We have reviewed the 2023 Trek Domane AL 3 Disc
- Price: $1,449.99
- Frame: 100 Series Alpha Aluminum
- Gear: 2×9
- Tire: 700×32c
What we like about it: Lightweight, sturdy frames and tires take you on bigger adventures.
What we don’t like about it: Mechanical disc braking some people think it’s not powerful enough (actual riding experience tells me mechanical disc braking is just as powerful).
As a cyclist, for a road bike, I want it to be unbeatable on flat roads, so when faced with the 2023 Trek Domane AL 3 Disc I wanted it to be a road runner, but I expected more from it.
This road bike’s excellent 100 Series Alpha Aluminum, slim 700×32c tires, and multi-shifting 2×9 drivetrain show us not only its lightning speed on the road, but also its ability to catch the eye of passersby like a magnet when it comes to commuting and light gravel roads, and its comfortable performance that is hard for me to ignore.
After a 3-month long review, this bike took us on nearly 80 miles of road riding, through park trails, and conquering gravelly countryside trails. Not only did we feel the bike’s excellent road speed, but we also experienced its outstanding performance on fitness and light gravel roads.
Below we break down the Trek Domane AL 3 Disc for road riding, gravel performance, general riding, key features, components and specs, and other versions.
If you want to know more about it, please stay tuned and we will bring more bike reviews.
Generally speaking, hardtail bikes are much better in rough, wooded terrain where this road bike is no match for a hardtail. However, on a flat road ride, the Trek Domane AL 3 Disc will keep the hardtail bike from seeing its tail.
This time we joined a road riding group that started together on an asphalt road, and although I was initially a bit behind them, I have to say that the Trek Domane AL 3 Disc had me cheered on by the crowd of teammates in the riding group for the second half of the ride.
Based on its slim 700×32c Bontrager R1 Hard-Case Lite road tires, and with a steep head tube angle (71.3°), it was able to maintain an above-average bike speed even on rides where I wasn’t doing my best.
Also, the Shimano Sora HG53 2×9 drivetrain, when facing different road surfaces, it allows me to make shifts to adjust to the most appropriate speed and its shifting is not as complicated as I thought.
In addition, it has Tektro C550 mechanical disc brakes, which allow me to maintain strong braking when descending on wet roads and needing to stop in a hurry.
As we have noticed, this is a road bike, so in terms of damping it is no trail or mountain bike professional shock absorber, but it is important to mention that this bike’s IsoSpeed carbon fiber fork, it makes up for it in this aspect.
All in all, I’m fascinated by the speed of the Trek Domane AL 3 Disc on the road at the same price point.
I wasn’t expecting much from the Trek Domane AL 3 Disc in terms of gravel performance, but I was ruthless enough to throw it out on the gravel trails in order to get a more complete picture of all aspects of performance.
The trail was covered with small and large gravel blocks and flowing winding paths, which I was also concerned would cause some hindrance to the Domane AL 3 Disc ride.
However, after the ride, I really couldn’t wait to jump off the bike and share with my friends that I was dazzled by the bike’s performance on the gravel trails. This is because of its special IsoSpeed carbon fork, which allows it to effectively absorb bumps caused by gravel, which made my ride more fun by not only not losing my pedaling efficiency, but also reducing my fatigue.
In addition, the Bontrager R1 Hard-Case Lite road tire is undaunted by gravel. The relatively slim 32c tire features Hard-Case Lite puncture protection, which gives it greater wear resistance and allows it to travel quickly and safely in the face of gravel.
In short, the Trek Domane AL 3 Disc is not only suitable for road riding, but also outstanding in its performance even when riding on gravel.
If you think that the Trek Domane AL 3 Disc’s features can only be used for road racing, then I must say that you really don’t know much about the Trek Domane AL 3 Disc.
