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Levo SL vs Turbo Levo?

Specialized Turbo Levo SL vs Specialized Turbo Levo? I compare both in a head to head video. From a up hill drag race to a ride down a trail. Two different bike with different advantages. Check the video above to see them compared to each other.

  1. good video Rob, especially the ending assessment.

    I read somewhere:
    SL: think of it as a trail bike with assistance.
    Levo: think of it as a full gas e-bike.

    I would think anyone not a regular rider, larger (heavier) people, anyone whose idea of a good ride is a long day out covering territory, anyone for whom "range" is a concern, would be best on the Levo.

    Regular riders wanting to go out and ride trails, have a blast, don’t mind working, happier on the SL.

    Noticed the Spesh guy at the event mentioned the SL was for "authentic" riders. That could be interpreted several ways …

    caveat: I own a Levo, yet to ride an SL. If I was buying today I’d want to try both but on paper would pick an SL.

  2. Looking forward to watching this after work.
    I’ve just done a 30 day exchange to swap a Rail for a Levo SL – which I’ll hopefully get this week.

    I thought the Rail was an absolute blast to ride… but offered way more assistance than I really wanted. The SL seemed more like an extension of my own legs – with subtle assistance.

  3. Shame there wasnt a 20 Sworks levo available for weight comparisons. Thanks for the review, amazing photography.
  4. Shame there wasnt a 20 Sworks levo available for weight comparisons. Thanks for the review, amazing photography.

    Thanks.

    There was a discussion regarding the 20 S-Works. In the end…. it came down to… I wanted more of a contrast in the video between the two bikes 😂 The S-Works looks so similar you’d barely be able to tell the difference in the video 👍

    The S-Works with the 700 battery is 20.8 KG so still almost 4KG heavier than the SL

  5. EMBN channel have for several years taken on time trials with descending capabilities on normal analog enduro bikes and downhill bikes vs emtb’s never saw that much gap, 10sec on a short track of 1:36 min. The SL must be a real KOM killer on descends much better than any analog bike ever 😉. Must get a demo👍
  6. EMBN channel have for several years taken on time trials with descending capabilities on normal analog enduro bikes and downhill bikes vs emtb’s never saw that much gap, 10sec on a short track of 1:36 min. The SL must be a real KOM killer on descends much better than any analog bike ever 😉. Must get a demo👍

    I’ll send you the raw file if you want to see them both with the timings 😊? Like I mentioned in the vid it was a quick blast down a track and I had been riding the SL more, so was more in tune with it.

  7. I’ll send you the raw file if you want to see them both with the timings 😊? Like I mentioned in the vid it was a quick blast down a track and I had been riding the SL more, so was more in tune with it.

    No, I totally believe your timing @Rob Hancill just found it to be not consistent with EMBN’s findings the last years 👍maybe the result would have been different with 5 consecutive runs with each bike?

    Edit: Just found this vid also, very nice to see others than EMBN doing these tests in these light vs heavy days 😀

  8. No, I totally believe your timing @Rob Hancill just found it to be not consistent with EMBN’s findings the last years 👍maybe the result would have been different with 5 consecutive runs with each bike?

    Mine definitely wasn’t a scientific accurate test in any sense. I’d definitely with practice / more runs be able to hack the Levo down quicker

  9. Mine definitely wasn’t a scientific accurate test in any sense. I’d definitely with practice / more runs be able to hack the Levo down quicker

    Will you be testing the new Santa Heckler soon. Really waiting for a honest review, not just promo vids as out today. Wonder where it will go on you board?

  10. If I can only have one E bike I would go with the levo. Having that full power for some climbs or sections that you just want to blast is really fun…Or racing cars across intersections at stop lights. People give you funny looks.
  11. Will you be testing the new Santa Heckler soon. Really waiting for a honest review, not just promo vids as out today. Wonder where it will go on you board?

    I asked SC but didn’t get much back. So it’s a no at the moment.

