650b just got sexy! Check out the new Saracen Kili Flyer

2013 looks set to be the year 650b wheels break through, with several big downhill teams rumoured to be using them this season. They may not be as fast-rolling as 29er hoops but they're stronger, accelerate faster and are easier to fit into long-travel frames. There's one other big advantage too – 650b bikes are a lot better looking than often-ungainly 29ers! Exhibit A: the Saracen Kili Flyer.

When this bike was unveiled at the London Bike Show it was difficult to look past the Yeti-esque colours but in frame-only Kili Flyer X mode this thing looks mean as hell! And unlike a lot of other 650b bikes we've seen, this isn't a prototype – it's available now. The frame costs £1,400, with the complete bike coming in at £2,800. Check out the photos to find out more.

Looking at the Kili Flyer frame you wouldn't immediately identify it as a big-wheeler. Picture by James Costley-White

Looking at the Kili Flyer frame you wouldn't immediately identify it as a big-wheeler

It uses a variation on the Tuned Ride Link (linkage-activated single-pivot) suspension design found on the Myst and Ariel. Picture by James Costley-White

It uses a variation on the Tuned Ride Link (linkage-activated single-pivot) suspension design found on the Myst and Ariel

There's 120mm of smooth rear travel on tap courtesy of a Kashima-coated Fox Float CTD shock. Picture by James Costley-White

There's 120mm of smooth rear travel on tap courtesy of a Kashima-coated Fox Float CTD shock

Don't be fooled by the amount of travel – bigger wheels should make this thing a lot more capable than its 26in rivals. Picture by James Costley-White

Don't be fooled by the amount of travel – bigger wheels should make this thing a lot more capable than its 26in rivals

Don't believe us? Why do you think it's got chain guide tabs? Picture by James Costley-White

Don't believe us? Why do you think it's got chain guide tabs?

You can also swap the quick-release dropouts for through-axle versions. Picture by James Costley-White

You can also swap the quick-release dropouts for through-axle versions

The two-tone matt and gloss black paintjob looks great up-close. Picture by James Costley-White

The two-tone matt and gloss black paintjob looks great up-close

The Kili Flyer is Saracen's first 650b bike but we don't reckon it'll be their last. While we're in Mystic Meg mode, the UK company have added a carbon rear end to their Myst downhill bike, so we wouldn't be surprised to see the black stuff cropping up elsewhere in the range in 2014. Watch this space…

Speaking of the Myst, here's the new Madison-Saracen team issue bike. Picture by James Costley-White

Speaking of the Myst, here's the new Madison-Saracen team issue bike

The new carbon rear end saves upwards of 1lb. Picture by James Costley-White

The new carbon rear end saves upwards of 1lb

The colour-matched PRO cockpit looks pretty pimp too. Picture by James Costley-White

The colour-matched PRO cockpit looks pretty pimp too

More info at www.saracen.co.uk.

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