Its not the "horst" that determines how a bike rides, but the position of the virtual pivot which affects axle path, I believe the ETSX is higher than for example the Turner. A lot of other intangibles such as geometry and shock choice have a greater effect on riding.
The ETSX I tried pedalled pretty well, was stiff laterally. I thought there seemed to be some granny ring pedal feedback. It didnt seem very plush, but that may have been set up. I remember thinking that the bike seemed "tall" to me, but I have pretty short legs.
The construction on the bike seemed to be high quality.
I had a Etsx 50 2003 model but changed it for a 5 Spot. It was very plush but bobed on climbs,you do feel very high up and i had to drop the post to often.I changed because to many frames have broken.The 5 Spot just blows the ETSX away except on long climbs.
my riding buddy is on his second ETSX frame - first one broke and he is a pretty mild rider - a few rockpiles and maybe a jump or two....I rode his bike a few times and it was too small for me, so I have a distorted view on it. For the most part it handled well, but seemed like it had a tiny wheelbase and was very squishy [he weighs more than me, so I have to wonder what the hell he thinks he is doing riding such a slushbucket?]
I've seen two ETSX's outside the showroom floor. The first was on a group ride, a friend of mine who works for a RM dealer demo'd one. He liked it.
About a week later I saw another one up in whistler, On "comfortably numb", which is the big epic XC trail up there. It was broken behind the shock, on the seat tube. second ride, according to the owner. He was on foot, about 2500v' and 10-12 miles from the nearest road. He said he was JRA when it broke. Not good!
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