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Aboard the Specialized Turbo Creo SL in the Ardèche region of France, we were able to spend an entire day exploring the trails of the 90-kilometer Dolce Via, a gravel rider’s dream that has seven official sections of mixed terrain converted from an old train route.
Dizzy from the scenery and miles, we had a difficult time focusing on the bike amidst a backdrop of ancient forests, steep cliffs and tiny medieval villages, but here are our seven highlights of the bike.
- It is light. In fact, Specialized claims it is the lightest e-bike in its class at 26.8 pounds (12.2 kilograms).
- We love the range. You can go 80 miles on a single charge, and add a range extender (which we did) to boost that range another 40. That should be enough to handle most any ride.
- It’s fast. The Swiss-designed 240-watt Specialized SL 1.1 motor offers assist up to 28 mph and only takes two and a half hours to fully recharge—about the length of the average lunchtime experience in the French countryside!
- It handles like a seriously capable gravel bike.
- The Future Shock 2.0 really works. If you don’t believe us, take one ride on this bike and you will change your mind.
- The price range: We love that you can get the base model of this bike (Turbo Creo SL Comp E5) for $5,000. If you have the means, the S-Works Turbo Creo SL is $13,500, and certainly worth a look.
- It is the benchmark for e-bike gravel experiences that all other brands will follow.