Specialized Camber Comp 29er (Robin Weaver/Future Publishing)

have had a stranglehold on the mountain bike market for many years now, and for
good reason – they make good bikes that cater for every type of rider. The 2013
line-up looks massively impressive and will no doubt further cement their
credentials as one of the big names in the MTB world.

Having been in the bike business since 1974, Specialized understand the impact bikes can have on individuals. “Cycling changes
lives,” said founder Mike Sinyard. He went on to
say that “any ideas of how you can expand on what you can do with a bicycle let’s
more people into the sport”. This statement couldn’t be more appropriate for
Specialized’s Enduro range. Built to tackle the ultimate in mountain biking,
the Enduro gets the full overhaul for 2013.


The idea
behind the bike is simple – based on the successful Enduro platform
from 2012, the latest incarnation is designed to “climb higher and descend

the frame remains roughly the same, using the X-Wing design, short 419mm
chainstays, a 350mm bottom bracket height and suitably slack 66.5-degree head angle. There’s
still the tapered head tube, ISCG 05 mounts and a 142x12mm rear axle, plus a new PF30 BB.

significant, though, are the changes to the FSR layout and tweaks to the suspension kinematics. These have created a bike that’s more responsive when you
hammer the pedals, and get rid of the wallow previous versions of the Enduro
could suffer from. Specialized see gravity enduro-style racing
gathering momentum, which is what’s helped push the development of a more efficient system.

The shock
mount configuration is now similar to that of the Stumpjumper FSR, using the
shock block that mounts directly to the base of the shock at the lower mount. This means the shock pivots on cartridge bearings rather than DU bushes, making it more sensitive to movement and more durable.

wise, the bike is still designed around a 160mm travel fork but now boasts
165mm of rear wheel travel.

Other changes include a shorter head tube, new graphics and internal
routing to accept a dropper post. The rest of the geometry stays the same.

than the S-Works, the Enduros receive the AutoSag shock
setup system.

S-Works highlights

Specialized’s top-flight, FACT IS-X 11M carbon front triangle is paired with an M5 aluminium rear
end on the S-Works Enduro. It comes shod with some of the finest equipment ever to have graced the
mountain bike world. This includes:

– A Cane
Creek Double Barrel air shock, which offers masses of adjustment.

– New
Roval Traverse SL carbon all-mountain wheelset (more on this later).

– Custom
Avid X0 Trail brakes featuring new four-piston callipers.

– Fox
34 TALAS CTD fork with Kashima-coated stanchions and 160mm of travel.

– Specialized
Command Post BlackLite dropper post.

XX1 11-speed transmission featuring the all new 1×11 setup. This uses a
10-42T cassette and single 36T ring with the 34T and 22T included should you
wish to mix things up a little.

claim the S-Works Enduro weighs in at an amazing 25.9lb (11.7kg).

A price on
the S-Works is still to be confirmed. Availability-wise, we should see every Enduro model other than the S-Works (due to the wait on the SRAM XX1 transmission) in
the shops around October.


are firm believers in the 29in wheel movement. So much so that certain 2013 lines will only feature 29er wheels, the Camber being one of them.

gone to great lengths to provide 29ers that will suit riders all of all sizes,
tweaking geometry along with considering how they spec each bike and each
size of bike to produce the ultimate fit. It’s looking at this ‘complete
package’ that drives the company’s ‘29ers for all’ ethos.

Camber Pro and Expert Carbon will also benefit from the Fox Shox weight
reduction on the 32 fork. Both models will offer thus improved, custom, 110mm travel

M5 aluminium frames

For 2013,
the Camber range expands to include new alloy models sculpted from Specialized’s highest grade M5 aluminium, with greatly improved, 29er specific geometry. These
new models are known as the Base (the entry-level bike) and the Comp.

Key to
the Camber’s new M5 frame is the improved standover height. By shadowing the carbon counterparts’ blueprint, Specialized can ensure that the new M5 frame offers a 23mm
lower top tube on the small frame. A large drops by 26mm compared to
the older, alloy framed Cambers.

The top tube is lower on the M5 aluminium frame of the Camber 

in order to create this reduction in standover height, the front
triangle had to be compacted and a shorter head tube used. On
the small frame, this caused a specific issue, which is why a special rubber
fork crown stop has been integrated into the down tube to prevent the fork crown
impacting and damaging the tubing should the bars spin in a crash. 

Again, on
the small frame, the lower standover also helps reduce weight by creating
a smaller head tube/seat tube/down tube, requiring a smaller weld and
reduced tube butting without impacting on strength.

Out back,
there’s 110mm of rear wheel travel, all controlled via either a Fox or
RockShox AutoSag equipped shock and driven by the new concentric link.
Specialized claim the new concentric link helps reduce frame weight yet
increase stiffness.

are now better sealed, to keep things smoother for longer and easier to

Comp 29 highlights

The Camber Comp
features the newly improved M5 aluminium frame and includes the following spec

hydroformed tubing with 29er specific geometry, a tapered head tube, dropper post
routing, 142x12mm rear dropouts, a PF30 BB and 110mm of rear wheel travel.

– Custom
RockShox Monarch RL with AutoSag.

– Specialized
Ground Control 2Bliss Ready tyres.

– Custom
SRAM S1250 2×10 chainset with bash ring.

claimed weight for the Comp is 28.1lb (12.7kg).

