Rather than the industry favourite pink’n shrink, Canyon have gone back to the numbers with their new Canyon Spectral WMN and Grand Canyon, but what do Canyon think women need?

There are now a number of brands that build bikes that not only target women with their marketing, but also show well-considered design advantages. While many experienced female riders happily choose to ride ‘unisex’ bikes, it seems crazy that half the population is overlooked when it comes to promoting cycling as the fun activity we all know it is. “Made for more” is Canyons latest campaign to present bikes that not only speak louder to women, but also have been built from the ground-up to meet the specific requirements of female riders, not just a new paint job. They have started with a womens version of the iconic Spectral trail bike, and also released a new Grand Canyon hardtail for those looking to get into trail riding on a budget.

The new Canyon Spectral WMN – woman specific mountain bike
The new Canyon Spectral WMN builds on the foundations of the Canyon Spectral, but is designed for female riders.

No more Pink’n shrink, the new Canyon Spectral WMN is a ground-up redesign.

The way that manufactures approach womens bikes varies heavily, the days of ‘pink and shrink’ are now mostly behind us, but the industry still does not have a unified approach to tailoring their bikes to the needs of a woman’s physiology. Some may argue that all bikes are unisex, and women are already well served in the marketplace, indeed a visit to any riding destination will highlight how many women chose to ride ‘men’s bikes, benefitting from the increased choice in the market, however, if we look at the ‘averages’ then we start to see that most bikes, especially the suspension and leverage curves are optimised around a 1.8 m tall, 80 kg man.

redesigned suspension kinematics on the woman specific canyon
Suspension kinematics have been redesigned to give a reduced standover height, a higher leverage curve and a lighter suspension tune.
The neat Integrated Cable Channel is continued in the WMNs model
The Spectral WMN features shorter reaches per size than the mens model.

Do women need different geometry?

The female development team at Canyon wanted to address this issue, and rather than focus on clever marketing, they went back to the numbers. Analysing the data from their Perfect Positioning System on-line bike sizing tool featuring 60,000 female riders. Canyon summarized that, on average, female riders are shorter in height, have shorter arms in relation to torso length, and narrower shoulders, they are also lighter and have a lower centre of gravity. To address this Canyon have shifted the midpoint to a size Small in the women’s range, adding a new 2XS frame size to fit bikes to a range of riders between 148 – 179 cm. The largest size in the women’s category is now a Medium. Canyon have also optimised their suspension platforms and geometry to produce two new bikes, entirely designed for women.

Trail action with the wmn canyons
Built for female riders of all levels, the new Spectral WMN is Canyons answer to a do-it-all trail bike, for women.

Canyon debut new Spectral WMN

The new Spectral WMN is a dedicated trail bike for female mountain bikers, with 140 mm of rear travel it builds on the iconic Spectral chassis, but brings new geometry and suspension kinematics to give lighter riders more control. With a 65.9° head angle, 430 mm reach in a size medium with a 74° seat tube angle. 430 mm chainstay length, the new Spectral WMN has a shorter reach than the equivalent men’s spectral (10mm in size medium) a lower top tube and a narrower 740 mm handlebar. Eagle eyed readers will see that the design of the rear linkage is different to the new men’s spectral. This has allowed Canyon to reduce standover height and ensure the kinematics and rocker have been tuned to increase performance for lighter female riders. The women’s version has a higher leverage curve to keep lighter riders in the sweet spot of the suspension. Canyon have stuck with the 27.5” wheel size, adding 30 mm internal width rims to permit the use of wider tires and features the same X-ring sealed bearings and amazing Integrated Cable Channel as launched on the new men’s spectral.

The Spectral will be available in three materials, full carbon, carbon front / aluminium rear and full aluminium in 5 models specifications. Prices range from € 2,199 for the aluminium Spectral WMN AL 5.0 with a RockShox Pike RC fork and Deluxe RT shock, Shimano SLX and XT drivetrain, Shimano Deore brakes and 30 mm DT Swiss M1900 Spline wheels, to € 4,999 for the top spec Spectral WMN CF 9.0 with a Fox 34 Factory fork, Float DPS Factory shock and full SRAM X01 Eagle drivetrain and Guide RSC brakes. 30 mm DT Swiss XMC 1200 Spline wheels and Maxxis Minion DHR / Ardent tires.

The fun and versatile, entry level, woman specific hard-tail Canyon Grand Canyon WMN
For simple trail fun, Canyon have released a new Grand Canyon, offering affordable thrills for riders of every level

Canyon Grand Canyon WMN

For those looking for a great entry-level hardtail that will not hold back progress, the new Grand Canyon is Canyons first women’s specific trail hardtail. The Grand Canyon WMN features a 110 mm suspension fork (80 mm on 2XS) and trail focussed geometry. Featuring a 74° seat tube to improve pedalling and a lower standover height to inspire more confidence. To bring the bike inline with women’s needs, Canyon have adapted the reach, bringing it a little shorter (420 mm in the largest Medium size) over the size ranges, and fitting narrower bars (680 – 700 mm). The Grand Canyon is designed to be progressive and has a slacker head angle to boost confidence and stability. The medium size of the Grand Canyon WMN will run 29” wheels for maximum performance in rough terrain, while the 2XS – S sizes will be balanced with 27.5” wheels. Narrower Ergon grips and a women’s specific saddle. The bike also comes equipped with a new Canyon Through Axle with a lever that hides away when not needed, very smooth welds finish the package.

Fulfilling the entry level segment from just € 1399 to € 1999, three models will be available in the range. All feature a RockShox Reba RL fork, Mavic or DT Swiss rims with 25 mm internal width and Schwalbe tires.

More info at: canyon.com

Did you enjoy this article? If so, we would be stoked if you decide to support us with a monthly contribution. By becoming a supporter of ENDURO, you will help secure a sustainable future for high-quality mountain bike journalism. Click here to learn more.

Words: Photos: Canyon