By Vernon Felton, Seb Kemp and Dan Barham

Specialized Bicycles kept a tight lid on this story.

A 29er Enduro?

It’s a bike that no one predicted would ever be built. And why should they even attempt to build a six-inch travel 29er when the 26er Enduro is already so capable and well-loved? Truth is, not everyone at Specialized was immediately sold on the idea either, but some impressive innovations on this rig have created a long-travel 29er with a shorter wheelbase than some cross-country bikes.

We went into the heart of Specialized Bicycles to find out both how and most importantly, why, the company decided to squeeze those big wheels onto their Enduro model.

Welcome to the first installment of our new Blueprint video series: the story of an impressive new product, from the perspective of the people who designed it.

Hard questions asked. Interesting answers given.

Want to see our first-ride impressions of the Enduro 29? Our test pilot, Kris Keefer, raced it this fall in Europe’s Super Enduro series. Here’s his review.

We also have a long-term review of the bike in the works now for our June issue of bike, which hits both digital and physical newsstands on May 7th, 2013. What did a 29er hater think of Specialized’s attempt to make big wheels play nice with more than six inches of travel? Check it out.