Pivot Les Ultimate Guide

This is the Ultimate Guide to the Pivot Les. The Les and all of its versions deserved an entire page for all the details.

When looking for the ideal Single Speed frame I discovered the Pivot’s hardtail option. Not only could this frame be a fantastic geared hardtail, it can be coverted to a Single Speed with sliding dropouts but also a Fat bike that will take almost any tire size. 

In addition to the above bike styles it can also be fitted with 29 inch wheels, 27.5 inch, and 27.5 inch plus wheels. 

As you will learn with all of its versatility this there is nothing less about this frame except the name.

Pivot Cycles was established in 2007 by Chris Cocalis in Tempe, Arizona, and the Les is their hardtail mountain bike offering. The name is a play on words pivot and less since it is not a full suspension.

Originally announced and sold in late 2012/early 2013. The frame geometry and build have remained almost unchanged, which means they pretty much got it right from its introduction.

V2 of the Frame

In late 2016 a 2nd version announced.  This update increased the wheel/hub spacing from 142mm to 148mm (boost) spacing. In addtion, some of the carbon layup changed and support for Di2 shifting was added.  This updated frame is referred as V2. 

Currently (as of 2020) the Les is available in three frame types, the Les, Les 27.5 and Les Fat.

  • Les = Geared or Single Speed, 29″/27.5+ wheels
  • Les 27.5 = Race Version, 27.5″ wheels, super light
  • Les Fat = Fat Bike Version 

Les

The Les is the original and was designed to be a versitle. 29″ or 27.5 plus bike. Using a patented rear dropout system the frame can be converted to a single speed.

Highlights

  • 27.5+” / 29″ wheels
  • Referred to as “The Les”
  • Can be configured as a Single Speed

Les SL

This is the newest addition to the family. Released in 2019 the SL focuses on being super light. It is available October 1, 2019

Highlights

  • 29″ Wheels (not 27.5+ capable, I think)
  • Designed for Racing
  • Frame weight of 2.3 pounds or 1045 grams
  • 3/4 pound or 300 grams lighter than the Les
  • NOT Single Speed Compatible

Les 27.5

  • Built for 27.5 wheels.
  • Can not be converted to a Single Speed.
  • Designed to be the lightest most nimble race bike

Les Fat

  • Set to take almost any size wheel
  • Can be converted to a Single Speed
  • Can be set up with Fat Tires

Geometry & Specs

Les Frame Details

Frame first released in 2012

Internal Cable Routing

Direct Mount Front Deraileur

Pressfit BB92 bottom bracket

The Pressfit 92 allows the frame to be wider on the bottom tube, wider on the down tube, wider stance on the chainstays.  This really stiffens the bottom bracket area so that the frame will absorb more of the bumps without having to resort to a stiffer carbon layup.

Wheel Spacing (Boost)

V1 of the frame is shipped with a full carbon 142mm by 12 carbon thru axle design.

V2 of the frame has 148mm by 12 boost spacing

Convertible to Single Speed

The frame is convertible from geared setup to a single speed sing the swinger dropout system.

The swinger system comes with quick index adjust system so that you can easily adjust both sides identically. Keeping the wheel centered. The system does not allow the wheel to slide forward under chain tension. The conversion kit also comes with all the caps needed to cover all of the cable ports. The entire kit is a well thought out thourogh process to convert the bike to a single speed.

Rider Sizes

Rider Size can go down to the 5’5″ / 5’6″ with the small size

Les SL Frame Details

Frame Sizes: Small Medium Large Extra Large

Designed to be Super Light.

Integrated Headset

1x and 2x compatible (front derailleur) 

Les SL Announcement Video https://youtu.be/Sb44jo9j60E 

Les 27.5 Frame Details

Direct mount front deraileur

Internal Cable Routing

There is an extra small size that can fit riders all the way down to a 4’11”

Features 16 3/4 inch Chainstays

69 1/4 head tube angle

Very fast race bike that can handle more aggresive terain.

142 by 12 thru axle

Pressfit 92 bottom bracket

Dedicated Axel system so it can not convert to single speed, this saves about 100g on the weight of the frame. Les 27 was meant to be as light as possible

Les Fat Frame Details

The Les Fat is intended as fat tire specific. It was originally released early 2016 in a black (raw carbon) with blue accents color. It was then re-released in 2019 in a light blue color.

