Table Of Contents

  • Climbing Ability 80% 80%
  • Downhill Ability 80% 80%
  • Overall Fun 90% 90%

Travel: 120mm rear/ 130 or 120mm fork

Head Tube Angle: 67.9

Seat Tube Angle: 77

Reach: 480mm (large frame)

Weight: 28.3 lbs

Price: $5,799

What We Like: DELTA link rear suspension

What We Don’t: Expensive build options

Evil has produced a really fun bike. With really modern geo to help with the climbing without compromising the downhill fun, it feels like the Following can do anything. The DELTA link rear suspension gives the bike a bottomless feeling which is impressive with only 120mm of travel. The frame geo offers so much control over the bike it almost disappears beneath you which is always a cool feeling. Be careful, the confidence you gain may land you in some trouble when the trail gets too chundery.

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The inception of the Following seems to follow a story like the rebirth of a phoenix, a full-on rise from the ashes out of some serious trouble. Evil had been dealing with manufacturing problems for a few years on the DH 29er they had designed, like bikes broke a lot…too much. So to bring something new to the table, they opted for a 29er short travel bike. From this decision and using a mix-match of older and more modern geometry, the Following was born—five years ago. Since then, Evil has had greater successes, has created a very competitive fleet of bikes, and has updated the Following to keep up with the geometry changes as riders demand more.

Even on their website, Evil has trouble defining what the Following is or even should be. Everything from cross country shredder to an all-mountain rock garden basher, it seems like anything goes while the best purpose for this bike remains unclear. Just looking at it, it’s a beauty with two different matte colors to choose from: a black and an… eggshell white? Either way, it looks clean and mean.

The Best Short Travel Mountain Bikes: Evil the Following - Gear Hacker

The Bike

As riders are looking for bikes that can handle a greater variety of terrain, climb like a mountain goat and descend like a squirrel—fast and smooth. In some ways, Evil didn’t change a lot with the third version of the Following, but the changes they did make made a difference. The seat tube angle got steeper (77-degrees) to help with climbing, and they increased the rear hub spacing to 157mm. All of these bikes getting the modern geometry are trying to find that perfect middle ground between climber and descender while not pushing the limited travel that they have set up on the bike.

Some other minor updates include a chainstay guard that has three mounds to help reduce chain bounce and keep things a bit quieter. There is also a downtube guard for when things get a little shallow.

The Best Short Travel Mountain Bikes: Evil the Following - Gear Hacker

Climbing

Evil, like Revel, has a slogan that goes with the Following. They want you to “Win up. Win down. Follow no one.” I mean that just gets me fired up and ready to jump back on the bike. With a 77-degree head tube angle, as a rider, you’re in a prime position for climbing. The reach is 480mm on a large frame, not aggressively stretched out, so you can feel control over the front end of the bike while powering up technical terrain. The head tube angle is fairly steep at 67.9-degrees, helping to maintain the uphill maneuverability while still being playful on the downhills.

The bike has a super quick pickup when pedaling, so no power is lost during the transition from cruising to crushing. As a result, it can climb really well. Using Evil’s DELTA suspension set up, adjustable and tunable with a progressive leverage rate curve, the suspension naturally rides higher in the travel to help with climbing as well. The DELTA link has given the Following a bottomless, hoverbike feel while pedaling over chunder. This is an excellent feeling when you are trying to set a new personal record to the top of the local hill.

The Best Short Travel Mountain Bikes: Evil the Following - Gear Hacker

Downhill

For being a 120mm travel bike this thing can crush. The suspension responsiveness and DELTA link system gives it an almost bottomless feel that can handle small jumps and kickers no problem. The handling is confidence-inspiring, and a good rider who likes control will love this bike’s responsiveness.

One word that comes up a lot when riding the Following and reading other rider’s reviews is the word “pop.” Even on the website, they say the word pop about five times in the main description of the Following. Pop gets thrown around a lot but for good reason, this bike POPS! Even on little kickers, it’s easy to get off the ground and fly into the next section of trail. Though, even with all of the pop, the suspension can keep everything under control on pump tracks and sections when the wheels need to be on the ground.

Build Options

The Following comes in several build options. For the frame only, it will cost $3,099, and the build options go up to $7,400 for the X01 I9 Hydra set up. Build kits range from $5,799 to $7400 with all models on Hydra hubs and Industry Nine’s Enduro S wheels. At the time of this article, every build option was sold out on its website except for the solo frame. That must mean good things! The GX Eagle build is available on the Jenson USA website at the time of writing, so you can still get your hands on one!

There is talk that at some point there will be a version with wireless SRAM components to make everything a little fancier. On the website, there are a few customization options as well to allow for a rider to dial in their perfect bike before purchasing.

The Bottom Line

If you’re a rider that likes a lot of control over your bike and spends as much time on the uphills as you do on the downhills, the Following is an excellent option. The new geometry is hitting that cheeky balance of powerful climber and poppy downhiller. With a steeper seat tube, slacker head tube, and short chainstay, this bike wants to go fast and will give you the confidence to let it.

The DELTA rear suspension creates a balance of keeping power in the pedals while climbing with an almost bottomless feel while bashing through a rock garden. We are really impressed with Evil the Following and hope to see a lot more of them on the trails in the future. There is a reason this bike has been revamped three times and is still selling out after 5 years of production, simple as that.

The Best Short Travel Mountain Bikes: Evil the Following - Gear Hacker

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We participate in affiliate programs to help us fund Gear Hacker. Some of the links in this website are affiliate links, which means that if you purchase a product using our link, we will earn a small commission. Don’t worry! This comes at no additional cost to you, and we will never base our reviews on whether or not we earn a commission off of a product. With that said, if you find our review helpful and decide to purchase an item we review, we would be very appreciative if you use our links to do so. It will help us bring you more awesome content in the future!