2023 Specialized Levo SL ll – It’s finally here!

Specialized SL 2.1
320Wh + 160Wh extender
Fork Travel
160 mm (150 mm size S1)
Rear Travel
150 mm (144 mm size S1)
17.7kg for Levo SL ll S-Works Size S4
£ 7.000-13.500
I really enjoyed the old Levo SL. It did feel less capable than many other lightweight emtbs that came after. And I had no problem with that, if you wanted more burly, there’s the Kenevo SL. It appears Specialized have changed this though. Fork travel is up by 10, to 160 mm while rear travel is still 150mm.

Here's Rob’s video of the new Levo SL ll, check it out to hear the thought of someone who actually rode the bike.

It wasn’t just the suspension travel that made the old Levo SL feel a bit XC. The rear suspension felt quite progressive, reminding me of shorter travel race bikes. The old SL pedaled well at the expense of plushness. The new rear linkage has a flatter leverage curve, making for a plusher ride according to Specialized. Also, the head tube angle wasn’t particularly slack on the first-generation Turbo Levo SL.

2023 Specialized Turbo Levo SL ll

The new 2023 Specialized Turbo Levo SL ll S-Works
Rear suspension leverage ratio Levo SL vs Levo SL ll.
Rear suspension leverage ratio Levo SL vs Levo SL ll.


Specialized have addressed this too, now they say 64.25* for the head tube angle. Down from 66*. But it is of course adjustable, so you can go 63 or 65.5* if you prefer. I know, there are a few different numbers for the head angle out there. Even the geometry table below shows a different number, it’s possibly down to the rear triangle flip-chip position.


It appears the race for steeper seat tube angles has come to a halt. Sure, 75.8* is pretty steep. But looking at the seat tube, the effective angle will be way slacker as the saddle is raised.

432mm chainstays make for a nimble and playful ride. Nice and short, some will say too short. Combined with that seat tube angle that gets noticeably slacker as the saddle height increases, bigger riders will likely asker for more rear-end.

2023 Specialized Turbo Levo SL ll S-WORKS
2023 Specialized Turbo Levo SL ll S-WORKS

That’s okay, the chainstays are adjustable too. Flip the chip near the rear axle to increase the chainstay length. It’s labled “27.5 | 29”, indicating it can be flipped to accommodate for 29er wheels. But it can be flipped even if you keep the original 27.5 rear wheel, bringing the chainstays up to 442mm.

The final piece of adjustability is found by the shock. This chip is set to Low by default. Flip it for another 5 mm of ground clearance and 0.5* steeper seat and head tube angles. This kind of adjustability is similar to what’s found on the full-power Levo.

The Levo SL ll is available in 6 sizes named S1-S6. The smaller S1 gets less travel with 144 mm at the back and 150 mm up front.

2023 Specialized Turbo Levo SL ll - all black

A new SL motor​

The Specialized SL 1.2 motor is considerably more powerful than the old one, rated at 50 Nm and 320 W. That’s 18 Nm and 80 W more than the old SL 1.1 motor. Specialized claim the new motor is still as lightweight as the old one. The new SL 1.2 motor is very similar to the old one. The electric motor is the same, but the new 1.2 gets a new gearbox to handle the increased power.

I like to divide the lightweight motors into two categories. We’ve got the small and stingy motors. They can be rated at as much as 60 Nm, but you do need to work to get all the power out of them. These tend to be almost invisible in the frame, and very silent. Then there’s the bigger and more generous motors that will output maximum power with less rider effort.

The Specialized SL 1.2 motor has also been referred to as the 1.2E.

The Specialized SL 1.2 motor has also been referred to as the 1.2E.

After talking to people that have ridden the bike, like Rob of emtbforums. I expect this motor to fit in the “generous lightweight motor” category. The old SL 1.1 motor would give max motor power almost instantly when ridden with max assistance. And it seems Specialized is sticking to this power delivery philosophy. I think that’s great. If you want a less generous motor, just detune it using the app or select a lower assistance mode.

The Levo SL ll gets the fine integrated Mastermind display.

The Levo SL ll gets the fine integrated Mastermind display.

I prefer the more generous lightweight motors because they are more versatile. They do a better job for Shuttle-duty, allowing the rider to rest a bit while going uphill. The downside is they’re usually heavier, bigger and noisier. The Specialized 1.2 SL motor isn’t heavy though. At just under 2 kg, it isn’t far off motors such as the small and lightweight TQ HPR50.

Noise is noticeably improved over the old SL motor. It’s not as silent as the mentioned TQ motor though. Still, this might just be the most silent one among the “generous lightweight motors”.

Specialized Levo SL ll
Specialized Levo SL ll leaving


Specialized is sticking with the 320 Wh battery while many competitors got 360 Wh batteries. Why doesn’t Specialized just slightly increase the battery capacity? Because it’s not possible, not for a 48 V system. Not if they want to keep the weight down. The 360 Wh batteries are 36 V systems. If Specialized wanted to increase the capacity of their 48V battery, it would be a much bigger 490 Wh battery running 39 of the same 18650 cells. Alternatively, a 470 Wh battery with 26 of the bigger 21700 cells. These aren’t small and light batteries that would fit inside a sleek downtube, so it’s not an option.

Specialized range estimates.

Specialized range estimates.


