The ACV sports 130mm of rear and 150mm of front travel.

The ACV sports 130mm of rear and 150mm of front travel.​

What is it?

The Intense ACV is the latest contender in the Plus bike full suspension arena, sporting 130mm of rear and 150mm of front travel. It is slack and aggressive with a 66.25 degree head angle and a 73.8 seat angle. It is a dedicated 1x11 bike only optimized for geometry and tire clearance. 29er wheels can be installed in the bike but Intense does not sell it in this form and the bb height will be raised by .5 inch.

To optimize towards short chainstay length and room for big tires, a front derailleur is not an option.

To optimize towards short chainstay length and room for big tires, a front derailleur is not an option.​

Geometry discussion

The geometry has been optimized for today's styles with a head angle that is very slack at 66.25 degrees for a 130mm travel bike. The wheelbase gets long due to the head angle but still manageable at at 1199mm. The reach is on the shorter side 416mm for a medium and the stays are at long-ish for a 27.5 Plus dedicated bike at 438mm or 17.25 inches.

Seat tube is on the long side at 458 mm or 18 inches for a medium bike so fitting a 150mm dropper post will be difficult for most folks who don't have the longest legs.

Head angle is 66.25 and seat angle is 73.8 degrees.

Head angle is 66.25 and seat angle is 73.8 degrees.

Continue to page 2 for ride impressions »


The ACV is ideal for the technical trails of Sedona.

The ACV is ideal for the technical trails of Sedona.​

How does it ride?

We love Plus bikes and this is no exception. Given very rocky or loose conditions, Plus bikes take advantage of more traction and more cushioning. The ACV showed its prowess in the chunky trails of Sedona, AZ as we were able to generate flow and momentum where it was scarce.

The 66.25 head angle worked out well for us as we're getting more and more comfortable with slack bikes. Seat angle could have been steeper and reach longer to give us room on the descents and the forward position handy during tech climbs.

Climbing was excellent. This version of JS Tuned suspension is more supple than previous Intense ones and it really excelled in the chunky, ledgy climbs of Sedona. And Plus tires really complement this suspension as the tires conform and claw up tech climbs as the suspension stiffens up under full power.

The ACV loves to climb.

The ACV loves to climb.​

On the wishlist

Our bike came with Maxxis Ikon tires and these tires are definitely outgunned on this bike. Ikons have many small knobs and it generates adequate grip without additional weight or sluggishness. But the knobby Rekons are way more appropriate for a bike of this ability so we implored the Intense product managers to move to better rubber for production versions.

The seat tube on this bike is long so we were limited to a 125mm dropper on a medium bike for our 5'8" stature. Most new bikes allow us a 150mm or even 170mm dropper post these days so we'd love to see a shorter seat tube on this bike. Taller riders are not affected by this issue of course.

The Ikons are light and agile but we want much meatier knobs for a bike of this ability.

The Ikons are light and agile but we want much meatier knobs for a bike of this ability.​

ACV PRO build

This bike comes equipped with the RockShox Pike RCT3 27.5+ fork and Monarch RT3 Debonair rear shock. Sram XO1 and X1 are in the mix for the drivetrain. Excellent DT Swiss 240 boost hub on a 40mm DT Swiss M1600 rim is matched up with Sram Guide RS brakes and Renthal bars.

  • U.S. MSRP: $6,499.00
  • Frame: ACV 27+ Monocoque UD Carbon Front and Rear Triangle, alloy Top Link, Internal Derailleur Routing, Integrated protector, w/ 148 x12 mm spacing, 115 -130 mm travel
  • Front Suspension: RockShox Pike RCT3, 27.5+" 15QR Thru Axle, 150mm Travel, 110 x 15 mm
  • Rear Suspension: RockShox Monarch RT3 Debonair, 200x 51 mm
  • Hubs: 28 Hole DT Swiss 240 ; 110 x15mm Front Hub; 148x12 BOOST Rear Hub w/ XD Driver, centerlock RIMS - DT Swiss M 1600 Spline Two, 27+", Tubeless Ready
  • Shifters: SRAM X1, 11 speed
  • Rear Derailleur: SRAM X01, 11 speed
  • Crank: Race Face NEXT, 32T
  • Cassette: SRAM XG-1175 10-42, 11 speed
  • Saddle: Fabric Scoop Radius Elite
  • Seatpost: RockShox Reverb Stealth, 31.6mm x 420 mm, zero offset, 125 mm of travel
  • Handlebar: RENTHAL FatBar 20mm - 760mm
  • Brakeset: SRAM GUIDE RS, 180 mm front and 160 mm rear

Chris Kovarik knows what to do with Plus.

Chris Kovarik knows what to do with Plus.​

ACV FOUNDATION build

The $4,599 Foundation model uses the carbon frame but with an alloy upper suspension link. Supspension is a RockShox Pike RC with the Monarch R Debonair. Wheels are Sun Duroc 40 rims set laced to Intense Tuned hubs with a Shimano driver to accommodate the more affordable SRAM NX/GX mixed 1×11 drivetrain. Since the NX uses the Shimano driver, the smallest rear cog is an 11 tooth instead of 10.

  • Matte Gold//Matte Brown
  • U.S. MSRP: $4,599.00
  • Frame: ACV 27+ Monocoque UD Carbon Front and Rear Triangle, Alloy Top Link, Internal Derailleur Routing, Integrated protector, w/ 148 x12 mm spacing, 115 -130 mm travel
  • Front Suspension: RockShox Pike RC, 27.5+" 15QR Thru Axle, 150mm Travel, 110 x 15 mm
  • Rear Suspension: RockShox Monarch R Debonair, 200x 51 mm
  • Hubs: 32 Hole Intense Tuned, 148x 12 mm BOOST; 110 x15mm Front Hub; 148x12 BOOST Rear Hub Shimano Driver, 6-Bolt RIMS - Sun Duroc 40 Rims, 27+", Tubeless Ready
  • Shifters: SRAM NX, 11 speed
  • Rear Derailleur: SRAM GX 11-speed
  • Crank: Race Face Aeffect, 32T
  • Cassette: SRAM NX 11-42, 11 speed
  • Saddle: WTB Silverado Sport
  • Seatpost: RockShox Reverb Stealth, 31.6mm x 420 mm, zero offset, 125 mm of travel
  • Handlebar: Intense Recon 31.8 x 18 x 760 mm
  • Brakeset: Shimano BL M506 180 mm front and 160 mm rear

For more info, visit Intense website