RockShox Introduces 2025 Charger 3.1 Damper and Vivid Coil, and Updates Pike, Lyric, Zeb, and Super Deluxe


RockShox Introduces 2025 Charger 3.1 Damper and Vivid Coil, and Updates Pike, Lyric, Zeb, and Super Deluxe

SRAM and RockShox always do this. They collect a bunch of minor and major innovations within a given product line, throw in a new model or two, and unleash it all at once on an unsuspecting public. I suppose it beats the alternative. If we had to wait several years for a component to get a top-to-bottom rebuild before any improvements could be made, we’d miss out on the types of innovations RockShox collected today for the 2025 model year. They’ve improved the bushing design on the Pike, Lyric and Zeb forks, revamped the damper in the Super Deluxe air shock, and introduced an entirely new Vivid Air dh-oriented coil shock. They’ve also updated their TrailHead tuning-guide app, which should help with my favorite news of the day, an updated Charger 3.1 damper.

I’ve actually got a new Pike featuring a Charger 3.1 in for test. I just haven’t had enough time on it yet to bring you a thorough review. But on the one ride I’ve managed to squeeze in between installing and writing, it’s already changed my mind a little about the compromises we’re used to making when setting up our suspension. No spoilers, but this is the first fork where I’ve increased high-speed compression damping and not paid for it with a significant increase in harshness. Again, I’ll save that for the review. For now, here’s what’s new in the news.

Charger 3.1 Fork Damper

Yep. Three Point One. For those keeping score, that’s 0.1 more than the Charger 3 that RockShox released two years ago. For those not keeping score, Charger 3 was one of those top-to-bottom rebuilds. For years, Charger dampers contained the shifting volume of oil with a flexible bladder. Charger 3 went to a coil-backed internal floating piston, which offers more consistent performance, better longevity and simpler maintenance. Charger 3 also boasted more independent high- and low-speed compression damping adjustments. Meaning, for example, that adding support for braking and pumping won’t increase harshness over high-speed chatter.

It seems those updates have opened some doors for riders regarding their compression damping settings. And SRAM has heard them asking for more. So, The “0.1” of the Charger damper includes a wider range of usable settings. The low-speed compression adjustment now has a significantly lighter wide-open setting. This is optimal for riders who prioritize comfort and traction over support. And it will probably be welcomed by lighter-weight riders who sometimes feel stock suspension settings to be overdamped.

RockShox sort of made the opposite update to the Charger 3.1’s high-speed circuit, widening its range in the other direction to accommodate aggressive riders who said they wanted more damping during hard hits. This is super interesting because these two updates aren’t necessarily related to serving the same type of rider. They were done to optimize the experience for more people in more situations. And it doesn’t stop there.

There are now $30 aftermarket shim kits for riders who are still at the end of their clicks. Shims are like little flexible washers that bend out of the way to let oil through when your suspension motion reaches a high enough velocity. Riders who are particularly light, heavy, or just picky have long turned to special tuning shops to open up their suspension and fiddle with their shims, but it’s very rare for a mainstream suspension brand like RockShox to offer it themselves. There are two compression shim kits and three rebound kits available, and each comes with the one specialized tool you’ll need to swap them out.

The rebound shim kits work with existing Charger 3.0 dampers, but those who want to tune their compression dampers will need to upgrade to 3.1, which in another uniquely nerdy move, RockShox is offering as an option. If any of the above updates speak to you, the kit is available for $75. A full Charger 3.1 damper assembly is available for $358.

Only top-end aftermarket “Ultimate” and top-end OEM “Select+” forks will feature the new Charger 3.1 dampers, but all 2023 or newer Pikes and Lyrics and all 2021 or newer Zebs can be upgraded to Charger 3.1. Also, going forward, all 2025 Flight Attendant electronically controlled fork dampers will run on Charger 3.1 dampers.

Updated TrailHead App

All these adjustments can be a little overwhelming. And there’s rarely any consistency across different models and different brands as to how many clicks or how many PSI are right for you. The TrailHead app has been RockShox’s solution for a while. It gives you initial setup suspensions based on your body weight and your exact suspension components. For 2025, theRockShox TrailHead app is getting some updates to make it easier to save settings, link to service videos, and integrate with other SRAM components. It’s not a way to bring phones where they’re not wanted. It’s more a way to remove some of the guessing-game sometimes involved with complex systems like Charger 3.1.

Updated 2025 RockShox Pike Ultimate

One fork that will feature the new Charger 3.1 for 2025 is the RockShox Pike Ultimate, which also got a few other tweaks. First, the negative air-spring volume was increased. This is a small self-charging air chamber that works opposite the one that you pump up when setting your preload. It aids in making the fork easier to “break away” when hitting small bumps. A larger negative chamber increases small-bump sensitivity.

The Pike also got some updates to (and around) the bushings that promise lower friction. In fact, so did the bigger-travel Lyrik and bigger-er-travel Zeb. Although it’s only the Ultimate and Select+ models that get the Charger 3.1 damper, every fork gets the new smoother bushings.

Updated 2025 RockShox Super Deluxe Ultimate

There were similar flow-focused updates to the Super Deluxe rear shock. Specifically, the compression damper allows for easier oil flow for better sensitivity. Also, the Super Deluxe air can volume has increased, bridging the gap to the gravity-focused Vivid Air shock. The new air can still accommodates volume spacers, so riders who want more late-stroke ramp-up can still tune it in. It’s no huge surprise that the larger air can is available aftermarket, but it’s a kinda-huge surprise that the new compression damper is, too. 2023 Super Deluxe (air and coil) as well as 2024 Vivid Air can be professionally upgraded to a new aftermarket damper. Or, riders who want a more gravity-focused option have an entirely new shock family to choose from.

All-New 2025 RockShox Vivid Coil

A dedicated gravity coil shock, the new Vivid Coil eliminates the climb switch featured on some Super Deluxe Coil shocks. It features the adjustable hydraulic bottom-out resistance featured on top-end Vivid Air and Super Deluxe Coil shocks, but adds a position-sensitive damper. “TouchDown” creates much lighter compression damping for the first 10% of travel. It’ll likely only be seen on dedicated downhill bikes, meaning it’ll likely never be seen here on The Radavist, but we love products that have a dedicated purpose.

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