As we all know, global warming, and the ecological environment needs each of us to take action to protect, low-carbon life, starting from me. So now whether it’s for work, or for some normal travel, we can see the bicycle figure, and I am no exception. So in this 3-month cycling review, I abandoned my usual riding partner and used Trek Domane AL 3 Disc for commuting, fitness, and leisure.
Based on the weight of the lightweight body and the Bontrager Comp VR-S road handlebars, it will be more agile when performing maneuvers, and its handlebars will provide shorter drop and reach distances, retaining the classic variable radius shape that provides a quick and comfortable transition from the hood to the sprint drop.
On my daily commute to work, my start-up speed always causes amazement among my peers when the light turns green, which is a source of joy for me throughout the day.
The smooth Tektro C550 mechanical disc brakes and 2×9 transmission shine when I’m riding for fitness with friends in the park or on flat village roads.
If you are a low-carbon living environmentalist, or if you are a commuter rider who loves fitness, the Trek Domane AL 3 Disc will be one of your quality choices.
As we all know, aluminum is a popular frame material, and a regular aluminum frame doesn’t feel as comfortable on my long rides, but when I rode the Trek Domane AL 3 Disc on long rides, it made me smile on my long rides, whether it was over rough trails or through gravel trails.
In fact, at one point in my riding, I thought that this was a road bike with a carbon frame, but the Trek Domane AL 3 Disc is indeed a road bike with an aluminum frame.
Yes, Trek’s engineers have researched methods that allow the material to retain the best properties of aluminum – lightness, and strength – while improving ride quality.
In addition, this bike’s subdued Lithium Grey, quiet Crystal White, and individual Alpine Blue to Dnister Black Fade are three paint colors that really appeal to me and have a relatively wide range of options.
If you like clean and tidy frames and look like I do, I think this bike will catch your eye too. I was impressed by its clean internal alignment and simple and generous frame design.
In addition, the Trek Domane AL 3 Disc’s two water bottle mounting holes and rear rack mounting holes are set up so that I can carry plenty of water and camping gear.
Comfortable geometry that will make me love the movement on two wheels. With the Trek Domane AL 3 Disc’s steep head tube angle (71.3°), I get faster steering on winding roads.
However, I must also mention that on rough terrain, steering may be a bit unstable if done at high speeds (although I don’t feel this way on my rides).
In addition, its steep seat tube angle (73.7°) and proper seat tube length (500mm) make my riding easier, allowing me to pedal more easily and maintain a comfortable upright ride with a higher range of vision.
Also, proper Trail (59mm) has faster and more agile steering, in addition to an improved ability to maintain a straight line in tight corners, while it is also stable in speed.
Components and Specifications
Shimano Sora R3000 2×9 Drivetrain
For mountain biking, 1× would give me a better experience, but more speed options on the road are what I want, so the Shimano Sora R3000 2×9 speed range is what I like.
On this road ride, Trek Domane AL 3 Disc was sturdy and most attractive 9-speed parts, it added a lot of fun to my riding trip.
The drive has a sleek and clean design with higher-level kit technology, so even if you are changing speeds on rough terrain, you don’t have to worry about chain rap issues happening too often (provided it is set up correctly). Some may think the 2× may be more complicated to change speeds, so I asked a less experienced rider to experience it and he told us that the Trek Domane AL 3 Disc 2× didn’t feel any different from the 1×.
So I think the Trek Domane AL 3 Disc with Shimano Sora R3000 2×9 drivetrain is for anyone.
Tektro C550 Mechanical Disc Brake
When I started riding the Trek Domane AL 3 Disc, my friend was surprised and asked, “This is not the hydraulic disc brake you like?” In response to her question, I told her for sure that this mechanical disc brake was the most cost-effective brake I wanted to have.
Most people who love to ride understand that hydraulic disc brakes are very capable and feel good, but they are relatively expensive and troublesome to maintain.
Mechanical disc brakes are relatively affordable, and it does not have a weak braking ability. In addition, maintenance for mechanical discs will be easier, and in my actual riding, when I need to stop the wheel, I often don’t need to spend much effort to stop the bike steadily.
