their fans will turn into their competitors to get something can be an alternative. But, Giant must be considered the possibilities, and what happen next is the most interesting part.
On press release, Giant tells their reasons with the 27,5 inch wheel, and their believe about the transformation. First, they said that they have been analyzing various track, and they have an opinion that 27,5 will be better than other wheels size option. They also said that the 27,5 is similar with 26 inch in the weight, but similar with 29er in performance. On the other words, the 27,5 is the combination between 26 inch wheel and 29er. Giant tells the three reasons why 27,5 has been chosen; the first is that 27,5 is light, the total weight (exclude tires), is only 5% more than 26 inch (while 29er is 11% more than 26 inch). This wheel size also has better performance. And the last which is maybe become their biggest consideration, is that this wheel has good control.
The alteration of the wheel straightly will reach in the frame, which is should be modification to make it fit with the new wheels. The headtube and the bottom bracket will be get the touch to make it fit with the new installation size. It seems that Giant is ready to make mass production of 27,5 inch, because when the wheels are getting bigger, the frame geometry will be more difficult to be optimized. But, this is a leading manufacturer in cycling technology and seems that they will not get any difficulties. And for the next racing session, Giant has been preparing the 27,5 lineups in full suspension all mountain and cross country bike.
The new bikes that apply the 27,5 inch wheels are:
Giant XTC Advanced 27,5
Giant XTC 27,5
Giant Anthem Advanced 27,5
Giant Anthem 27,5
Giant Trance Advanced 27,5
Giant Trance 27,5
Giant Talon 27,5
The difference between advanced series and non-advanced is the material for the frame, that advanced series uses advanced grade compsite, while the non-advanced uses ALUXX SL Aluminum material. Interesting how their fans respond this big alteration for the most popular Giant bike.