Pivot Launches the Shuttle SL
02 August 2022
By Dan Duguid
With the launch of the Shuttle SL, Pivot is leading the way in a new eMTB category - the lightweight class.
In the Shuttle SL, Pivot has put its focus on weight, refined suspension with the dw-link, and crisp handling that gives the feel of Pivot’s best trail bikes combined with the perfect blend of power assisted acceleration and climbing performance to get you up the mountain as fast as you can get down it.
To define a new category, you need a market leading advantage and Pivot is just that with the Shuttle SL weighing in at just 36.25lbs. On the scales next to an eMTB trail bike the Shuttle is light, up to 10lbs lighter in comparison to a full power eMTB and in some cases as light as your non-power assist trail bike. This low weight gives the Shuttle SL gives a snappy ride and when you need it, the assisted power when you need it, closing the gap between E-Bikes and the normal ‘analogue’ bike.
Integral to the light weight, is Pivot’s proprietary carbon fibre construction. Beginning with the inside of the frame, Pivot’s Hollow Core Carbon Moulding technology creates best in-class frames that are stiff yet compliant whilst aiding weight reduction – the perfect blend of performance for a lightweight chassis.
Working directly with Fazua on its new 60Nm motor, Pivot was able to achieve the optimum balance of battery size, motor output and placement within the Shuttle SL. This new power unit is driven by a compact 430wh battery, providing lightweight power of 450 watts to give you that all important power when riding trails and the slope increases, all the time giving enough range for your ride. This lighter weight motor and battery unit also plays a role in the overall weight loss too.
Fazua designed its new Ride 60 Drive System specifically for eMTB integration, meaning that Pivot was able to achieve a more seamless integration into its Shuttle SL. Whereas the previous Fazua Ride 50 has its drive unit and battery in-line, this is not required for the Ride 60 and has enabled Pivot to fit them into a low position and close to the centre of mass ensuring the handling of Shuttle SL is flickable on the trail. The 10Nm increase in power will also give an appreciated extra boost when you need it to power over technical terrain. With three assist modes plus a boost mode that gives you a 12 second boost of power when needed, there is plenty enough power to allow you to keep up with more powerful eMTB’s. When you aren’t asking for power, the motor will also disengage fully to ensure that no watts are lost, and the Shuttle SL is not only silent but smooth pedalling.
Striving to achieve a ride feel parallel to all of Pivot’s trail bikes, Pivot has designed the Shuttle SL with 132mm of rear travel using a refined dw-link rear suspension. The dw-link suspension is designed for anti-squat and to Pivot’s advantage, transfers itself well to eMTB’s.
Affecting anti-squat the most is power and unlike other designs that tend to squat more with the added power particularly from an eMTB, forces compromise to be made. Often having to counteract this squat with more damping and the suspension. However, with the dw-link, Pivot was able to optimise the performance for 32 or 34 tooth chainrings to maintain pedalling performance, traction, and plush compliance no matter the size of the hit and keep the Shuttle SL handling on point.
Pivot has built the Shuttle SL with progressive geometry and Flip Chip to customise the geometry akin to its other trail bike models such as the Trail 429. This is then meshed perfectly with size specific chainstay lengths and a slackened head angle compared to the Trail 429 to give consistent and intuitive handling no matter the size of bike. The Shuttle SL will feel at home on technical trails as any trail bike in Pivot’s range, with little weight disadvantage often associated with eMTB’s.
The integration of the Fazua Ride 60 has allowed Pivot to take a different design approach to its current Shuttle, creating a bike that looks almost like your ‘normal’ trail bike. It’s integration has also allowed Pivot to use its vertical shock layout, allowing for a more compact frame that is stiffer and lighter but more significantly increased shock rate progression.
Pivot has dialled the build options to allow all riders to complement their riding style.
Ride and Pro build options come with Fox E-Tuned 36 29” 150mm travel forks. Whilst both builds use the Fox 36 and Float X rear shock, the Ride is available with an SLX/XT build and the Pro comes with SRAM X01 Eagle.
If you are looking for one the lightest eMTB’s on the market, the World Cup build uses Fox Factory E-Tuned 34 29” 140mm travel forks and matched with Fox’s DPS rear shock. The bike is finished with Shimano XTR M91000.
The final Word
The launch of the Shuttle SL has introduced a new category to the eMTB market, one that Pivot is setting the new standard, and a new way of riding the trail.
The SL’s lack of mass is a key differentiator to that of its competition, it is absurdly light for an eMTB trail bike, combing Pivot’s ability to create a bike with a dynamic and lively ride in a package that now encouraging you to push that bit harder and faster. It has possibly the perfect balance between weight and power of an eMTB out there.