When Specialized launched the Turbo Levo, there were immediately riders that wanted something bigger. So here it is, a motor assist version of the Specialized Enduro, and it’s called the Turbo Kenovo.

It’s a 27.5 ripper with a bit slacker geometry than the Enduro, but with the same BB height. It gets an Ohlins TTX coil shock with Rockshox Lyrik and SRAM Code brakes. Oh, and it gets 180mm of travel front and rear, which is 20mm more than the new Enduro.

2018 Specialized Turbo Kenevo e-mountain bike with 170mm travel

Why a long travel e-MTB? Well, imagine if you wanted to do a sick 20 minute run again and again. You could arrange friends and a truck to shuttle you, which sometimes takes 40 minutes to drive up and a whole lotta BS to organize. Or buy an expensive lift ticket and wait in the queue. Or you could just ride up the same mountain and have way more fun. That’s what we did at the launch event this summer, and it was awesome.

2018 Specialized Turbo Kenevo e-mountain bike with Ohlins TT coil rear shock 2018 Specialized Turbo Kenevo e-mountain bike with 170mm travel

The Ohlins TTX handles the extra weight of the bike with ease. The motor’s assist eliminated any concern over the FSR design’s active nature…I really didn’t notice any bobbing under pedaling up the hills, even when standing to get up a couple steep sections (yes, it still requires some work to ride uphill).

2018 Specialized Turbo Kenevo e-mountain bike with Rockshox Lyrik

Up front is a Rockshox Lyrik with big 200mm rotors.

2018 Specialized Turbo Kenevo e-mountain bike with SRAM Code Brakes

It’s all brought down from full speed by the new four-piston Code brakes, with 200mm rotors in the back, too.

specialized wu post dropper seatpost with automatic saddle tilt

It comes with their new Wu post, which changes the angle of the saddle as it drops. It gets 125mm of stroke, but the saddle’s tail actually changes position by 150mm thanks to a dual cylinder system.

2018 Specialized Turbo Kenevo e-mountain bike with 170mm travel

The frame uses Specialized’s hydroformed M5 alloy tubing, similar to the non-carbon Levo, with internal routing for anything headed back from the handlebars, including the stealth-routed Wu.

2018 Specialized Turbo Kenevo e-mountain bike with 170mm travel

The heart of the system is the latest Turbo 1.3 motor, which has plenty of juice to power this monster and its rider up any trail. Wide 27.5×2.8 tires provide the traction.

2018 Specialized Turbo Kenevo e-mountain bike with 170mm travel

We covered the motor and battery tech in great detail in our post about the Levo Carbon, but the short of it is this: You can adjust the settings through their companion app to customize the output for each setting (low, medium, and turbo). The motor completely disengages when coasting so there’s no parasitic drag, and it eases into power smoothly (but quickly), so it’s easy to keep traction on the tricky bits. No, you can’t roost dirt and destroy trails.

2018 Specialized Turbo Kenevo e-mountain bike with 170mm travel

When switching modes, the only indication is the lights on the battery. After a second, it returns to showing battery level in a counter-clockwise countdown. It’ll also relay battery life info to compatible ANT+ cycling computers and to the Mission Control smartphone app.

2018 Specialized Turbo Kenevo e-mountain bike with uphill walk assist mode

The controls are simple and sleek. Plus/Minus buttons change assist level, and the real standout feature is a Walk Assist button. Push it, and it’ll power the wheel along at 2mph so you can easily walk up any sections too gnarly to ride up. You know, like those steep, techy, awesome sections that you just wanna hit again.

2018 Specialized Turbo Kenevo e-mountain bike with quick turbo mode button

The “Turbo” button is on the front of the control and provides immediate access to full power.

Specialized wanted to keep a traditional rear gearing setup rather than the larger steps of SRAM’s e-bike specific drivetrain, so you’re getting a modern 1×11 wide-range setup. There’s only one model, so to keep price (somewhat) in check, they used a SRAM GX1 drivetrain with Praxis cranks. Retail is $7,500 / €6,299.



  1. Wait…. I thought this was about bikes, not motorcycles.

    I wish I had somebody schilling things for me the way Specialized has you all.

    The obese white men that can afford this bike can definitely afford both the lift ticket and to at least attempt to ride up the hill without a lift or a motor.

  2. love telling e-bikers that come into the shop for inevitable repairs that there are no legal places to ride them nearby. the look on their faces is priceless. goodbye.

    • Your boss is going to hate firing you, but it’s what he’ll have to do in order to grow his shop beyond your short-sightedness. Those e-bikers are already steering people somewhere else.

