Specialized launches the all-new Crux: “More Than the World’s Lightest Gravel Bike” – Starting at 750gm! (S-Works)

specialized crux s-works review 2021

More Than the World’s Lightest Gravel Bike

The Crux is the lightest gravel bike in the world, with the exceptional capability of massive tire clearance and performance gravel geometry. It’s not just the ultimate expression of gravel performance, it’s your one-way ticket to gravel enlightenment.

specialized crux s-works review 2021

The Crux has always been one of the best rides when it comes to what we now call gravel or dirt or tracks, both single and double. Originally the bike was developed as a straight-up cyclocross race-machine, but after a World Championship title and more than a few wins on the endurance side, it’s safe to say that it’s the worst kept secret in the gravel world. The more we rode it, the more we knew we were forging a deeper connection with all surfaces. When we realized the breakthroughs we made with Aethos could be applied here, that’s when things started to get interesting…

specialized crux s-works review 2021

A “eureka” moment led Specialized engineer Peter Denk to reimagine the tube proportions and shaping that would make the most efficient carbon frame. It was the breakthrough that made the 585-gram Aethos a reality – longer, unbroken plies in more consistent positioning, require fewer stiffness layers, and ensure every fiber is working to carry load – turned out to be a perfect application to deliver the same performance characteristics to the Crux platform.

specialized crux s-works review 2021


  • 725G S-Works FRAME
  • 7.25KG Complete S-Works Bike
  • 825G Frame: Pro/Expert/Comp

When Road and Gravel Product Leader, Stewart Thompson, saw this breakthrough, he knew it could change gravel riding forever. The all-new Crux was born. But, we didn’t stop at making the lightest weight frame on the market. We made the two lightest weight frames – the S-Works 12r and 10r Crux frames. But being light isn’t just about shaving grams (even though at 725 grams, they’re super light). The result? A gravel bike that climbs like a dream and floats over nightmarish terrain.

specialized crux s-works review 2021

No “Lazy Carbon”

“How we taper the top tube, how we taper the downtube, the curvature of how we run into the head tube and the bottom bracket is extremely important. If we follow those shapes, we get rid of all stiffness layers. Just with this shape, we can save 150 grams of composite weight.” – Peter Denk SPECIALIZED FRIEBERG

specialized crux s-works review 2021

“We knew an ultralight bike with massive tire clearance would truly unlock gravel performance. With the breakthroughs made on Aethos, we finally had the technology to make it a reality with the new Crux.” – Stewart Thompson ROAD AND GRAVEL PRODUCT LEADER

specialized crux s-works review 2021


  • 47C/650B X 2.1” TIRE CLEARANCE

More clearance means more capability. With Diverge-level tire clearance, Crux takes you anywhere you can imagine, at full gas.

What makes the Crux define a new category of dirt-perfect gravel machines? Its ability to handle anything that you can throw at it, thanks to the same 700 x 47c/650b x 2.1” tire clearance as the Diverge. The Crux doesn’t employ the solid beam chainstay the Diverge uses or the swopping, vulnerable dropped stays some other platforms resort to for tire clearance. The Crux’s straight-shot, hollow drive-side chainstay allows us to keep the whole package light, elegant, and focused around the 1x and gravel 2x cranksets that have elevated the category. Tire choice then becomes the final piece of this puzzle, the ultimate way to adjust and fine-tune the riding experience depending on where, how, and over what surfaces you ride.

specialized crux s-works review 2021

Clearance to Weight Ratio

Introducing CTW, because we all know the industry needs a new standard. But seriously, nothing unlocks a gravel bike’s full potential like the combination of an ultra-lightweight frame with massive tire clearance. How does the competition stand up? *

* Based on published competitor claims.

specialized crux s-works review 2021

The Ride Quality

At one time, it was just assumed that the only way to go fast off-road was to bounce and chatter with an expected harshness. Well, it turns out that doesn’t have to be the case.

Think about the whole bike as an ecosystem, an incredibly light frame paired with a compliant seatpost for a supple-in-the-saddle feeling that makes the ride quality shine. Combine that with favorable tube shapes and lack of extra plies that were part of our learnings from Aethos, and suddenly that whole system is working together to respond more naturally. It’s a deft, nimble feeling that this style of riding deserves – responsive and supple on every surface. And with our Rider-First Engineered™ philosophy at play, it’s a feeling that translates across every frame size.

In It to Win It: Performance Gravel Geometry

Our Performance Gravel Geometry creates the feeling of being “in” the bike for incredible confidence while still feeling quick and nimble at the bars.

