Is Norco Fluid FS A4 Splendid? – [Norco Fluid FS A4 Review]

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Norco Fluid FS A4 Review

  • Price: $1,999
  • Frame: Aluminum
  • Tires: 29 inches
  • Gear: 1×11

What we like about it: Great geometry plus carefully selected components are at a lower price for everyone.

What we don’t like about it: The aluminum frame may feel a bit heavy when climbing.

Rating: (4.8/5)

Norco Fluid FS A4
Norco Fluid FS A4

The Fluid FS series is the cross-country mountain bike Norco has been working on.

Today we take a look at their award-winning FS aluminum series, the Norco Fluid FS A4.

With 130mm of rear travel paired with a 140mm fork, it uses Norco’s Ride Alignment Design System to adjust the geometry and suspension kinematics for each frame size.

Below, we will analyze the riding experience, key features, components, and specifications as well as other versions of this bike.

Additionally, at the end of the review, we will also compare several best bike models. If you want to know more about bike reviews, don’t hesitate to follow us.

Riding Experience

The Norco Fluid FS A4 is the cheapest of the Fluid FS lineup, priced at just $1999.

For that money, you can get a sturdy and reliable 6061 aluminum frame plus a great front RockShox Recon Silver RL, 140mm Travel fork and a custom-tunable X-Fusion 02 Pro R rear shock.

For this reason I immediately booked tickets on Skyscanner to a mountain bike park near my home.

Our mountain bike park is on a hill with a forest road section, some big drop jumps, winding trails, and a long descent acceleration course.


The Norco Fluid FS A4’s ability to climb up was similar to other aluminum full-suspension forest road mountain bikes in the same class.

After all, this type of mountain bike would all face the situation of pedal release.

The FSA Comet 1X DM, 30T crankset with the SunRace CSMS8, 11/51T, 11 Speed flywheel on the Fluid FS A4 was able to help me up the steeper inclines.

In addition, I was satisfied with the grip of the front Goodyear Newton 2.4″ and rear Goodyear Escape 2.35″ big grain tires on this bike, which helped me to climb up better.

Eventually, after spending some time with the Norco Fluid FS A4, I finally made it to the start of the descent route at the top of the mountain.

Here’s a look at its descent performance.


After starting on the descent route, I was greeted with a big drop-off crash pad.

Luckily, the Norco Fluid FS A4 had a RockShox Recon Silver RL 140mm travel fork and offered an X-Fusion 02 Pro R rear guts with 130mm rear wheel travel.

The moment I hit the ground, the impact was quickly absorbed and I was very satisfied with the stable performance.

Then came a long downward acceleration section, so I increased the pedaling frequency to speed up the bike.

But the Fluid FS A4 didn’t become unstable due to the increased speed thanks to the stability and passability provided by the 29-inch wheelset.

The RockShox fork’s excellent initial sensitivity and silky smooth performance also gave me the confidence to continue accelerating.

Then on the winding trail routes of the forest road, I thought the Norco Fluid FS A4 was still nimble enough.

The shorter rear fork combined with the 2.35-inch outer tire was also swift to fly down the trails.

The Tektro HD-M535, 4 Piston brakes and Tektro TR180-22, 180mm discs, are good braking power, but still a little short of instant hold.

However, it’s still good for a full-suspension Lindo mountain bike at this price.

All in all, I am satisfied with the overall performance of the Norco Fluid FS A4, and I highly recommend it as a first full-suspension mountain bike for newbies.


The Norco Fluid FS A4 is available in five aluminum frame sizes from S to XXL, and all come standard with a 29-inch wheelset, which adds to the bike’s descending stability and passability.

In addition, the frame of the bike has two mounting holes, one at the bottom tube and one at the top tube.

The mounting holes at the down tube support full size water bottle mounting, while the mounting holes at the top tube allow for carrying portable tools to support the rider to ride further.

The internal alignment of the frame also makes the appearance look neater.

The design of the silent line pipe ensures that the vehicle will not make noise during the ride.

Next, the Norco Fluid FS A4 features a dropper design that allows the rider to readily adjust the center of gravity of his or her ride while climbing and descending.

A chain patch on the rear lower fork reduces noise from the chain slapping the frame during intense riding.

Finally, the Norco Fluid FS A4 has a loose geometry and a long wheelbase, so it is stable, efficient and has a good groundhold when descending.


Other versions

The Norco Fluid FS A4 is a full-suspension mountain bike with excellent all-around capabilities, both climbing and descending, and is perfectly adequate for novice and less intense riding.

