Trek Rail sports a new carbon frame, new Slash-like aggressive geometry, Bosch Performance Line CX motor and a new 750Wh battery.
The Trek Rail is one of our favourite e-bikes, it was the mbr E-bike of the Year in 2020 and its blend of speed, composure and power kills it on the descents. Well, Trek wasn’t satisfied with that though, it’s brought out a new Rail that promises to be even better.
With more battery power, the latest Bosch technology and updated geometry things are looking likely that the Rail will retain its claim to be one of – perhaps the – best electric mountain bikes out there.
Trek Rail need to know
- New bike is restricted to top-end 9.8 and 9.9 models
- Rail is a 150mm travel e-bike with 160mm fork and 29er wheels
- Full battery charge now takes six hours, 50% charge takes two
- Host of new frame refinements and integration
The new bike is restricted to the top models in the range, which Trek calls 9.8 and 9.9. Drop down the pricing to 9.7 and below and the bike is unchanged. We’d be surprised if the new tech changes didn’t slip down the range for next year though.
We’ll stick to talking about the new 9.8 and 9.9 models here then, although you can always check out the old Rail review for details on the 9.7 models.
The Rail comes with 29in wheels front and rear, but you can swap to a mullet setup by fitting a 27.5in wheel and adjusting the geometry through the brand’s Mino link flip chip… all with Trek’s blessing.
Naturally, there’s a whole new carbon frame, unleashing some aggressive new geometry. Trek says it’s akin to the Slash’s sizing and geometry and sizing, with an average 19mm longer reach by size. That means the size Large is now very large indeed, with a 490mm reach. The bike is slacker and longer too, and most importantly the effective seat tube angle is now 77° – that’s two degrees steeper, which should help the Rail climb.
The Rail is still powered by one of the best drive units out there, the Bosch Performance Line CX motor, and the bike now comes with the biggest 750Wh battery that Trek says takes you 20% further. To make the most of this Bosch recommends you run its Flow App on your phone, because it integrates third party apps, synchronises data and lets you know when a service is needed. Perhaps more usefully, the app also lets you get auto updates for the motor system on your bike, meaning you won’t have to haul it back into the bike shop to get the latest advances.
The Flow app will also run diagnostics on the bike if you’re having problems, and it’ll even navigate for you and run a ton of ride data in the same way your Garmin does.
New Kiox display is safely tucked away on the top tube, mounted to the Knock Block system
The Bosch hardwear is also updated, the Rail comes with a Kiox display that’s now mounted on the top tube rather than in the way on your bar. Trek has positioned this on top of the Knock Block, which stops the fork smacking the frame if it spins round.
You do get a switch on the bar still, but it’s more subtle, thanks to LEDs that tell you which mode you’re in, and adjust in brightness to the ambient light. There’s also a new walk-assist that takes the weight of the bike for you when you’re pushing up a steep climb.
Trek Rail 9.9
The flagship bike is the Rail 9.9, Trek has gone to town with SRAM integration on this bike, To start with you’ll get TyreWiz, a tyre pressure monitoring system that sits on the rim and flashes red or green to tell you if your running the right PSI. It’ll tell the SRAM AXS about about it all too, if you’d rather look on your phone than down at your wheels. In the same vein, the Rail 9.9 comes with AirWiz, a shock and fork pressure monitoring system that you can also see through the AXS app.
Look out for a first ride on the new Trek Rail shortly.