With its 90 Nm motor, 700 Wh battery and performance-oriented spec, the S-Works Turbo Levo has become a regular in our eMTB group tests and is determined to secure victory in our 2022 test, entering the race unchanged from last year. How did the most expensive bike in the entire test field fare against the competition?

For an overview of the test fleet head to the group test: The best eMTB of 2022 – 13 models in review

Specialized S-Works Turbo Levo | Specialized 2.2/700 Wh | 160/150 mm (f/r)
22.10 kg in size S4 | € 15,000 | Manufacturer’s website

For the 2022 S-Works Turbo Levo, Specialized rely on their in-house 2.2 motor with a big 700 Wh battery, a progressive geometry concept and holistic connectivity solutions. While the 2022 Levo remained unchanged from last year, its price hasn’t, increasing by € 1,000 to a whopping € 15,000. In typically Specialized fashion, the entire motor system is seamlessly integrated into the frame. Amongst the bike’s most striking features is the MasterMind display in the top tube, which, together with the Mission Control app, allows you to see crucial ride data, perform over-the-air updates and tune the support levels of the motor. From the speed sensor and remote through to the SWAT multi-tool integrated into the headset, all the way to the extensive frame protection on the swingarm, Specialized’s 22.1 kg eMTB (S4) has been thought down to the very last detail. Unfortunately, the flimsy charge port cover breaks a little too easily and we had to secure ours with gaffer tape – something we hope Specialized will remedy.

Optimised for uncompromised trail performance – The spec of the Specialized S-Works Turbo Levo

The S-Works Levo 2022 is specced uncompromisingly for trail performance. The suspension consists of a burly FOX Factory 38 GRIP2 fork and matching FLOAT X2 shock, controlling 160/150 mm travel at the front and rear. The wireless SRAM XX1 Eagle AXS drivetrain and RockShox Reverb AXS dropper ensure a tidy cockpit. Last year, we criticised the Shiftmix clamps that connect the shifter and dropper remote to the MAGURA brakes of the Levo, because they only offer a limited adjustment range, making it hard to position both the brake lever and shifter within easy reach. Unfortunately, the Levo rolls into the new season with the same problem. The SRAM brakes and Matchmaker of the Kenevo SL work much better in this respect. For the wheels and tires, Specialized rely on their in-house components, combining a low-profiled 27.5” x 2.6” Eliminator tire at the rear and 29″ Butcher at the front. Both tires come in the puncture-prone GRID Trail casing, which requires higher pressures to prevent the Roval Traverse SL carbon wheelset from getting damaged. Unfortunately, higher pressures always come at the expense of traction, even with high-volume tires.

A pioneer for many
As far as battery integration goes, Specialized are true pioneers. This is the second Levo generation where the battery is integrated deep into the down tube, right in front of the motor, yet still easy to remove. The system allows Specialized to achieve a low center of gravity despite the big battery and has already been adopted by other leading eMTB manufacturers.
The brain
The MasterMind display in the top tube and Mission Control app are the brains of the Turbo Levo. Together, they enable over-the-air updates that should allow you to constantly improve the performance of your bike. However, so far Specialized have only released minor software updates. What a shame!
Variable geometry
The special headset cups and flip-chip in the chainstay allow you to adjust the geometry of the Levo. While the different settings have a huge influence on the handling and character of the bike, the Levo is always composed and good-natured.
The Levo’s Achilles heel: the tires
Both the Butcher tire at the front and Eliminator at the rear are rather massive. However, they both come in the puncture-prone GRID Trail casing, which requires high air pressures to prevent damage to the lightweight Roval Traverse SL carbon wheelset. Unfortunately, high air pressures always come at the expense of traction, even with high-volume tires. Here a more robust casing like GRID Gravity would make more sense.

Specialized S-Works Turbo Levo

€ 15,000


Motor Specialized 2.2 90 Nm
Battery Specialized M3 700 Wh
Display Specialized MasterMind
Fork FOX 38 Factory GRIP2 160 mm
Rear Shock FOX X2 Factory 150 mm
Seatpost RockShox Reverb AXS 170 mm
Brakes MAGURA MT7 200/200 mm
Drivetrain SRAM XX1 Eagle AXS 1x12
Stem DEITY Copperhead 50 mm
Handlebar Specialized Trail, FACT Carbon 780 mm
Wheelset Roval Traverse SL29 29"/27.5"
Tires Specialized Butcher / Eliminator GRID TRAIL 2.6"

Technical Data

Size S2–S6
Weight 22.10 kg
Perm. total weight 131 kg
Max. payload (rider/equipment) 108 kg
Trailer approval no
Kickstand mount no

Specific Features

SWAT Multitool
various Geometry options

Will you upsize for more composure on fast bike park tracks or go smaller for more playful handling on techy natural trails? The S-Sizing system allows you to choose your frame size based on your desired reach and riding characteristics.
Unfortunately, the charge port cover breaks a little too easily. Gaffer tape on a 15k bike is definitely not a good look!
Levers and cockpit ergonomics
Specialized use Shiftmix clamps to connect the SRAM AXS paddle shifter with the MAGURA MT7 brake levers. Unfortunately, the clamps offer only a limited adjustment range, making it hard to position both the brake lever and shifter within easy reach.