  12. This is a good thread and no doubt lots of Levo owners have been considering this! Having bought a 2019 Levo Comp Carbon on the 16th Jan, I felt and I’m still annoyed that J E James didn’t mention the SL was about to come out. I’m quite sure they would have known.
    I’m not sure whether to complain, not that I think it would be of much help….however I did want a bike I could easily take the battery out as my bike will be kept outdoors in my bike safe. Also my fitness levels are ok but at 50 I’m not as fit as I was and when I have ridden the bike I really have enjoyed the power of the bike. The SL Comp Carbon is 6k and if I didn’t get a discount then I couldn’t afford that model and am I right in thinking the 5k base model is 19.5Kgs? So I reckon the Levo is for me. At some point I’ll probably get an electric hardtail as I’m definitely converted. Any thoughts anyone?
  13. The deal breaker for me is the limited tire sizes…I was close to putting in an order and then noticed the 2.3" tire size limit.
  14. Great film Rob which I should have watched the first and now have. Yes the Levo is definitely the bike for me. Safe and steady downhill with more assistance uphill.
  15. This is a good thread and no doubt lots of Levo owners have been considering this! Having bought a 2019 Levo Comp Carbon on the 16th Jan, I felt and I’m still annoyed that J E James didn’t mention the SL was about to come out. I’m quite sure they would have known.
    I’m not sure whether to complain, not that I think it would be of much help….however I did want a bike I could easily take the battery out as my bike will be kept outdoors in my bike safe. Also my fitness levels are ok but at 50 I’m not as fit as I was and when I have ridden the bike I really have enjoyed the power of the bike. The SL Comp Carbon is 6k and if I didn’t get a discount then I couldn’t afford that model and am I right in thinking the 5k base model is 19.5Kgs? So I reckon the Levo is for me. At some point I’ll probably get an electric hardtail as I’m definitely converted. Any thoughts anyone?

    I got my Levo Comp Carbon in November with a good discount, and had buyers remorse the other day when they launched the SL. Now having had time to think, I made the right decision. I’m 56 and getting fitter thanks to the Levo. Not being a very experienced rider, I’m not sure (at this point in time) I’d fully utilise the ability of the SL and seeing what people do on the Levo I can’t/don’t use anywhere near it capabilities. I just know that its great fun to ride and does everything I ask of it now, and for the foreseeable future.

    Another major factor for me is that the battery is not easily removable, as the battery is kept and charged in the house and the bike in the garage.

  16. Another major factor for me is that the battery is not easily removable, as the battery is kept and charged in the house and the bike in the garage.

    With the range extender though, you can have some quick snap-in 160Wh batteries. That’s kinda of a cool feature.

  17. EMBN channel have for several years taken on time trials with descending capabilities on normal analog enduro bikes and downhill bikes vs emtb’s never saw that much gap, 10sec on a short track of 1:36 min. The SL must be a real KOM killer on descends much better than any analog bike ever 😉. Must get a demo👍

    Ha. After I put a Trust Shout fork on my Pivot Shuttle, my DH times are faster than on my Hightower…

  18. With the range extender though, you can have some quick snap-in 160Wh batteries. That’s kinda of a cool feature.

    Good point, but then there’s the expense of the extra battery and either leaving the main battery in the bike over the winter which can’t be good for it, or taking it out for the winter and not using it. I’s a real shame, but it is an important consideration for me and possibly others.

  19. Good point, but then there’s the expense of the extra battery and either leaving the main battery in the bike over the winter which can’t be good for it, or taking it out for the winter and not using it. I’s a real shame, but it is an important consideration for me and possibly others.

    Depending on how far you need to go, you can take the main battery out and leave that in the house and just run with the range extender (making the bike even lighter).

    Buy the founders and you get two range extenders included – that’s how to save money :)

  20. Depending on how far you need to go, you can take the main battery out and leave that in the house and just run with the range extender (making the bike even lighter).

    Buy the founders and you get two range extenders included – that’s how to save money :)

    True, but I’m not a dentist!

  21. @Rob Hancill
    Great video!

    I know you ride an XL…
    In the video, your S-Works has the Reverb AXS and is always slammed in as far as it’ll go. You’re 6ft 3” tall right? I believe Spesh put a 170 on the XL…
    I’ve ordered an XL SL Expert, and was going to get a 170 Reverb AXS. I’m 6ft 1 3/4” tall – so is the 170 post going to be too big for me?

    I’ve also read that the SL will only take 2.3 tyres. I assume this is just on the rear, as I’d expect the Fox 34 to take a 2.6?

  22. My 2.4 wild enduro measure up same as spesh tyres fitted. Not much room for bigger than that.

    View attachment 25912

    View attachment 25911

    Doesn’t look like much space there – although I was quite happy with the rear. I feel like I could do with a little bit more on the front – maybe a 2.5 or 2.6.