Chances are the Levo SL ll has about the same range as the competing 360 Wh bikes. Specialized makes a point about the bike being efficient in the press release. And it seems it is. Reports indicate the range is comparable to the 360 Wh battery bikes.

Based on my emails with Specialized, the motor efficiency isn’t improved over the old one. So, if you ride maximum everything, you should get less range on the new bike. If you dial down the assistance, you’ll get the same range as with the first generation Levo SL.

Levo SL ll efficiency

There is also a range extender available. It appears to be the same 160 Wh one that was used on the old SL. We found the range extender would get hot when testing the first generation Levo SL. We were thinking the battery was a bit small for the old 240W motor. The range extender is the same for the gen2 Levo SL. We would configure the bike to drain both batteries simultaneously when riding with the extender. That way the batteries will easily deliver enough current and there will be little heat-loss that reduces the range.

The models​

There are 4 models being introduced today. All bikes have the same 320W, 50Nm motor and 320 Wh battery. And they all come with a mullet wheel setup, 29er at the front and 27.5 for the rest.

2023 Specialized Turbo Levo SL ll S-Works Ltd – UK£ 13.500​

We did not receive specs for this model.

2023 Specialized Turbo Levo SL ll S-Works – UK£ 13.000​

This Levo SL isn’t Ltd, so I guess it’s the S-Works Unlimited. Specs are:
  • Fork: Fox 36 Factory, 29", 44 mm offset, Grip 2, Kashima, 160 mm
  • Shock: Fox Float X Factory Kashima, Fox Float DPS Factory (size S1)
  • Brakes: Sram Code Silver Stealth 4-piston, 200 mm rotors
  • Drivetrain: SRAM XX Eagle AXS Transmission, 12spd

2023 Specialized Turbo Levo SL ll Pro – UK£ 10.250​

We did not receive specs for this model.

2023 Specialized Turbo Levo SL ll Comp Carbon – UK£ 7.000 / € 7.900​

  • Fork: Fox 36 Rhythm, 29", 44 mm offset, Grip, 160 mm
  • Shock: Fox Float X Performance, Fox Float DPS Performance (size S1)
  • Brakes: SRAM Code RS, 200 mm rotors
  • Drivetrain: SRAM GX Eagle + NX, 12spd

My take​

I liked the old Levo SL. Sure, it was different to much of the competition, with a lighter ride feel and lower peak power. But a light ride feel can be good. And max power is not the most important to me, I like having a motor that is generous with what-ever power it’s got.

Still, Specialized addressed this. And I guess it’s the right thing to do. The new bike is the same lightweight trail bike, but it rides plusher. And the new frame geometry should make it more confidence inspiring on the descents. The new Turbo Levo SL ll comes across as a more versatile and complete lightweight emtb. Reduced noise and increased peak power is a nice bonus.

Did I mention the bikes are out now? The first lucky ones are picking up their bikes as we speak.

About author
Started mountainbiking in the 90s. Moved to emtbs in 2014 and have been reviewing them since 2016. Contact me here https://emtb.no/contact/


Looks like a great bike. I love how Specialize adds in all the adjustability. I was hoping for a 60/65 torque and 400/450 battery. I would say the ride 60 bikes are safe with regards to performance.
Just another bike people will buy and try to make it a Kenevo….. they will over fork it, then over shock it and the Kenevo will still better.:rolleyes:

But this is not a problem of the Levo but of the people who want to do it better and usually achieve the opposite...

Great Bike in my eyes, but not the one to kill my 2022 Levo SL tomorrow.

@Rob Rides EMTB The Comp modell price tag in germany is 7.900€, not the claimed 8.500€
7900 Euro will be Retail price in "Stone" shops and Specialized website. It will be probably rather soon 7500 Euro at online retailers (bike24/bike-box/etc..) as it was with previous gen, Kenevo SL, etc.. not even as discount, they just straight up ignored msrp last time.
I'm not sure what to think of this bike. Having just built up an Sworks Turbo Levo and kept my Orbea Rise, would this bike replace both of them? I can knock off 10 lbs off the T Levo, adjust the geo to my conditions and be down to one bike... oh, transfer my SRAM transmission as well. Ugh. I generally find that the "oh my god it so special" turns into the reality that it has its pluses and minuses. Bike Radar and Ryan Palmer proclaimed the Turbo Levo the "best bike I've ever ridden", so why should I care, lol. I agree with the review on Pinkbike, in which Kasmer tells us the ideal bike is still a few years out.... The SL with the torque and battery of the Turbo. Oh, upon contemplation, why not just consider myself lucky, I have two rocking bikes. Give this some time to hit the used market, OR just wait for the real leap coming in a few years Kasmer!!
Just ordered a Frame Only option which should be here in about 2 weeks… and will use my 2019 Levo SL as a donor. Never built a bike before, but I did upgrade every part on my SL myself - so I guess it’s much the same thing.

Just wondering if my Chris King dropset will transfer over, or do I have to use Spesh’s own parts because of the HA adjustment cups?

My other unknown is does the frame only come with a range extender - as I can’t seem to find any info on it.

Looking forward to it anyway. Hopefully Invisiframe will have a kit for it by then too.
Gawd, another bike that the Specialized faithful will gush over, no matter its shortcomings. More of the same underpowered, over-hyped stuff from the Big S. Or is Shimano the Big S? IDK, I wouldn't buy anything from either of them as long as they do business like American Airlines. All soulless...