Brand new from Nukeproof, the Reactor is their aggressive 150mm-travel carbon Trail bike in 27.5” or 29” wheel size options.
New for 2020, the Nukeproof Reactor fills the missing link in their mountain bike range. Up until now their line-up jumped from the Scout hardtail to the Mega full-suspension enduro racer – the Reactor is designed to give that option in between.
During the summer we tested their Mega 275c Pro. An animal of a bike, its chewed up the gnar with its 165mm of travel. However we always felt that, like a light switch, it was either on or off with the bike and you needed to ride on the limit to get the benefits of it.
Now, with the introduction of the Reactor, we’re excited to see Nukeproof address that.
Billed as their ultimate aggressive trail bike, the Reactor is available in either wheel sizes of 275 or 290, with carbon or alloy frame options to suit both.
The Reactor 275 comes with 150 front and 140mm rear travel, while the Reactor 290 is 140mm front and 130mm rear.
Rockshox is specced across the board, except the “middle-tier” Factory and Elite which are kitted out in Fox.
The bike features flip chip “Trail or Rail” geometry allowing you to swap from mellow, climbing-friendly riding to more aggressive shredding.
Depending on what finishing spec you’re budgeting for, it starts with the entry-level Comp alloy for €2749.99, right up to the top-tier RS carbon model at €5399.99.
Here’s what Nukeproof are saying about the Reactor…
From concept through to design, the kinematics, the geometry and specification; the Reactor is designed from the ground up to be the ultimate aggressive trail bike. At home on technical climbs, but happiest when thrashing the most technical trails you can point it at.
To ensure the bike could climb as well as it descends, the design of the 4-bar horst linkage offers higher levels of anti-squat for climbing gears, but lower levels when you drop down the cassette.
This means that the bike can behave itself on the climbs, but when you get it up to speed, it turns into a trail hooligan.
The combination of low anti-squat and progressive rate give ultimate small bump compliance (removes rough trail and root chatter) with good mid stroke support for cornering/pumping and end stroke progression for aggressive riding.
Balanced anti-rise figures allow the Reactor some squat when braking hard, maintaining rider position and providing a good amount of pressure through the tyre to ensure traction. Nukeproof say, the Reactor is designed to reward the rider and ensure you get that stoke factor in on any ride.
Choose Carbon or Alloy
For the first time, Nukeproof offer riders a full UD woven carbon frame in 27.5” & 29” wheel size options.
In addition to this, there are 27.5” & 29” aluminium frame options which feature carbon seat stays to help reduce the unsprung weight.
The 27.5” bike combines 150mm of travel up front and 140mm out back, whereas the 29” has 140mm up front and 130mm out back.
This is true for all models except the RS; the top-tier spec option features an extra 10mm of travel with the Lyric Ultimate RCT3 forks – 160mm 27.5”/ 150mm 29”.
Flip Chip – Trail or Rail
All Reactor frames feature a “flip chip” to adjust the geometry from “Trail” to “Rail” mode.
Trail: As the name suggests, this setting is best suited for trail riding. It is for riders who get as much enjoyment from the climb as the descents.
Rail: The Rail setting turns the Reactor into a corner shredder, dropping the bottom bracket 6mm and slackening the head angle by half a degree.
It is there to maximise the descending capabilities for big days on the uplift, in the bike park when required where railing turns and stability at speed are your prime motivation.
With 6 specification levels taking in the latest components from Shimano, SRAM, Rockshox and Fox, there are options for everyone no matter your preferences. All spec levels are available in both 27.5” or 29” frames.
- 27.5 or 29” wheel size
- Head angle: 66 degree in Trail / 65.5 degree in Rail
- Front: 27.5” 150mm / 29” 140mm
- Rear: 27.5” 140mm / 29” 130mm
- Seat angle: 75.5 Trail / 75 Rail
- 275: S, M, L, XL
- 290: M, L, XL
- Alloy Options: Comp, Expert
- Carbon Options: Elite, Pro, Factory and RS
- Prices from £2745.00
- In stores late October 2019
Initial Reactions To The Nukeproof Reactor
Of course we’re just skimming through the press kit like most others here, but as we initially said (and actually talked about in the Mega review), a Trail bike was the missing link to complete range.
Naturally, how the Reactor rides remains to be seen, but if it’s a ‘mellower’ version of the Mega then they’re on point for sure.
We like options and the inclusion of the flip chip into the geometry certainly offers that. It can be that all-mountain riding we wanted, but with a quick tweak transform into a bike park steed or bona fide racer too.
The Mega 275c was Nukeproof’s first go at carbon, but now they’re pushing on with that by offering it in both the Reactor 275 and 290, which is cool to see.
We also like the provision of space for a bottle holder into the frame design, which isn’t there on the Mega.
Price point wise and it’s matched with the Mega range, so ultimately if it’s a Nukeproof you’re after then the type of riding you predominantly want to do will decide the direction you take.