Another major manufacturer has decided that the 29er niche has become a growing trend in the mountain biking scene and has jumped in with their own 29er. After years of claiming that the big S would not build 29ers because they’re just a “fad”, Specialized has reversed field and come out with a Specialized Stumpjumper 29er. Although most 29er advocates are not going to be impressed with a new aluminum geared 29er, many Specialized only bikers will give 29ers a chance now that their beloved Specialized has started building some of these sweet bikes.
Here is what Speciliazed has to say about the new Stumpjumper 29er:
What You’re Looking At: The first 29er to wear the name Specialized; our new Stumpjumper 29er.
Why It Matters: It Handles Sweet! Our unique geometry allows Specialized 29er mountain bikes to have a lower center of gravity than others of the breed, making for a nimble-yet-stable ride.
It Improves Control: Thanks to their increased diameter, larger wheels are less affected by rocks, bumps and other trail irregularities. When combined with our new The Captain tire in a 29-inch version, there’s no better 29er over a wide range of conditions.
It Enhances Stability: Like all big wheel mountain bikes, ours benefit from stability that comes from increased gyroscopic effect. Yet the Stumpjumper 29er’s unique geometry provides increased stability by offering a lower center of gravity.
It Offers Incredible Traction: A 29er’s bigger tire contact patch improves cornering, climbing and braking traction and our The Captain tires in a special 29-inch diameter offer traction and durability in the widest range of conditions possible.
It Flows: Big wheels flow through turns, over drops and in the rough-stuff. Our Stumpjumper 29er is a premiere flow finder to be sure.
Who It’s For: 29-inch wheeled bikes work best for some people due to their enhanced stability, control and improved traction. Combine bigger wheels with our unique geometry and new The Captain tires and you’ve got a 29er like no other.
Other: The Stumpjumper 29er has adjustable dropouts that are easily converted to single speed. Because the rear brake mount moves with the rear wheel during any adjustment, the disk is always positioned in the correct spot. The Stumpjumper 29er has a seat tube that is shaped and offset to keep the chainstays short and the front derailleur out of the way but still within Shimano’s standards.
Some people are taking shots at Specialized for arriving late to the party, but I’m on the other side of that line of thinking. I don’t mind if Specialized just arrived with their 29er or that Fox is only now starting to produce a 29er fork, although I am surprised and very happy that the Fox fork is being spec’d on Gary Fishers (who was the first major manufacturer to support the 29er movement) and not on Specialized (as some had predicted) but that’s a topic for another post.
I personally like more choices and the more manufacturers start producing 29er bikes/29er specific components, the more choices I will have. So bring ’em on. Now, when is Giant going to realize the folly of their ways and come out with a 29er bike?