Sea Otter 2015: Specialized Enters The Chubby Arena

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We did predict that they’d all be at it at the Sea Otter, and you can find out more in the next issue of the magazine, but it wasn’t a surprise to see that Specialized has a plus-size bike (or bikes) coming out. Interestingly, rather than Trek’s apparent view that (its 29+) plus-size bikes are for experts, Specialized is very much aiming its 27.5in+ bikes more at newcomers. It reasons that the big tyres are less intimidating (to both ride and to look at) than regular skinny(ish) mountain bikes. While that might be true, we’re not sure that the ‘6Fattie’ range name really works in the UK – it’s a play on ‘Six-fiddy’ AKA ‘Six Fifty’ – you know? Like Fiddy Cent, that rapper chap? Exactly…

Ignoring the complications of language for a moment, let’s look at the Fuse and the Ruze (although again, it would have been better to have a Fuze and a Ruze, or a Fuze and a Ruze we reckon…)

‘Three inches of fun’ says Specialized. So, that’s a 27.5in rim with a 3in tyre front and rear. Specialized reckons that this could be the future of the (non-racing) trail hardtail. Let’s have a look then!

6Fattie! Six Fiddy! Geddit? No, us neither.

 

Mixing the s and the z so that you don’t have to…

 

Essential to the new B+ craze is a wide rim. Here’s a new wide, carbon Roval ready for the shredding of.

Pure carbonium from one of the pioneers of the hookless bead.

 

Now that’s a gnarly looking tread. Here’s the Purgatory 3in tyre.

 

 

In their natural habitat. There’s no word if Specialized will be doing them as matched his ‘n’ hers pairs.

 

The new Fuse and Ruze will have the classic Ground Control 3.0 as standard.

Of huge interest to all riders is the new Specialized Command Post (and snazzy lever). The very thumbshifter-like lever is one of the best we’ve seen, and meshes seamlessly with SRAM’s brake lever/Matchmaker mounts. And that’s not the only good news…

A very nice lever it is.

Rather than only offering fully up, inch down and dropped (like a Fox DOSS post) the new Command Post offers infinite adjustment over its whole stroke. We’re hassling for prices and delivery dates right now…

Up, down and all points in between

And here are some pics from Specialized showing the fun happening with these new chunkier-tyred hardtails.

 

Spesh uses a split chainstay to bring the back end in while clearing the cranks.

 

Goes up too

 

This is another bike on the ‘would like to try out of interest’ list.

 

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