The geometry and riding position of the Specialized S-Works Turbo Levo

The S-Works Turbo Levo uses Specialized’s “S” sizing system. This relies on super-short seat tubes across all sizes, allowing you to choose the size based on your desired reach and riding characteristics and pick from at least two sizes: size up for more stability and composure or go smaller if you’re after a playful character for narrow and techy natural trails. Moreover, you can adjust the geometry of the Levo using special headset cups and a flip chip in the chainstays. On level ground, the steep seat tube and low front put a lot of pressure on your hands, so we recommend pushing the saddle all the way back before going on long rides. Even then, the Levo can’t keep up with the most comfortable tourers in this test, the FOCUS JAM 7.0 and the Norco Sight VLT C1.

Size S2 S3 S4 S5 S6
Seat tube 390 mm 405 mm 425 mm 445 mm 465 mm
Head tube 105 mm 115 mm 125 mm 135 mm 145 mm
Head angle 64.5° 64.5° 64.5° 64.5° 64.5°
Seat angle 77.2° 76.7° 76.2° 76.2° 76.2°
Chainstays 442 mm 442 mm 442 mm 442 mm 442 mm
BB Drop 27 mm 27 mm 27 mm 27 mm 27 mm
Wheelbase 1,200 mm 1,225 mm 1,255 mm 1,284 mm 1,318 mm
Reach 432 mm 452 mm 477 mm 502 mm 532 mm
Stack 617 mm 626 mm 635 mm 644 mm 653 mm
Helmet Bluegrass Rogue Black | Glasses 100% Speedcraft | Hippack USWE Zulo 2 | Jersey Üped
Shorts Specialized Atlas Pro Shorts | Kneepad Troy Lee Designs D30 Stage
Shoes ION Scrub Amp Rusty Leaves | Socks Happy Socks

Specialized’s S-Works Turbo Levo uphill

Together with the Yeti 160E T1, the Levo shines on technical climbing sections where it pulls past the competition with its efficient suspension and powerful motor. The latter is easy to modulate and is forgiving of incorrect gear choices, despite the low-profile tread of the rear tire! The Levo also convinces on flowing trails. Wheelieing out of a corner? Don’t mind if I do! However, with a relaxed and passive riding style, you’ll have to stay vigilant in tight corners and actively weight the front wheel to keep the bike tracking.

The Levo craves speed and masters every trail with stoic composure.

New Challenges
Whether you’re making your way to the trailhead on technical climbs or shredding your way back into the valley on nasty singletrails and fast bike park tracks, the Levo encourages you to explore your limits.

The versatile Specialized S-Works Turbo Levo on the downhills

Downhill, the Levo shines in all areas, encouraging you to ride fast in all situations while instilling huge amounts of confidence and offering sufficient freedom of movement. The flip-chip and resulting change in chainstay length have a huge influence on the handling and radically transform the character of the Levo. Here you can choose between “challenging and playful” (high) and “composed and good-natured” (low). Regardless of the setting, the Specialized comes to life on rough tech trails and fast bike park tracks, because that’s where it can satisfy its speed cravings best. The excellent suspension generates plenty of traction and excellent small-bump sensitivity However, heavy riders should add more volume spacers to the shock to prevent the rear suspension from bottoming out on botched landings and hard impacts. That being said, the lack of control and traction from the tires puts the Levo behind the Yeti 160E T1 or Kenevo SL on fast trails. A special highlight of the S-Works Turbo Levo is the absence of any noises: the Levo is the only bike in this test who’s motor doesn’t make an annoying rattling sound– awesome!

Tuning tips: experiment with different flip-chip and head cup settings | more volume spacers in the shock for heavy riders | more robust tires (e.g. Specialized GRID Gravity casing)

Innovate or die!
With the app, connectivity features and battery position, Specialized are taking user experience to a whole new level. That being said, we’ve been waiting for over-the-air updates and new features for a whole year!

Riding Characteristics



  1. sluggish
  2. playful


  1. nervous
  2. stable


  1. demanding
  2. balanced

Riding fun

  1. boring
  2. lively

Motor feeling

  1. digital
  2. natural

Motor power

  1. weak
  2. strong

Value for money

  1. poor
  2. top


Forest road


Flow trail uphill


Flow trail downhill


Technical single trail uphill


Technical single trail downhill


Downhill tracks



The Specialized S-Works Turbo Levo leaves behind the entire test field on technical climbs and makes an excellent companion for adrenaline-laden shredding sessions – provided you upgrade the tires and dial in the suspension. Connectivity, frame details and motor customisation are top notch! However, there are other bikes in this test that perform better than the Levo in specific disciplines. While the Levo remains an excellent eMTB, it wasn’t able to secure victory in our 2022 eMTB group test.


  • the only bike in this test that is quiet downhill
  • integration of the motor system
  • SWAT multi-tool


  • fragile tire casing on carbon rims
  • cockpit ergonomics
  • easily damaged charge port cover

You can find out more about at specialized.com

The test field

For an overview of the test fleet head to the group test: The best eMTB of 2022 – 13 models in review

All bikes in test: FOCUS JAM² 7.0 (Click for review) | MERIDA eONE-SIXTY 10k (Click for review) | Norco Sight VLT C1 (Click for review) | Orbea Rise M-Team (Click for review) | Rocky Mountain Altitude Powerplay C70 (Click for review) | ROTWILD R.E375 PRO (Click for review) | SCOR 4060 Z ST XT (Click for review) | SCOTT Ransom eRIDE 910 (Click for review) | Specialized S-Works Turbo Levo | Specialized S-Works Turbo Kenevo SL (Click for review) | Trek Rail 9.9 XX1 AXS (Click for review) | Yeti 160E T1 (Click for review) | YT DECOY MX CORE 4 (Click for review)

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Words: Photos: Robin Schmitt, Julian Lemme