    I forgot how much of a mess you get with no front mudguard… I had mud spraying all over my face coming down the soggy fire track. Amazing how much difference those small front guards make!

  23. Seriously. It would be a riot to try with my 180mm Lyrik plus 650b front and back . Maybe go 55mm stroke on the shock to get a bit more monster truck.

    Nah.. Just increase travel to 170mm on the standard 29 fork.
    Dont up the rear travel at all. Keeping it nice nlow n slack

  24. Seriously. It would be a riot to try with my 180mm Lyrik plus 650b front and back . Maybe go 55mm stroke on the shock to get a bit more monster truck.

    Slap a Trust Shout on there and you’ll monster truck over anything!

  25. Nah.. Just increase travel to 170mm on the standard 29 fork.
    Dont up the rear travel at all. Keeping it nice nlow n slack

    I don’t think that the stock 34 can go up to 170mm. But that would definitely be slacker

  26. Just saying: Pivot Shuttle? 437mm chain stays. Lighter than Levo I think, not as light as the SL. 160/140. 29" both ends. Priced at £7k/£9k (yes Spesh are at Pivot pricing!).

    ?

  27. Sorry man. I didn’t even look at what fork it has. I’d have just slapped a Lyrik on if I’d wanted an SL. (I don’t really)
  28. Rob,
    Not sure if this is the ideal thread to post this but I am trying to decide which bike to buy for here in the USA. A fully capable Kenevo or SL that I can maybe sneak into more locations. At one point you had mentioned in a video that after a year of riding the Levo you had mentioned the new 2020 Kenevo had become your bike of choice for all around riding. Does the SL change that thought?
  29. Rob,
    Not sure if this is the ideal thread to post this but I am trying to decide which bike to buy for here in the USA. A fully capable Kenevo or SL that I can maybe sneak into more locations. At one point you had mentioned in a video that after a year of riding the Levo you had mentioned the new 2020 Kenevo had become your bike of choice for all around riding. Does the SL change that thought?

    The Kenevo is a bike I enjoy riding, it’s long and slack. It fits me better than any other bike I’ve ridden at 520mm reach. I have a long torso and am 6’3” so enjoy the extra reach. And that stable feeling that the long wheelbase and long reach provide.

    The SL and Kenevo really are chalk and cheese. I need to test the SL more on home trails. I don’t know if it could replace the Kenevo.

  30. I bought the large SL carbon comp last Wednesday and couldn’t be happier with my decision. I struggled with wanting to buy the standard Levo or the SL or maybe the Kenevo. Truth is I didn’t even know about the SL until one day before it launched and I demoed it that day. Over the past year, I rode quite a few standard emtb’s like the Tazer, Pivot, Levo, Cannondale, Altitude Powerplay and they all felt pretty similar except for the motor feel and power delivery. Handling of those bikes was pretty even with nothing standing out. The SL feels in a class all its own with the potential to be only a few pounds heavier than a typical trail or enduro bike. The SL accelerates so quickly downhill and is so nimble on tight single track, I can’t imagine going back to my regular carbon bike. This is my first specialized bike and my first emtb. I have owned lots of Santa Cruz and now an Alchemy Arktos.

    I have ridden the SL everyday since I bought it…I haven’t done that with any of my acoustic bikes when they were new. The handling and sheer speed of the SL is pretty addicting. The drag is so minimal when off motor support and that is very significant when thinking about this bike. I turned the motor off on the SL for about 1/2 my single track climb yesterday. How many other emtb’s would you try that with? With the motor off, it fells like riding a normal bike with heavy tires, but that is about it.

    The SL comp carbon is very capable with the existing components, however, I do plan on upgrading to the following components as the stock suspension and braking is not my preference:

    – Fox factory 36, 160mm with Grip 2 damper
    – XT or XTR 4 piston brakes, 203mm front and 180mm rear rotors
    – Either the EXT Storia or the Cane Creek DB Coil IL (210x55mm)
    – OneUp carbon bar
    – Maybe the OneUp EDC stem but don’t know?
    – Reverb AXS in 150mm
    – XO1 AXS rear Derailleur
    – Try to use existing Roval Traverse wheels that the SL came with. Not sure this is possible if I intend use Shimano’s new rotors. The may only come in center lock.

    Anyone know how to use the new Shimano Freeza ice tech brake rotors with the 6 bolt specialized hubs?

    Thanks

    brill that you’re so pleased.

