Coming into this test the Shuttle LT was a bike that a couple of our testers had already spent quite a bit of time on and had high hopes the rest of the crew would feel the same. Without sharing our input or bias, it was quick to see by the smiles on the other rider’s faces that they felt it too. Some bikes take time to dial in while others just feel right. Our review of the Shuttle LT, when you’ve got the right size, is that it feels like home.
The Shuttle LT’s suspension platform required very little effort to tune and that’s something we really like as testers and riders. We’re constantly swapping between bikes, and when it takes little more than getting air pressure and your preferred rebound feel set, it’s a major plus. It’s also a great indicator that the bike’s been designed well and the company worked with their suspension partner to give consumers a great off-the-shelf ride. No need for $1,200 shocks, or crazy custom tuning here, just hop on and let it rip. The suspension offers a firm, but not harsh feel that allows the bike to pump and accelerate nicely on backsides but doesn’t abuse the rider or hang up on square-edge hits.
ELECTRONICS & INTEGRATION |
As Shimano EP8-equipped bikes go, Pivot has done a good job with their Shuttle LT at integrating it cleanly, with the painted motor cover showing little of the motor and the small Darfon charger plug blending into the seat tube. The top tube on-off switch and USB-C charging port are neat, though we found the button could become sticky after some use. With the Shimano system though there’s no getting away from the extra wires required for the remote and display – it’d be great to see wireless versions in the future.
The Shimano motor is a solid performer but not the most powerful out there, especially notable for heavier riders where it can bog down if cadence drops or the terrain pitches up suddenly. The large 756Wh Darfon battery gives good range that is much appreciated to squeeze in that extra lap or two, but while some folks seem to be focusing on the “more is better” mentality of battery size, we rarely find ourselves draining this large battery, and would gladly take the 1.5-2lb weight savings. It would be great to have the option to select a battery size to best fit each rider’s preferences.
CLIMBING | The climbing position is efficient and comfortable and we were able to billy goat up some pretty impressive techy climb challenges, but it was also a bike that you could sit on and grind away for an hour-long climb. Traction and comfort strike a nice balance and this was a bike our crew enjoyed pointing uphill.
DESCENDING |As great as the Shuttle LT is to climb, this is a bike designed to go downhill fast, and it does that exceptionally well. Most of our riders in the 5’10-6’1 range preferred the size medium while our 6’2” and up guys liked the size large. What we noticed is that the medium rides a lot more playfully and feels much lighter, especially in the front end. Snapping it out of corners into a manual or little trail-pops off smaller features required less effort on the shorter medium-size bike. The small sizing gaps will let most riders choose between two or even three sizes to obtain their preferred handling characteristics. Compared to other bikes in the roundup, the Pivot Shuttle LT strikes a really nice balance of being confident and composed enough to tackle the truly gnarly downhill tracks but is still playful enough to pop and play on mellower trails. It’s an excellent all-rounder.
FINISH AND VALUE |
The Pivot is put together very well, with a very refined feeling all around. Speaking value, it’s difficult for us to vouch for a $12k bike as “good value”, but given the high spec, quality finish and excellent performance, it seems about right. If you’ve got this sort of money to spend on an enduro eMTB, the Shuttle LT will serve you very well.
So, do we have anything we don’t like about the Pivot Shuttle LT? Other than the fact that we probably couldn’t afford one comfortably, there’s not much that we’d change. It would also be nice if they incorporated some sort of a rear mud guard to prevent so much build up behind the seat tube in that lower pivot area. And while the Shimano motor doesn’t negatively affect us in any way, we’d love to see them offer Bosch-level power and assistance so we can remain more competitive on the races up the hill too.
The Wolf’s Last Word
Every year when our reviewers show up to start testing the bikes, there seems to be a couple that just stand out instantly. This year the Pivot Shuttle LT was one of those bikes. Whether it was a die-hard Bosch fan or someone who didn’t love the color of the bike, none of our riders could deny that the Shuttle LT was down to shred and it was a bike we all kept wanting to take out for the next ride. When you’ve got a garage full of bikes waiting to be ridden and one keeps pulling you back, that’s a pretty big sign that it’s a bike we’d suggest to our friends. Pivot Cycles have done a great job creating a fun yet capable all around enduro eMTB.
WHO’S IT FOR?
The Shuttle LT is surprisingly versatile for its 160/170mm travel, and will suit a wide variety of riders who value a bike that goes uphill and downhill well. It’s not the bike we’d choose above some of the others for a gnarly e-Enduro race, but for everything else it’s stellar…if you can afford it.
WHERE TO BUY?