The new Specialized Turbo Levo Expert brings top end eMTB tech to more mountain bikers.
Specialized haven't taken their foot off the gas with their ever-evolving range of eMTBs. With the Specialized Turbo Levo having gained popularity thanks to the smart assistance system, battery size options and sleek finish, the range has only expanded. The Levo SL set a new benchmark in eMTBs just becoming 'bikes' with incredible integration into the frame design and ride characteristics, and the new Kenevo SL uses the same motor and battery in a 170mm 29er that is designed to shred.
Earlier this year the popular Turbo Levo was updated to carry across many of the design cues from the Specialized Stumpjumper Pro (like adjustable geometry) and married it with their most recent technology: like MasterMind for more data, better control, and wireless firmware updates. While the new Turbo Levo was launched in the S Works model only, now the Expert model has just landed, bringing the same tech and frame updates to a lower price point. The Specialized Turbo Levo Expert sells for $15900.
The S Works model is $23700 while the Pro model is $19800. These bikes share the same frame, 2.2 motor and 700Wh battery - but the price points reflect different build kits to the pricier bikes.
What's the same on the Levo Expert?
Lots of things. The Specialized FACT 11m carbon frame carries over from the S Works model, with the mixed wheel size (29" front, 27.5" rear), Boost spacing, adjustable head tube and dropout geometry chips, and 150mm of travel.
You also get the same Turbo 2.2 motor and 700 Wh battery, delivering a huge range of upto 5 hours, and delivering a peak of 565W of power and 90Nm of torque. That's all looked after by MasterMind, which is the integrated head unit and software.
It's tucked neatly into the top of the top tube, with a simple display to give you the essential data you need at a glance. You can tune exactly what you want to see, and customise power delivery in 10% increments. You really can tune the assistance to suit your riding, your trails - and even your specific ride for the day.
That adjustable geometry delivers the same benefits - customisation to make sure your bike rides how you want it to. There are 6 different geometry positions to play with, moving from lower and slacker to taller and more agile - and options in-between.
The S sizing is based on reach and not seat tube height, so you can size and adjust your bike to be super agile, or a high speed, stable charger. Or - you can just run it stock and have a blast. So in short - the ride of the frame and the updates that the S Works and Pro model received all carry over to the Expert model.
What's different with the Levo Expert?
The saving of $7800 from the S Works model comes down to parts spec, which may skim a little of the cream off the top in the minds of some riders, but in reality the on-trail performance is barely impacted.
In terms of suspension, all the kinematics and the Rx tune by Specialized remain. But instead of a Fox Factory Float X2 and Float 38 - you're getting Performance Elite. That means black stanchions not Kashima, and all the same adjustment range.
The drivetrain makes a bigger change, moving from SRAM Eagle AXS to a mechanical Eagle XO1 and GX mashup, using the 10-52t cassette. Braking duties are thanks to SRAM Code RS brakes with suitable 200mm rotors. L and XL get 220mm upfront. Kudos to Specialized for making those sorts of spec changes based on size!
The dropper post also loses the electronic wizardry from the S Works model, with an X-Fusion post doing a commendable job instead.
Wheels drop from carbon to the Roval Traverse, a trusty aluminium-rimmed all-mountain wheel set. 30mm internal rims provide a bunch of support for modern tyres, and that's a key part of any modern mountain bike.
How does it all ride?
The proof is in the pudding, and feedback from our tester Ryan Walsch is that the X2 and new geometry and suspension kinematics completely change how the bike rides compared to the previous Levo.
The mullet wheel sizes play into this to, with the firmware updates also making the power transfer (and drop off) near seamless. Ryan's full review will be in our next issue.
Photos: Nick Waygood