It wasn’t that his idea was bad; it’s just that the execution wasn’t right. Fast forward a few years and now e-bikes have come along. “I thought my Levo was cool. It was my first e-MTB and really opened my eyes to what could be achieved with a little extra help. Even though I rode plenty of gnarly stuff on my Levo, I always dreamt of a full-blown DH rig with a motor,” said Marshall. Thinking back to one of his first rides on the Levo Marshall remembered, “I thought to myself that the ultimate e-bike would be a DH bike. One that you can pedal to the top easily, but keep the handling of a downhill bike on the way down. As soon as I saw the first photo of the new Kenevo, I thought to myself, ‘I’m going to throw a dual crown on there.’ I knew it would hurt some feelings, but I knew this was the bike to make my dream a reality.”
Even as a Specialized ambassador, the build had some hurtles. “I had a lot of people telling me it was a bad idea. They said the fork was too tall and would lift the front end too high. Everyone I talked to claimed it wouldn’t ride right. The new Fox 40 would be an entire inch longer, and have a much greater offset than the stock Lyrik that comes on the bike. I was certain that this was still the best choice.
Even before the fork swap, the BB on the Kenevo was an inch higher than my Levo. The Kenevo comes stock with a BB height of 13.78 inches but with the 40 installed it’s now 14.13 inches. This is substantially higher than the Levo, but I actually prefer it. I am able to run a more appropriate amout of sag in the suspension without constantly bashing pedals when climbing over technical terrain. A big benefit to these bikes is the ability to pedal over anything, and with a really low BB, it becomes an issue. At least for now, I’ve found a sweet spot in BB height.”