      This is the fastest growing user group and they don’t belong on motorized trails with 700-2000lb ohv’s any more than you do. There is zero risk to our hard earned access (ride one, you’ll see), only opportunity that comes with a larger voice.

      • Where I live there are plenty of multiuse trails where dirt-bikers, hikers, mountain-bikers and horses all get along. I think e-bikes are fun and great for a lot of people, but they DO NOT belong on non-motorized trails.
        Sorry, but bicycle+motor = motorcycle.

      • Why not? They can ride where legally permitted. If someone at the shop asks where they ride and the owner knows it is not a legal trail …. what do you think should happen when someone gets hurt. The fact is shops are selling these things without educating the customers about legal access! Those shops need to be held responsible if and when something happens. And indeed it is the fastest growing segment of riders that don’t understand trail rules and edict.

        • Are car dealerships responsible for someone who purchases a car then has a drunk driving accident?
          People buy bikes and ride them on illegal trails all the time. This is a problem that has existed long before e-bikes

      • I regularly ride motorized singletrack and generally find it more enjoyable than the alternatives. Whoops, rut-berms, and consistent grades are really fun on any sort of bike. This is where I direct the e-bikers. But those aren’t the nearby, non-motorized, and heavily-trafficked local trails.

        As the black sheep who cares far more about riding good trails than new gadgets and gear, I take issues with people who sweep trail access issues under the rug. Sarcasm of my first post aside, this is a major issue, and jeopardizes trail access for many communities in the United States. I’m concerned that many major bike companies are gambling the future trail access for actual mountain bikes in exchange for short-term profits on these MOTORIZED bikes.

    • Strava is just a “for fun” feature. It can be cheated in so many way. It’s based on user keeping it reasnoably clean. Around my place Kom are hold mostly by pro or wannabe pro. Their performance are based on their races not their kom so i trust them. If an unknown guy smash a hard Kom without race credential then i won’t look at it too much.

  3. I had a customer tell me he was 65 and bought an E-MTB. He told me that he can finally ride the trails he wanted to and could do it all day. I wasn’t really into the E Bike thing, but you know what? The dude had the biggest smile on his face. These bikes are a thing and have a place.

    • You’re absolutely correct!
      They are a thing: motorized vehicles
      They have a place: motorized trails

      To pretend otherwise is self-interest (financial for the industry, fitness for their users) masquerading as inclusiveness and undermines the thirty-five years of mountain bikers’ hard work to convince land managers that bicycles are not motorcycles.

      As a user group we need to say no to the normalization of ePeds before Specialized and their peers’ short-sighted search for profits undermines access for us all.

      See Blister Gear Review for a very well-considered editorial on the topic: http://blistergearreview.com/featured/pinkbikes-efailure

      (Insert obligatory United States disclaimer here)

        • Dude, e-bikes are NOT motorcycles. the provides some WATT … if you give it some WATT ! and let me tell you one thing : with my e-bike, I generate less WATT than a pro-rider would do with their bike …. So, should the pro-rider be denied trails ? what would be the limit ?
          you guys are just haters, but when you are getting older, you’ll love e-bikes (especially eMTB)

          • Class 1 e-bikes can add up to 270% of a rider’s input before their limiters are defeated. That means that as little as 27% of their power is provided by the user [1/(1+2.7)].

            E-bikes are unambiguously motorized and as such have areas where their use is permitted.

            But they’re not non-motorized and certainly not bicycles.

          • sorry dude…a motor is a motor, so no access :-D. I really love it when peope by an $$$$ e-bike and then someone tells them they cannot legaly ride it on the nice trails.

      • It’s easy to pass judgement when you have your health and are able to climb with hard work. But when you get older or God forbid have a health issue that no matter how hard you try, you cannot climb, you will surely see the light. I have 60% lung function. I love to mountain bike. My lung function will rapidly get worse. If I can extend the amount of time on my bike I will.

    • Allowing elderly people to ride in areas beyond there ability is a horrible argument for motor/pedal bikes.

      It is, however, a great argument for banning all bike shaped objects from wilderness areas.

      • Beyond his capability? Like you’ve never crashed… The trails where I live and are well built for all bikes. This dude is only having fun. Why do you hate having fun?

        Personally I don’t need or want to ride one. But if my dad can keep up with me with a little extra boost so be it. The only problem these bikes have is people saying they are not bikes. They are BIKES just with a little enviremently friendly electric motor.

        To each his own. I see these bikes as a way to get people to step outside and have some fun.

        • The math does support this argument: nearly quadrupling his output is much more than giving your dad “a little extra boost.”

