Is Trek Slash 9.8 GX Worth Buying? [Trek Slash 9.8 GX review]

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Trek Slash 9.8 GX

  • Price: $7,899
  • Travel: 160mm (rear), 170mm (front)
  • Wheels: 29″ carbon
  • Drivetrain: 1×12

What we love about it: A mid- to long-distance cross-country bike that’s all carbon brazed, powerful and quick to ride.

What we don’t like about it: The prominence of descending ability overshadows the superior performance of climbing.

Rating: (4.8/5)

2022 Trek Slash 9.8 GX

The Trek slash 9.8 is a mid- to long-distance trail bike designed for all-mountain terrain. When you see this bike in action, you’ll be amazed by its tall wheels, which make it look a little sturdy. But the fact is that in the process of riding, you will find that it is like a galloping horse that shuttles between the mountains and forests.

And amazingly, it can also help riders race against the clock in enduro races on rough roads, and achieve the best performance even in the face of high-challenging professional routes. An upgraded carbon fiber frame leads the Trek slash 9.8 to absorb more shock and vibration, while making the leaps easier.

In Bike Radar / MBUK’s competitive Enduro Bike category, the Slash Series has been named the Best Enduro Bike! The editor’s evaluation is: “Balance between entertainment and dynamic, can easily cope with any situation!”

Next, let’s analyze Trek slash 9.8’s performance, key features, components, and specs, as well as a detailed review of other versions in the other series.

Learn more: Trek Procaliber 9.7 Review: How Does It Perform On The Field?


2022 Trek Slash 9.8 GX

For the Trek slash 9.8, I would have preferred it to have a very big advantage in descending. In the terrain of trail cross-country, the professional ability of the rider is most tested, and the more thrilling is the rapid dive and descent.

Because of the wetness of the forest, the tangled roots are exposed on the surface all year round and become very slippery, not to mention the large amount of rocks exposed on the surface.

If you are riding a very compact cross-country bike, you will understand the test of this kind of terrain, the extreme vibration can make you unable to hold the bike at all, and the rigid body can make you unable to withstand the continuous blow.

Advantages of Trek slash 9.8

With this in mind, the Trek slash 9.8 geometry is longer, lower and more slack. The detachable Knock Block has a larger steering angle for maximum safety in all sharp and steep cornering situations, while also keeping those delicate cables and hoses safe.

It can effectively absorb the shock from the outside, and it is stable enough when going up and down steep slopes. And the tall wheels with very strong grip also exert their own strength at this time. I think all the components of this bike work hard to get the rider through tougher terrain.

The travel design of the suspension is very thoughtful. The combination of 160mm in the rear and 170mm in the front can also provide better shock absorption when you are driving on rough terrain. And with ultra-sturdy RockShox ZEB Select+ fork struts, this will give you confidence in challenging tougher, higher-height terrain.

Of course, here I will also introduce one of my favorite components: the thru shaft shock absorber of the same brand, this shock absorber can feel agile for even smaller vibrations.

During normal off-road bike riding, there will be a delayed response to ground feedback. This delayed response can take a big hit on the shock of the ride, but the Trek slash 9.8 uses this technology to keep you moderately close to the ground on rough mountain roads, effectively avoiding stalls and bouncing, and staying on track , and finally reach the finish line without falling behind.


If you pay attention to the fashion trends in recent years, you will be surprised by the unique frame texture of the Trek slash 9.8, because it uses taller 29” tires. You know, many models are now more biased in the choice of tire size 27.5″. So by comparison, the Trek slash 9.8 is like a real tough guy.

You’ll find what I call this sturdy personality when you’re riding a challenging stretch of trail. Fitted Bontrager Line Elite 30 29″ tubeless tires allow you to reach the finish line more easily because of the superiority of the rolling height.

On some wet, lush, forested tracks, you should be very impressed with the steep and smooth rocky uphills. In terms of grip and friction, the 29×2.40″ aramid-covered tires have been my biggest boost.

