For 2022 Canyon has bolstered the Spectral range, now offering the bike in, 650b, mullet, and 29" wheel sizes. Along with that, the Spectral is now available both with an alloy frame and a no expense spared CFR model. There's a lot to get through here, so let's get stuck in.
Before today, you might remember the previous Spectral 27.5 and how the little wheels weren't brought over to the new shaped Spectral 29 CF that was released last year but now, that's set to change. That's because the Spectral 29 CF frame is available with 650b wheels for 2022, opening up everything we know and love about the 29er to a wider audience.
That's not all, because there's also a mullet option on the cards dubbed the Spectral CF8 CLLCTV (we've got this one on test, click here for the First Ride). It's claimed to offer the traction and rollover of the 29" wheel at the front and the maneuverability and playfulness of a 650b wheel at the rear. Canyon hasn't taken the easy route and just shoved a 650b wheel at the back, or designed a geo-adjust rocker link to get the job done. Instead, the brand has managed to design the front and rear ends so that they're modular.
That means, to create the mullet bike Canyon takes the rear end assembly of a 27 model and bolts to the front end of a 29 bike. This means that all wheel sizes run the same rocker link and therefore, benefit from the same suspension kinematic and characteristic. At the moment, there are no plans to offer 650b rear ends if you're looking to convert your Spectral 29 to a mullet bike.
If those aren't enough options for you, the Canyon now offers the Spectral with an alloy frame, making the Spectral more accessible than before. With the alloy bikes, Canyon wanted to make the bike feel as close to the carbon chassis as possible. However, unlike many brands, the alloy bike has been given its own special attention, rather than simply replicating the shape of the carbon frame.
The AL frame features bespoke tube profiles with wider radii than the carbon. The tubes are also straighter to improve alloy's stiffness characteristic for better handling.
Setting itself apart from its carbon sibling is that, in the name of simplicity, it drops the geometry adjusting flip-chip. Instead, Canyon has blended the high and low positions of the CF models on the AL, giving it the same 64° head tube angle and low bottom bracket as the CF bike in the 'low' position, while it benefits from the 76.5° seat tube angle found on the CF's 'high' position.
Its cable routing is a little different too. Rather than using fully guided routing like the CF models. The front end is internally routed with a foam-lined routing on the front end, then the rear end is routed externally.
As for its weight, the AL frame is said to weigh 3kg more than the CF.
Just like the CF frame, the AL gets replaceable steel threaded inserts at the pivots adding heaps of durability and its bearings get the same proprietary grease.
While we're on the subject of frames, Canyon has unleashed its engineers to create the CFR model. The CFR is a no holds barred build featuring an even lighter frame, claiming a 300g weight saving against the CF frame, without sacrificing stiffness.
As with last year's Spectral 29 CF, the 2022 range benefits from Canyon's Triple Phase Suspension Kinematic with increased anti-squat in the earlier stages of the rear travel and at the sag point for crisp pedaling performance. Then, there's more progression built into the leverage curve in a bid to boost control by increasing bottom-out resistance.
For 2022, all bikes run 160mm of travel at the front and 150mm at the rear, dropping the option to run 150mm at both ends.
Moving onto the geometry, asides from the new alloy model, it remains unchanged with a 64.5° head tube angle, a 76.5° seat tube angle, a 437mm chainstay, and a 485mm reach on a large frame. That's with the flip-chip in the 'HI' position. In the 'LO' position, those angles are slackened by half a degree.
In a positive move for any little rippers out there, the Spectral has gone the route of the Neuron and is now available in a Young Hero model. This bike gets a RockShox Recon Silver fork offering up 150mm of travel, paired with a RockShox Deluxe Select+ damping 140mm of travel. Then, there's a SRAM SX drivetrain, SRAM Guide T brakes, and 650b wheels wrapped with a 2.3" Maxxis Minion DHF at the front, and a 2.3" Maxxis Aggressor at the rear.
Along with the bikes Canyon has given the G5 range of components a bit of a shake up. Specifically, the dropper post is now adjustable, offering up to 25mm of travel adjust. To do this, it uses a very similar method that the PNW Loam Post, with a turnable shim that allows you to pick how much travel you want on offer.
The choice to go down this route with the dropper means that sizing up is made easier. If the bike's seat tube is a bit too tall, and the dropper's travel is a bit too much, you can cut down the travel to suit. All G5 components are tested up to the brand's highest Category 5 rating, meaning that they're deemed strong and worthy enough for use on downhill bikes, and even at Red Bull Rampage.
The 2022 Canyon Spectral range is made up of eight models, including the Young Hero, six of which receive 650b and 29" options, however, sizes XS and XL get only 650b or 29" hoops respectively with no option to opt for a different size. The Spectral CF 8 CLLCTV is mullet only.
Prices for the new Spectral range start at £2,500 and go up to £6,500, and each bike is available in sizes XS up to XL.
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