Specialized are renowned for stretching the mould, and with the new Diverge Evo that’s exactly what they’ve done. The Specialized Diverge has been one of the brands best selling bikes for the last couple of years. All roads, gravel, cross, you name it, this bike is equipped for anything. It’s almost always been aimed at the road rider looking for something a bit more aggressive, until now.
The whole range blurs the limits of what you can and can’t do on this bike. Everything from dashing around the city to letting loose on a trail, you can’t rule out the Diverge.
The last few years the lines between mountain biking and road cycling have all become merged in the discipline people call “gravel”. This thing called ‘gravel riding’ is still evolving, still being defined. A hard tail MTB or an all road adventure bike, the limits are becoming blurred with people tackling the same routes on both. So we’re wondering: What’s next?
With speed, control, and confidence on any terrain, Diverge is the most capable gravel bike ever made. Switching from Midwest gravel at Mach 5 to rutted single track with ease, nothing helps you escape faster than Diverge. It’s the ultimate getaway vehicle.
What geometry is a gravel bike supposed to have?” Wrong question. “What does the gravel rider need?” That’s more like it. Status quo tossed out the window, Specialized created geometry so progressive it’s a revelation in the saddle. That little voice in the back of your head saying, “Stay off the brakes, you got this,” just got a lot louder.
The new Specialized Diverge is inspired by the Epic, a slacker headtube, longer reach, and shorter cockpit keeps Diverge stable so you can stay in control and on the gas in soupy gravel and rutted dirt.
With some slide rule wizardry, the Specialized Diverge’s new fork has increased offset to ensure all that stability at speed never feels slow at the bars or ‘floppy’ at the front wheel.
Specialized raised the Diverge’s bottom bracket by 6mm, improving pedaling clearance and making it more nimble, but at 80mm of drop, it’s still among the lowest in gravel for true stability.
At 425mm, the Diverge’s chainstays keep the wheel tucked under the rider for lively acceleration and nimble handling, while perfectly balancing the bike for ultimate confidence.
Sure, they made Future Shock for cobbles, but turns out it’s the ultimate technology for riding rough road, thick gravel, and chunky dirt. Future Shock 2.0’s adjustable, hydraulically damped travel keeps you in control and on target, all while protecting your hands, arms, and shoulders from the battering.
More clearance = more fun. Nothing unlocks potential like tyre clearance. Luckily, Specialized were feeling generous. Very generous—47mm on a 700c wheel and 2.1” on 650B. Crazy, we know, but wait until you rip a descent with that much rubber. Hallelujah!
Specialized wanted mega-tyre clearance, but they didn’t want to resort to long chainstays or a heavy, vulnerable, dropped-stay design. The answer? The drive side chainstay is a narrow, solid beam of carbon between the tyre and chainrings. You can have your cake and eat it too.
The Specialized Diverge’s internal SWAT compartment takes gear out of your pockets and puts it low in the frame, improving handling and keeping you more comfortable. Go ahead and rip past that first aid station, or take extra gear to escape farther into the unknown. Dual SWAT pouches keep it all dry and organized.
At under 1,000 grams the Specialized Diverge’s frame is lighter than most stripped-down gravel race frames with skimpy clearance, while being more capable than anything else in the gravel. Climb it, race it, or load it down with packs and fenders for the long haul, the Specialized Diverge does it all, faster and lighter than the rest.
But wait, hang onto your flannel! They’re not done pushing, prodding, and challenging this thing called gravel. What’s next? Who the hell knows? But Specialized claim to have made the bike that’ll find out. The Specialized Diverge EVO is an alloy badass, a gravel rig with flat bars in the key of “Send It!” Slacker, longer, and fitted with the new Rhombus tyre—whatever you get into, send a video.
Progressive Handling You Say?
The progressive Diverge geometry is designed to make the Specialized Diverge more capable and give the rider more confidence off road, without losing the nimble feeling on road.
On a 56cm bike, Specialized lengthened the reach by 13mm. At the same time they made the head tube angle almost one degree slacker, and increased the fork offset by 5mm. Specialized also lengthened the chainstays by a few millimeters, and tweaked the bottom bracket drop.
With the longer reach, you can use a shorter stem and maintain an appropriate cockpit length overall. The shorter stem can offset the slower steering effect of larger tyres and makes steering more lively overall.
The geometry updates also make the wheelbase significantly longer—38mm on the 56cm— eliminating `toe overlap’ and providing a more stable feeling, overall.
The slacker head tube angle and increased fork offset maintain a ‘normal’ trail number. This ensures a balanced approach to steering inputs on and off road.
Why A Higher BB?
The bottom bracket drop on the previous Diverge was 85mm—incredibly low for any bike. While this is awesome for stability, it was a drawback with pedal strikes off road, and in particular with slightly smaller 650b wheels. With the adjusted bb drop of 80mm, Specialized maintain class leading, low bb height, with a much lower risk of pedal strikes.
Talk Carbon To Me.
The main difference between carbon frame levels is in the layup and materials. FACT 8r carbon is used on the Base and Sport level bikes to keep them light and strong. FACT 9r carbon is used on Comp, Expert, and Pro level bikes. These frames are equipped with SWAT technology and are approximately 200g lighter than the 8r frame. The S-Works frame uses Specialized’s highest level FACT 11r carbon. It is a further 100g lighter than the 9r frame and maintains the same level of stiffness.
Can I Fit Cargo?
Yes, the Diverge frame is compatible with most rear cargo racks. The lower mounting points are just above the rear axle and the upper points mount to a special seat collar that is shipped with each model.
The fork is designed to accept low rider style racks that mount to the fork legs and dropouts. Racks that mount to the fork crown, like the Specialized Pizza Rack, are not compatible with the Diverge.
What Bags Will Fit?
Most frame, seatpost, and handlebar bags are compatible with the Diverge. Note that top tube bags with Velcro straps that wrap around the Future Shock can damage the rubber boot. When using a top tube mounted bag, we recommend one that mounts directly to the top tube bosses like the Specialized Burra Burra bag.
Specialized have utilized the same, tried and true SWAT door that is on Specialized mountain bikes.
Your imagination is the limit when it comes to down tube storage. They have designed two specific SWAT pods to fit inside the frame and keep your gear protected. The larger SWAT pod is designed for storing a tube, tyre lever, and CO2, while the smaller pod is designed for other items such as a multi-tool or keys. Specialized SWAT jackets pack into their breast pocket and can be stowed in the down tube as well.