The latest incarnation of Specialized’s evergreen bike strikes with an impressive look and cool features such as the SWAT box. But can the Specialized S-Works Stumpjumper convince on the trail with its featherlight 12.48 kg weight and modern geometry?

For an overview of the test fleet head to the group test: The best mountainbike of 2021 – 22 models in review

Specialized S-Works Stumpjumper | 140/130 mm (f/r)
12.48 kg (Size S4) | € 9,999 | Manufacturer-website

Undoubtedly, many bike brands reach deep into their bag of tricks to create unique and striking frame designs. The Californian cult brand is no exception, making the latest version of the Stumpjumper distinctively recognisable as a Specialized. Thanks to the carbon yoke, the elegant black S-Works carbon frame is a smidge lighter than the standard carbon version. The Stumpy’s classic Horst-link FSR pivot point has been replaced by flex stays. By moving away from the FSR linkage, Specialized were also able to squeeze the rear brake calliper between the seat and chainstays, ensuring a tidy look and making room for a big 200 mm rotor. While at 12.48 kg, the S-Works Stumpy is the lightest bike in our big 2021 mountain bike group test, it still offers a generous 130 mm travel at the rear. The frame features Specialized’s proprietary SWAT storage box with an integrated bottle cage, in which you can store all your essentials like snacks, CO2 cartridges and spare tubes. On top of that, there’s a SWAT tool hidden in the steerer tube, where it’s quick and easy to access – awesome! The internally routed brake line combined with the wireless AXS groupset and dropper post ensure a tidy look. Only the separate shifter clamp spoils the otherwise clean cockpit, leaving us with one simple question: why not use a Matchmaker? Moreover, the frame comes with a big down tube guard and a reasonably-sized chainstay protector that helps keep noise down.

A low system weight is great for climbing and accelerating. But if you shave off grams by using a light, puncture-prone tire with little tread, you won’t get far on a mountain bike. Because with the first rock you come across, your hard-earned momentum will vanish in a white cloud of tubeless sealant

The bling department – The high-end spec of the Specialized S-Works Stumpjumper

For their exclusive S-Works models, Specialized rely only on the finest components – but they don’t give them away for free! Our test bike retails at € 9,999 and is the only bike in test with a 140 mm FOX 34 Factory with a GRIP2 damper. Cool! At the rear, the FOX DPS Factory shock is easy to access and controls 130 mm travel. The high-quality SRAM XX1 AXS drivetrain with a 10–52 t cassette in oil-slick finish contributes to the tidy look. There’s even room for a small chain guide, which holds the chain in place on rough trails. The wireless package is rounded off by a Rock Shox AXS Reverb dropper, which has 170 mm travel on our size L test bike. All levers and shifters are attached to 780 mm Specialized Trail FACT carbon handlebars with 27 mm rise. SRAM G2 Ultimate four-piston brakes with a 200 mm rotor at the front and smaller 180 mm disc at the rear take care of the braking. While these offer tool-free lever reach and bite point adjustments, in combination with the small rear rotor they overheat quickly and require strong fingers, especially for heavy riders. The Stumpy rolls on Specialized’s own-brand tires mounted on a lightweight XC Roval Control 240 carbon wheelset, which is not as robust as the Traverse SL model of the Stumpjumper EVO and Turbo Levo SL. Unfortunately, for the tires, the Americans still rely on an old-generation Butcher and Purgatory (f/r), both with the old rubber compound and puncture-prone GRID casing, which, in combination with the carbon wheelset, could lead to costly breakdowns. For the rear in particular we would prefer a tire with a more pronounced tread and more robust casing, like the Eliminator GRID Trail. The fastest acceleration in the world is useless if it vanishes in a white cloud of tire sealant on the first rock you come across.

SWAT aka “Store Waffles And Tools”
Plenty of room for whatever you want. We love to fill ours with sweets and tools.
The standard Specialized Purgatory tires come in the puncture-prone GRID casing and old GRIPTON rubber compound. To protect the carbon rims from impacts and improve grip, we’d like a tire with a more robust casing and grippier profile.
Caution hot!
The small 180 mm brake rotors tend to overheat quickly. However, the new position of the brake calliper is great!

