Lightweight carbon frame? Check. Industry-leading suspension technology? Oh yeah. Race-ready build kit? You know it. The Epic Expert is not only ready to shine in races but it's also ready to put your closest buddies in the pain cave on the weekends.
Race courses have evolved over the past few years. They're more technical steeper and more challenging to ride. But instead of quivering in our boots we saw this as an opportunity to make something special - something that both World Cup athletes and XC riders alike can instantly feel the benefit from. We looked at the sum of parts that make a bike handle well like the head angle reach stack chainstay length fork offset etc. and reevaluated all of it. Increasing the reach made a bike that was more stable at speed and generally more comfortable to ride. Dropper posts? Yep those fit and not just a short-travel XC option but full-length droppers that fit in the 30.9mm seat tube. Head angle? We slacked that out but not without evaluating the overall handling package. It now lands on a custom offset 42mm fork that works with the slacker head angle in order to behave itself in tight corners and through switchbacks.
Next comes Brain 2.0. The original Brain changed the way the bike world looked at suspension both in its inefficiencies and benefits alike. And oh was it good. It won races and put a flag in the ground for us as a true leader in innovation and suspension development but we knew that we could make it better. Simple physics told us that by moving the Brain closer to the rear axle it would be in the most sensitive spot. And after countless hours with the RockShox team the Brain became more than just a slight upgrade. It's totally reborn. Now it reacts seamlessly to bump forces it has much more consistent damping performance and finally it integrates the hoses into the suspension links. This in turn improves oil paths and it creates an incredibly sleek package that outperforms anything on the market.
The Epic also has a rider Rider-First Engineeredâ„¢ design that places complex carbon pieces in all the right places and this greatly increases stiffness in the front-end for a vast improvement in ride quality and control. To go along with this each frame size has size-specific tubes that result in the stiffest best riding XC bike we've ever developed - no matter the frame size.
And while stiffness Brain technology and geometry features are cool and all we know what you're thinking 'What about weight?' We're glad you asked. With the goal of the new Epic to be the fastest XC mountain bike we've ever made weight was at the top of our priorities list. We started with an efficient frame layout and tube shapes that feature clean cable routing integrated channels through the shock extension straight tubes with less curves and optimized torsion profiles in every section. And if you're curious this weight savings is equivalent to shedding a chainstay and shock extension from the previous Epic - nearly 525 grams.
The build of the Epic Expert meshes performance with value featuring a 12-speed SRAM GX Eagle groupset a RockShox SID fork with bottom-adjust Brain Fade SRAM Level TL brakes and a hand-built Roval Control Carbon fibre wheelset. Get ready because this is going to be Epic.
|Frame||Specialized FACT 11m, XC Geometry, Rider-First Engineeredâ„¢, threaded BB, 12x148mm rear spacing, internal cable routing, 100mm of travel|
|Rear Shock||Custom RockShox Micro Brain shock w/ Spike Valve, AUTOSAG, 51x257mm|
|Fork||RockShox SID Brain 29, Solo Air, top-adjust Brain Fade, 15x110mm MaxleStealth thru-axle, 42mm offset, 100mm of travel|
|Rear Derailleur||SRAM GX Eagle, 12-speed|
|Shift Levers||SRAM GX Eagle, trigger, 12-speed|
|Chainset||Truvativ STYLO, DUB: SRAM Eagle, 32T|
|Bottom Bracket||SRAM DUB, threaded BB|
|Cassette||SRAM GX Eagle, 12-speed, 10-50t|
|Chain||SRAM GX Eagle, 12-speed|
|Rims||Roval Control Carbon, 25mm internal width, tubeless-ready|
|Front Hub||Specialized, sealed cartridge bearings, 15x110mm spacing, 28h|
|Rear Hub||Specialized, sealed cartridge bearings, 12x148mm thru-axle, 28h|
|Spokes||DT Swiss Industry|
|Tyres||Fast Trak, GRIPTON compound, 60 TPI, 2Bliss Ready, 29x2.3|
|Front Brake||SRAM Level TL, hydraulic disc|
|Rear Brake||SRAM Level TL, hydraulic disc|
|Stem||Specialized XC, 3D-forged alloy, 4-bolt, 6-degree rise|
|Handlebars||Specialized Alloy Minirise, 10mm rise, 750mm, 31.8mm clamp|
|Grips /Tape||Specialized Sip Grip, half-waffle, S/M: regular thickness, L/XL: XL thickness|
|Saddle||Body Geometry Phenom Comp, Adaptive Edge design, hollow Cr-Mo rails, 143mm|
|Seatpost||Alloy, single-bolt, 30.9mm|