After a complete remake for the 2020 model year, the Specialized Demo 29er downhill mountain bike gets a slight refresh option for this year to let you turn it into a mullet. Using a flip chip and revised geometry, they were able to give riders equally good kinematics regardless of their rear wheel size choice…just like Loic Bruni and the rest of their World Cup and Pro riders.
How does the Specialized Demo run mixed wheel sizes?
Pretty simple, really. The Chainstays are new and incorporate a three-position flip chip for the rear link.
Put it in the short position to optimize for 27.5″ rear wheels. Put it in the long position for 29ers. Or set it in the middle to run either, giving you a bit of tunability for both wheel sizes. There’s a 10mm spread from short to long, adjusting the chainstay length from 348mm to 448mm.
Any other geometry changes?
Overall, it’s the same frame as before. Geometry changes slightly based on where the rear pivot position is set, and based on wheel size. BB height goes from 355mm to 345mm in the middle setting. Head angle is 62.5º with the smaller wheel, and 63.2º with a 29er.
This Demo launched last year with all new kinematics, and all of the anti-brake jack, square-edged hit performance carry over. Now you can just hit those square edges with a smaller rear wheel if you want.
They’re a little backordered due to COVID-related production and shipping delays, but you’ll eventually be able to find Small, Medium and Large sizes in both the Expert (black, $5,000) and Race (red, $6,800). You can still get the original 29er-only model, too, but it won’t have the new chainstays with flip chip.