Big wheeled carbon monster for high level enduro racing

Hot on the heels of Trek’s new Fuel EX and Remedy bikes comes a real surprise – the Trek Slash 29.

150mm travel carbon framed 29er paired with a 160mm fork up and proudly sporting one of the slackest head angles yet seen on a 29er (65.1°). The forks will be the larger 51mm offset G2 forks to help reign things in a bit.

>>> What are fork offset, head angle and trail?

Trek Slash 9.9 in Squamish, BC, June 2016

Interestingly Trek have opted not to use their Full Floater rear suspension design on the Slash 29 too.

Why have they ditched the Full Floater for the Slash 29? It’s all about short beefy chain stays and prioritising stiffness.

Trek Slash 9.9 in Squamish, BC, June 2016

Even though Trek’s downhill bike – the Session – has a Full Floater design that bike doesn’t have the task of fitting in 29 inch wheels with decent size tyres in there. Something had to give with the Slash 29 and Trek felt the Full Floater design wasn’t as important as achieving maximum back end stiffness.

Stiffness really has been at the very top of Trek’s list for all their full suspension bikes for 2017 and they’ve made some impressively bold choices and come up with some cool solutions.

>>> Trek Fuel Ex Jr (2016) review

Trek Slash 9.9 in Squamish, BC, June 2016

We’ve discussed it already on Trek’s 2017 Fuel EX models but we’ll mention again the hugely oversize and perfectly straight down tube. On the Slash 29 the down tube is officially MAHOOSIVE.

Due to this straight fat tube the issue of fork crown clattering into the down tube (in crashes) raises its head. So Trek have come up with the Knock Block. This is essentially a bump-stop integrated into the top tube and stem that prevents the forks from turning past a certain point.

Trek Slash 9.9 in Squamish, BC, June 2016

The chain stays are impressively short – 434mm long – for a 29er with 150mm travel that can still fit in a whopping 2.6in tyre. It’s a 1x specific design – no front mech. It almost goes without saying that the Slash 29 is Boost enabled.

So is the Slash 29 one of these bikes where you can run 29in or 27.5+ tyres? Yes and no. Yes we reckon they’d fit. But no, Trek would rather you didn’t.

Trek Slash 9.9 in Squamish, BC, June 2016

The Slash 29 features Trek’s Mino Link geometry-adjusting flipchip but we all know that pretty much everyone just automatically slams it into the lowest/slackest setting and leaves it there!

Trek Slash 9.9 in Squamish, BC, June 2016

There will be two Slash 29 complete builds – the 9.8 and the 9.9 RSL. There will also be a frame-only option. We have no UK pricing details as yet.

We do have US pricing though which will give us a bit of a clue: Slash 9.8 29 will be $5,499, Slash 9.9 29 RSL will be $8,999 and the Slash frame only will be $3,699.

Here’s how Trek explain the Slash 29

“Focused on highest level of enduro racing. It’s only available as a carbon frame and only 29.

“The motivation for this bike started with our top enduro athletes who modified the Remedy 29 with longer travel forks to great success on the EWS stage.

“This is the stiffest 29er frame we’ve ever made and rivals or bests Trek’s DH bike, Session, in stiffness measures.

“With the Remedy going to 27.5” only, the new Slash is Trek’s emphatic answer to those riders looking for a long travel 29er. For those looking for the Slash with 27.5” wheels, they should check out the new Race Shop Limited Remedy 9.9 and 9 with 160mm front/150mm rear travel.”

Geometry table

Click on the pic for a large version.

Screen Shot 2016-07-19 at 09.08.38

Trek’s handy Slash 29 FAQ in full

What’s new with 2017 Slash?

With the new 2017 Remedy moving deeper into All-Mountain territory, new Slash sets its sights squarely on Enduro racing. With that in mind, we designed it around a carbon frame with the fastest-rolling wheel size. All 2017 Slash models use 29” wheels with Boost110 & Boost148 hub spacing. Rear travel moves to 150mm for the right balance of capability and efficiency. Both models get Enduro-minded 130mm/160mm forks which offer a better climbing position in the 130mm setting, and more confident descending in the 160mm setting.

Like the Fuel EX & Remedy, Slash gets a Straight Shot downtube with Knock Block frame defense for DH-worthy frame stiffness with no added weight. It also gets our extra-versatile Control Freak cable routing system to tie it all together.

How many Slash bike models are there?

Two. Both the Slash 9.8 and Slash 9.9 RSL share the same race-ready, full-carbon, 1x-specific frame.

What does Race Shop Limited mean?

Race Shop Limited, or RSL models are built with a parts spec that meets the demands of our top-level Enduro racers, including extra suspension adjustments, a Rapid Drive rear hub, and the new SRAM X01 Eagle 1×12 drivetrain.

Is Slash available as a frameset?

Yes. Slash is available as a frameset, which includes a Fox Factory Float X2 shock, Knock Block headset, and Line Pro 35mm stem.

What are the available sizes for Slash?

All Slash models are available in 15.5, 17.5, 19.5, and 21.5.
While most other long-travel 29ers suffer from design constraints that don’t allow for a Small frame size, Slash benefits from Trek’s decade of 29er experience, allowing us to offer a fast, great-handling 15.5” long-travel 29er.

Why doesn’t the new Slash use Full Floater?

We developed Full Floater years ago to address performance constraints associated with the air shocks that were available at that time. Since then, mountain bike shocks have evolved. More dynamic and responsive dampers, along with more refined air springs like EVOL and Debonair, offer the performance benefits our engineers sought to achieve with Full Floater.

Using a fixed lower shock mount opens up the lower frame area, giving us more opportunity to design stronger, stiffer frames and chainstays. This also gives us more flexibility to accommodate larger, more capable shocks. All of these effects are experienced most dramatically on long travel bikes, like the Slash.

Then why is Full Floater still on new Fuel EX and Remedy?

Full Floater works great on short to mid-travel bikes where engineering requirements are not so challenging. The demanding combination of design requirements – frame stiffness, bigger 29” wheel size, long travel, and fitting piggyback shocks– of the new Slash 29 presented the greatest opportunity to incorporate a new direction in suspension layout.

What front derailleurs work with the new frame?

None. The carbon chainstay is 1x only, which allowed our engineers to optimize stiffness and weight, as well as keep the length down to 435mm.

Is Slash compatible with other aftermarket shocks?

Yes. Slash uses new standard metric shock sizing (230×57.5mm).

Does Slash use a G2 fork?

Yes. It’s a 29er, and we know that our G2 Geometry with a 51mm offset fork still makes for the best 29er handling at any speed, on any terrain.

What Mino Link position is standard out of the box?

All MY17 full suspension bikes (EXCEPT Top Fuel and Session) will ship with the Mino Link in the High (steeper) setting. This gives Slash a headtube angle of 65.6 out of the box.

Is the new frame compatible with 27.5 Plus wheels and tires? 27.5?

No. We designed Slash around 29” wheels and tires for maximum speed. Running any other wheel/tire size will adversely affect handling and speed.

What is the max tire size for Slash frames?

29 x 2.6”