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Bikes Buying Guide Electric Bikes Featured Hot Products Mountain Bikes News

Specialized Kenevo SL

“No e-MTB is lighter and more capable.”

A bold claim indeed from Specialized. Following up on the arrival of last years’ Levo SL, Specialized have released the all-new Kenevo SL and we had our hands on one of the Expert models for release day.

At the time of release the Levo SL was a stand-out bike, being one of the lightest electric mountain bikes available, based around the Stumpjumper and weighing just 38 pounds. Building on this technology Specialized has gone one better, taking the ever-popular Enduro and electrifying it with their 240 Watt Turbo Super Light system to create the Kenevo SL. Weighing in at just 40.9 lb (for the size S4 S-works model) this thing is super light (get it) and only 8 pounds heavier than a standard, non-electric Enduro, or 12 lb less than the Turbo Kenevo.

While the S-Works Kenevo SL is the range-topping model, we got our hands on the Kenevo SL Expert version, which still packs one mighty punch, especially in the Gloss Brassy Yellow colourway! The frameset at a glance is frighteningly recognisable, you’d be forgiven for mistaking it for the current Enduro, the Kenevo SL boasts a few tricks up it’s sleeve however in comparison with its fully pedal-powered equivalent.

The Turbo Super Light motor and 320Wh battery are fully integrated in the chassis to improve handling responsiveness while allowing for up to 4.5 hours of rider support, which makes for some serious shred time. Allowing for a pedaling cadence of 75 RPM or more you can seamlessly control the power delivery via the Handlebar remote while keeping a close eye on things thanks to the MasterMind TCU display perfectly placed on the top tube, with customisable display fields.

Specialized equipped the Kenevo SL with adjustable Geometry too, six distinct settings allow you to tune the bike to handle just how you like it. This thing really is built to be ridden over or down pretty much anything. With 170mm of fully usable travel mean elevated ride quality on the trail. Specialized put it quite simply, they’ve never made a more adjustable and adaptable trail bike. Let alone one that essentially doubles your pedaling output! Frame sizes are based around Specialized’s S-Sizing system which accounts for rider size and style rather than inseam. When selecting which size to go for you can choose that which best suits your individual style, smaller sizes are more nimble and playful while bigger account for a roomier, more stable ride. All sizes have fairly short seat tubes which make it easier for riders to size up or down depending on which they prefer.

The Kenevo SL Expert model is well equipped, there’s not a single component that hasn’t been carefully selected and well thought out. SRAM’s superb X01 Eagle 12-speed groupset with 10-52T cassette gives a 520% gear range ensuring efficiency on even the most brutal climbs. 1x components mean Eagle is lighter, more durable and easier to use than ever. You could even upgrade to wireless shifting using one of SRAM’s GX Eagle AXS wireless upgrade kits should you want an even more simplistic approach.

FOX Float X Performance 170mm forks paired with a FOX Float X Performance shock ensure travel is supple on small bumps while remaining super capable when the trail gets tough. 29″ Wheels front and rear still deliver a ride that’s nimble while optimizing traction and control. The Specialized Butcher GRID TRAIL front and Eliminator GRID TRAIL rear 29×2.6″ tyres make sure of this. SRAM Code RS 4-piston brakes keep everything well under control when descending and the 220/200mm rotors certainly help. The X-Fusion manic dropper post allows for extra room in that area as and when it’s required. Specialized really did pour some serious hours into developing this bike and it shows!

Specialized’s Kenevo SL Expert is available now, in extremely limited numbers. You can also shop our full range of Specialized Turbo E-Bikes here!

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Castelli Spring Summer 2021 Range

This weekend the weather took a turn in the right direction, the leg warmers are well and truly off! With the arrival of the sunshine, we thought we’d take a look at some of the highlights of Castelli’s 2021 Spring/Summer range. With technology developed alongside the Ineos Grenadiers trickling down across the whole range, Castelli creates products that not only perform at the very highest level but that look good while doing so. With comfort and style in mind, Castelli SS21 collection sees updates to some of the Italian brand’s best-loved kit along with all-new cycling bib shorts, jerseys and accessories. Here we walk you through some of the key pieces for Men and Women.

Men’s Competitiione Bib Short
The Competizione is a premium bibshort in look and feel. The sort of thing that’s ideal to pull on for a Sunday club ride but is equally at home being raced in. When you’re pinning on a number you need kit that you can forget about and simply concentrate on the road in front of you, the Competizione lets you do just that. The Giro4 leg gripper features silicone stripes to help lock the legs in place, this technology along with the Vortex textured fabric comes straight from Castelli’s top-of-the-line Free Aero Race 4 bibshort. Other features include a KISS Air2 chamois, flat-lock stitching and breathable mesh straps.

Women’s Prima Bibshort
Castelli understands how hard it is to get one of the most important pieces of cycling clothing right. With the Prima bibshort they’ve taken their obsession of making the perfect bibshort and packaged it into an entry-level short in terms of price with a zero-compromise approach in terms of performance. From the Women’s specific KISS Air2 chamois to the Pro Dry Soft material the Prima bibshort has a premium look and feel. Ride this short all summer long then take it indoors to the trainer come the colder months. If you’re looking for your ideal Women’s specific, Summer Road Cycling bibshort the Prima is exactly that!

Men’s Rapido Jersey
Featuring a striking graphic comprising of lines and fades, this is a jersey that not only looks fast, it performs at the highest level. Utilising Strada micromesh fabric with a 7% Lycra content the Rapido jersey is designed to fit without being overly tight making it suitable for all body shapes. With an easy on/off full-length zip and Tailwind dimpled fabric on the shoulders, side panels and pockets, the Rapido is the perfect all-day Summer jersey.

Women’s Gradient Jersey
Based on Castelli’s long-distance Squadra jersey that you may be familiar with, the Gradient jersey is designed to keep you comfortable mile after mile. Featuring ProSecco Micromesh fabric to help wick moisture away with breathable mesh side panels, the Gradient jersey provides a great close-to-body fit ideal for long days on the bike we all dream of.

Men’s Classifica Jersey
The Men’s Classifica jersey oozes style. Slip this jersey on for your next training ride and as you clock up the miles you’re bound to turn heads for all the right reasons. Offering supreme comfort, the micro-piqué knit fabric offers moisture management and has a super-soft feel. With a close-to-body fit that offers slightly more room then Castelli’s race kit, the Classifica jersey offers as much style at the cafe stop as it does performance on the bike.

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Bikes Buying Guide Electric Electric Bikes Featured Hot Products Road Bikes

Cannondale Topstone Neo SL E-Gravel Bike

When Cannondale told us about their Topstone Neo SL e-bike we thought it sounded great. An e-bike built for roads, lanes, byways, gravel trails or just about anything you can point it in the direction of with an ultra discrete, lightweight Mahle ebikemotion X35+ drive system. No we’ve had a chance to get our hands on the bike we’re even more impressed than we had anticipated.

When you first see the Topstone Neo SL you realise just how far e-bikes have come. You’d be forgiven for asking the question ‘Where’s the motor?” The simple answer is that this clever hub-based motor really does hide in plain sight. Despite its subtle appearance, the assistance achieved by this lightweight motor is far from it. 250W power with a 250Wh battery provide three levels of support ensuring assistance is always there when you need it. A maximum range of 47 miles is achieved when used conservatively so you really can go the distance.

Controlled by the integrated top tube controller, assistance is always within reach. You can turn the system on, select your assist level and see your battery charge, all at the touch of a button leaving plenty of space on the bars for any other accessories you decide to take along for the ride. Charging is simple thanks to the easy access charging port. This also allows for an optional range extender for a total battery capacity of 450Wh allowing you to ride even further!

The lightweight aluminum frame and full carbon fork provide a smooth and stable ride. The geometry is perfectly balanced to allow you to munch miles in a back-friendly position without being too slack. You can still get pretty aero in the drops! Clearance for 700x42c tyres provide all the cushioning and grip you’ll need on the more technical trails, tubeless compatibility means you can get the pressures nice and low too.

Functionality is catered for with multiple mounts for water bottles, racks and storage. Fit a set of fenders to keep the grime off in the damper months and you’ll have a year-round companion if you don’t mind facing the elements making it the perfect companion for commuting in style.