Bontrager R1 Hard-Case Lite Road Tire
My first impression of this bike’s tires was that it was too slim, and with a 32c tire width, I was skeptical of its stability. But I still had a riding experience and sure enough the Trek Domane AL 3 Disc broke my misconceptions about it.
Because the Bontrager R1 Hard-Case Lite road tire has Hard-Case Lite puncture protection, there is no noticeable wear on the tire over gravel, and the 32c width of the tire reduces rolling resistance and provides enough traction on almost every road, even when facing corners. The 32c width reduces rolling resistance and provides enough traction on almost every road, even when facing corners.
IsoSpeed Carbon Fiber Fork
As we can see, the bike doesn’t have a shock, and like many of you, I may have wondered “what if I hit a bumpy, rough road?” Don’t worry, the Trek Domane AL 3 Disc takes this into account.
The special IsoSpeed carbon fiber fork reduces the feeling of bumps on the ground without sacrificing the efficiency of riding speed, allowing me to remain relaxed and happy while doing the rugged ground riding.
Other Versions of Trek Domane AL
In our current review, we have reviewed and experienced in detail the Trek Domane AL 3 Disc’s frame, Shimano Sora R3000 2×9 drivetrain, Tektro C550 mechanical disc brakes, and its tires and other components. To get a more detailed look at the bike, we found other versions of it.
The Trek Domane AL is available as a 2×9 Trek Domane AL 3, but also as a 2×10 Trek Domane AL 4 and a 2×11 Trek Domane AL 5. These are priced at $1,799 and $2,099 respectively, and both are hydraulic disc brakes, so if you prefer more variable speed or hydraulic disc brakes you can also try them out.
All in all, there are 3 different Trek Domane AL’s to choose from, so no matter what your budget is and what your speed change requirements are, you can find the right comfortable road bike for you here.
What do we like about it?
- The lightweight aluminum frame can enjoy the freedom of Mercedes-Benz on the road.
- The wide range of 2×9 shifts allows for appropriate gear shifts to suit the changing terrain.
- Aggressive road tires that take you to exciting driving speeds.
- Tektro C550 mechanical disc brake is affordable and low maintenance.
- Rack-mountable setup allows you to carry more essential items.
What we don’t like about it?
- Some people think mechanical disc brakes are too cheap (it will surprise you if you are willing to try it).
- Not too rich a paint color selection.
- What is the material of Trek Domane AL 3 Disc’s frame?
Trek Domane AL 3 Disc’s frame is 100 Series Alpha Aluminum.
- How many gears does the Trek Domane AL 3 Disc have?
Trek Domane AL 3 Disc has a variety of gears.
- How much does the Trek Domane AL 3 Disc weigh?
- Which height riders do the Trek Domane AL 3 Disc fit?