Specialized S-Works Stumpjumper

€ 9,999


Fork FOX 34 Factory GRIP2 140 mm
Rear Shock FOX DPS Factory 130 mm
Seatpost RockShox Reverb AXS 170 mm
Brakes SRAM G2 Ultimate 200/180 mm
Drivetrain SRAM XX1 Eagle AXS 1x12
Stem Deity Copperhead 35 mm
Handlebar Specialized Trail FACT Carbon 780 mm
Wheelset Roval Control 240 Carbon 29"
Tires Specialized Butcher/Purgatory GRID GRIPTON 2.3

Technical Data

Size S1 S2 S3 S4 S5 S6
Weight 12.48 kg

Specific Features


As you can hear, there’s nothing to hear!
The chainstay protector is well-positioned and padded, effectively eliminating annoying chain slap. We love quiet bikes!
Weird flex dude!
No linkage here! While the flexible seat and chainstays are manufactured in one, integrated flex allows for suspension travel.
Treasure hunt
What do you find at the end of the rainbow? An elegant oil slick XX1 cassette.
That’s how we like it!
The high-quality GRIP2 damper allows the 140 mm FOX 34 Factory fork to work at its best.

The geometry of the Specialized S-Works Stumpjumper

The revised Stumpjumper adopts Specialized’s new S-sizing system, which lets you pick your frame size depending on your riding style and preferences: go large if you want a stable bike or go small if you’re after playful handling. This is possible thanks to the low seat tube, which is just 425 mm in size S4. However, the dropper can still be fully inserted into the frame and, in combination with a reach of 475 mm (size S4) and high stack of 632 mm, ensures sufficient freedom of movement. This means that most riders can choose from up to three different frame sizes, from S1 to S6 – great! In addition, a flip-chip integrated into the shock mount lets you adjust the geometry of the bike. In this test, we ended up riding almost exclusively in the downhill-oriented low setting. Specialized combine a rather slack 65° head angle with very short 432 mm chainstays.

Größe S1 S2 S3 S4 S5 S6
Seat tube 385 mm 385 mm 405 mm 425 mm 445 mm 465 mm
Top tube 563 mm 583 mm 605 mm 632 mm 660 mm 692 mm
Head tube 95 mm 100 mm 110 mm 120 mm 130 mm 140 mm
Head angle 65.0° 65.0° 65.0° 65.0° 65.0° 65.0°
Seat angle 76.0° 76.0° 76.0° 76.0° 76.0° 76.0°
Chainstays 432 mm 432 mm 432 mm 432 mm 442 mm 442 mm
BB Drop 47 mm 42 mm 42 mm 42 mm 42 mm 42 mm
Wheelbase 1,152 mm 1,175 mm 1,200 mm 1,228 mm 1,268 mm 1,302 mm
Reach 410 mm 430 mm 450 mm 475 mm 500 mm 530 mm
Stack 614 mm 613 mm 622 mm 632 mm 641 mm 650 mm
Helmet Fox Speedframe | Glasses 100% Hypercraft | Shirt Carhartt T-Shirt | Shorts Fox Ranger Short
Shoes Ride Concepts Men’s Transition Clipless | Socks Stance

Downhill, the low bottom bracket (42 mm drop) integrates you nicely between the wheels but also requires good timing to avoid smashing the cranks into obstacles. Uphill, the Specialized Stumpjumper shines with its comfortable pedalling position, which also makes it a great option for long rides. The position is comfortably rear-heavy but at the same time sufficiently centred to prevent the shock from sinking into its travel on steep climbs. The suspension is always supportive even with the shock fully open and only starts using its travel on impacts and steps, whilst always generating sufficient traction even on loose terrain. Moreover, the light carbon wheelset combined with the thin and light Specialized tires ensures great acceleration. Nevertheless, the Stumpy doesn’t rank amongst the best bikes on test and even lags behind the equally comfortable Trek Fuel EX, which is actually a whole kilogram heavier!

