Pivot Mach 5.5 vs. 2020 Switchblade- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1
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    Pivot Mach 5.5 vs. 2020 Switchblade

    So, I currently own a 2018 Mach 5.5, 10th Anniversary, and I've been very happy with it. The new 2020 Switchblade has definitely caught my eye.

    I wish Pivot's website had a 'compare' feature, but as far as I can tell, they don't. I'd like to compare geometry, side-by-side, along with build specs. As far as I can tell, they're pretty similar, but without a side-by-side, it's tough to tell w/o having to go back-and-forth from tab to tab every two seconds = annoying.

    Am I correct in thinking these bikes are pretty much the same, just with minor differences?

    A few things that intrigue me about the new Switchblade are:

    1. 12-speed drivetrain vs. my Mach 5.5's 11-speed.
    2. Fox Live Valve option.
    3. Slightly higher BB height.
    4. I prefer 27.5, so the Switchblade's option of 2.8 tires vs. the Mach 5.5's 2.6.
    5. Fox's new DPX2 custom tuning on the Switchblade.
    6. Sram's XX1 Eagle AXS appears to be pretty slick.

    I understand a lot of this may be trivial and very expensive, but nerding out on Pivot's website is thrilling. What do you think - Is the new Switchblade an 'upgrade,' or just a waste of money coming from a 5.5?

  2. #2
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    I'm looking both bikes as well. The most obvious difference is the Switchblade can run multiple wheel sizes/combo with 27.5", 29" or a reverse mullet. I do wish it were Boost(148) spacing rather than SuperBoost(157) as I own a set of boost wheels and would make purchasing the Switchblade a no brainer. The 2020 switchblade also runs DPX2 Fox shock as well.

  3. #3
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    So if you are going to 27.5" wheels anyway, they are similar enough that I'm not sure I would buy unless you are planning on all the upgrades. Of course the 5.5 is available with all those options now too.

    I have a 2018 5.5(XO1 build) as well and love the bike. I have demo'd and rented the SB so I have about 50 miles under my belt on it, most of it at South Mountain in Phoenix. . It is an awesome bike, No experience with mulleting it, but climbs well and descends like a beast. Just point and shoot, much like the 5.5. If I didn't already have the 5.5, I'd be all over it, but not different enough to sell mine and "upgrade" IMO.

    I did love the rear shock. Really didn't have to adjust at all, just set the sag with rebound in the middle and it was perfect, so they nailed the tune on it.

    Overall, I feel my 5.5 climbs a bit better, but the SB kills it on the downs. Would have liked to have ridden side by side though in the same terrain.

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    Dump the Geo numbers into a spreadsheet... easy.

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    Wow, I'm surprised to hear you think the 5.5 climbs a little better than the new SB. Every review of the new SB indicates this may be the best climbing trail bike available. I obviously have no experience with that as I've never ridden version 1 or 2. I feel my 5.5 does everything very well, too.

    I'd have to agree that they're probably so close that it may not be worth the 'upgrade,' unless I choose the new options like Live Valve or AXS, etc.

    Those upgrades only exasperate the price, obviously, but a 12-speed option, especially Shimano's 510% range on my 5.5, would be appreciated.

    If Pivot offered you two comparable bikes; a 5.5 and a new SB, same components, same price-point, would you stay with the 5.5, or take the new SB? Just curious from your experience on both rides.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by SoDakSooner View Post
    So if you are going to 27.5" wheels anyway, they are similar enough that I'm not sure I would buy unless you are planning on all the upgrades. Of course the 5.5 is available with all those options now too.

    I have a 2018 5.5(XO1 build) as well and love the bike. I have demo'd and rented the SB so I have about 50 miles under my belt on it, most of it at South Mountain in Phoenix. . It is an awesome bike, No experience with mulleting it, but climbs well and descends like a beast. Just point and shoot, much like the 5.5. If I didn't already have the 5.5, I'd be all over it, but not different enough to sell mine and "upgrade" IMO.

    I did love the rear shock. Really didn't have to adjust at all, just set the sag with rebound in the middle and it was perfect, so they nailed the tune on it.

    Overall, I feel my 5.5 climbs a bit better, but the SB kills it on the downs. Would have liked to have ridden side by side though in the same terrain.
    Wow, I'm surprised to hear you think the 5.5 climbs a little better than the new SB. Every review of the new SB indicates this may be the best climbing trail bike available. I obviously have no experience with that as I've never ridden version 1 or 2. I feel my 5.5 does everything very well, too.

    I'd have to agree that they're probably so close that it may not be worth the 'upgrade,' unless I choose the new options like Live Valve or AXS, etc.

    Those upgrades only exasperate the price, obviously, but a 12-speed option, especially Shimano's 510% range on my 5.5, would be appreciated.

    If Pivot offered you two comparable bikes; a 5.5 and a new SB, same components, same price-point, would you stay with the 5.5, or take the new SB? Just curious from your experience on both rides.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by AlpineIce View Post
    Wow, I'm surprised to hear you think the 5.5 climbs a little better than the new SB. Every review of the new SB indicates this may be the best climbing trail bike available. I obviously have no experience with that as I've never ridden version 1 or 2. I feel my 5.5 does everything very well, too.

    I'd have to agree that they're probably so close that it may not be worth the 'upgrade,' unless I choose the new options like Live Valve or AXS, etc.

    Those upgrades only exasperate the price, obviously, but a 12-speed option, especially Shimano's 510% range on my 5.5, would be appreciated.

    If Pivot offered you two comparable bikes; a 5.5 and a new SB, same components, same price-point, would you stay with the 5.5, or take the new SB? Just curious from your experience on both rides.
    It's not that much different. Kind of why i thought it would be nice to ride them both on the exact terrain. I am slow so that may be part of it. I just felt the front wandered just a touch more. That said the front really stayed down well and the rear stayed planted. The only bike I have ever ridden(SB) that I went looking for climbs though...I hate climbing.

    If I had a choice between the two, the SB would win. I was about 6 months premature in buying the 5.5. Not enough of a difference to take the loss on selling the 5.5 though.

    FWIW, I demoed a Mach 4SL with live valve. It's a pretty sweet setup.

    My brother just picked up a SB a couple of months ago. Pretty sure he thinks its a winner too.

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