As you’ve probably guessed, the big news from Trek’s line-up is the new Madone. Launched just before the Tour de France and ridden by the Trek Factory Racing squad during the race, the new Madone is Trek’s most radical bike since the Domane.
We’ve already been through all the tech in the Madone in full, but there are a few things worth repeating. The headline feature of this bike is that it’s fast. Seriously fast. Trek took the Madone to the wind tunnel and tested it against what they identified as the main competitors: Felt’s AR2, Cervélo’s S5 and the Giant Propel. Against all three, the Madone came out on top.
But, you ask, how does it stack up against Specialized’s new Venge ViAs? Well that’s an interesting question. Trek’s Chris Garrison was straight up about it and told me that Trek haven’t had their hands on a ViAs yet to directly test the two in a tunnel, but seeing as Spesh claim that the ViAs is ‘around as fast’ as their Shiv TT bike – and Trek have tested the Madone as faster than the Shiv – they’re pretty confident that it’s not going to be a competition.
The other key feature in ride terms is the inclusion of the IsoSpeed decoupler, as first featured in the Domane. Although it’s often referred to as suspension, what the decoupler actually does is allow the seat tube a degree of freedom of movement independently from the seat stays/top tube junction. This increases vertical compliance of the bike – otherwise known as comfort.
Although it’s nothing new in itself – the IsoSpeed has been in the Domane since the bike’s launch in 2012 – Trek have made a bold move by putting it in the Madone. Until now aero road bikes have, quite rightly, been all about speed, sometimes to the detriment of ride quality. But with this inclusion, Trek have shown determination to make the new Madone a bit that rides well (and one not only suited for pros) with this clear comfort-focused move.
Anyway, on to the range and Trek have four versions of the Madone planned for men, as well as two frameset options, and a women’s model too. The top model is the Madone Race Shop Limited H1, which is essentially the bike that Trek Factory Racing ride, in the same aggressive H1 geometry. The RSL is available in 50-62cm frame sizes (at 2cm increments), and comes with full Shimano Dura-Ace Di2, (53/39 crankset, 11-28t cassette) and Bontrager Aeolus 5 clinchers. As you can imagine, riding the same bike as the pros comes as a price, and in this case that price is a cool £9.750.
Below that, the three other production models of the Madone are H2 fit, a slightly more relaxed geometry made to suit those of us who don’t fit ‘low and long’ as easily as the pros.
The 9.9 has a 600 series OCLV carbon frame instead of the RSL’s 700 series, and swaps out the H1 fit for an H2 but other than that is specced out just the same as its professional-grade elder sibling, coming with an RRP of £9,000.
Below that, the 9.5 is £6,000 for the same 600 series frame, but comes with a mechanical Dura-Ace drivetrain (50/34 compact crankset, 11-25t cassette) and a set of Bontrager Aura 5 deep section clinchers. The baby of the bunch – the 9.2 – keeps the same frameset again and comes with a full Ultegra drivetrain (50/34 compact crankset, 11-28t cassette) paired to Bontrager Paradigm Elite aluminium clinchers.
The Madone 9.9 women’s model is essentially the same bike as the men’s 9.9, but is available in 50, 52, 54 and 56cm frames, and comes with a slightly different 50/34 compact crankset twinned with an 11-28t cassette.
The Madone will also be available through Trek’s Project One custom service which will include a few new colours, too like the powder blue and flouro orange combo on this bad boy: