2015 Scott Spark Ultimate Di2 full suspension mountain bike with electronic fork and shock lockout and derailleurs shifting

The Scott Spark frame has carried over virtually unchanged since its launch in 2012, save for the switch from 26″ to 27.5″ wheels (and the 29er stays, too, of course). What has changed are the parts adorning it, and there’s been no shortage of testing and tweaking under the pros to get to this top of the line, spare no expense Ultimate Di2 model for 2015.

The main goal was to integrate two electronic systems, running both the Fox iCTD suspension and the XTR Di2 off a single battery, creating a race optimized full suspension bike. It’s built off the existing Spark 120mm travel platform, but adds new electronic suspension controls and a proprietary new eNude rear shock developed with Fox.

Controlling it all are three switches up front, the two standard Shimano XTR Di2 shifters, and the electronic evolution of Scott’s TwinLoc rotary lever that simultaneously switches through three modes. It’s built by Shimano with a custom actuator attached to the fork and Fox-made switch specific to this shock and fork pairing…

2015 Scott Spark Ultimate Di2 full suspension mountain bike with electronic fork and shock lockout and derailleurs shifting

The addition of electronics cleans up the cockpit of all the cables that used to protrude from their Twinloc lever, adding two to the already fully equipped 2x drivetrain. Six cable housings/brake hoses in front of the bar can clutter things up, so a couple wires is a big improvement. And they enter the frame so cleanly, too!

One wire goes from the rotary lockout control switch to the fork, then to the battery and internal junction box, which splits things to go to the derailleurs, rear shock and back to the stock XTR Di2 gear display unit. Or all that in reverse…but thanks to eTube, it all works in harmony.

2015 Scott Spark Ultimate Di2 full suspension mountain bike with electronic fork and shock lockout and derailleurs shifting 2015 Scott Spark Ultimate Di2 full suspension mountain bike with electronic fork and shock lockout and derailleurs shifting

The rotary suspension control switch nuzzles up to the brake lever mount, filling the space usually left open between it and the grips. Compared to a traditional lockout lever, it’s faster and far more ergonomic. Pro’s we’ve spoken to are stoked on it, saying it makes it so easy to switch that they end up using it hundreds of times for even the shortest sprint sections.

The Di2 display shows the gear, battery level and suspension mode, tying everything together and providing an external charging port for the battery.

2015 Scott Spark Ultimate Di2 full suspension mountain bike with electronic fork and shock lockout and derailleurs shifting

2015 Scott Spark Ultimate Di2 full suspension mountain bike with electronic fork and shock lockout and derailleurs shifting

The new Fox eNude rear shock uses an electronic interface for switching modes. For them, it’s iCTCD, which refers to Climb, Traction Control and Descend.

It not only changes the compression damping, but going from Descend to TC (aka Trail) mode, it actually raises the sag point by closing off an auxiliary air chamber around the top of the shock. That drops air volume, which increases the air pressure relative to everything else that’s going on, so the sag ends up being less.

It’s still an active suspension, just not as soft and travel is reduced from 120mm to 100mm. So, you maintain full pedaling efficiency and traction compared to locking it out, but it’s a bit firmer. The fork also drops to 100mm, but it’s a mechanical change rather than an air volume change.

2015 Scott Spark Ultimate Di2 full suspension mountain bike with electronic fork and shock lockout and derailleurs shifting

The bike also has a flippable chip at the rear shock mount that allows further, manual geometry adjustment. A manual rebound knob has an extended red lever to make it easier to reach between the mount and the electronic control box.

2015 Scott Spark Ultimate Di2 full suspension mountain bike with electronic fork and shock lockout and derailleurs shifting

The battery is hidden inside the top tube, just in front of the upper shock mount. To access and remove it, you simply detach the upper shock mount and loosen a single screw on the underside of the top tube and it’ll slide out. That single screw holds the battery tight so it’s not rattling around in the frame or stuffed in there with bubble wrap like some of the early prototypes the Scott 3ROX team was running.

2015 Scott Spark Ultimate Di2 full suspension mountain bike with electronic fork and shock lockout and derailleurs shifting

While many top level race bikes have gone to a single front chainring, they’re keeping the double here. And having ridden XTR Di2 ourselves, we see no downside to it.

