Our photographers spotted something new under Specialized's enduro team during practice at the Whistler EWS. Specialized has been giving their mountain bike range a bit of an overhaul over as of late, with new hardtails, trail bikes, and even a completely re-designed downhill sled
arriving recently. All that's left to do is a new Enduro platform, which is what we might be looking at here from the sixth round of the Enduro World Series in Whistler, BC.
The bike's black and white wrap job, something usually seen on unreleased cars that companies really don't want you to take photos of, is intended to confuse a camera's autofocus system. There's no mistaking where it came from, though, with a few different prototypes being ridden by Specialized's employees and racers.
Oh, and it sure looks like their new downhill bike, doesn't it?
The 2018 Enduro (left) debuted during Crankworx two years ago. Is the black and white prototype (right) its replacement?
Rather than go with a single-sided seat mast as they did on the latest Stumpjumper, the prototype sees its shock mounted low in the frame but still activated by a Horst Link design. The layout resembles their new, 200mm-travel Demo, albeit a bit more compact, and Specialized's riders are using both air and coil-sprung shocks on the new bike. That new Demo sports an axle path with a few more millimeters of rearward travel than the previous version, as well as more progression, more anti-squat, and more anti-rise.
We'll have to wait and see if the all-new Enduro, if that's what we're looking at here, gets the same more, more, more, and more treatment as well.
The prototype looks a lot like a downsized Demo.
Suspension travel? It's likely somewhere around 160mm. Wheel size? It looks like a 29er to me, but that doesn't mean Specialized won't offer it with both 27.5'' and 29'' wheels, just like they do with the current Enduro. More details when we get them.