          As far as riding with slower family, I would never, ever expect my kid, wife, or parents to keep up with me if it was beyond their abilities. If we ride together it’s for them- I get my speed and technical kicks on my own time.

      • I can ride most technical trails and jump ok. I get really tired so I have to take a lot of breaks when I do downhill parks. I have never felt my legs burn because my lungs give out before that happens. I am buying an electric and I am part of this sports segment that is growing and has the means to change legislation. I agree that nobody should buy one of these to improve their strava times. This opens the door to more people.

  4. I have demoed this things twice, it is heavy as hell and not agile. You can charge trough obstacles, but that is about it. Wheels are stuck to ground. The pedal assist is just weird, I felt I was riding a moped (the old ones w pedlas). They should drop the sport segment and just use the electric bikes for city commuters, but I am sure the car industry is not going to be happy and the result will be mandatory helmet, license plate, insurance etc… same history and progression as mopeds in europe in the 80’s. This things do not belong to bike trails and they are dangerous for other trail users including bike riders. More accidents will close trails to bikes and may push to mandatory license and insurance. Then people will start hacking the built in speed limit software and it will be impossible to cohexist. Regardless they are overall slow on any slightly tech terrain, I was much faster on the same course with regular bikes (except for smooth uphills sections and smooth flats). The few enduro races where e-bikes competed on same course as bikes, the times where similar to the women race. For old folks, if you been riding all your life, 70+ can still kick ass, amd they know that. If you decide to pick up mtbiking at 65 you are making the wrong choice.
    Bicycle + motor = moped.

  5. Hey, it would be great if you would start linking to citations for statements like this:
    “there were immediately riders that wanted something bigger”
    I ride a ton, and have a huge cycling network of friends (some with e-bikes), and I’ve never heard anyone go down this road. Unless they were talking sarcastically about how to make e-bikes even more like a full-on motorcycle.

  6. In before someone calls it a…. Nevermind… E-bikes are not motorcycles or mopeds. They don’t feel or ride anything like a motorbike. It’s a bicycle that gives you an extra boost of wattage. It’s a heavy bicycle that helps you out.

    It’s not pedaling for you. It’s not effortless. These things don’t even have 1HP of power on tap. 1 HP = 750W. These things have a 250W motor. When was the last time anyone rode a 1/3HP motorbike?

    Why are so many people threatened by these bikes? You afraid someone is going to pass you?

      • How many times are you going to mention this? So a cart + motor = car?

        People are making this argument because you seem to think it’s the lack of motor power that has allowed mountain bike trails to exist. It’s not the bike, or the lack of power that keeps trails closed. It’s the same as “ski only” hills and mountains that ban snowboards. It has nothing to do with the snowboard’s ability to go down a mountain.

    • By that logic we should allow 1/3hp dirt bikes on non-motorized trails, right? After all, they’d be quieter and lighter than proper motos and have better range (at a lower price) than ePeds. It’s only fair to the old folks and kids who can’t keep up.

      • There is no such thing. Comparing an e-bike to a motorcycle is akin to comparing a golf cart to a Honda Civic. Golf Carts got a motor… FOUR WHEELS + MOTOR = CAR! Golf carts should only be allowed where cars are allowed!

    • “Why are so many people threatened by these bikes? You afraid someone is going to pass you?”

      The threat, quite simply, is to current and future trail access. Pretending that a motorized (let alone a majority-motorized) vehicle somehow qualifies as “nonmotorized” by virtue of its throttle mechanism is ridiculous.

      No hand-waving, no ‘just’ this or ‘only’ that: vehicles with motors are motorized. In the United States, the delineation is clear: motorized vehicles are not and should not be permitted on non-motorized trails, regardless of their (easily-defeated) output limiters or legal-loophole pedal throttles. Attempting to blur the lines between the categories has serious near- and long-term implications for bicycle trail access.

      • An e-bike passing me on the trail is the same as a car passing me on the road….someone with a motorized vehicle going faster then me. Thats no threat. I notice e-bikers are more comparing themselves to cyclists then visa versa. For a cyclist an e-biker is a motorrider so no comparison whatsoever. My main concern is the use of cycling trails for non-cycling related activities.

      • You think trail access somehow has something to do with how the power is delivered? Trail access has nothing to do with how mountain bikes get power down. That’s just the argument that mountain bikers have used to convince old men to allow them.

        The real problem here is only that e-bikes throw a wrench into your already lame argument. That is, because bikes are human powered, they pose little threat to the environment. Yet you go to any trail and there are dudes riding in down pour or recently after one. There are guys throwing trash on the trails. Regular bikes go wherever they please including private land.

