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First impressions: Specialized Stumpjumper 15 looks into the future

First impressions: Specialized Stumpjumper 15 looks into the future

Specialized is turning 50 this year and, as part of the celebrations, refreshing one of its oldest and longest running bikes. 43 years after it was first released in 2981, the iconic Stumpjumper, the brand’s do-it-all trail bike is back for its 15th generation.

As a brand, Specialized likes to always be doing something new to try push mountain biking forward. While it might not look, at first glance, like the Stumpjumper 15 is a huge change from the exitsting Stumpjumper / Stumpjumper EVO combo, there is actually a whole lot going on here.

We’ll get into all of that, with a different approach. Some details, some ride impressions and then a bit of a deeper dive into the details, explanations and thoughts some of the bigger changes from Specialized that are new for the Stumpjumper or for this year.

Specialzied Stumpjumper 15: What’s new?

This is, as the name suggests, the 15th version of the Stumpjumper. A lot has changed since 1981, from rigid steel frames, rim brakes and 26″ wheels to the current carbon fibre, full-suspension 29″ (The smallest, S1 and S2 sizes come with 27.5″ rear wheels), ripper. The idea of the do-it-all trail bike remains, it just continues to evolve to reflect how trails evolving.

The big change for existing Stumpjumper fans will be that the main model merges with the more agressive EVO model. There’s now just the Stumpjumper. And it looks, well, a lot like the EVO used to. There’s slightly less travel, at 145mm out back with a 150mm fork, but many of the features and much of the intention of the EVO survives into Stumpy 15. That is, in part, because the newer Epic 8 is so close in capabilities to the outgoing Stumpy.

There is also an updated, more streamlines SWAT 4.0 storage compartment, adjustments to the geometry, a re-design of the frame to improve stiffness while also removing the old side bridge. Specialized includes a flip-chip in the chainstay, the option to run mixed, 27.5″/29″ wheels instead of the stock 29″ and, for the carbon fibre models, removes the option to run non-wireless drivetrains.

A very stable Genius

All of that, except removing cable routing, fits in with a major update that is an evolution. Except the shock. Specialized worked with Fox to create an entirely new shock design for the Stumpjumper 15. This is the Genius. The frame will fit a wide range of other shocks, and Specialized is confident it will work just fine with those (one model comes with Öhlins suspension). It is…

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