Merida One Fourty 800

Lewis has spent the first part of this year on Merida’s One Fourty 800. The banana coloured beast has (you guessed it) 140mm of travel and some good, all-round angles that work well for all but the gnarliest of trails.

With a few months in the tank, a bit of racing and plenty of miles it’s time to check in on how the Merida faired.

Time for the wettest photo shoot ever!

Best bits:

  • 6013 lightweight hydroformed frame
  • 2.6-inch Maxxis on boost wheels
  • Rockshox rear deluxe RT shock
  • Revelation 150mm fork
  • Sram GX Eagle 12 speed components
  • Sram Code brakes
  • Internal Cable routing
  • £3,000

Out of the box and into the hills

I had my first bash on the Merida One Fourty 800 on a cold and Wet Welsh morning at Afan Bike Park and then onto some local natural dirt.

There’s four sizes available from small to extra large, and I opted for the Large with a 455mm reach and a 75° seat angle. At 5ft6″ it was a wee bit on the large side for me but, not enough to spoil any fun.

The bike doesn’t do anything by extremes, instead Merida have picked some solid numbers that make it ride most conditions very well. It’s neither long and bargy, nor is it short and cramped. The 66.3° head angle is a great all-rounder, that only really feels outgunned when the trails get very fast and rough or very steep and technical. For almost everything you’ll face in the UK if feels spot on.

Dialled in

My first challenge was to get the tyre pressure right. The Merida comes with 2.6″ tyres which offer plenty of volume without being proper ‘plus sized’.

I set the bike up tubeless and changed the bar/stem combo to the new Renthal lite bars to allow me to compare this to other bikes I am currently riding. Other than that, setup was just the usual job of sorting the suspension and the OneFourty was good to go.

With that sorted, I rolled onto some of Afan’s surfaced trails and got a feel for the bike. Straight away it felt like Merida have done a great job with the geometry. It’s an easy bike to manoeuvre and to is fun to throw around, buzz round corners or send over jumps.

Digging deeper

The OneFourty stayed with me for a few months and every time I rode it in the dry or on surfaced trails I felt like I was getting faster and more confident.

Despite not being a big travel monster, it felt completely at home on the hard-packed trails at Bike Park Wales. It floats over breaking bumps and you can really chuck it into a turn with confidence in the grip.

Merida eOneSixtyMerida eOneSixty

Moving on to the rough stuff

In the dry and on the surfaced stuff, it felt like it offered the perfect amount of grip whilst feeling steady and in control on the descents. The grip through the turns really is immense and is thanks, I think, to the Float Link suspension system, Maxxis tyres (HR II 2.6″ TR EXO front and Maxxis Rekon 2.6″ TR EXO rear) and solid geometry.

Moving on to some rougher, more churned up trails I wasn’t any less impressed, the 140mm travel and the Rock Shox Deluxe RL rear shock worked really nicely and gave me a good feeling of floating over technical terrain.

When the weather turned slippy, things weren’t quite so easy and the large Maxxis tyres struggled to hold up that awesome grip I’d seen on the man-made trails. Tyre pressure is key and I had to go all the way down to 11PSI to start feeling good on wet, loose, natural trails.

I also had big troubles with the GX rear mech. It died (along with a few others on our other tests bikes from other brands) and I was left grounded till I could scrounge another one.

Let’s look at the spec sheet

Firstly, the Sram’s GX 12 speed is a great choice for this type of bike. The wide range of gears made the bike a breeze to climb and long, draggy climbs become less of a chore. The Sram Code R brakes were a standout for me and really gave brilliant stopping power on steep trails.

The Rock Shox Deluxe R rear shock works well with the bike’s suspension, which is a linkage driven single-pivot setup and it feels like an easy bike to jump from big, all day rides to laps of the Bike Park.

Upfront and keeping the bike pointing in the right direction is the 150mm Revelation fork with the chassis from the previous Pike, a great choice as the adjustability and motion control damping kept the bike balanced throughout.

Merida’s finishing kit was also surprisingly good for the price, the tubeless ready rims combined with the bar, stem and seat made this bike look sharp and feel like good value for money. The KS dropper with Southpaw lever was a great cheeky addition to add the icing on the cake. I also like the neat rear brake mount inside the rear triangle.

Loved it

  • Floating suspension design along with the suspension platform
  • Sram’s powerful code brakes
  • 12 speed group set
  • Lightweight frame

Could do better

  • Maxxis tyres are great in the dry but struggle in the wet
  • The GX rear mech died

What do we think?

If you want to buy a short travel bike that can do everything, the Merida One Fourty 800 is a really good shout.

It’s not a full bore enduro racing machine but it’s got plenty of travel and great geometry for plenty of real world riding and a few races here and there.

It needs a more do-it-all rear tyre but that’s an easy fix. Despite the rear mech troubles, the 12-speed groupset and Code brakes are a great addition for the money. The suspension really is something I’d happily ride all day long. 


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