My Levo 2019 review of a critical owner and summarize until today

Maastricht

Active member
Oct 3, 2018
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Specialized
#1
Hi all,

I would like to share my LEVO 2019 experiences with you. Sorry for the long story but I wanted to share my complete experience with all of you.

I ordered an Levo 2019 Men's Turbo Levo Comp XL in Cast Battleship/Hyper on October 3rd 2018 at Jef Abels in Gulpen The Netherlands. This would become my first emtb after riding regular mtb’s for many years.

After a long comparison between a lot of brands (not only bike brands but especially motor brands and the available software as well) I choose for the new Specialized Levo. Why? Mainly due high quality level Specialized is known for, the low noise level of the Brose motor (compared to other brands), less drag/internal resistance when the speed limiter kicks in then most other motor brands and next to that I found it very important to be able to fine-tune the motorsupport levels via the great 3rd party BLEvo app.

October 27th the bike was delivered after a the supply stop due to the additional noise quality check by Specialized. Once I received the bike I tried the bike for a very short ride around my LBS. I thought my bike was not affected by the "noise issue". However when I went out for the few first rides I was very keen on listening to strange noises. I and other riders also started to hear the motor especially at low gearing, high cadence, low speed and going uphill. Due to all the negative feedback on the forum I started to wonder if I had an affected motor too and posted some critical messages.

Later on other 2019 owners also started to post messages about all dirt which was being collected inside the motor casing due to the gap in front of the rear tyre. Also here I was kind of astonished and was starting to doubt Specialized engineering capabilities and also my own buying decisions.

However after complaining on the forum, first of all other forum members brought up the idea to add some foam. (which I did and it proved to help) However the solution was not very neat at such an expensive bike.

Then I was contacted by @Specialized Rider Care via the forum and they took my issues very seriously. They contacted my LBS and supplied a new motor just to make sure I didn’t have an affected motor and as the motor needed to be replaced anyway they also supplied the new motor covers and the sponge. Last week I brought in my bike at my LBS Jef Abels in Gulpen The Netherlands. They have great shop and a great team which supported me a lot. Mostly this forum is pointing out great UK Spesh dealerships but I must tell you that we have excellent Specialized dealerships in The Netherlands as well. So my LBS changed all the mentioned components free of charge and they also added the rubber Bikescene UK dealership fix of which @James_MTB was to kind to share it with us:
2019 Turbo Levo Owners Thread - EMTB Forums

As I read some of you are afraid that closing the gap can cause overheating, I guess it’s wise to read this post of Specialized Rider Care as well relating to the Bikescene solution:
2019 Turbo Levo Owners Thread - EMTB Forums

At home I made the rubber flap based on the pictures of the post of @Kiwi in Wales:
2019 Turbo Levo Owners Thread - EMTB Forums

I made two rubber flaps so my LBS has a mould now to support other 2019 riders as well. You can hardly see the rubber flap, which is now positioned on top of the sponge. Of course the water drain hole at the bottom side of the cover needs to stay open!

So to present you with some feedback, yesterday I have been riding in very muddy and wet trails. The bike performed outstanding and like the bike I was under mud from top till toe. However no mud or other dirt ended up in the casing due to the fix above!

The bike drives great and the noise is almost gone, in rare cases you can hear the motor but only at very high cadence an low gearing. For me at an acceptable level now and certainly less loud then other motor brands. However of course future needs to tell us if it stays at this level but anyway it’s warrantied.

I used BLEvo heart rate (140 bpm) and smart power functions (180W in ECO) with a support level between 5 and 15%. I was driving with other non emtb riders so therefore I had the support tuned in low level just to compensate the additional weight of the Levo compared to a normal MTB. We rode for more than 2 hours and 36km. I only consumed 31% of the battery (154Wh) with an average of 4,32 Wh/km.

I used the new BLEvo navigation feature where you can add several gpx routes in one screen. I was now able to combine several tracks with each other. So very funny to see was that where I first was the cheating guy in the group which wasn’t that cool to start driving an emtb, now other non emtb riders were getting really impressed about all the features and benefits of the Levo and BLEvo app. So let’s call it today’s trend setters and future trend followers. ;-) Thanks for all of your support @PaoloBLEvo!

I also want to thank @Gary for his contributions which helped me a lot in relation to suspension:
Suspension set-up guides and info - EMTB Forums

Also @GeorgesEBike recent post helped me a lot:
2019 Turbo Levo Owners Thread - EMTB Forums

I agree with all of you that it’s actually ridiculous, that an owner should be concerned about these issues for the early 2019 Levo models. However I guess if we could make all our decisions twice in life then most of us would have made different decisions and the world would look completely differently. I guess also Specialized learned a lesson here and yes, most of us were right with their comments, and therefore Spesh tried to solve these issues as soon as possible.

Just to summarize if I would need to make my buying decision again, I would make the same choices as I did. I don’t regret them, at least not at this moment in time, with the issues I had and faced until now I am still very happy!
 
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R120

E*POWAH Elite World Champion
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Apr 13, 2018
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#2
Thanks for the detailed feedback!
 

