Bigger trails demand a bigger bike. But big isn’t the same everywhere! And sometimes you want a little help to get you and your shred sled up to the top so that you have plenty of energy to get yourself down with the biggest smile on your face.
That’s what you get with the Specialized Turbo Kenevo Super Light, a super lightweight, downhill-oriented eMTB. No eMTB is lighter AND more capable than the Kenevo SL!
As with all Specialized Turbo bikes, Kenevo SL was designed from the ground up as a bike first and an eBike second. Many other eBikes start with the motor and the bike is designed in a way that the motor and battery are bolted onto the frame. Not with Specialized Turbo eBikes! These bikes are designed in a way that they integrate the motor and battery seamlessly into the overall bike. The end result is a bike that feels and rides, both in handling and e-assist, almost exactly like a non-electric bike.
Adding to that natural feel, Kenevo SL was built using the Specialized Turbo SL drive system with 240 watts of power and 35Nm of torque. It’s you, times 2. Dig deeper into the Super Light system in our Full Power vs. SL Drive systems video. The real magic of the Super Light system is in the programming of the firmware. The result is the most natural-feeling power delivery of any eMTB system, hands down.
Powering this beast is a 320Wh battery and there is an optional 160Wh Range Extender Battery that will give Kenevo SL up to 5 hours of battery life!
The brains of the Kenevo Super Light is the Mastermind TCU. The LCD screen is completely customizable with 28 different data metrics that can be shown on up to 16 different pages! You can adjust the support on the fly using the Microtune feature and do some over-the-air firmware updates without having to go into the Mission Control app!
Speaking of Mission Control, this is the app that you use to make those custom settings for the Mastermind TCU, along with the rest of the features like motor tuning, diagnostics, and even battle Range Anxiety with Smart Ride. Check out our blog on How To Connect And Use The Mission Control App.
Based on the tried-and-true Enduro Mountain Bike from Specialized, Kenevo SL sports 170mm of both front and rear travel and rides on 29” wheels.
Like other recent trail bikes from Specialized, Kenevo SL has tons of adjustability with 6 different settings that you can use to match your riding preferences and conditions.
The headtube angle can be set in three different settings just by changing the headset cup. Set things up in the super steep (for a downhill focused bike) 64.5° setting if you are climbing more hills or want a snappier feeling front end. Slack it on out to 62.5° for a super planted and stable downhill ripper.
The adjustments aren’t just in the headtube! At the rear Horst link is a flip-chip that lets you adjust your bottom bracket up or down 6mm. This, in turn, changes your chainstay length from 442mm to 447mm. Higher bottom bracket for more ground clearance and snappier performance, lower for a more stable, planted feeling. Couple this with reduced offset forks and Kenevo SL keeps it firmly rubber side down!
Keeping the bike connected to the ground is a 6-bar linkage where there are six pivots with one goal – control. By using a Horst link in front of and below the rear axle along with the different links, the engineers behind Kenevo SL were able to fully decouple the brakes from the suspension forces. This allows the suspension to operate fully without getting locked up when the brakes are applied. The result is suspension that lets you take advantage of all that travel without losing any control.
The shock placement on the Kenevo SL is low in the frame, keeping the center of gravity nice and low, adding to the natural, stable feel. While the stock shocks are specifically RX tuned to work with the unique kinematics of each frame size, Kenevo SL uses the standard metric, eyelet mounted shock of 230×62.5 so riders can choose an aftermarket shock if they prefer!
The results of all of this tech are amazing suspension traits. This system is super pedalable for when you put power down to move forward without getting too into the suspension.
Kenevo SL features a Progressive Leverage Rate which is soft at the start of the travel to deliver good small bump sensitivity, good mid-stroke support for where you would be pedaling, firm big bump-force support deeper into the travel and tons of bottom-out resistance as you get to the end of your travel. The result is a bike that feels great underneath you from the start to the end of your travel.
Finally, this suspension design allows for a rearward axle path during the first third of the travel. This allows the wheel to move back and out of the way at first, reducing hangups that can rob you of your speed and efficiency. Once you are out of that part of the travel where you aren’t likely to be pedaling, the suspension can compress and react to what’s happening on the trail.
Like many other mountain bikes from Specialized, Kenevo SL uses S-Sizing, or Style Specific Sizing. Instead of “T-Shirt” sizing of S-XL, Kenevo SL comes in S2 through S5 sizes. This allows riders to choose from a few different sizes to select the size that works best for how and where they want to ride their bike.
All of this bike, motor, and battery HAS to come with a huge weight penalty. NOPE! Kenevo SL weighs in at a whopping 12 pounds lighter than the full-power Kenevo! At just 41.2 pounds for the S-Works bike, Kenevo SL isn’t that much heavier than a burly downhill bike.
Finally, Kenevo SL comes with a custom designed rear suspension fender to help keep all of those pivots, bearings, and shock bits working when the conditions get gnarly.