The 10mm longer reach allows for ideal weight distribution, eliminates toe overlap, and uses a shorter stem for more responsive steering. The low stack reinforces optimal weight distribution and is ideal for an aggressive fit while the 72mm bottom bracket drop is the sweet spot to create a low and confident feel while ensuring the bike remains nimble for quick line adjustments and tight, fast tracks.

specialized crux s-works review 2021

specialized crux s-works review 2021

The New Modern Gravel Bike

It’s been said that perfection is achieved when there is nothing left to take away.

specialized crux s-works review 2021

The thread of minimalism established with the Aethos was also the guiding principle of the new Crux. The removal of the rack, fender, and bag mounts ensures riders can enjoy the straightforward experience of simply riding. The small parts and details we deemed necessary were borrowed from the Aethos, including minimalist dropouts, thru-axles, seatpost clamp, and derailleur hanger. Finally, in achieving this high-performance and minimalist design, we didn’t sacrifice the features that riders need for reliability and personalization, like a 27.2mm seatpost and threaded bottom bracket.

specialized crux s-works review 2021

specialized crux s-works review 2021

specialized crux s-works review 2021

Crux Pricing & Component Specs

  • S-Works Complete Bike – $US 12,000
  • Pro Complete Bike – $US 8,000
  • Expert Complete Bike – $US 6,000
  • Comp Complete Bike – $US 4,200
  • S-Works Frameset – $US 5,000
  • Regular Frameset – $US 3,200
specialized crux s-works review 2021
Crux S-Works
specialized crux s-works review 2021
Crux S-Works Specs
specialized crux pro review 2021
Crux Pro
specialized crux s-works review 2021
Crux Pro Specs
specialized crux expert review 2021
Crux Expert
specialized crux s-works review 2021
Crux Expert Specs
specialized crux comp review 2021
Crux Comp
specialized crux s-works review 2021
Crux Comp Specs

S-Works Crux Frameset

specialized crux s-works review 2021

specialized crux s-works review 2021

Crux FAQ

Is the Crux a cyclocross or a gravel bike?

The previous generation Crux was focused on CX racing. With this generation of Crux, we’ve focused on the gravel experience. The bike’s incredible light weight, massive tire clearance, and responsive feel are a package that many gravel riders have been asking and waiting for. At the same time, the Crux retains the performance fit and feeling that cyclocross racers appreciate.

What is the Crux tire clearance?

The Crux has clearance for 700 x 47c or 650b x 2.1” tires on modern, wide rims. This is the same tire clearance as on the Diverge. Claimed and actual tire sizes do vary, so always check that there is proper tire clearance when installing a new setup.

Is the Crux UCI-approved?

Yes, the Crux is UCI-approved.

What does the Crux frame weigh?

The S-Works 12r frame weighs 725g, and the 10r carbon frame weighs 825g (lightest paint job/56cm). The S-Works 12r fork is shared with all models and weighs just under 400g with the steerer cut for a 56cm frame.

What does the complete Crux bike weigh?

Weights of complete 56cm Crux bikes in each model are below. These weights reflect an out-of-the-box, tubeless setup.

  • S-Works – 7.25kg
  • Pro – 7.6kg
  • Expert – 8.1kg
  • Comp – 8.5kg

How many bottle cage mounts does the Crux have?

The Crux has mounts for three bottle cages – two in the usual spots in the front triangle and a third under the downtube.

Does the Crux have any other accessory mounts besides bottle cages?

Keeping with its minimalist nature, the Crux does not have rack, fender, or TT bag mounts.

How should riders choose between a Crux and Diverge?

The Diverge is the more versatile, capable, and compliant bike. Riders looking to ride further, with more gear, or who want the most confidence-inspiring bike should choose a Diverge. Riders who prioritize a quick, light, nimble ride should choose the Crux for its lightweight and responsive nature.

Is the Crux compatible with dropper posts?

The Crux is compatible with all 27.2 dropper posts. Wired dropper posts can be routed internally through the frame.

Is the Crux compatible with 2x drivetrains?

All Crux complete bike models feature 1x SRAM drivetrains, however, the Crux is compatible with 2x drivetrains as well. The Crux shares the bolt-on FD mount from the Aethos and is compatible with 2x electronic GRX and eTap drivetrains. The Crux is not compatible with 2x mechanical drivetrains and some road 2x gearing configurations due to chainstay or FD mount positioning limitations.

Does the Crux have a weight limit?

The Crux frameset has a 275lb/125kg weight limit. However, the weight limit of Specialized and Roval carbon components spec’d on complete bikes is currently 240lb/109kg.

Since the Crux is so light, are there any restrictions on how and where it can be ridden?

The Crux does not sacrifice strength or durability to achieve its incredible lightweight. The Crux meets or exceeds all of the same testing and safety criteria we have for gravel bikes like the Diverge.

Additional Photos, S-Works & Pro Models

specialized crux pro review 2021

specialized crux pro review 2021



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