PaoloBLEvo

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Jun 13, 2018
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#3
Thanks @Maastricht for the detailed story.. I like the part related to BLEvo.. ;)
In this story you didn't say anything about speed limitation and Levo 2019. What you think about it?
 

Maastricht

Active member
Oct 3, 2018
246
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M
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Specialized
#4
Thanks @Maastricht for the detailed story.. I like the part related to BLEvo.. ;)
In this story you didn't say anything about speed limitation and Levo 2019. What you think about it?
No thanks Paolo! I guess we should all thank you for all the great work, which you still call a hobby;), next to a busy working and family life.

It's my personal opinion that an ebike speedlimiter due to current European legislation kicks in too soon. For example when I was riding my old non assisted mtb I could easily keep around 30km/h for long distances on the flat. However today as the Levo is more heavy and the tyres have more resistance it's much harder to keep up with a group of non assisted mtb riders on the flat once they ride above 25km/h.

However I must admit as well that most rides are going from flat to hilly areas (unfortunately we haven't got any mountains in The Netherlands like in Italy;)) where only the speed on the flat is sometimes irritating. However most of the time the speed is below or around 25km/h.

Next to that today, despite the speedlimiter, my average speed today lies higher then with my previous non assisted bike. I guess the ideal situation would be a restriction at 20mph or 32km/h like in the US. I have heared that there are discussions around this topic on European level. I am very curious about the outcome.

I am honnest too that when I ordered the Levo 2019 I had hoped to be able to change the wheel circumference/speed slightly via MC or other apps. However Specialized decided to block these options as I understood due to liability reasons which I can understand from a manufacturer point of view.

As Spesh blocked the bluetooth setting completely which is related to wheel circumference setting it's my understanding that this is the reason why the value is not adjustable anymore by apps (MC or BLEvo) in general.

So I guess from now on when you want to "fly" buy a motor cross bike a Levo/Kenevo model year 2018, 2017 or 2016 or go into the direction of other tuning devices or watch this thread:
I created a purely mechanical Turbo Levo speed limit increase - EMTB Forums
or this thread:
Deristricting

Despite BLEvo is not able to modify the speed setting anymore I must really admit that I still see many added values compared to Specialized MC app. To be fair for only €9,99 I received the best bike value to money ratio upgrade ever. I especially like the GPX route import, connecting several gpx routes with eachother and all the smart functions like heart rate and leg power. BLEvo helps me to train much more consistenly and it offers me a very natural feeling of riding a classic non assisted mtb.

Thanks for your support and keep up with all the good work!
 

galaga187

Active member
Apr 15, 2018
305
155
43
Wroughton
#5
No thanks Paolo! I guess we should all thank you for all the great work, which you still call a hobby;), next to a busy working and family life.

It's my personal opinion that an ebike speedlimiter due to current European legislation kicks in too soon. For example when I was riding my old non assisted mtb I could easily keep around 30km/h for long distances on the flat. However today as the Levo is more heavy and the tyres have more resistance it's much harder to keep up with a group of non assisted mtb riders on the flat once they ride above 25km/h.

However I must admit as well that most rides are going from flat to hilly areas (unfortunately we haven't got any mountains in The Netherlands like in Italy;)) where only the speed on the flat is sometimes irritating. However most of the time the speed is below or around 25km/h.

Next to that today, despite the speedlimiter, my average speed today lies higher then with my previous non assisted bike. I guess the ideal situation would be a restriction at 20mph or 32km/h like in the US. I have heared that there are discussions around this topic on European level. I am very curious about the outcome.

I am honnest too that when I ordered the Levo 2019 I had hoped to be able to change the wheel circumference/speed slightly via MC or other apps. However Specialized decided to block these options as I understood due to liability reasons which I can understand from a manufacturer point of view.

As Spesh blocked the bluetooth setting completely which is related to wheel circumference setting it's my understanding that this is the reason why the value is not adjustable anymore by apps (MC or BLEvo) in general.

So I guess from now on when you want to "fly" buy a motor cross bike a Levo/Kenevo model year 2018, 2017 or 2016 or go into the direction of other tuning devices or watch this thread:
I created a purely mechanical Turbo Levo speed limit increase - EMTB Forums
or this thread:
Deristricting

Despite BLEvo is not able to modify the speed setting anymore I must really admit that I still see many added values compared to Specialized MC app. To be fair for only €9,99 I received the best bike value to money ratio upgrade ever. I especially like the GPX route import, connecting several gpx routes with eachother and all the smart functions like heart rate and leg power. BLEvo helps me to train much more consistenly and it offers me a very natural feeling of riding a classic non assisted mtb.

Thanks for your support and keep up with all the good work!
@PaoloBLEvo Leg Power sounds interesting - could that be used to control a workout like ERG mode on smart trainers?
 

galaga187

Active member
Apr 15, 2018
305
155
43
Wroughton
#7
Could you give more information about this?
Shane explains it well in this video -
. If you were able to Pre-programme the level of leg power over time you could create a work out say 10 minutes starting at 80 ramping up to 100w for a warm up then 5 minutes at 200w then 1 minute 100w to recover then back up to 200w. As Shane explains in the video riders generally do workouts based on FTP if you could implement this that would be really powerful.
 

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