2015 Scott Spark Ultimate Di2 full suspension mountain bike with electronic fork and shock lockout and derailleurs shifting

2015 Scott Spark Ultimate Di2 full suspension mountain bike with electronic fork and shock lockout and derailleurs shifting

The naming scheme of the model includes 700, which refers to 27.5” wheels, and for now this configuration is only available in this wheel size. There’s no 900 (29er) for now, and that’s because of the 29er’s front triangle shape. It’s different and a water bottle would hit the rear shock’s electronic control box, and they want you to be able to use a water bottle. Yes, they’re working on a solution.

Frameset weight is 1,940g including shock and hardware. Complete bike is claimed at 10.4kg (22.93lb).

Pricing is at the level you’d expect: $12,499 / €9,799 complete with Syncros FL1.0 and XR1.0 components with XR1.0 carbon wheels (rims are made by DT Swiss). The fork is a Fox FLOAT CTD Factory.

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Sitting close by were several of the Scott team riders’ bikes. We’ll have a full run down on Nino Schurter’s current World Cup race bike shortly, but a few photos in the meantime never hurts.

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As always, plenty of Ritchey and DT Swiss parts adorn the team bikes, including the new limited edition DT Swiss OPM Race suspension forks we covered here and here.

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Thanks to tubulars, XX1 and carbon suspension bits, Nino’s bike comes in at a claimed 8.8kg (19.4lb).

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Word is this new Ritchey V6 pedal is a bit different than what we saw in prototype form at the Meribel World Cup last year and similar to some concepts shown at Eurobike.

Scott-Sports.com

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36 Comments
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Dustin
Dustin
7 years ago

What? No electronic dropper? That’d only bring things to 13k, I’m guessing.

MasterOMayhem
MasterOMayhem
7 years ago

for the 29er, run the rear shock backward. voila clearance for a bottle.

me
me
7 years ago

I’m sorry to say this, but I’ve seeing these 2×10 or 2×11 new bikes, running wide range cassettes and long cage derailleurs… I just think that is way overkill! I recently put together a 2×10 set up on my MTB, 11-28 cassette 114g, short cage road RD 130g, then 22/38 chainrings… plenty of range and very light setup. Just saying

Rico
Rico
7 years ago

Too many wires! Wireless is up next. Wait for it.

me
me
7 years ago

and Wireless Hydraulic brakes to clear the deck completely

DT
DT
7 years ago

Wireless braking?? Are you nuts?? Wait for it?? Ill wait for you to be checked into a hospital WHEN ur brakes dont work bec of a connection problem!
That is the dumbest idea. Whoever buys that is a true moron and obvsly only interested in it because it’s new. The fact that Sram is visibly working on wireless shifting is proof AGAIN of how stupid they are compared to any other company.

rico
rico
7 years ago

I’m talking about Di2 not brakes genius.

skip
skip
7 years ago

fell the calm with me
the deep zen moment, far off
on broke, fancy bikes

elastomer
elastomer
7 years ago

@DT, just took a screenshot of your comments so I can have a little chuckle a few years from now when all shifting is wireless. Just like my 1996 Mountain Bike Action articles that wonder if 4″ is “way too much travel” for any fork.

muf
muf
7 years ago

8.8k FS is pretty nice

Agten
Agten
7 years ago

They should use the PRO Tharsis XC Handlebar and stem to intergrate the cables, these are also perfect matching this bike!

fergus
fergus
7 years ago

Should have a Decepticon insignia on the head tube.

Ian
Ian
7 years ago

@Rico – Wireless road groups are heading into production, so give it a few months and it’ll happen

pmurf
pmurf
7 years ago

While wireless braking is, for obvious reasons, not an option (exquisite trolling btw, DT) In the future I would love to see hydro+regenerative braking on bikes à la hybrid cars for charging di2 batteries, lights, etc. We’ve got generator hubs now, but they do have the caveat of friction. I think it’d be cool, especially with the industry toying with this “computerize the bike” idea.