Trek Domane AL 3 Disc size chart:
|Frame Size||Rider Height|
|44||4’11” – 5’0″|
150 – 153 cm
|49||156 – 163 cm|
5’1″ – 5’4″
|52||163 – 168 cm|
5’4″ – 5’6″
|54||168 – 174 cm|
5’6″ – 5’9″
|56||174 – 180 cm|
5’9″ – 5’11”
|58||180 – 185 cm|
5’11” – 6’1″
|61||185 – 191 cm|
6’1″ – 6’3″
Trek Domane AL 3 Disc Specs
|Frame||100 Series Alpha Aluminum, tapered head tube, internal routing, fender mounts, DuoTrap S compatible, flat mount disc, 142x12mm thru axle|
|Fork||Domane AL carbon, tapered alloy steerer, internal brake routing, fender mounts, flat mount disc, 12x100mm thru axle|
|Hub front||Formula RX-512 alloy, 6-bolt, 100x12mm thru axle|
|Skewer front||Bontrager Switch thru axle, removable lever|
|Hub rear||Formula RX-142 alloy, 6-bolt, Shimano 11-speed freehub, 142x12mm thru axle|
|Skewer rear||Bontrager Switch thru axle, removable lever|
|*Rim||Size: 44, 49, 52, 54, 56, 58, 61|
Bontrager Affinity Disc, Tubeless Ready, 24-hole, 21mm width, presta valve
Size: 44, 49, 52, 54, 56, 58, 61
Bontrager Paradigm SL, Tubeless Ready, 24-hole, 21mm width, presta valve
|Spokes||14g stainless steel|
|Tire||Bontrager R1 Hard-Case Lite, wire bead, 60 tpi, 700x32c|
|Max tire size||35c without fenders, 32c with fenders|
|Shifter||Shimano Sora R3000, 9 speed|
|Front derailleur||Shimano Sora R3000, 31.8mm clamp|
|Rear derailleur||Shimano Sora R3000, mid cage, 34T max cog|
Shimano Sora R3000, 50/34 (compact), 165mm length
Size: 49, 52, 54
Shimano Sora R3000, 50/34 (compact), 170mm length
Size: 56, 58, 61
Shimano Sora R3000, 50/34 (compact), 175mm length
|Bottom bracket||Shimano RS500, 68mm, threaded external|
|Cassette||Shimano Sora HG400, 11-32, 9 speed|
|Chain||Shimano Sora HG53, 9 speed|
|Max chainring size||1x: 42t, 2x: 50/34|
|*Saddle||Size: 44, 49, 52|
Bontrager P3 Verse Comp, steel rails, 155mm width
Size: 54, 56, 58, 61
Bontrager P3 Verse Comp, steel rails, 145mm width
|*Seatpost||Size: 44, 49|
Bontrager Comp, 6061 alloy, 27.2mm, 8mm offset, 250mm length
Size: 52, 54, 56, 58, 61
Bontrager Comp, 6061 alloy, 27.2mm, 8mm offset, 330mm length
|*Handlebar||Size: 44, 49|
Bontrager Comp VR-S, alloy, 31.8mm, 81mm reach, 118mm drop, 38cm width
Bontrager Comp VR-S, alloy, 31.8mm, 81mm reach, 118mm drop, 40cm width
Size: 54, 56
Bontrager Comp VR-C, alloy, 31.8mm, 100mm reach, 124mm drop, 42cm width
Size: 58, 61
Bontrager Comp VR-C, alloy, 31.8mm, 100mm reach, 124mm drop, 44cm width
|Handlebar tape||Bontrager Supertack Perf tape|
Bontrager Elite, 31.8mm, Blendr compatible, 7 degree, 70mm length
Bontrager Elite, 31.8mm, Blendr compatible, 7 degree, 80mm length
Size: 52, 54
Bontrager Elite, 31.8mm, Blendr compatible, 7 degree, 90mm length
Size: 56, 58
Bontrager Elite, 31.8mm, Blendr compatible, 7 degree, 100mm length
Bontrager Elite, 31.8mm, Blendr compatible, 7 degree, 110mm length
|Headset||FSA Integrated, sealed cartridge bearing, 1-1/8” top, 1.5” bottom|
|Brake||Tektro C550 mechanical disc brake, dual piston, flat mount, 160mm rotor|
|Rotor size||Max brake rotor sizes: 160mm front & rear|
|Weight||56 – 10.30 kg / 22.71 lbs|
|Weight limit||This bike has a maximum total weight limit (combined weight of bicycle, rider, and cargo) of 275 pounds (125 kg).|
|Schwinn Fastback Carbon 105||$2299.99||Shimano 105 BR-7000 Cable Pull Brake||700×25c||2×11||Click View|
|Scott Contessa Speedster 25||$1,499.99||Tektro MD-C511 Mechanical Disc||700×32c||2×9||Click View|
|Trek Domane AL 5 Disc||$2099.99||Shimano 105 Hydraulic Disc Brakes||700×32c||2×11||Click View|
|Canyon Endurace 8 Disc||$1999.00||Shimano RT70Hydraulic disc brake||650×30c /700×32c||2×11||Click View|
2023 Trek Domane AL 3 Disc vs 2022 Schwinn Fastback Carbon 105
To be honest, I was a little surprised to see that the 2022 Schwinn Fastback Carbon 105 is a carbon fiber frame at $2299.99. At this point, some people may think the Domane AL 3 Disc’s aluminum frame is slightly inferior, but in my opinion, the lightweight aluminum frame doesn’t give me a bad experience.
