Inside Line: First look at the new Devinci Spartan Carbon

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Late last summer there were signs that big(ger) things were coming from Devinci Cycles. Suspension designer Dave Weagle was working closely with World Cup downhill racer Steve Smith to develop a special bike for the (relatively) tame World Championship track in Pietermaritzburg, South Africa.

It featured not just a move toward lower, slacker geometry, but also had to accommodate a larger 27.5 rear wheel. While the Atlas, Troy and outgoing Dixon models used a vertical shock orientation in junction with the Split Pivot suspension, the new bike had to be redesigned with a horizontal shock to work with the bigger wheel and 165mm of travel.

That bike eventually became the Spartan, released earlier this year in aluminum. A few weeks ago at Crankworx we got to see the new carbon version in the fiber and resin flesh.

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There are four models in the line with the carbon frame, to pair with four in aluminum. Essentially each of the four build kits is available with either frame. All the bikes throughout the Spartan line come equipped with a 160mm RockShox Pike fork and Monarch Plus rear shock. Prices for the carbon models range from $4,299 to $7,499.

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Geometry is progressive but not extreme by the standards of some of its competition: a 65.8 degree head tube angle pairs with 13.2 inch bottom bracket height and 17 inch chainstays in the Low setting. Flip the chip at the shock mount and the bike sits up a bit, with a 66.4 degree head tube angle, 13.5 inch bottom bracket height and 16.9 inch chainstays. It can also accommodate a front derailleur, something that many of the latest all-mountian/enduro bikes cannot.

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While Smith will likely stick with his Wilson for the World Cup circuit, Devinci’s Enduro World Series rider Damien Oton took his first series victory aboard the new Spartan earlier this year in Italy.

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Beneath the downtube you’ll find this aluminum armor skid plate. It can be removed in seconds with a few bolts.

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Devinci also include a smart “center” graphic on the top tube for the upcoming FSA angle adjust headset. It’s not out yet, and this bike doesn’t have it, but when it arrives the little logo will make centering it a cinch.