Pivot LES cross-country bike first look

Carbon hardtail XC racer gets lighter, sleeker — and 27.5+ compatible

27.5 Cross Country Plus Sea Otter Classic

2016 Sea Otter Classic

Race ready — and 27.5+ compatible all in one package of fun.

Race ready — and 27.5+ compatible all in one package of fun (click to enlarge). Photo courtesy Pivot

Three years ago, Pivot launched the carbon framed LES, a speedy hardtail built around a slacker trail geometry with a 69.5-degree head tube angle in a category that previously considered itself incompatible with this concept. Now this race ready 29er fun bike has been revamped, shedding 50 grams, and gaining Shimano Di2 electronic shifting compatibility and 27.5+ capability.

The new LES features clean internal cable routing, with a stealthy little opening in the downtube for a Di2 battery pack. There’s also Boost hub spacing, and Pivot’s Swinger II system offers seamless conversion to a singlespeed or the 27.5+ setup with close to an inch of possible adjustment via dropout indexing. The shortest achievable chainstay length is a stubby 17.1 inches.

The Swinger II system offers seamless conversion to a singlespeed or 27.5+ setup with close to an inch of possible adjustment via dropout indexing, with the shortest achievable chainstay length being a scant 17.1 inches.

The Swinger II system offers seamless conversion to a singlespeed or 27.5+ setup with close to an inch of possible adjustment via dropout indexing, with the shortest achievable chainstay length being a scant 17.1 inches (click to enlarge). Photo courtesy Pivot

The only hitch is that although this conversion requires a straightforward dropout reconfiguration, it also takes a particular fork combination. Pivot offers all their complete builds with the new lightweight 100mm Fox 32 Step-Cast fork. But for riders looking to utilize the new bike’s 27.5+ capabilities, the Fox 34 X 120mm is the choice, as the default Step-Cast build does not play friendly with 27.5+ tires. Complete bikes start at $3000, with available sizes from S-XL, and 1x and 2x gearing available.

A day after the new LES launch we spent some time aboard this bike, including lining up for the Sea Otter amateur cross-country race. We’ll let you know how that went in another post soon.

For more info visit www.pivotcycles.com.

This article is part of Mtbr’s coverage of the 2016 Sea Otter Classic in Monterey, California. For more from Sea Otter CLICK HERE.

Photo Thumbnails (click to enlarge)

About the author: Dillon Caldwell

Dillon Caldwell is a native of Bend, Oregon with a big heart for the sport of cycling. He grew up to be a successful junior cross-country racer but got hooked on road racing during his time at the University of Oregon, where he ran the school's club cycling team for several years. He now spends the majority of his time as a road racer for both the Audi and the Canyon Bicycles - Shimano racing teams on the regional and the national scales, respectively. On the side, he is a mountain bike tour guide for Cog Wild, a cycling coach for Wenzel Coaching, a member of the board of directors for the Tour des Chutes cancer charity, and a passionate writer.


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  • Adin says:

    Is the stock swinger dropout ready for singlespeed. Or does ‘seamless conversion to singlespeed’ mean you need another $300 dropout ?

    I love my ’14 LES and this 27+ ready option makes this a worthy upgrade. Nice work Pivot

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