If you’ve watched any of the UCI Mountain Bike World Cup series this year you might have spotted the Trek Factory Racing team riding on a full-suss XC whip with a hidden rear suspension. Trek have kept their secret weapon from prying eyes, letting the bike do the talking as the team stormed to podium after podium.
Now the gloves are off, so to speak, and Trek has unveiled what it was that helped the team to such success. The new Supercaliber is Trek’s dedicated full-suss XC race machine, a sharp handling and lightweight crusher ready to take your riding to the next level.
A new breed of XC race bike
At the heart of the Supercaliber is the new IsoStrut rear suspension set up. It was this that Trek were so keen to keep from prying eyes, so much so that they designed a bespoke sleeve to cover it throughout the race season. Now we’ve seen it we can confirm it’s a thing of ingenious beauty – incorporating the suspension into the frame simplifies things significantly beneath your tush, reducing weight and increasing efficiency. In the hectic world of cross-country racing, this is manna from heaven.
It’s not the first time Trek, or indeed many others, have tried this type of design out. The difference this time is that it’s been proven at the very highest level. The IsoStrut is fixed at both ends, and there’s no pivot at the rear axle, the result being the frame becomes part of the suspension. The Fox shock provides up to 55mm rear suspension and the thin seat stays flex to add another 5mm, giving a total rear travel of 60mm. If that’s enough for Swiss superstar Jolanda Neff it’s sure as heck enough for the rest of us.
The Supercaliber bridges the gap between hard-charging hardtails and full-suspension race rigs – you no longer have to choose between the two on race day. It gives just the right amount of travel for everything from rooty singletrack to hectic rock gardens, with the 100mm RockShox fork perfectly complementing the 60mm rear bounce. If you’re looking for the one XC bike that works perfectly in all-terrain, you can stop searching.
An XC-crushing range
The Supercaliber range is all built around a carbon frameset, using Trek’s lightweight and tough-as-you-like OCLV Mountain Carbon layup and featuring internal cable routing. The geometry is right on the money for the type of technical, aggressive charging so beloved of you XC maniacs. Combined with 29” Bontrager Kovee carbon wheels the Supercaliber is the super-charged whip that allows you to crank out the fastest rides of your life.
The Supercaliber 9.7 is the lowest priced in the range, and for £4,000 you get a lot of serious tech for your cash. A lightweight spec – including a RockShox Reba fork, SRAM NX Eagle 1x12 drivetrain and the aforementioned carbon wheels – makes up one hell of a carbon XC bike for the money.
At £5,300, the Supercaliber 9.8 might just be the best-value XC bike on the market right now. Its category-defining features, IsoStrut integrated shock and lightweight Fox Performance 32 Step-Cast fork give a capable ride that's flat-out fast and soaks up technical terrain. And it's trimmed with some of the best components you can get, including a SRAM GX Eagle drivetrain with carbon cranks, wider Bontrager Kovee Elite 30 carbon wheels and a Bontrager carbon seat post and handlebar.
If you’re after the very best for your XC days out, look no further than the range topping Supercaliber AXS 9.9, the fastest, lightest and most capable cross-country race bike out there. The top end spec features a fully wireless SRAM XX1 Eagle AXS electronic drivetrain and includes the highest performing suspension, brakes and wheels you can get.
We’ll have the new Supercaliber in store soon. Keep your eyes peeled on the website and pop down to check it out. Your search for the ultimate XC bike is over.