        Access is the issue. Seriously stop pretending that e-bikes are motorcycles. Anyone who says this clearly hasn’t spent ANY time on one. The best ones in existence are still just heavy bikes. They don’t do anything until you pedal. Mopeds, scooters and motorcycles require zero physical input to operate. There is no throttle on a Turbo Levo. You have to pedal, and at best it just make it faster to go up.

        It doesn’t do the work for you, it’s not at all like a motorcycle. It would be literally, the worst motorcycle in the world. Imagine you actually rode a motorcycle that averaged 15mph. That it REQUIRED you to pedal and sweat? Have you even been on a motorcycle? You do realize they can go several times quicker than an ebike?

  7. Lame electric motorcycle. These have been showing up on our trails and they are abusing all sorts of delicate laws and ordinances. Now they are illegal. Didn’t last long. Too easy to bypass limiters.

    • This guy is just taking the piss. If you bypass the “limiter” do you think an e-bike can go twice as fast? Newsflash, e-bikes aren’t really artificially limited. 200W is 200W. That’s good for about 20MPH. A Honda Civic has a limiter too. If you remove it, you think it can go 200MPH?

  8. Every attempted justification for why these motorized cycles should be given unrestricted access to non-motorized trails sounds more desperate than the last.

  9. I have ridden a Levo and I get it !
    I have noticed on steep root or rock climbs…sections where I’d usually spin out in the granny gear….the Levo rolled up and over.
    With the Levo I could peddle at a higher pace and carry more momentum.
    In that situation less trail damage.
    At 56 yrs old, tired and worn knees, it’s getting increasingly harder to make these long climbs.
    An Ebike would help prolong my life long passion.
    I can still rip down…it’s the climbs I’m getting weaker on.
    Might be my next bike.

  10. I’d love to see a sub 35# e-mtb with a max 50-100 W assist. That is a true assist and still light enough to be fun almost everywhere and not need assist every time the trails has any upward grade. I also like to see assist based on user power output tied to an inclinometer (i.e. when it falls below a certain threshold when I’m pedaling and climbing above “x”% grade

    Not sure i’d actually buy one, but I can see these being popular, especially for older crowds.

  11. At our yearly “demo days” where all the manufacturers show up and offer up their latest bikes, Trek had the wise idea of ONLY bringing ebikes. The place where they held it (like most Michigan trails) eBikes are not allowed, therefore no one got to ride trails. We got a good laugh at it. There bikes just sat there 🙂

    So already Specialized is putting a non pedalling throttle on here (albeit 2mph) whats next, a JRA button, a Turbo button, etc. That sounds like something that could easily be modified. Remember, this is the land of rolling coal. Your 600 lb feet of torque isn’t enough on your pickup, lets up to 1000 hp with a simple chip. Who cares about regulations. The other thing with these in general, yes, I understand the Bosch systems and the like are actually really good at delivering smooth power, do actually cut out at a certain speed, however for every $7500 one of these, there are hundreds of crappy ebikes with hub motors (sometimes dual) that can output whatever you want at whatever speed, without a pedal input. Check youtube. Just type in crazy ebike and you get 17200 watt (23 hp) ebikes, ones that top out at over 100 kph, etc.

    Who’s going to be at the trailhead checking do you have a non modified, approved baby loving earth caring ebike system? If you allow ebikes, you allow all ebikes. Again, the “proper” system costs $7500, or you can buy a rear wheel and battery for next to nothing. I just search ebike kit, and the second result was a kit from Walmart for $189 which had a 1000watt rear wheel. For those who don’t have a power meter, 1000 watts is something that even most top local guys can only hold for about 5 seconds in a full out sprint.

    • A) “The market” doesn’t control trail access, local, state and federal authorities do.
      B) Literally the opposite is true. The big guys like Trek and Specialized are pushing e-MTBs harder than customers want to buy them. Much ink has been spilled over this topic in the trade press.

  12. We are Borg, you will be assimilated. Resistance is futile

    But in all seriousness, with every E-bike post that Bike Rumor makes, there is a huge backlash. Yet they still keep making these posts. So I am going to go out on a limb here and say they probably won’t stop making these posts.

    But there is something you can do about it. Instead of complaining about it, don’t read e-bike posts

  13. Considering that our local county parks are these as Motor Vehicles this not allowed on MU Trails….same goes with our local Forest Singletracks….you would be wasting your money. Then again, the local shops selling them aren’t telling the customers this.

  14. If you people would as much effort into opening more bike trails as you do hating on the E-bikes, we would have a lot more frickin trail!

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