But if you are an expert rider and have a budget, then this bike’s package may not be good enough for you.

We also found a Norco Fluid FS full-suspension mountain bike in the same series with a more top-notch package.

Norco Fluid FS A1

Norco Fluid FS A1
Norco Fluid FS A1

The Norco Fluid FS A1 and Norco Fluid FS A4 use the same aluminum frame and both have the same size specifications.

However, the former uses a more advanced kit, resulting in more power.

First of all, the former uses Fox FLOAT Factory 34 GRIP2 fork and Fox FLOAT X Performance Elite rear shock, which provide better support when leaping to the ground, thus supporting to make more intense riding action.

As for the drivetrain, the former uses the Shimano XT kit, which has silkier shifting and better rear derailleur tension than the latter, and is less prone to chain fall off during descending rides.

Finally the biggest difference between these two cars is the braking. The former with excellent braking ability TRP Trail EVO, 4 Piston brakes is also much more powerful than the latter’s braking ability, making the mountain bike stop instantly.

Below, we will list the specific parameters of the Norco Fluid FS A4 in detail and some other brands of full-suspension Lindo bikes at similar prices for your reference.

What do we like about it?

  • -Inside alignment design makes the appearance looks cleaner and neater, and it’s easy to clean.
  • -Cable muffling treatment reduces the noise made by the cable slapping the inner wall of the down tube during the ride.
  • The dropper can switch the riding weight between climbing and descending at any time.
  • The mounting holes at the lower tube can support full-size water bottle installation, and the mounting holes at the upper tube can carry portable tools for cycling.
  • -The bike has Reinforcement treatment at the seat tube and top tube, and the whole bike has higher and stronger wall fixing.
  • -Excellent geometry gives the vehicle an agile, stable off-road capability.

What don’t we like about it?

  • The aluminum frame feels heavy when climbing.


  • What wheelset does Norco Fluid FS A4 use?

Norco Fluid FS A4 front wheelset: Bear Pawls Sealed Bearing, 15x110mm Boost, 6 Bolt.

Rear wheelset: Bear Pawls Sealed Bearing, 12x148mm Boost, HG, 6 Bolt.

  • What kind of rider is Norco Fluid FS A4 suitable for?

As the best choice for entry full-suspension Lindo mountain bike riding, it is suitable for everyone riding, but even more so for newbies with less than adequate budgets.

  • How do I choose the right size for Norco Fluid FS A4?

Here we provide you with a size chart, but of course you do not necessarily have to follow this standard. The best way to find the most suitable size is to test ride.

Rider heightSIZE

Norco Fluid FS A4 Specs


Frame6061 Alloy, 130mm Travel, UDH, Hangerless Interface Compatible, Ride Aligned™
BB Standard: BSA, 73mm, Threaded
Hanger Standard: UDH
Colors: Red / Black; Black
ForkRockShox Recon Silver RL, 140mm Travel , 42mm Offset
Rear ShockX-Fusion 02 Pro R, Custom Tune, 210x50mm
Bottom BracketFSA MegaExo, BSA Threaded
HeadsetSealed Bearing, Tapered
Stem6061 Alloy, 40mm Length, 35mm Clamp
Handlebare*thirteen, 800mm, 20mm Rise
SaddleNorco Trail
SeatpostSDG Tellis Dropper, 34.9mm, 150mm (S), 170mm (M, L), 200mm (XL, XXL)
PedalsVP Nylon Flat
GripsWTB Waffle, Lock-On


Rear DerailleurShimano Deore RD-M5100
CrankFSA Comet 1X DM, 30T, 170mm (S), 175mm (M – XXL)
ShiftersShimano Deore SL-M5100
CassetteSunRace CSMS8, 11/51T, 11 Speed
ChainKMC X11
BrakesTektro HD-M535, 4 Piston, Organic Pads
Brake LeversTektro HD-M535


RimsStan’s Flow D, 29″, 32H
Front HubBear Pawls Sealed Bearing, 15x110mm Boost, 6 Bolt
Rear HubBear Pawls Sealed Bearing, 12x148mm Boost, HG, 6 Bolt
TiresGoodyear Newton 2.4″, Folding
Disk RotorsTektro TR180-22, 180mm

Comparison Table

BicyclesClick viewDrivelineFrame materialBrake TypeDamping stroke
Canyon Neuron 6Click View1 × 12AluminumHydraulic Disc130mm rear, 140mm front
Kona Big HonzoClick View1 × 11AluminumHydraulic Disc130mm front
Cannondale Habit 5Click View1 × 11AluminumHydraulic Disc130mm rear, 140mm front
Trek Roscoe 7Click View1 × 12AluminumHydraulic Disc140mm front

Norco Fluid FS A4 VS Canyon Neuron 6

Canyon Neuron 6
Canyon Neuron 6

The Norco Fluid FS A4 and Canyon Neuron 6 are two very similar full-suspension mountain bikes, both using aluminum frame materials and internal cable routing.