Available in two differing builds, the Topstone Neo SL1 comes equipped with Shimano’s GRX600 1×11 Speed groupset, the Topstone Neo SL2 has Shimano GRX400 2×10 Speed, providing reliable functionality you’d expect from a Shimano hydraulic disc brake groupset in both cases. The SL1 even has some fine finishing kit like the Fabric Scoop saddle, Promax carbon seatpost both of which aid in soaking up any buzz. WTB Resolute TCS, 700 x 42c, tubeless-ready tyres and Cannondale 16 degree flared handlebars round up a really well-thought-out build.

Available in-store and online the Cannondale Topstone Neo SL1 and Cannondale Topstone Neo SL2 form part of our huge range of electric road and gravel bikes.

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Hot Products Mountain News Parts And Accessories

The SRAM GX Eagle AXS upgrade kit has landed!

SRAM launched the latest in their Mountain Bike component series yesterday, the GX Eagle AXS wireless upgrade kit. SRAM’s high-end AXS technology has trickled down to their mid-range groupset, meaning flawless wireless shifting for the masses at an affordable price point. Retailing at £554.00 for the upgrade kit which includes everything you need to make your existing Eagle drivetrain wireless. Backwards compatible with both their original and expanded range Eagle Cassettes, making it a no-brainer for anyone looking to upgrade or replace tired components.

Featuring SRAM’s proven AXS wireless technology and renowned, rugged durability of the GX range while mirroring the performance of their XX1 and X01 Eagle AXS derailleurs, the GX Eagle AXS rear mech doesn’t disappoint. Paired with the GX Eagle AXS Controller which has incredible levels of customisation this is a winning combo that makes for effortless shifting. Not only is there the option to assign different touchpoints using the SRAM AXS app but you can also swap out the paddle shapes should you feel the need. With SRAM’s AXS technology at the heart of this setup it also leaves the option open to pair a RockShox Reverb AXS dropper post with the system.

Using ANT+ and Bluetooth connectivity, the AXS system allows you to pair with a multitude of devices such as a Garmin or smartphone. Fire up the SRAM AXS app and you can fine-tune the setup to your heart’s content, you can also check the battery life of your components via the app, not that it’s something you need to worry about with around 20 hours of run time thanks to the AXS Battery. If you do drain the juice you won’t need to wait long before you can hit the trails again however with a charge time of around an hour. The shifter uses a button cell battery which has a run time of 2 years, allowing for a fit-and-forget approach.

Another amazing feature of the new GX AXS derailleur is the double-clutch mechanism system. The Overload Clutch protects your investment in the event of an impact, the mech senses this and disengages the motor gearbox. This allows the derailleur to move out of harm’s way, before instantly returning to its position allowing you to get back on the gas! The second roller bearing clutch keeps the chain under tension preventing chainslap.

If you have a mechanical SRAM Eagle drivetrain and the components are in need of a freshen up or you’re just eager to see what all the fuss is about with wireless shifting then the SRAM GX Eagle AXS upgrade kit is right up your street! Available in-store or online, giving you the option of having our team of qualified technicians fit that for you or go down the DIY, home mechanic approach.

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Accessories Featured Hot Products News Parts And Accessories Reviews

Garmin Edge 1030 Rider Review

  • I’m going to cover some of the main things that stood out about the Edge 1030 but there are so many more features that I haven’t touched upon. It’s just got too many features to feasibly talk about in a short(ish) review!

Size

It took me some time to get used to the size of the Edge 1030. I had previously been using an Edge 820 and an Edge 500 before that so the increase in size seemed like quite a lot at first. However, after a few uses I got used to the size of it and actually found the bigger screen size to be useful. Data screens were clearer and also, I could see the time at the top of the screen without having to bend forwards and squint whilst riding along. This also has benefits for when you are using the unit for mapping. I would say that I wouldn’t use the unit for racing as I feel it would be a bit too big and look a bit out of place on a race bike but for someone who doesn’t race and wants to be able to see lots of data screens and big maps it’s a great size.

Touchscreen

The touchscreen on this device is very good and very responsive. It is also much clearer than the Edge 820 I had previously been using. It’s a known fact that the touchscreen on the Edge 820 can be at times be a little slow to respond. With the Edge 1030 however, this wasn’t the case. Each press is responded to very quickly and moving around the menus and between screens is very quick. It also doesn’t require a hard press, just a gentle press or flick. With auto brightness on the visibility of the screen is great no matter what conditions you are riding in. I have ridden with it on dreary winter daysand hot blue-sky days and anything in between and I have always been able to see the screen perfectly.

