The Specialized Rumor, the company claims, is “the ultimate women’s full-suspension trail bike” — offering big-wheel benefits to smaller riders.
It’s certainly easy to get to grips with as, out of the box, the AutoSag tuning makes the rear shock super-easy to set up, and the riding position was immediately comfortable, not perched on top but happily within the bike.
It was quickly obvious that the Specialized Rumor is all about speed. The 110mm travel gives you plenty of feedback — so what you are riding over isn’t all soaked up and flattened out by the suspension — but the big wheels take the chatter out of the trail. You can carry bags of speed, even over bigger rocks and roots and the result is some serious pace on flowy singletrack.
The 70° head angle feels quite steep and twitchy, and I wasn’t comfortable taking the Specialized Rumor down really steep, technical trails, but then that’s not really its remit. However, pushing its limits did reveal an important issue — the more forward foot position, with flat pedals as opposed to SPDs, resulted in the front wheel catching my toe on several occasions (and I’m only a size three). So SPDs are definitely the way to go.
I loved the Command dropper post, although it has required me to bounce on it hard to make it go down sometimes — a lighter rider issue perhaps? The Ground Control tyres feel secure and roll well, the standover clearance is amazing and though I could’ve gone a touch wider than the 680mm bars to match the bigger wheels, all in all, this is a fun, fast ride. Janet Coulson
We Love: The fast-rolling feel, good ride position and ample standover clearance.
We Hate: Too much toe overlap.