  31. My SL Expert is now in the store, but due to most of the mechanics being off ill with man-flu, I’m unlikely to get it until next week. Gives me a chance to ride my Stumpjumper over the weekend… and it’ll feel like the SL has loads of power when I ride it again!

    I asked them to order me the AXS Reverb (as they could price match to the cheapest price I’ve seen), and I ordered the XX1 AXS upgrade kit a minute ago myself – as they couldn’t price match anything like the price I could find it!
    I’m going to ask if they can try a couple of slightly wider front tyres to see what will work.

    Not sure whether or not to order an Invisiframe, as Spesh are pretty good at putting clear film over all the parts that are likely to wear?

  32. My SL Expert is now in the store, but due to most of the mechanics being off ill with man-flu, I’m unlikely to get it until next week. Gives me a chance to ride my Stumpjumper over the weekend… and it’ll feel like the SL has loads of power when I ride it again!

    I asked them to order me the AXS Reverb (as they could price match to the cheapest price I’ve seen), and I ordered the XX1 AXS upgrade kit a minute ago myself – as they couldn’t price match anything like the price I could find it!
    I’m going to ask if they can try a couple of slightly wider front tyres to see what will work.

    Not sure whether or not to order an Invisiframe, as Spesh are pretty good at putting clear film over all the parts that are likely to wear?

    Congrats on your new SL :)

    If the film on the SL is like the Levo, its the outside of the down tube, back of the seat tube up to a point and chain stay. I got an Invisiframe kit for my frame and forks, no regrets at all, I’d rather the film got scuffed than the paintwork.

  33. My SL Expert is now in the store, but due to most of the mechanics being off ill with man-flu, I’m unlikely to get it until next week. Gives me a chance to ride my Stumpjumper over the weekend… and it’ll feel like the SL has loads of power when I ride it again!

    I asked them to order me the AXS Reverb (as they could price match to the cheapest price I’ve seen), and I ordered the XX1 AXS upgrade kit a minute ago myself – as they couldn’t price match anything like the price I could find it!
    I’m going to ask if they can try a couple of slightly wider front tyres to see what will work.

    Not sure whether or not to order an Invisiframe, as Spesh are pretty good at putting clear film over all the parts that are likely to wear?

    At that price I would invisiframe the shit out of it, especially when you come to sell it after six months and need it in tip top condition when Shimano drop a hammer with the new EXTR
    E8100
    E-9000 motors ;)

  34. Congrats on your new SL :)

    If the film on the SL is like the Levo, its the outside of the down tube, back of the seat tube up to a point and chain stay. I got an Invisiframe kit for my frame and forks, no regrets at all, I’d rather the film got scuffed than the paintwork.

    Did you peel off the existing film before fitting the Invisiframe?

  35. At that price I would invisiframe the shit out of it, especially when you come to sell it after six months and need it in tip top condition when Shimano drop a hammer with the new EXTR
    E8100
    E-9000 motors ;)

    In 6 months it probably won’t be worth selling :rolleyes:

  36. I’ve a 19 Comp Carbon Levo in the gloss navy blue – it marks really easily, right down to brush swirls. Get it Invisiframed.
  37. My old Levo and current Kenevo scratched pretty easily. Levo on top tube where my shorts / trousers rubbed against it.
  38. Did you peel off the existing film before fitting the Invisiframe?

    On the down tube I put it over the existing one for extra protection, and didn’t use the seat stay piece. I didn’t use a couple of pieces as they were duplicates and have kept them in case they’re needed at some stage.

  39. Ok… I’m convinced! I’ll order the kit tomorrow – should be here before the bike. That’ll be another couple of evenings the wife won’t see me!!

    I’ve now got the gloss v’s matte dilemma again…

  40. Ok… I’m convinced! I’ll order the kit tomorrow – should be here before the bike. That’ll be another couple of evenings the wife won’t see me!!

    I’ve now got the gloss v’s matte dilemma again…

    maybe the dealer would do it for you, mine offered (I should have accepted).

    if there’s a choice I prefer matte for a bike. gloss is ok in the showroom but matte is more workmanlike for a bit of kit that gets chucked down mountains. it ain’t a Ferrari!

    and I wouldn’t bother invisiframe on matte. my gen 1 Evil Following is matte, shows it’s age but only as appropriate. think stickers on matte look silly too.

