Intend may not be immediately familiar to you, but its unique design and ideas have been creating a lot of interest for a while now. Intend was created by Cornelius Kapfinger in 2017 in Freiburg, southwest Germany. It is still a small company, but after moving to a proper production facility in 2021, it has slowly increased the range of products it offers and developed a cult following amongst high-end bike builders. If you are familiar with Dangerholm's work customizing Scott bikes on Instagram, you will have seen him using Intend forks and rear shocks for a while now on various show-winning bikes.
The company first launched the Samurai forks earlier this year at Eurobike. It initially consisted of three forks, all designed to be as light as possible whilst keeping the signature upside-down layout of the rest of the Intend range and a high-quality CNC machined finish. Originally the forks were designed to use the excellent Rockshox race day damper. Still, the potential for the limited availability of parts and the need for more than 120mm of travel for some riders has led it to offer another model with its own damper design.
Intend's damper, of course, isn't just a standard affair. It has a carbon damper tube, and the company has removed as much material as possible. It is functionally similar to the dampers used in its longer travel forks shrunk down to fit in the smaller, lighter chassis of the Samurai range.
The Intend range is certainly on the higher end of the suspension spectrum price-wise compared to front MTB suspension on the market from other brands. Still, the company's unique approach and incredibly high attention to detail, and handmade in Germany manufacturing sets it apart.
Intend goes about weight savings in a unique way with this range of forks. It uses an angled crown, meaning it can build less offset into the fork's dropout. This reduces the overall size of the dropout, therefore saving weight. Intend also makes use of a carbon steerer in the CC version, as well as careful machining of the axle and hardware. Carbon steerers are commonplace on road and high-end gravel bikes but are still relatively rare in the mountain bike world.
The four versions available are as follows:
- Samurai TR – 130mm travel using Intend's Carbon damper. With low-speed compression, rebound adjustment and weighing in at 1555g, this is the most downcountry fork in the range ( €1799)
- Samurai XC – 120mm and making use of the race day damper. This has a lockout as well as low-speed compression and rebound adjust, weighing in at 1515g (€1649)
- Samurai CC – this is the lightest in the range utilizing a carbon steerer, carbon cable guides, and a flat mount brake option. No word on travel as Intend is still working on a few of the details on this model, but the target weight is 1405g (€1949)
- Samurai GR – this is a 50mm travel gravel variant and features the same race day damping with lockout, compression, and rebound adjust as the XC model (€1649)