Specced with up to six pairs of bottle bosses, and WTB Resolute 42mm gravel tires — with room for 29×2.0″ rubber — the new utility-centric Marin Four Corners is made for touring, bikepacking, and commuting alike… all for $1,039.

Posted by Logan Watts

  • Highlights
  • Frame: 4130 CrMo steel frame and fork
  • Geo Angles: 71.5° Headtube, 72.5° Seattube
  • Bottom Bracket: 68mm BSA Threaded
  • Hub specs: 135mm/100mm Open QR
  • Seatpost: 27.2mm
  • Max tire size: 29×2.0″
  • Price: $1039 (complete)

Marin claims the newly updated 2018 Four Corners as “perfectly suited to today’s commute and tomorrow’s touring adventures”. But as you can see by their marketing lifestyle photos, they have gravel bikepacking in their sites. There are a few interesting things about the 2018 Marin Four Corners. For one, Marin has expanded the utility of the Four Corners models by adding a third bottle inside the triangle as well as pair of mounts under the downtube (something every bike should have, in our opinion). There is an additional pair of bottle bosses on each fork leg too. Also for 2018, the new models got graphics updates and new color ways. A few other things folks might appreciate are the threaded bottom bracket shell, a full chromoly frame and fork, and a nice price point.

2018 Marin Four Corners, Steel Adventure Bike

  • 2018 Marin Four Corners, Steel Adventure Bike
  • 2018 Marin Four Corners, Steel Adventure Bike

Marin also updated the geometry based on “biometric fit data”, which means that the five different frames sizes are proportionate to properly fit riders between 4’11” – 6’4”. Similar to Jamis’ size-specific approach mentioned in the previous post, but taken a step further, Marin made the XS and S sizes designed around 650B wheels and tires, while the M, L, and XXL feature 700C wheels.

That rather upright looking geometry — owed in part to the long headtube — is dubbed “Biometric geometry”. In Marin’s words, “The Four Corners is built for the adventure rider looking to explore deep off of the beaten path, sleep outdoors, and be ready for whatever pavement, dirt road, or light singletrack is around the next corner. The heads-up bar position and generous braze-ons that make it possible to live on the bike for days at a time are equally at home on the daily commute.” It definitely appears to be more touring-comfort oriented than bikes such as the Jamis Renegade. One thing’s for sure, that headtube makes for a massive frame triangle… good for a cavernous custom frame pack, or up to three bottles inside the frame alone.

Marin Four Corners, 2018, Steel Adventure Bike

  • 2018 Marin Four Corners, Steel Adventure Bike
  • 2018 Marin Four Corners, Steel Adventure Bike
  • 2018 Marin Four Corners, Steel Adventure Bike

2018 Marin Four Corners Build kit

As far as the spec sheet goes, there are a few nice things to note. While I am not familiar with the Sora drivetrain, the 3×9 gearing has a decent range that’s not too punishing for loaded touring. Also, the WTB Resolute 42mm tires are a nice touch.

  • FRAME/fork Utilitour Double Butted CrMo
  • RIMS Marin Aluminum, Double Wall, Disc Specific
  • HUB REAR Forged Aluminum Alloy, 6-Bolt Disc, 32H
  • HUB FRONT Forged Aluminum Alloy, 6-Bolt Disc, 32H
  • SPOKES 14g Black Stainless Steel
  • TIRES WTB Resolute, 650B/700Cx42, Puncture Protection
  • DERAILLEUR REAR Shimano Sora 9-Speed
  • DERAILLEUR FRONT Shimano Sora
  • SHIFT LEVER Shimano Sora 3×9-Speed
  • CRANKSET Shimano Sora Hollowtech II, 50/39/30T
  • BOTTOM BRACKET Shimano Hollowtech II
  • CHAIN KMC X9
  • CASSETTE Shimano HG300 9-Speed, 11-34T
  • BRAKES FRONT Tektro Spyre-C Road Mechanical Disc, 160mm Rotor
  • BRAKES REAR Tektro Spyre-C Road Mechanical Disc, 160mm Rotor
  • BRAKE LEVERS Shimano w/ Integrated Shifters
  • HANDLEBAR Marin Butted Alloy, Compact 12º Flared Drop
  • STEM Marin 3D Forged Alloy
  • GRIPS Marin Comfort Bar Tape, Shock Absorbing Gel Pads
  • HEADSET FSA No.8D, Sealed Cartridge Bearings
  • SEATPOST Marin Alloy
  • SADDLE WTB Volt Sport 142 Custom
  • PEDALS Trekking Platform

If you appreciate an upright, comfort-oriented geometry, plus the ability to run big tires, the 2018 Marin Four Corners certainly looks like a good value. As mentioned, it will retail for $1,039 and will be available in the USA late-summer 2017. Learn more at MarinBikes.com. And read the preface to this release here.

  • Mark McGrath

    Thanks – so far the Jamis is more of what I’m looking for vs. the Marin. ..what are the other two bikes on the list of 4?? Very curious as I’m in the market.

  • Rod Kimble

    One advantage of the Sora groupset is that the rear derailleur pull ratio is the same as their 9sp MTB stuff. I’ve been using a Deore rear mech with a 11-36t cassette to give me a better granny gear. With something like the wolf tooth and a sunrace cassette it might go even bigger? Plus, as “travel” bike, 9sp parts are easier to find/bodge in out of the way places! Plus, that blue is lovely!

  • Great point about Sora…. and 9sp DTs. I imagine a larger cassette is possible with the Wolf Tooth road link.

  • Well, that would kill the suspense. ;) Stay tuned…. you are likely familiar with both if you are in the market though.

  • You’re not alone Mark. Great idea Logan. Steel adventure bikes are rad, no matter what genre (drop bar, fat, plus, etc). I doubt you will be able to avoid one if not both from the big S, but I like that Jamis and Marin kicked things off. They have made some solid bikes since the earliest bikes I can remember and I can honestly say I like how both companies have done business over the years. You have our interest piqued. Looking forward to the next article!

  • Yeah, I have liked what Jamis is doing for a few years now, Marin as well. It helped that they were both early adopters of steel 27.5+ bikes, which is a great platform for bikepacking…

  • Exactly. Steel plus bikes. I like the Stache I ride regularly, but it doesn’t check all the boxes like those steel plus bikes do, especially when I am choosing which bike to take on an overnight.

  • Alright, all are up!!

  • Ultra_Orange

    So is this confirmation that there is no Elite model coming out? Wanted last years Rasta paint so bad!

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