However, the latter’s Fox 34 fork and FOX Float DPS Performance rear shock have better support than the former, but the former’s damping will be more sensitive and filter better for small vibrations.

In terms of drivetrain, the latter Shimano SLX is also smoother than the former Shimano Deore M5100 in terms of shifting, and the rear derailleur has more tension.

As for braking system, the braking capacity of both bikes is similar, and both can meet daily forest road riding very well.

Finally, the biggest difference between the two is that the former has a more relaxed geometry and a longer wheelbase, so the body will be more stable when descending and has more potential for upgrades.

For these two cars, I would recommend the Norco Fluid FS A4 because of the better drop performance and greater potential.

Norco Fluid FS A4 VS Kona Big Honzo

Kona Big Honzo
Kona Big Honzo

The Norco Fluid FS A4 and the Kona Big Honzo are two different forest road mountain bikes, and each has its own advantages.

First of all, the Norco Fluid FS A4 has two suspension systems, front and rear, while the Kona Big Honzo has only one fork with 130mm travel.

So the former will be much stronger on descents than the latter and can handle more rough roads. But the latter will be much easier to ride on climbing routes.

Next, both bikes use the same Shimano M5100 drivetrain, which is similar in terms of drivetrain efficiency.

But in terms of braking ability, the former Tektro HD-M535, 4 Piston has two more pistons in the clamp than the latter Shimano MT201, so it has stronger braking ability.

In the end, I think the Norco Fluid FS A4 is better than the Kona Big Honzo in almost every aspect of capability.

Norco Fluid FS A4 VS Cannondale Habit 5

Cannondale Habit 5
Cannondale Habit 5

The Norco Fluid FS A4 and Cannondale Habit 5 share the same aluminum frame and similar geometry, both with a loose head tube angle.

As mountain bikes they both have a 140mm front and 130mm rear travel, which makes them capable of forest road riding. Also, the same Shimano Deore M5100 drivetrain is also perfectly adequate for the strength of forest road riding.

However, in terms of braking, the former Tektro HD-M535, 4 Piston brakes will have better braking effect than Tektro M275 hydraulic disc, which is also the difference between four piston clamps and two piston clamps.

In the end, if I had to choose between these two bikes, I would favor the Norco Fluid FS A4 not only for its better brake package, but also for its exterior styling, which I think is much cooler.

Learn More: Is Cannondale Habit 5 A Good Bike?[Cannondale Habit 5 Review]

Norco Fluid FS A4 VS Trek Roscoe 7

Trek Roscoe 7
Trek Roscoe 7

The Norco Fluid FS A4 and Trek Roscoe 7 are two different styles of woodland mountain bikes.

The former can filter more bumps on the descent than the latter’s hardtail design due to its front and rear damping system, and can handle more complex descending surfaces.

But the latter’s hardtail design, combined with the 12-speed flywheel, has better drivetrain efficiency than the former when climbing upwards, thus saving energy.

In terms of braking, the former’s four-piston brakes still provide a better braking effect and more efficient braking experience than the latter’s two-piston brakes.

Finally, the Trek Roscoe 7 has its own downtube protector to avoid splashing rocks hitting the downtube while riding and damaging the frame’s paint job.

So of these two bikes, if you like forest road climbing riding then Trek Roscoe 7 is more suitable for you. Suppose you pursue descending riding ,Norco Fluid FS A4 will be a better choice.

Learn More: Is Trek Roscoe 7 Worth Buying? [Trek Roscoe 7 Review]


Above is my ride review of the Norco Fluid FS A4. In our opinion, it has something for everyone on a forest road ride.

The excellent frame geometry greatly increases the potential and limits of this bike. For that, we give it a 4.8 out of 5 rating.

Of course, if you’re interested in exploring other similar bikes, we have reviewed a variety of bikes at different price points that you might find interesting. Feel free to check out our other reviews as well.

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