I ride a Specialized Venge and love it. It is beautiful and incredibly fast but it’s really stiff but that’s true for any aero bike. My only regret is that I didn’t buy the S-Works variant. My experience with Specialized lies only in their road bikes, but from what I’ve experienced they’re great. From my experience, Specialized makes a good quality bike. Overall their bikes are well designed, have great geometry and a suspension many people like though it doesn’t suit everyone. There are test centers all around the world so it should be relatively easy to ride one before you buy one.
Some riders prefer a stiffer bike, others prefer some forgiveness; but ultimately it’s whatever your sponsors pay you to ride. It’s your job. And many times bikes may be made by somebody else, and painted to match the team sponsor.
In my opinion Specialized is one of the best brands of mass produced bicycles on the market.
The are about equal, if not superior to Trek. And they have a better following than Cannondale and Giant, the only other two makes that come close to Trek in scope and pedigree.