This year Specialized has introduced a strain of highly evolved bikes into its expert range of bikes. The Epic, Stumpjumper HT, the Stumpjumper FSR, and the Enduro all get the EVO tune which are designed to serve the evolving needs of certain riders. There are limited numbers of these bikes being produced but what it means is that Specialized can cater to sub species or niche markets of MTBers who want slightly more aggressive or faster builds. Some models lean towards more aggressive styles of riding (EVO), with wider bars, slacker angles, lower standover, more travel, meatier tyres etc, while other models (EVO R) are XC race-leaning thoroughbreds with ultra lightweight and efficient specs. Yes, that paragraph sounds like the press spiel I was fed last week, but honestly these bikes are very very exciting offerings because they are bikes that relate to me, you and the average Joe. Who has an above average income of course.

For example, the Stumpjumper EVO retains the fast, light Stumpy bloodline but has 150mm travel, tapered headtube, slacker and lower geometry, Command post, and double ring chain guide. Basically Specialized looked around at the bikes people were actually riding in the real world. A lot of people were modifying their bikes after sale; Specialized recognised this and decided that they would just produce a small run of these souped-up machines.

Enduro EVO with Killer Bee paintjob. Yeah bro!

The Stumpy Evo is gorgeous. Stealth matt black paint job with understated graphics and highlights. It's like someone took a ride through my mind, took notes on some of my favourite things, then made a bike from those bullet points.