Pistolero
Pistolero
7 years ago

I like much more the racers setups, with uber light shock and fork, and sram 1 by, than the heavy and expensive di2 and electronic machine.

Collin S
Collin S
7 years ago

What type of grips are on Nino’s bike?

Robert W
Robert W
7 years ago

Very nice bike. A friend has one of the new Spark frames and the bb creaks constantly.

TheKaiser
7 years ago

@Collin S, I think those are the newest iteration of Ritchey foam grips on Nino’s bike.

RoughRider
RoughRider
7 years ago

Modulation for electronic wireless braking will be difficult and extremely taxing on the power/battery supply.
SRAM wireless has a lot of problems. Not one team is testing it at Giro and probably not at the Tour either.

Ck
Ck
7 years ago

Bring on the technology! I’d rock this full setup in a heartbeat if I could afford it.

Mac
Mac
7 years ago

I welcome our robot overlords. Wait, no I don’t. It won’t be long until bikes become like a bmw – you wont even be able to change a battery without a trip to the dealer to get hooked up to their proprietary computer.

me
me
7 years ago

I was kidding when I said Wireless braking…so funny to see you guys taking it seriously!

Derek
Derek
7 years ago

@RoughRider: Have you used the wireless SRAM group? How do you know it has a lot of problems? Some AG2R riders are riding it. AG2R is the only team in the Giro that SRAM sponsors. Even their leader, Pozzovivo was riding it before he crashed out.

Sully
Sully
7 years ago

meh….. MY 1×10 setup with non-electric suspension works pretty damn good. And I could remodel my kitchen for $13k.

And, we all know that it is the rider that makes a bike fast, not the other way around.

MTBRDR929
MTBRDR929
7 years ago

@RoughRider how would it be taxing on a battery, couldn’t it just be accomplished by a wireless signal being sent to a computer which would adjust the amount of current being sent to the brakes? I agree its a stupid idea but cars use drive by wire to control the amount of fuel the efi system is injecting into the engine, a similar system COULD be implemented in brakes.

Greg
Greg
7 years ago

You guys aren’t thinking big enough. Once we have wireless shifters, Scott should be able to integrate some electrodes into their helmets to monitor brainwaves and actuate up and down shifts. XTR already has shift maps and you can buy kids toys that allow for binary control mentally. Voilà no shifters on handlebars at all!

kc
kc
7 years ago

This must be a wonderfull bike to ride and the pinnacle of engineering excellence but somehow this is also a development that is moving me away from mountainbikes all together. Either I’m feeling to old to ride with digital gearindicators and several electronic switches on my bar or this has gone past the essence of mountainbiking.

What?
What?
7 years ago

If you care about the price, then this bike is not for you. Should be called Bike Complaining site, not rumor. All sound a bit jealous.

Jdvt
Jdvt
7 years ago

just use ESI grips. Nino uses ritchey grips because they are free. ESI are the best out there and come in three different sizes. I still dont know of any Pro racing Di2. To me Di2 is just for fun but not racing. Maybe road but not MTB.

keith
keith
7 years ago

I love my 2013 spark 29…except for the bb creaking like Robert W said in his post earlier….

That Guy
That Guy
7 years ago

@What?

NAILED IT

steve
steve
7 years ago

i dunno, i like the bike but i would opt for a non electrified version @ a pound lighter. Price is a bit steep but for a super light cutting edge bike it’s not stupid expensive

Jack
Jack
7 years ago

I love to see the tech evolve, but as KC says, we are pricing bikes out of reach of people entering the sport. On a recent several hour ride with my buddy, the people I saw on the trail were almost all middle aged guys on ~ $5000 bikes (plus a few team/pros flying past us) We need to get more teen agers and 20 somethings on the trail if the sport is goign to keep growing.

CJ
CJ
7 years ago

I have seen one of these in my local shop and it was OK in person. The amount of wires all over the place, sticking out, long cables and the like, did not feel worthy for a rig this expensive. I guess give it some time and they will get the wiring clean, like where current road bikes are.

brattercakes
brattercakes
7 years ago

@kc

I agree with you.

Mountain bikes like these have gone past the essence of mountain biking.