Downhill Bikes

Specialized S-Works Demo 8

2015 downhill bike of they year, 2016 downhill bike of the year, 2017…?

The Specialized S-Works Demo 8 is bike we chose to run at the World Championships simply because we couldn’t find a frame that beat it. We’ve now got a National Championships and Worlds podium on the beast that probably prove we were right all along.

It’s the details that make this bike so perfect. A whole year was set aside for research purposes alone. In that time the Specialized engineers tested every other downhill bike on the market to understand the characteristics that go into a winning machine. It’s strange then, that the final product is unlike anything else out there.

“A bike that shines on pure downhill”

Immediately eye-catching is the asymmetrical shape. A cut away on the non-drive side gives easy access to the shock and makes the bike look more suited to a sci-fi novella than a bike park. The finish is impeccable. True internal routing leaves the bike rattle free, an overlooked advantage that encourages you to push all the harder when between the tapes.

The shock housed within is quite the coup too. The Demo is the only production bike available with the phenomenal Ohlins TTX shock and it makes it all the more attractive. A combination of clinical Swedish construction and years of suspension know-how, have come together to produce a shock that refuses to be cowed by even the burliest of terrain.

It looks like a downhill fork is set to accompany the shock in the future, but for now a RockShox Boxxer is its boon companion. A Boxxer equipped Demo was the only bike to stain the Fox whitewash of the World Cup circuit this year and, had Loic Bruni not injured himself in training, it could have done so time and again.

The custom Sram Guide RS levers paired with Code calipers that pro racers have been bodging for years, the Sram X0DH seven speed chainset which Specialized pioneered, the Demo has it all, there is no weak link on this bike. To pick it apart, it could be longer, fitting an offset headset will get you some of the way there though.

When all the parts come together you have a truly fearsome beast. It’s a beast that’s tamed though – it comes to heel with only a hint of body-English and is muzzle-quiet with a reassuring thump emanating from within as it obeys its masters commands with unfaltering surety.

This is a bike that shines on pure downhill. Make it longer, steeper faster and the bike truly responds. There is a discernible difference between the Demo and some other downhill mountain bikes that only comes from the complete build, the mix of flex and stiffness, the rear damping, the custom parts and brawler geometry, the bassy thud and menace that this bike exudes and leaving you hungry for more. The chasing pack is not far behind but for now the Specialized Demo is the beaux of the ball.

Specialized S-Works Demo 8



Selected for Dirt 100 2017

View the full 100
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