Specialized Epic Expert Carbon XC Full Suspension

4.76/5 (21 Reviews)


Product Description

  • Frame: FACT 9m carbon front triangle, Az1 construction
  • Rear Shock: Specialized AFR inertia
  • Fork: Fox F100 RL, 100mm travel
  • Stem: Specialized adjustable rise
  • Handlebars: Specialized XC low rise 31.8mm bar
  • Chain: SRAM PC-971
  • Saddle: Specialized XC MTB


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Reviews 1 - 15 (21 Reviews Total) | Next 15

User Reviews

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Devastazione a Cross Country Rider

Date Reviewed: January 8, 2014

Strengths:    Fast,improved comfort on 2014 models over previous years models,efficient,Brain gets better every year,OEM carbon rims !!

Weaknesses:    Paint chips out of the box,Specialized red's paint it's said to be fragile and I can tell it's true,warranty requested. SLX shifters are a waste of time, so is the Sram 1050 cassette. Price,but you get what you pay for and the Expert is still the best bank for the buck Epic. Weight is 11.8 kg size L with pedals,managed to drop 500gr but that did not come cheap.

Bottom Line:   
The 2014 Epic is an entirely new bike. If you're looking for the good old race bike Epic go for their World Cup models,if you're looking for an insanely fast although plenty efficient and comfortable bike get the standard Epic. My LBS offered me the WC version but I'm glad I did not take the plunge on it. Rider position is now almost on par with my Stumpy FSR,incredibly comfortable. Pleasantly surprised by Magura brakes. The Epic to me is the total bike.

Overall Rating:4
Value Rating:4
Submitted by Tommy Leopard a Cross Country Rider

Date Reviewed: February 4, 2013

Strengths:    This bike is everything I wanted it is light, fast and takes a beating. Two trip though backwoods of Colorado mountains and forest roads. This bike never let me down. Had some noise in the bottom bracket took my bike shop about 30 minutes to fix. The SRAM 10 speed shifts clean and quick. Front and rear brain adjust to most trail conditions making a smooth ride. I worried about the carbon frame breaking but it has taken some shot that would have bent my old metal bike. I bought this bike with the hopes of not having to upgrade in few year and after 2 years it looks like I'll ride it a few more.

Weaknesses:    Specialized Service: I have had a slight oil leak in the rear brain. Specialized after an (attempted rebuild) that this was not a issue and should not hurt the prefomance of the bike. Not to knock my bike shop these guy have been great and I continue to use them.

Bottom Line:   
This was a little to much bike for my level when first bought but has worked well for me the last 2 years. So keep in mind this bike is for the serious rider.The down hills are fast and it takes a while to learn how to set up the the suspension. Get it set right and you can feel the better grip in the turns and better bite on the climbs. This would be an easy 5 point review if not for the service and warranty issues. You should not have to ride around with a big dirty oil stain on a 5000 dollar bike.

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   Single tracks, forest roads

Duration Product Used:   2 1/2 years

Price Paid:    $5000.00


Overall Rating:4
Value Rating:3
Submitted by cda biker a Weekend Warrior

Date Reviewed: May 13, 2012

Strengths:    this bike is a solid race bike... very fast & nimble for a 29er (2012). overall the bike comes spec. well even the x7 front der. works great. previous rides on other 29ers were disappointing but the epic is dialed.

Weaknesses:    $5800 price...ouch, front fork rattles enough that my friends think something is loose on my bike every time we ride. would like the option to choose grip shift or trigger shifters.

Bottom Line:   
great bike for cross country racing. the stumpjumper would be my first choice for a one quiver do it all bike. the epic delivers a great racing package and that is what I'm doing on it.
if your are looking for a wickedly fast bike that handles great it would do you well to test one out chili. 3 flamin chilis on value due to price $5800. I guess that makes me the fool for buying buying one.