  41. Will any of those lovely upgrades jack the weight up?

    Mine?
    Lyrik will add 400g ish weight but be well worth it
    27.5 wheels n tyres (like for like)will remove 250g+ per wheel and be stronger/stiffer

    losgatogtr?
    – Fox factory 36, 160mm with Grip 2 damper – should add about 400g
    – XT or XTR 4 piston brakes, 203mm front and 180mm rear rotors – won’t be much different
    – Either the EXT Storia or the Cane Creek DB Coil IL (210x55mm) – will add 300-550g depending on the spring weight
    – OneUp carbon bar – similar weight
    – Maybe the OneUp EDC stem but don’t know? – Edc tool will add 110g (and your headset/stem will come loose more often
    – Reverb AXS in 150mm – bout the same
    – XO1 AXS rear Derailleur – bout the same

    I wouldn’t put a coil on this bike as it’ll simply be far poppier with an air shock

  42. maybe the dealer would do it for you, mine offered (I should have accepted).

    if there’s a choice I prefer matte for a bike. gloss is ok in the showroom but matte is more workmanlike for a bit of kit that gets chucked down mountains. it ain’t a Ferrari!

    and I wouldn’t bother invisiframe on matte. my gen 1 Evil Following is matte, shows it’s age but only as appropriate. think stickers on matte look silly too.

    I had to do the one on the Trek myself as the shop don’t do it, so will have to do this one too. Now I’ve had practice, I should be quicker the second time round!

  43. Thanks for the component weights Gary. By changing the front fork, bar and stem I’m looking for less vibration on the hands and a more compliant ride at the front. Actually want to slightly slacken the head angle with the 160 fork and of course get better HSC and LSC control.

    Main reason for wanting to try a coil shock on the SL is to have a more controlled ride over gnarly trails and rock gardens and increase the grip all around.

    Would I be better off with a different shock?

  44. There is quite a bit of room in the rear triangle with a 2.3 in their now and I’m sure I could fit something larger.
  45. Thanks for the component weights Gary. By changing the front fork, bar and stem I’m looking for less vibration on the hands and a more compliant ride at the front. Actually want to slightly slacken the head angle with the 160 fork and of course get better HSC and LSC control.

    Main reason for wanting to try a coil shock on the SL is to have a more controlled ride over gnarly trails and rock gardens and increase the grip all around.

    Would I be better off with a different shock?

    havnt ridden the SL but I would 100% recommend not putting coil on that bike, go for a DPX2, perfect for that bike. Coil will change the character too much, just looking at it on paper. You bought it to be a snappy fun trail bike I’m assuming? Coil will change that. I’m sure plenty will disagree, but I’d keep it as light as possible. 2.3 tire is plenty big especially on rear. Taking this light snappy trail machine and giving it the enduro bro treatment is opposite of its design intention. im sure the will come out with an sl enduro at some point, just buy that.

  46. seamarsh…I’m curious as to why you would not recommend a coil on the SL as it has the same exact geometry numbers at the standard Levo except for a shorter chainstay of 437 mm vs 455 mm on the Levo. People seem to love how a coil rides on the Levo and the weight difference between the Fox DPX2 and the EXT Storia is about 200 grams or about the weight of a 29 inner tube. The EXT Storia with spring installed weighs about 630 grams and the DPX2 weighs about 430 grams. I understand if you are after the lightest weight…but that isn’t what I am after.

    Now, if you say that the DPX2 rides just as good as the Storia, then that would win me over. I do like the $500 difference in price of course. Many riders are floored with the performance of the EXT Storia but I have never ridden either shock so who knows.

  47. I think people get confused over the whole coil vs air argument. Its rare that a coil is better than an air shock or vice versa as they are not the same thing, they are different options for controlling the rear end of your bike.

    Fundamentally it comes to how you want to ride your bike, where you ride and what you are looking for in terms of handling characteristics.

    I would always caveat that when you say I fitted so and so and it transforms the bike, that it transformed the bike for you.

  48. The wife and I rented one last weekend. I was a huge opponent to ebikes hated them really. So we took them out to the best place to try them out. Henry Coe STate Park. Holy hell was I impressed. Rode like a normal bike yet had the power to climb all the hills that were normally a long hike-a-bike. We went back and ordered 2…an Expert for me and a S-Works for her.
  49. I was wondering since the Levo SL will give 100% assist as a max can you use Belvo or another app to increase the amount of assist at lower rider for input? I am not looking for more speed but rather more accelaration.
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