2020 Giant Reign 29 and Reign 27.5 Comparison
Author: Manish Date Posted:9 August 2019
REIGN 29 AND REIGN SX 29 ALLOY FRAME
Giant use their ALUXX SL grade aluminium for the Reign 29 2 - the only aluminium Reign 29 in the range besides the Reign 29 SX. ALUXX SL frames used double-butted tubing; thicker where there’s more force and then transitioning to a thinner section where forces aren’t high.
So the manufacturing method is a bit more sophisticated than a basic aluminium frame. Which means it’s going to be lighter and stiffer - delivering much better handling.
The chassis has been engineered to deliver 146mm of rear travel, paired with a 160mm travel suspension fork. The Reign SX 29 uses the exact same frame as Reign 29 but is paired with a 170mm travel fork and uses a DH-specific coil rear shock (also with 146mm of rear-wheel travel).
REIGN 29 ADVANCED (CARBON) PRO FRAME
Giant call their carbon-fibre bikes, Advanced Pro. It’s a completely redesigned carbon frame. No tube shape looks remotely similar to the previous generation carbon Reign.
A one-piece carbon front triangle helps reduce weight and increase chassis stiffness for exceptional handling. A massive change for the Reign Advanced Pro 29 is a carbon rear triangle. We’ve never seen this done before and it’s really exciting to see. A carbon rear triangle increases the torsional stiffness of the chassis significantly.
Imagine riding over tree roots, and rocks, at warp speed. Frames that flexes too much will cause you to ride off-line. Stiffening the back-end (by using a carbon triangle) will help the bike stay on its line; making the handling much more precise than an aluminium frame.
There are so many changes to the new Reign 29er’s geometry, so I’ll go through them step-by-step.
SEAT TUBE ANGLE
This is a big one. The Reign 27.5 has a seat tube angle of 72.5-degrees, compared to 76.8-degrees for the Reign 29.
This position you over the bottom bracket and slightly forward of the rear shock. This ensures you’re much (much) better positioned on steep technical climbs; forcing the front wheel down (less front wheel lift and understeer).
HEAD TUBE ANGLE
Surprisingly, in an industry where head tube angles are getting slacker, the Reign 29 is steeper at 75.0-degrees (0.5-degree steeper than the Reign 27.5).
This will also help the Reign steer up climbs better than it used to. Before you think it’s not going to be stable, consider the new Reign 29er’s Trail number. Which leads me to talk about...
Trail is the bike’s ability to ‘self-correct’ after the front wheel hits something. Ever ridden a hardtail or cross-country mountain bike, and the front wheel turns quicker than you want, or washes out or you end up going over the bars? All to do with head tube angle and trail.
The Trail number for the new Reign 29 is 129mm (compared to 120mm for the Reign 27.5). More Trail equals more stability. And that’s a big difference.
At warp-speed over tree roots and rocks, the Reign 29er will stay much more stable.
Reach has been increased to across all sizes by 9mm (S), 1mm (M), 24mm (L) and 25mm (XL), compared to the equivalent size in the Reign 27.5.
In the past, everyone has had to upsize to a Large frame to feel comfortable. Now, the Large and XL sizes are properly proportioned. Riders around 6-foot or 183cm will find the size Large a better fit than previous years.
Stack is the distance from the front axle to the top of the frame. A higher Stack height means better rearward weight distribution on steep descents. Stack has increased between 30mm to 40mm depending on size - another huge change - compared to the Reign 27.5.
Stuff that isn’t so obvious is:
Compared to the Reign 27.5, chainstay length has been increased by 4mm to deliver slightly better stability on the descents, without affecting the climbing ability.
Stem lengths across all sizes are now 40mm, instead of 40mm for the small and 50mm for every other size.
Crank lengths have decreased from 175mm to 170mm. This should deliver a smoother pedal stroke by reducing the dead-spot at the top of the pedal stroke.
REIGN 29 2 2020 $3,999
ALUXX SL aluminium frame, SRAM NX Eagle 12-speed, Rock Shox Yari RC/Rock Shox Deluxe Select+ RT, Giant AM Wheel
REIGN Advanced Pro 29 2 2020 $5,699
Advanced Pro (carbon) frame, SRAM NX Eagle 12-speed, Rock Shox Lyrik Select+/Rock Shox Deluxe Select+ RT, Giant AM Wheel
REIGN Advanced Pro 29 1 2020 $6,999
Advanced Pro (carbon) frame, SRAM GX Eagle 12-speed, Fox 36 Performance Elite/Fox Float X2, Giant TR1 Hookless Alloy Wheels
REIGN Advanced Pro 29 0 2020 $10,299
Advanced Pro (carbon) frame, SRAM GX Eagle 12-speed, Fox 36 Factory/Fox Float X2 Factory, Giant TR0 Hookless Carbon Wheels
REIGN SX 29 2020 $5,299
ALUXX SL aluminium frame, SRAM NX Eagle 12-speed, Fox 36 Performance Elite/Fox DHX2 Coil Performance Elite, Giant AM Wheels