Now 2.6in tyres and ample clearance for 2.8in Plus size rubber
Blink, and you could miss the latest round of revisions to the Trek Remedy 8. The biggest change to the frame is move away from Full Floater shock mount.
Previously, the shock on the Remedy was mounted to an extension of the swingarm, allowing Trek’s engineers a degree of wiggle room to vary the progression rate of the 150mm suspension as the shock compresses. Ideal before the advent of volume reducers and custom tuned shocks, but much less relevant now.
Trek Remedy 8 review
So full-floater is gone, the lower shock mount now wedged neatly between the seat tube and down tube. A move that also places the shock lower in the frame, allowing the upper linkage to shift down too, making it easer to accommodate 150mm dropper posts. The frame is also 100g lighter and 5 per cent stiffer.
The seat tube angle had also been tipped forward a full degree, so you don’t have to tip you’re weight so far forward on the climbs. Trek retains the Mino-link, a small asymmetric chip in the rocker that offers two geometry settings. The bike now ships in the low setting and with the 2.6in tyres raising the BB height the high position is somewhat redundant.
Trek has always looked to gain a performance advantage with proprietary suspension components, the most recent development being its RE:aktiv valve. On the outside the RockShox RT3 shock on the 150mm travel Remedy looks like any other, but Trek’s custom internals give the suspension a unique response. It’s stable when pedalling but retains good small bump sensitivity. Also the damping ramps up to provide a hydraulic pillow on harsh drops and compressions.
Up front, the 160mm travel RockShox Lyrik RC fork needs no introduction. And while the Remedy doesn’t benefit from the top-end Charger RC2 damper, it still gets the bigger volume Debonair negative air spring and low friction seals, making it buttery smooth. Its real strength though, is that it’s super easy to set up.
Notice anything different on the Remedy compared to the other bikes? That’s right, the down tube is straight, rather than kinked at the headtube. This makes for a stiffer, lighter frame but has some knock on effects, namely; the fork crown hitting the downtube.
To prevent this the Remedy has a steering lock headset. Trek dubbed it Knock Block and sits just behind the top race of the headset. It’s a replaceable component designed to fail in a massive impact, which is why the frame also has protective bump-stops on the downtube. The head seat spacers and stem are both keyed to interlock with the headset, but you can use a normal stem providing you have a female conversion spacer.
Why so much detail on Knock Block? Well it’s important to highlight that it doesn’t limit your turning circle, even on the steepest switchbacks. It does make it tricky to get the bike into the back of a car though, because even with the front wheel out the handlebar won’t lie flat.
More importantly, the Remedy 8 comes with 30mm of interlocking headset spaces, three 10mm spacers to be precise. At max height the handlebar felt too tall, causing the bike to run wide on flat turns. Drop it done 10mm and it felt too low for steep chutes. Given that the spacers are custom, Trek really should replace one of the 10mm spacers with two 2.5mm spacers and a 5mm, so you can fine tune the bar height.
Size wise the Remedy 8 felt a little short and tall for the second largest size in a five strong range, the height of the seat mast making it nigh on impossible to upsize.
It still a really capable bike, and even though it’s one of the longer travel bikes in test, with gravity focused suspension that settles in under braking to make the bike feel more stable on the steepest descents, thanks to the stiff frame and RE:aktiv damper it’s no slouch on the climbs either.
All of the changes to the 2019 Remedy 8 are positive. The steeper seat angle helps with climbing, the 2.6in tyres increase traction and the lower shock position and 150mm dropper improve standover clearance and fit. Trek is still a touch too conservative with it sizing though. Yes, there are five sizes on offers but biggest option available only has a 475mm reach measurement….Hardly XL proportions. In fact, it’s sizing that’s the only thing holding the Remedy back as all other aspects of the bike are sorted. It even looks top dollar.