The only difference between the two different versions was color and components.

The frame geometry is the same between the two releases.


The Les Fat has 197mm x 12mm rear hub/wheel spacing. The front hub/wheel spacing is 150mm x 15mm.

Les and Les 27.5 Differences

Key Differences between Les and Les 27.5

Les converts to single speed

Les 27.5 no conversion to single speed

V1 and V2 Frames Differences

V2 has boost spacing

V2 has slightly different carbon layup

V2 has different colorways 

v2 can handle Di2 cable routing (need to find out if v1 can)

Colorways

Pivot has kept colors clean and straight forward for the Les. There are just two colors for each size and each version

Les - v1

  • Sold between late 2012 and late 2016
  • Black with white/red accents
  • Orange with white/black accents

Les v1 - Black with white/red accents

2015 Black with red and white accent pivot les frame only

Les v1 - Orange with white/black accents

Pivot Les v1 Orange

Les - v2

  • Sold between late 2016 to Present (currently fall of 2019)
  • Black with Blue Accents. This is also referred to as “Team Blue”
  • Black with Red Accents. This is referred to as “Matte Black”

Les v2 - Black with Blue Accents

2016 Pivot Les Black with Blue accents

Les v2 - Black with Red Accents

Pivot Les v2 Black with Red Accents
2018 Pivot Les Grey with Black

Les SL

  • Sold between late 2019 to present
  • Black with Blue Accents
  • Black with Red 

Les SL Black with Blue Accents

Pivot Les SL Black with Blue

Les SL Black with Red Accents

Pivot Les SL Black with Red

Les 27.5 - v1

  • Sold between late 2012 and late 2016
  • Black with red/white accents
  • Lime Green with Black/White accents

Les 27.5 v1 - Black with Red/White Accents

Pivot Cycles Les 27.5 v1 black red white

Les 27.5 v1 - Lime Green with Black/White Accents

Pivot Cycles Les 27.5 v1 lime green
Pivot Les 27.5 v1 Lime Green

Les 27.5 - v2

Les 27.5 V2 Notes

  • Sold from late 2016 to Present (currently Fall 2019)
  • Black with Blue Accents. This is also referred to as “Team Blue”
  • Red with Black Accents
  • the Team Blue colorway looks the same on the Les and Les 27.5
  • The name on the bike size is different also the Les 27.5 says Les 27.5 on it.  Makes sense to me.

Les 27.5 v2 - Black with Blue Accents

Pivot Les 27.5 v2 Black with Blue Accents

Les 27.5 v2 - Red with Black Accents

Pivot Les 27.5 v2 Red with Black Accents

Les Fat

Les Notes Notes

  • Originally Release in 2016 (Black with Blue Accents)
  •  2nd Release 2019 (Light Blue)
  • Only Difference Color and Components
  • Frame Geometry Identical between two Fat releases

Les Fat - Original Release

Pivot Les Fat Blue Frame Set
Pivot Les Fat Marc Landry

Les Fat - 2nd Release

Pivot Les Fat Blue

Les Reviews & Posts

Over the years there have been some great write ups and reviews. Here are some that I have found.  If you know of any others please let me know.

I have tried to group them based on the frame, wheel setup or drive train. Some posts cross over so bear with me and be sure to check out any post that looks interesting

Les 29" Posts

This is the big update year for the Pivot Les.

Pivot Les Version 2 https://bikerumor.com/2016/04/15/soc16-pivot-les-29-gets-lighter-stiffer-can-get-fatter/

https://enduro-mtb.com/en/pivot-presents-new-carbon-xc-race-bike/

https://gearminded.com/meet-the-new-pivot-les/

Pivot Video: Les v2 from 2016

https://flowmountainbike.com/tests/tested-pivot-les-29/

Les 27.5" Posts

27.5 Posts to go here

Les Single Speed Posts

Les Fat Reviews & Posts

Mark Landry Riding his Les Fat
Marc Landry Riding his Les Fat in the Winter

Pivot Cycles Posts

Rose Grant and 2016 Pivot Les
2018 Pivot Les Black

Conclusion

If you made it this far, congratulations! The more I learned about the Les and its related frames the more I like it.

Questions? Comments? If I missed anything or you think something should be added let me know below.

Thanks! — Steven