When I was racing upwards, especially when I encountered a platform with a sudden height, a good powertrain was an essential power. The SRAM GX Eagle 1×12 drivetrain did a good job of helping me with sudden acceleration, just had to choose to tune to the highest standard. In terms of sensitivity, I think it can also meet the standard very well.

After doing a very high and fancy air roll, a violent landing will mean that the impact on the body will reach a very big test. The Trek slash 9.8’s longer 170mm can absorb the larger squeeze from the ground first, so you can always control the bike.

Main Feature


In terms of the material selection of the body, Trek slash 9.8 uses the OCLV mountain carbon fiber main frame. The advantage of this material is that it is lighter and stronger than ordinary carbon fiber frames. For a long time, people have been arguing about alloy frames and carbon fiber frames, nothing more than that alloy frames will be more suitable for rough environments.

However, with the upgrade of technology, the use of OCLV mountain carbon fiber material can also actively face the unknown environment in the wild, and has a good performance in resisting ultraviolet rays and splashing stones on some gravel roads. However, there is also an unavoidable disadvantage, that is, the price will be relatively expensive.

Like I mentioned earlier the Trek slash 9.8 geometry is longer, lower and more slack, so for me, I can stay in this cockpit comfortably and enjoy the ride.

Carrying water and tools as well as some energy supplements is essential for long drives. The design of the Trek slash 9.8 is very thoughtful. It is hard to imagine that a full-sized water bottle can be installed in a small space, which can allow you to ride at least 30 minutes more.

At the same time, I also tried the internal storage compartment, and the capacity was equally astonishing. In the handling of some details, such as the knock black, this design prevents the pipes and hoses from being dragged around in the bumps during high-speed riding.

At the same time, a full-length downtube guard effectively protects the frame from rock damage. In the process of my rapid descent, or on the way to accelerate the sprint, there are always some bumps in the rock. However, with this setup, I was able to ride with more focus.


The moderate 64.1-degree head tube angle minimizes the impact on the difficulty of climbing or descending. At the same time, it also provides a relatively faster assist in the speed of descent.

Trek Slash is an endurance mountain bike. When you are going through a long climbing ride that tests your endurance and physical strength, I think the loose and near-vertical 75.6-degree seat tube angle can help you to be more stable and comfortable. Avoiding muscle discomfort is an essential advantage for endurance-testing riders. At the same time, the Trek Slash has been balanced in terms of efficiency, and I think it can be called a car with amazing speed and power.

Components and Specifications

Thru Shaft Air Shock

I’m totally invulnerable to new technology, and I can’t wait to hear about Thru Shaft air shocks. Therefore, during the test, I deliberately chose a section of descending mountainous terrain with very rocky bumps, just to see if it could respond quickly to constant vibrations.

During the ride I felt like Thru Shaft understood my riding needs and the trail conditions. As it works, this low-speed adjuster can counteract the rider’s pedaling input without compromising the high-speed thrills of rough terrain.

An enduro shock built for the perfect enduro mountain bike, I think. I completely surrendered to the charm it gave me, and at least made me tackle the raised terrain intimidated.

RockShox Super Deluxe Ultimate Rear Suspension

RockShox Super Deluxe Ultimate Rear Suspension

The rear shock of the Trek slash 9.8, the RockShox Super Deluxe Ultimate, can be said to be a complete change in the design of the rear shock. From the consideration of riding, the first consideration is performance, abandoning all previous constraints. The friction of riding bumps can be improved to the greatest extent, so that the bicycle can understand the road more clearly and face the pressure of impact more calmly.

The RockShox Super Deluxe Ultimate delivered unrivaled grip when I was climbing some climbs and tuned the bike to high geometry mode and had the freedom to tackle new challenges on the trails. It even enhances the Trek slash 9.8’s slack and tall frame to some extent.

