• NZ Mountain Biker

NEWS: Specialized's new Epic & Epic EVO

Specialized have just dropped the latest iteration of their Epic and Epic EVO, with geometry tweaks among other things to suit the more-and-more demanding modern cross country courses we're beginning to see. Get the scoop below!


"The all new Epic


You’re looking at the fastest XC bikes in the world. Building on the legacy of the winningest full suspension XC bike in history, these freshly redesigned Epics deliver an unmatched combination of pedalling efficiency, light weight and control.



“Make the fastest XC bike ever.” That was the Epic development team’s audacious mission. Luckily for them, the starting point was the winningest full suspension XC race bike in history. Building from this, the team delivered an unmatched combination of pedalling efficiency, light weight and control. Mission accomplished.


If winning isn’t everything, we’re doing something wrong. For 20 years, Epics have rocketed more racers to the top of the podium than any other full suspension XC bike. Now with a smarter, tougher, more responsive Brain shock and a stiffer, lighter frame, the new race-focused Epic cuts the time between starting line and victory even shorter.

Brain technology in the Epic fork and shock knows the difference between pedalling force and bump force—it keeps suspension efficiently firm on smooth terrain and automatically switches to active the instant things get rough, boosting control and speed. The new Epic gets a fresh Brain shock, the most durable and control-enhancing that we’ve ever made.


The culmination of two decades of obsessive refinement, the new Epic frames are lighter and stiffer than ever. The S-Works Epic FACT 12m carbon chassis shaves over 100 grams from its predecessor, employs a carbon link, and boasts a15% increase in rear triangle stiffness. The FACT 11m frame found on the rest of the Epic range now matches the stiffness and weight of the previous S-Works chassis.

Dominating today’s technical XC courses demands geometry that borrows from trail bikes while optimizing XC responsiveness. Combining precise handling with improved capability in technical terrain, we relaxed the headtube to 67.5 degrees, stuck with the reduced fork offset that we pioneered in 2018, increased reach, specified shorter stems, shortened chainstays and dropped the bottom bracket by 9mm. Bring it.

Riders all, our team of engineers and technicians toiled to develop every aspect of the Epic suspension into an optimally performing singularity. Chassis design, telemetry, wheel rates, spring curves, custom shim-stacks, oil viscosity—every detail obsessed over, prototyped and tuned until the whole was way faster than the sum of its parts.


The all new Epic Evo


What do you get when you give a crazy-smart, single track-obsessed development team virtually unlimited resources and tell them to make the fastest XC trail bike ever? Epic EVO. Start with the Epic frontend, build an all-new rear end, swap the brain fora custom-tuned metric shock, and tune the geo for technical terrain capability. Ready, set, shred.



The heart of the EVO chassis is the same wicked-light and super-stiff front triangle as the Epic. Next, for stability, we designed a purpose-built rear end. Finally, we boosted control and trail performance by unifying the front and rear end with a stiff shock link optimized for the plush metric damper used on the EVO. Evolved for trail speed.

The EVO’s 66.5-degree head angle and lower bottom bracket keep things calm when the trail turns technical. For pedalling efficiency, the seat angle is 3/4 of a degree steeper than its predecessor. If you want sharper handling and a bit more clearance, just rotate the FlipChip—angles get half a degree steeper and the bottom bracket comes up 6mm.


To conquer rough trails as fast as humanly possible, the Epic EVO maintains ultra-efficient pedalling manners, but trades the Brain in favor of an Rx-tuned metric shock. A purpose-built link yields a2.8:1 leverage ratio, and milks bump-devouring performance from its 110-mm rear travel. 120mm forks with custom Rx-tuned valving complete EVO’s balanced, trail-smart suspension.