Also, since the Schwinn Fastback Carbon 105’s cable-pull brakes produce some harshness on slippery surfaces and are not enough for a rider like me who loves to go fast, I would prefer disc brakes.
Also, 700c x 25c tires, maybe better in speed, but the 25c tires are a bit slim, which may take more attention for novices to handle it when driving fast.
If you’re on a budget and prefer disc brakes, you can look at the Trek Domane AL 3 Disc, which is $850 cheaper and will give you a pleasant surprise.
2023 Trek Domane AL 3 Disc vs 2022 Scott Contessa Speedster 25
It was really hard to choose between these two bikes. First of all, they are both $1499.99 in price and they have the same 2×9 transmission range, but in real-world riding the Trek Domane AL 3 Disc feels better to me, it doesn’t have a noticeable rustle when shifting.
With almost identical mechanical disc brakes, there is little difference in their performance on wet roads. If I had to say one thing, the Trek Domane AL 3 Disc is 0.44Ibs lighter than the Scott Contessa Speedster 25, so the Domane AL 3 Disc gives you a better experience in braking.
Also, as we can see, both bikes have the same tire size of 700 x 32c, but if you notice the tread pattern, you’ll notice that the 60tpi Bontrager R1 Hard-Case Lite road tire has relatively more wear and traction.
If you are looking for lighter weight or better tires, you can try the Trek Domane AL 3 Disc.
2023 Trek Domane AL 3 Disc vs 2022 Trek Domane AL 5 Disc
The Domane AL 5 Disc and the Trek Domane AL 3 Disc are both parts of the Domane AL series. Both bikes have the same aluminum frame, but the Domane AL 5 Disc costs $650 more than the Domane AL 3 Disc.
However, the Domane AL 5 Disc is a hydraulic disc brake, which may be softer compared to a mechanical disc, and the Domane AL 5 Disc has a 2×11 drivetrain, so there are a few more speed options than the Trek Domane AL 3 Disc. If you like more speed options, you may be attracted to the Domane AL 5 Disc.
It’s also worth mentioning that the tires on both bikes are the same, so there’s not much difference between them in terms of wear resistance and traction.
If the 2×11 transmission is complicated for you, you can choose the more suitable 2×9 transmission, both in terms of ease of speed change and speed range selectivity it is sufficient, and you can save $650 to upgrade your car.
2023 Trek Domane AL 3 Disc vs 2022 Canyon Endurace 8 Disc
As we can see the 2022 Canyon Endurace 8 Disc has a 2×11 shift range and it also comes with Shimano RT70 hydraulic disc brakes, so it appeals to me in at least those two areas and the not-so-high price tag has me intrigued.
Although the bike looks great from the drive and braking side, that doesn’t mean that the Trek Domane AL 3 Disc will admit defeat.
The Domane AL 3 Disc’s mechanical disc brakes are affordable, light, and low maintenance, and not only that, but the brakes work reliably even on slippery surfaces. Some people may think that the speed range of the Domane AL 3 Disc 2×9 is a bit too small, but in my opinion, it depends on your needs and the 2×9 shifting is great in my real-world riding. I also like the affordable price of the Trek Domane AL 3 Disc.
Whether you’re riding on light gravel roads or flat roads, I think the Trek Domane AL 3 Disc is one of the bikes you should choose for the money.
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