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   cave

Price Paid:    $5800.00

Purchased At:   2 wheeler dealer

Similar Products Used:   older epics

Bike Setup:   stock with carbon bar up grade

Overall Rating:3
Value Rating:4
Submitted by MultiRider a Racer from Colorado

Date Reviewed: August 23, 2011

Strengths:    I have the 29er version. Handles extremely well - both nimble and stable. Both Brains work well so I no longer have to worry about flipping levers or whatever. Inspires confidence, I definitely go faster both uphill and downhill compared to my old Ibis Mojo. Love the bike!

Weaknesses:    Not a fan of 2x10. I race the Expert class, so I'm not an untrained cyclist, but I sometimes need the granny and 36t in the back with the 29er hoops. And I sometimes need the big ring and 11t for top speed.
The stock wheels are pathetic at this price point. The rear hub disintegrated - cassette carrier cracked, ball bearings pouring out, trashed. The LBS couldn't supply a loaner because of the idiotic "142+" spacing. Only later did I realize they could have loaned me a 142 and re-tuned the rear der. Specialized replaced the wheel, but it took 2 weeks.


Bottom Line:   
Awesome bike with a couple component issues. A very solid "4" chilli's.

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   Lots

Duration Product Used:   1 Year


Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:3
Submitted by Daveflan a Weekend Warrior from RSM CA

Date Reviewed: July 13, 2011

Strengths:    2012 Epic 29'r Carbon EVO model, white and black looks cool. Some upgrades this year the 2010 does not have.

Weaknesses:    Good thing it has two brains, I lost mine.

Bottom Line:   
Love the bike. 2012 Epic not found on Specialized website for some reason? Not sure if I should have thought more about and IBIS or Santa Cruz for this kind of money?

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   Whiting Ranch

Duration Product Used:   Less than 1 month

Price Paid:    $5000.00

Purchased At:   Rock/Road MV

Similar Products Used:   2011 Epic, Stump, Camber demo bikes. Older Santa Cruz and Turner.

Bike Setup:   Tubless, drop post

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Fly Rod a Cross Country Rider from Ashland, OR

Date Reviewed: May 28, 2011

Strengths:    Very stiff and efficient. Brain fr/rear. 2x10. Light wheel set and tires. Exceptional handling and climbing. FAST! 29" tires rock!

Weaknesses:    Still waiting to discover one. Perhaps weight at 27 lb 10 oz with XT SPD's?

Bottom Line:   
This is the fastest climbing fs bike I have ever riden. The cf frame is very stiff I have yet to feel any bb flex. Hammering climbs on this bike is a pleasure. Catch the big ring and stand up. In two cranks you are flying. Fastest transition to speed I have ever experienced climbing. The bike inspires confidence in fast single track. I am finding I am constantly bettering my fastest loop times. Quite simply the fastest bike I have ever owned or riden.

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   Apine trail

Duration Product Used:   Less than 1 month

Price Paid:    $4300.00

Purchased At:   Peak Sports

Similar Products Used:   Kona HeiHei deluxe

Bike Setup:   All stock except converted to tubless = -3 oz per tire.

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by K-OS a Cross Country Rider from Brantford ON, Canada

Date Reviewed: May 15, 2011

Strengths:    Amazing bike, lightweight, great looks, best bike I have ever owned, feels like the thing just rides itself, handles anything the rider can and it fly's uphill.

Weaknesses:    IMHO ... NONE !

Bottom Line:   
My price above is tax in, with some upgrades added at time of purchase.

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   Many...

Duration Product Used:   Less than 1 month

Price Paid:    $5760.00

Purchased At:   Brantford Cyclepath

Similar Products Used:   Nothing, my previous bike was a KONA Hoss Deluxe.

Bike Setup:   2011 Epic Expert Carbon, Spec. Command Post, Crank Bros Egg Beaters SL, upgrade to full XO (shifters & fd)

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:4
Submitted by seattle43 a Cross Country Rider from Atlanta, GA

Date Reviewed: January 18, 2011

Strengths:    Responsive and great looking - yet the fit was best for my riding style.

Weaknesses:    Lots of consideration to dial in your fork response rate with Reba Brain in front and back.

