The Best New Bikes and Gear at the 2017 Sea Otter Classic

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Specialized Epic Hardtail
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Specialized Epic Hardtail

Specialized has a long history in mountain bike design, beginning with the Stumpjumper in 1981. This year the Morgan Hill-based company has launched its lightest ever carbon hardtail, the Epic. The frameset weighs 844 grams, which is lighter than Specialized’s flagship road bike, the Tarmac. The Epic received a redesign from the ground up and the new geometry features an extended reach and slacker head tube. Those changes aim to give the bike a more stable feel in technical terrain and reflect the changing nature of world cup level mountain bike racing. The new Epic features the Boost 148 standard on the rear axel which is designed for stiffness. A bumper ensures the bars don’t hit and damage the thin carbon top tube. Built with Shimano’s innovative Di2 electronic shifting and SID World Cup with Brain, the Epic is a cross-country rocketship. Price: $9,500. Looking for something more affordable? The Epic is also available with a Rockshox Reba and SRAM GX/NX build for $2,600. 

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