Battery

One of my disappointments with my previous smaller Garmin devices has been battery life. Often if I head out for a day and require maps on to follow a route I will be crossing my fingers by the end of the ride hoping that the battery isn’t going to go. The battery life on the Edge 1030 is amazing, Obviously the unit is bigger but the increase in amount of battery life is far greater than the increase in size from the smaller Garmin units. I took this unit on a cycling holiday to Monaco where we were out from 9am until 7pm, each day I had a route on the go and the device connected to my phone via Bluetooth. I don’t think the battery was on anything less than 45%. For people who do a lot of touring or maybe go away cycling for a weekend without the ability to charge things, this device will comfortably see you through two days of riding if not more! There is also a battery pack which can be piggybacked on to the Edge 1030 which will give you battery life in the region of 24+ hours!

Maps

As you would expect the maps on the Edge 1030 are the best across all the Garmin devices. The maps on my Edge 820 are very good and it’s one of the reasons I bought the unit in the first place as it provided detailed maps but on a compact unit. On the Edge 1030 you just get extra details like off road trails and footpaths. This would be great for people who ride off road or do rides which are both on and off road as tracks are clear to see coming off roads and then rejoining. The navigation is also very good and turn by turn is very accurate. The increase in size of screen coupled with the extra detail also mean it is very easy to follow a route. I often come across sections of rides where there are lots of roads coming off a main road, in a town centre for example. With the Edge 1030 it is very easy to see which turn you need to take without having to bend forwards to get closer to the unit. The unit comes loaded with full European maps at the same detail as the roads on the UK maps. This was great when I used the unit in France on unfamiliar roads riding through the outskirts of Nice not really knowing where I was going. The maps were clear enough for me to be able to focus on the traffic around me and still be able to navigate with a brief glance every now and then. The Edge 1030 effectively is as good as a satnav; addresses can be put in and navigated to if you find yourself lost or just want the device to plot a route to a friend’s house for you. The type of roads used and route plotting options can be customised to suit your needs. When scrolling around the map to check to see ahead on a route you have plotted, the map loads very quickly if not instantly. Some previous units took a while for the tiles to load but on the Edge 1030 there is no delay.

Performance Data

Along with all the usual data fields that most GPS units record these days, the Edge 1030 takes this to another level. It’s the ultimate training device. When coupled with a HR monitor and power meter it’s the perfect training partner and will no doubt help you to achieve those long-term training goals. At the end of each ride you are informed of various stats to do with your performance. One of these is a number on a scale of 1 to 5 of how much you are improving/working aerobic and anaerobic systems. This can be really handy depending on what type of session you are aiming to do and also helps you to understand your sessions. It will also inform you if you are overreaching which is good for preventing injuries or fatiguing yourself preventing sustained periods of training. It will also suggest a recovery time from the session, however I have found this to be more a recovery time to fully recover from that session or if back to back sessions the past two sessions.

“a virtual coach guiding you to greater things on the bike”

The device can also auto calculate your FTP if used with a power meter. This may take a few sessions for it to gather the data. This can be helpful if you don’t often do/don’t want to do a specific FTP test but have done a hard ride. Power is then combined with HR (make sure to set max HR) to give you an estimated FTP. At the start of rides the device will also give you a performance conditions number, again out of 5. This is an indication of how fit/fresh you are based on HR and power from previous rides and how that compares to the current ride. This is great on long rides as this is tracked for the duration of the ride and can be seen on a graph in the Garmin Connect app. I found that generally performance condition decreases as the ride went on which is what you would expect as you got more fatigued. This can be useful if you head out to do a hard interval session but have done quite a few back to back sessions and can see your performance condition is bad. In this case it would probably be more useful to do an easier ride. Without the performance condition feature you may over-train which is obviously detrimental in the long run.

These are just a few examples of what this unit can do with performance data and statistics but the list goes on and on. It really is a fantastic device for aiding training and could be regarded as a virtual coach guiding you to greater things on the bike.