Bottom Line:   
Bike is capable of handling more than the rider is able to provide. Looks are second to none and fortunately, the shop is very responsive if I ever need support.

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   Any

Duration Product Used:   3 months

Price Paid:    $4500.00

Purchased At:   LBS

Similar Products Used:   None...went with what I thought was best option

Bike Setup:   2011 Epic Expert Carbon and replaced entire drivetrain with XX

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:4
Submitted by aus81 a Cross Country Rider from Australia

Date Reviewed: September 12, 2010

Strengths:    Exceptional handling, climbing, light weight, brain shock is awsome

Weaknesses:    Had some issues with the stock rims, keep on breaking spoke nipples, also got the front lut of true way too easily

Bottom Line:   
I really enjoy this bike,mine is the 2010 model. definitely run the types tubeless! the stock sworks tyres are really good for most congitions. I had the shock replaced after about one month as the brain stopped working, no issues from specialized there, done quickly with no questions asked. a very well handling bike and quite custmizable with the tock stem etc... I think it's really good value for the high level of performance. 4 stars for the front wheel nipple issue

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   ones with dirt

Duration Product Used:   1 Year

Price Paid:    $3000.00

Purchased At:   byman

Similar Products Used:   trek ex 9.9/top fuel ssr

Bike Setup:   roval sl wheels, sworks XX 2 ring crank, carbon flatbars otherwise stock

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by ssbrix a Racer from Fort Smith, AR

Date Reviewed: February 11, 2010

Strengths:    Good components, light and fast.

Bottom Line:   
I thought my xc was a great bike but going from it one day to the epic the next I was definitely faster and in a race on a new course could fly through rock gardens with no problems. A great race bike.

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   Ben Geren

Duration Product Used:   6 months

Price Paid:    $3500.00

Purchased At:   Champion cycling

Similar Products Used:   2007 specialized xc comp

Bike Setup:   original except replaced seatpost with a thompson elite.

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by billabongbrad a Cross Country Rider from Sydney, NSW, Austraila

Date Reviewed: January 11, 2010

Strengths:    Light, Stiff, Direct & strong. This bike is so fast, you just aim it hand hang on.

Weaknesses:    I kept getting punchers in the light weight tyres. DT Swiss rims are alittle weak and one has cracked at the join. The new rim was $199.00 and Specialized couldn't match the colour. I now have a brown & a black rim.

Bottom Line:   
A wicked bike all fronts.
I can enjoy a fast cardio ride on open fire trails and when I tackle the technical tight trails its light enough to throw it around.
When you're spending this sort of money on a bike, not only does it have to be tough and light but it must look sexy too. This bike has got it all.
I weigh 96kgs and ride 3 to 4 time a week on tight rocky singles tracks, littered with tree roots, and this bike does an awesome job. I would love to compare it with a Stumpjumper FSR Expert Carbon as I love the thought of 140mm travel on the new 2010 model, but unless I buy one I will never know.
Every time I ride, I struggle with the thought of which bike I should have bought. I know that eventually I will give in to my needs and own both.

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   Royal National Park

Duration Product Used:   6 months

Price Paid:    $4654.00

Purchased At:   Chain Reaction

Similar Products Used:   Specialized Big Hit FSR

Bike Setup:   Stock standard off the floor

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Rotor888 a Weekend Warrior from Hamilton, Ontario

Date Reviewed: December 11, 2009

Strengths:    Rigid rigid rigid. There simply isn't any frame flex. Suspension is suprisingly easy to dial in.

Weaknesses:    I'm always nervous about chipping the carbon, but it's taken some hard hits and it's good to go. I ride it as a all mountain/trail bike and it takes it and loves it.

Bottom Line:   
Everyone on the trail loves the look of it. The carbon weave is large and looks trick. I burn through stuff I would have walked before. If I had not found this used, I would have paid full and thought of it as a deal.

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   Escarpment

Duration Product Used:   1 Year

Price Paid:    $2000.00

Purchased At:   Bought used on pinkb

Similar Products Used:   Cannondale hardtail. Rocky etx10

Bike Setup:   No tubes in maxxis ignitor rubber. Crank bros eggbeaters. Might put lighter seatpost & stem on in spring.