Bridging the gap between tours, climbs and trails ain’t easy. However, the Specialized S-Works Stumpjumper manages this perfectly. If you ride fast and love to get rowdy on rough trails, we recommend you take a closer look at the Stumpjumper EVO.quote]

[quote]Tuning-tips: more robust tires with grippier profile | bigger brake rotor at the rear

Finally downhill! The Specialized S-Works Stumpjumper on the trail

Downhill, the Specialized Stumpjumper is fun to ride for everyone! The short chainstays and high front ensure playful handling and, in combination with the low system weight, make it easy to pull into the air. Add the low bottom bracket, and the Stumpy conveys great amounts of confidence on steep terrain and only rarely triggers unpleasant OTB-chills on high gradients. Where beginners benefit from the intuitive handling, experienced riders take advantage of the Stumpy’s great manoeuvrability, which lets it chase after the Trek Fuel EX at close distance on singletracks. While the suspension of the Stumpjumper works effortlessly and generates good traction in corners, the poor tire choice gets in its way! At high speeds and on very rough terrain, you’ll reach your limit and, like with the Yeti SB115, have to slow down to avoid losing control or bottoming out harshly – aggressive riders need far more support from the suspension to feel safe and confident.

Riding Characteristics



  1. sluggish
  2. efficient


  1. cumbersome
  2. playful


  1. nervous
  2. confident


  1. demanding
  2. balanced


  1. harsh
  2. plush

Fun Factor

  1. planted
  2. poppy

Value for money

  1. terrible
  2. very good

Intended Use










Die edle Ausstattung und der schicke Look ziehen so einige Blicke auf das Specialized S-Works Stumpjumper. Zusätzlich schafft es einen gelungenen Spagat zwischen Tour, Uphill und Trail-Performance. Durch sein intuitives Handling lässt sich das Stumpy von jedem Fahrertyp gut beherrschen und liefert erfahrenen Piloten ein sehr agiles Bike. Will man es richtig krachen lassen, bietet das Fahrwerk nicht ausreichend Gegenhalt und die Reifen zu wenig Grip. Hier sollte man zum großen Bruder, dem Stumpjumper EVO greifen, welches mehr Sicherheit vermittelt und große Hindernisse leichter wegbügelt.


  • intuitive, good-natured handling
  • SWAT features and great build quality
  • bridges the gap between touring, uphill and singletrail performance


  • puncture-prone tires paired with XC carbon wheelset
  • brakes overheat quickly and require strong fingers on long rides

Find more information here:

The testfield

Get an overview of the grouptest here: The best mountainbike of 2021 – 22 models in review

All Bikes in this group test: Canyon Neuron CF SLX 9 (Click for review) | Canyon Spectral 29 LTD (Click for review) | Canyon Stoic 4 (Click for review) | FOCUS THRON 6.9 (Click for review) | Ibis Ripmo V2 (Click for review) | MERIDA eONE-SIXTY 10K (Click for review) | MERIDA NINETY-SIX 8000 (Click for review) | Nukeproof Reactor 290C (Click for review) | Orbea Rise M-Team (Click for review) | Propain Hugene (Click for review) | RAAW Jibb XTR Build (Click for review) | Rocky Mountain Instinct C70 (Click for review) | Santa Cruz 5010 X01 (Click for review) | Santa Cruz Tallboy CC X01 (Click for review) | SCOTT Ransom 900 Tuned AXS (Click for review) | Specialized S-Works Stumpjumper | Specialized S-Works Stumpjumper EVO (Click for review) | Specialized S-Works Turbo Levo SL (Click for review) | Trek Fuel EX 9.8 GX (Click for review) | Trek Top Fuel 9.9 X01 (Click for review) | Yeti SB115 TURQ3 (Click for review) | YT IZZO BLAZE 29 (Click for review)

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Words: Peter Walker Photos: various

About the author

Peter Walker

As editor-in-chief, Peter is as much a man of action as he is of words. This expert, screw-driver-flexing two wheeled-whizz has many envy-inducing characteristics, including a background in motocross, several EWS race plates to his name, and more than 150 recorded days at Whistler Bike Park. However complex the bike and however steep the trail, he’s probably already nailed it, twice. Oh, and he can do it all on skinny tyres too. When it comes to guiding consumers, Peter cut his teeth at Vancouver’s oldest bike shop and now puts pen to paper on the daily translating this know-how into our editorial plan. When not tearing up Stuttgart’s local trails while testing bikes, he loves nothing more than loading up his self-renovated VW T5 and hitting the road. The fact that he’s a trained paramedic gives his colleagues reassurance out on the trails. So far we haven’t had to call him by his alias ‘Sani Peter’, so here’s hoping he keeps it right side up for the rest of his time here!