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The All New Stumpjumper 2019 – The Ultimate Trial Bike

THE ULTIMATE TRAIL BIKE – STUMPJUMPER 2019

The new Stumpjumper is the ultimate trail bike. Seriously, the damn thing rides like it’s on rails. It’s the most versatile trail bike we’ve ever made. And yeah, we’re stoked about that, but we’re even more excited about how well it’s tuned to you. We’ve said goodbye to proprietary bull****, focused on your needs, and made, what we feel, is the new benchmark in trail bikes.

You Can’t Lose

We’ve made three versions of the new Stumpjumper to give every kind of rider the best bike imaginable. The Short Travel (or ST) is snappy and nimble, while the Stumpjumper rides fast and planted. And for anyone that eats and sleeps gravity riding, we’ve brought back the EVO in all its slacked-out glory.

Real-World Testing

We loved the last Stumpjumper, but we wanted to make it an even more capable descender—this meant adding stiffness to the frame. To do it, we developed our own mountain-specific stiffness test that examined the connection between a rider’s hands and feet. When each get different signals, you get confused.

Extensive field-testing was performed in order to fine-tune the front-end stiffness. Our team would go ride a working version of the frame, provide feedback, and then we’d overwrap the frame with carbon plies, test it in the lab to record the stiffness value, and then give it back to the rider. We did this exact fine-tuning process over and over until we hit the perfect balance of stiffness and handling. And the result is a bike that feels like it’s riding on rails. Point it where you want, and you’re going there. This is Rider-First Engineered™ for mountain, and it delivers the ultimate trail ride—regardless of size.

All-New Sidearm Frame

We pulled out all the stops to lighten and stiffen up the frame, and what we arrived at was a vastly more efficient structure with a new sidearm design. The sidearm design directly connects all three mounting points of the rear-end and shock to the frame, and this creates a significant increase in both stiffness and performance over bumps. More explicitly, frame flex has been minimized when the rear suspension is active. In CAD, we were able to put the new 3D shape against the last iteration of the Stumpjumper, and with Finite Element Analysis (FEA), we were able to prove that the new layout was 20% more efficient. At the end of all of this, we’ve ended up with one of the lightest trail frames on the market.

A New Frame Yields a New Approach

With over two decades of experience with FSR, we refined our proven design. We love it, because FSR allows us to tune every part of the suspension with the least amount of compromises. Bike suspension is a marriage between the frame kinematics and the shock, after all. And given that we have our own Suspension Team (led by the King of Suspension, Mike McAndrews), we had them working hand-in-hand with the frame engineers on the bike design from day one. Because of this union, we’re now able to rely more on the frame kinematics and less on the shock damper to perfect the Stumpjumper’s ride quality. The end result? The Stumpjumper is supple over small bumps, yet it possesses a firm mid-stroke and exceptional bottom-out support. This is the suspension that makes the Ultimate Trail Bike.

Ultimate Adjustability

This is the best mountain bike we’ve ever made when it comes to customizing it however you want. All of the configurations use standard stroke and eye-to-eye metric shocks, so you won’t find Shock Block anywhere. So yeah, if you want to swap shocks—be our guest. You won’t have any problems from us or the Stumpjumper. We’ve also ditched the PF30 bottom bracket of yesteryear in favor of moving back to a threaded BB system, and both 27.5 and 29 frames can fit up to 3.0″ tires, now. You’ll still want to check with your fork manufacturer to make sure a high-volume tire can fit, but this should be music to everyone’s ears.

Improved Cable Routing

We seriously couldn’t make cable routing any easier on carbon models. Full tubes can be found throughout the carbon frame, so all you have to do is push the cable housing and it’ll come out the other end. No more lazy loop, hidden stashes of magnets, pokey spokes, or pillows to cry in.

Quieter Drivetrains Await

The new chainstay protector makes the drivetrain virtually silent, and it pretty much makes chain slap a thing of the past, too. The nubs on this protector disrupt the slap of the chain and this reduces the overall movement and sound of the chain.

Specialized Stumpjumper 2019

Price range: £1,700 – £8,000

View the full range at: https://www.hargrovescycles.co.uk/bikes/mountain-bikes.html?is_new=1&model_year=7224