Cambers should be available in August, and the likes of the Comp will set you
back £2,000.


covered the 2013 Demo already, but this beast is always worth a mention.

have said the latest carbon incarnation of the bike is lighter, stronger and the “raddest complete race bike” – so a lot to live up to, then.

While the
Team Replica receives the rather custom 135mm rear axle spacing and 7-speed
cassette, the Carbon Demo 8 I will stick with the more standard 150mm spacing
but feature all the same geometry as the S-Works.

S-Works Carbon Demo 8 Team Replica highlights

With only
250 of these special bikes in the pipeline, it’s no wonder they come with the
best of the best aboard. This includes:

– New
FACT 11M carbon front triangle with M5 rear end and 200mm of rear wheel travel.

– The
unique FSR with sub seatstay design allowing for ultimate kinematic suspension tuning.

– Beefed-up down tube in critical areas to protect against rock strikes, as well as an aerospace polymer down tube protector.

– Reworked
drivetrain to improve clearance. This includes Specialized’s micro drive
system, which uses the 32T chainring and a 7-speed rear cassette. The
cassette features a 9T sprocket, so requires a custom DT Swiss
freehub body.

– New
135mm rear axle spacing to improve heel clearance.

– RockShox
Boxxer World Cup with BlackBox Black Gold stanchions and 200mm of travel.

– A RockShox Vivid shock that’s likely to be upgraded to the custom
shock Sam Hill is running.

X0 DH transmission and brakes.

– Specialized
Sip Grip – half waffle, aramid infused custom grip.

The Team Replica version of the Carbon Demo 8 

claimed weight for the S-Works Carbon Demo 8 Team Replica is 35.8lb (16.2kg).

If you’re
looking to buy one of the 250 full builds it will likely set you back in the
region of £9,000. Fear not, though – it will be available as a frame-only for £3,500.


The Epic
line-up is also set to go 29er only for 2013. The big news here, though, is the
introduction of the Marathon model, which should help span the gap between the S-Works
and Expert Epics.

Marathon highlights

Here’s what stood
out for us:

– New
graphics on the carbon frame help to reduce weight by a claimed 90g.

– Carbon
seatstays and M5 aluminium chainstays.

– Due
to numerous consistency issues with Avid brakes, there’s been a switch to the
Magura MT brakes for many Specialized bikes in 2013. The Marathon uses the MT6 brakes.

X0 10-speed Grip Shift.

– Fox
Brain rear shock and RockShox Brain fork.

The Epic
Marathon will cost £5,000.


of the range to go 29er only for 2013. And, as with the Epic, a Marathon model is being introduced to bridge the gap between the S-Works
and Expert models. The Marathon model looks set to cost £3,800.

The new Marathon version of the Specialized Stumpjumper hardtail

Stumpjumper hardtails will now use Magura brakes, and there’s a Chisel fork (a carbon, rigid suspension corrected
fork) on the Stumpjumper Expert EVO R. This also features 1×10 gearing.


Stumpjumper FSR goes largely unchanged for 2013 in terms of design and
geometry. A full carbon model has been introduced, as well as the
new Comp EVO, which comes in at a reasonable £2,000 considering the package on

The Comp EVO version of the Stumpjumper FSR, new for 2013

Both the standard FSR and EVO models will be available with 26in and 29in wheels.


The guys
at Specialized are firm believers in introducing new riders to mountain biking, and
the Carve is a great example of their commitment to entry-level riders. It’s also another bike to go 29er only for 2013. 

Specialized were also adamant that improvements needed to be made to enable this well-priced bike to be raced if
the riders wanted to. To
do this, Specialized focused on making the bike lighter and improving its control. 

This was done by introducing a new, lighter wheelset that
uses a new rim extrusion. They also upgraded the fork – the entire range only uses
air-sprung forks, to improve tenability and increase travel to 100mm compared
to the previous 80mm. Head tube height has been decreased, though. On top of all
this, the drivetrain has had a seeing to and now offers a custom SRAM
2×10 chainset with 29er specific gearing.

To help
improve concerning, Specialized raised the BB a smidge over the previous

Comp highlights

competitive entry-level beast has plenty on offer for those keen to get into
mountain biking:

M4 alloy frame has cross-country specific geometry and is fully butted and uses
smooth welds. There’s a tapered head tube and forged post-mount rear disc mount.

– RockShox
Recon Gold TK SA solo air 29 SL fork with 100mm of travel and a PushLoc remote
lockout lever.

– Avid
Elixir 1 brakes.

– Custom
SRAM S1250 2×10 chainset.

Specialized claim they’ve knocked 3.6lb off the Carve Comp, which will cost £1,200.


When it
comes to other significant news across Specialized’s 2013 range, it’s worth noting that
both the Rockhopper and Hardrock will soon only be available with 29in wheels.

650b question…

As for going over to the much-hyped new wheel size of 650b (27.5in),
Specialized openly said that they were reluctant to make the switch while there’s limited size-specific equipment available (forks, wheels, tyres, and so on)
to let them do what they want. 

On top of that, they also remarked on the
minimal difference you get jumping from 26in to 650b wheels compared to
going from 26in to 29in wheels.

there are no 650b machines for 2013, Specialized were quick to point out they
wouldn’t rule it out in the future.

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