2012 Specialized Crux Cyclocross Bikes Lose Carbon, Gain Disc Brakes and Tubular Tires

2012 Specialized Crux Comp disc brake cyclocross bike with SRAM Apex component group

For 2012, Specialized has ditched the carbon fiber in its Crux cyclocross bike line, but they’ve brought disc brakes to the mainstream and introduced three new tubular ‘cross tires.

We spotted a prototype earlier this year that looked pretty close to production ready, and here it is. The Crux Comp gets Avid mechanical discs paired with a SRAM Apex component group, FSA cranks and Specialized’s CXD wheels for $2,100. The main frame carries over from 2011 with their OSBB (oversized bottom bracket), E5 alloy and same basic tubesets, however it does switch to full length housing in the internal shift cable runs. What’s new is the 135mm rear hub spacing (yes!) and S-Works level full carbon fork.

The mountain bike rear hub spacing will let anyone with a standard QR set of 29er wheels run their existing wheels on the bike, making a frameset ($880) option a very, very appealing option for fans of Specialized. Keep reading…

So, while there’s no longer a carbon fiber option in the Crux family, there are three additional cantilever brake options as complete bikes ranging from $1,450 to $2,750 and a canti-ready frame module for $770. The canti models get a new forged, one-piece brake hanger to mitigate brake chatter.

On the disc brake model, the new FACT carbon fork is tapered with a 1-1/2″ lower bearing, which Specialized says makes it stiff enough to resist any brake stuttering. The fork is built for a 140mm front rotor, but the complete bike will come with a 160mm and spacers. The dropouts face forward slightly to help keep the wheel in just in case it’s not clamped in well.

The rear brakes use IS mounts rather than direct mounts, which adds a bit of weight but makes it a bit more durable in the long run. We’re betting 2013 will see a carbon model with post mounts.

The bike’s geometry is pure race, using the same specs as Todd Well’s race-winning E5 model from last season.

2012 Specialized Trigger, Terra and Tracer tubular cyclocross tires

From left to right, Specialized is offering the new Terra, Tracer and Trigger tubular cyclocross tires for mud, all-around and smooth/dry conditions respectively. They’re priced at $100 each, pretty reasonable considering the treads are hand glued to a 260TPI 33mm polycotton casing. This puts them right at the edge of the UCI’s max width allowance.

Comments

Uri - 07/18/11 - 6:31pm

Wasn’t the carbon one last year just a rebadged Tri Cross Carbon anyways? Good on ‘em for taking the cx market seriously though, I’ve already got one on the way.

wigs - 07/18/11 - 7:05pm

i can think of 20 cross bikes that are more appealing.

Brett - 07/18/11 - 8:28pm

@Uri last years carbon Crux was a completely different from the Tri Cross. Different geometry and frame carbon layup.

professor - 07/18/11 - 10:33pm

Any word on tire clearence?

Monkey - 07/19/11 - 8:31am

Tires look like they are still being made by Kenda?
the middle one looks like a small block lite.
The Terra looks very similar to another Kenda tire.

Specialized has pumped so much money into pro teams, I think they’ve lost touch with the average rider. They’ve been too busy building and selling 10k s-works bikes, who the f_*^ has that kind of cash?

Their price points keep going up.
Shops are marking up their grass-roots programs to make money on the deal.
I am not sure their bikes are so “special” any more.

Uri - 07/19/11 - 9:06am

@Brett

2010 Crux Carbon had different geometry than the alloy Tri-Cross (and the alloy Crux) but identical geometry to the 2009 Tri-Cross Carbon. Also, both described as “S-Works FACT 10m carbon, Az1 construction, semi-compact design, Zertz inserts, OS BB.”

http://www.specialized.com/us/en/bc/SBCProduct.jsp?arc=2009&sid=09Tricross&gold_ses=

Matt - 07/19/11 - 11:45am

The 2011 Carbon Crux and 2010 Carbon Tricross had the exact same geometry just a different carbon layup.

Alex - 07/19/11 - 1:18pm

Nice-looking bike.

Any word on weight?

Any details of the moisture sealing on the internal cable routing?

If anyone’s interested, I just finished machining and am now testing a bolt-on rear disc brake adapter for Kona Jake, Jake the Snake, Major Jake aluminum frames. It’s an IS mount, so all the usual IS adapters will bolt up to it. Looks like it should fit almost all frames since 1999, but haven’t checked this exhaustively. If you are interested, send me an e-mail at a_stickler(at)yahoo.com.

Adam - 07/19/11 - 2:34pm

For anyone interested in disc brakes on their CX bike, there is also this option:
http://2btherapy.com/bikes/brake-therapy-conversion-kit
I haven’t installed one of these on a bike in YEARS but to the best of my knowledge, they are still in business. They were a good product, and I assume are still such.

Dylan - 07/19/11 - 8:45pm

Wow, how depressing to see such a design theft. I hope the Vanilla Speedvagen crew provides them with a cease and desist like Specialized does with everyone else.

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