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by siegerhund a Cross Country Rider from North Park, PA

Date Reviewed: October 28, 2009

Strengths:    Light,quick, and very nimble! Holds excellent lines. Climbs great.

Weaknesses:    Seatpost is Hvy.

Bottom Line:   
I went from 1998 technology to 2009. WOW! I'm now faster in the mud then I was on the dry dirt on my old bike. Great investment!

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   AnySouth

Duration Product Used:   Less than 1 month

Purchased At:   Pro Bikes

Similar Products Used:   98 Stumpjumper M2 Pro ( Goodbye! )

Bike Setup:   All stock except for 2.1 Nevegals Stick E's.Will change stem and seat post soon.

Overall Rating:4
Value Rating:5
Submitted by helo300 a Cross Country Rider from Pomona, NY, USA

Date Reviewed: October 25, 2009

Strengths:    Perfect geometry. Not too twitchy, not too slow. Fairly light bike which is fast, light wheelset and great hubs. Carbon frame very stiff. Rock Shox SID Race is a great fork. Brain works very well. Avid brakes are great! Stock Specialized tires work surprisingly well for a low profile XC Race tire.

Weaknesses:    Not really a weakness, but the DT Swiss Skewers are a pain to use. Can easily swap those skewers, the seatpost, QR seat collar, and bar/stem for lighter equipment if so desired.

Bottom Line:   
Down and dirty racer that is more than plush enough for my liking. I just riding this bike. Very, very efficient and fast! Nice feel to geometry. Dialed in. Great bike and glad I purchased it.
Specialized fire-saled out the 09's in preparation for getting the new model 2010 year bikes in. $4400 bike discounted to $3200! Saaweeeet machine.

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   Stewart Airport

Duration Product Used:   3 months

Price Paid:    $3200.00

Purchased At:   Cyclesport

Similar Products Used:   None

Bike Setup:   Totally stock except I had to get pedals. Bought the Crankbrothers Eggbeater Ti pedals. Nice.

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by bike182mtb a Racer from australia

Date Reviewed: August 28, 2009

Strengths:    frame its so stiff it rocks going up hill and brain shock as a race bike its great

Weaknesses:    some parts are a bit cheap and heavy[cassette,seatpost,stem]

Bottom Line:   
this bike is so much quicker then my old NRS[on a 50 min race about 3-4 mins].it climbs well and the brain just works.the ride is a little hard for normal riding .but when its time to race watch out these things rock.dont know if you would find a quicker bike around a x/c race track.they go where you point them [maybe its the 20mm front axle]and are light sub 22 pounds.and strong the frame fields like you cant brake.this is the best bike i have riden.as someone said it hard to ride slow and you want to stand up and charge up hills i would give it 10 out of 10 chilis if i could

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   woodford to glenbrook

Duration Product Used:   3 months

Price Paid:    $3600.00

Purchased At:   lbs

Similar Products Used:   2005 carbon nrs air,mojo carbon

Bike Setup:   xt cassette,fsa carbon bars,sella itla seat,carbon seatpost,mavic slr wheels,ritchy wcs stem

Reviews 1 - 15 (21 Reviews Total) | Next 15

Review Options:  Sorted by Latest Review | Sort by Best Rating


2013 specialized epic comp alum v. 2011 epic expert carbon comp

i am in the market for a new mtb. have test ridden the '13 epic comp on sale at LBS for $2400 (from $3K retail). a friend is selling a '11 epic expert carbon comp for $2300 in very good condition. thoughts on a 4 yr old frame w/ X0/9/7 components, carbon frame, better wheels/crank set/older brain ... Read More »

Can I run 9 speed on a 2010 Specialized Epic Expert Carbon frame?

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2013 epic expert carbon fox fork upgrade

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Specialized Epic Expert Carbon World Cup 29er - my friend's sweet new bike

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2013 Epic Expert Carbon of Epic Marathon: Which one to get?

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