The Trek slash 9.8 has more usable travel with quicker recovery from consecutive bumps when riding into certain rocky terrain. Not only that, but the excellent rear suspension allows the wheels to grip the ground more precisely. At the same time, this more aggressive suspension system does not strike while riding, always giving the bike a smoother, more controlled ride.

SRAM GX Eagle 1×12-speed Drivetrain

 Trek slash 9.8 GX Drivetrain

When I drive the Trek slash 9.8 beast, I don’t want it to be limited in speed. For a high-speed fan like me, the SRAM GX Eagle 1×12-speed drivetrain delivers super-smooth shifts, while the easy-to-follow 1x drive is designed to be thumb-friendly. You’ll just focus on the direction of the vehicle as you ride, and not be distracted by design flaws.

At the same time, the SRAM GX Eagle1x12 has a stricter manufacturing and assembly method, which can reduce the consumption of it when you are driving at a high speed, thereby increasing its lifespan and becoming more durable. Don’t worry about a lot of maintenance later on.

SRAM Code R 4 Piston Hydraulic Disc

 Trek slash 9.8 GX has SRAM Code R 4 Piston Hydraulic Disc

In the face of some unexpected and sudden drops, why do I have great confidence. In addition to being very familiar with the conditions of the track, another point is that the braking must be very agile, otherwise I have no great confidence that I will not be injured.

I really like the SRAM Code R 4-piston hydraulic disc on the Trek slash 9.8. Many of the Trek models I’ve tested have this type of hydraulic brake on it, so I know it well, and more importantly, it doesn’t weigh too much on the car.

In some conditions full of muddy roads, I will not be afraid of the pressure of the weather, providing me with efficient all-weather braking power, ensuring that I am calm in different conditions.

Other Versions of Trek slash

Trek Slash 9.9 XTR

2022 Trek Slash 9.9 XTR

Compared to the more expensive upgraded Trek Slash 9.9 XTR, the Trek slash 9.8 has narrower tires. The narrower wheels feel less drag and are quicker on the climbs in the riding conditions I like at high speeds.

At the same time, realize that the Trek Slash itself is a large-frame model, and the handling of its weight must be very strict. The Trek Slash 9.9 XTR has some weight gain at 13.9 kg. By design, it’s understandable that a full-suspension model can’t be as light as a hardtail.

However, the Trek Slash 9.9 XTR also shares the same oclv carbon fiber frame as the Trek slash 9.8, and there is no increase in suspension travel.

Some model upgrades have been made on the brake hydraulic discs and drivetrain. Because these models are from the same brand and have the same key performance, the overall impact on the body and riding experience has not improved to a higher level, and it did not surprise me. For economic advice, I would think the Trek slash 9.8 is what you’d expect from a full-suspension model.

At the same time, in the treatment of car paint color, Trek Slash 9.9 XTR has designed several bright themes. This is also an improvement over the Trek slash 9.8, which is a relatively single color.

Learn More: Trek Slash 9.9 XTR-The All-Rounder On The Mountain

Trek Slash 7

2022 Trek Slash 7

Compared to the cheaper Trek Slash 7, the Trek slash 9.8 performs better. On the main body frame, the Trek Slash 7 uses a more affordable aluminum frame. The material of aluminum alloy will be relatively friendly to some novices, such as some professional maintenance.

But it is undeniable that in the face of long-term endurance riding or climbing, oclv mountain carbon fiber is more resistant to friction and firmness, and even in terms of weight, it will not burden the rider. This is also reflected in the difference in weight between the two.

The Trek slash 9.8 is even lighter. With the upgrade of materials, aluminum alloy materials are rarely seen on professional models, but it is undeniable that some consumers will prefer this material, after all, it has an advantage in cost performance.

Learn More: Trek Slash 7 –Full Suspension Endurance Race Bike

What do we like about it?

  • Professional oclv carbon fiber material, allowing you to achieve the best balance between firmness and lightness.
  • 1×12-speed drivetrain for super smooth shifting and more freedom of speed selection.
  • Thru Shaft Air Shock makes the perfect all-around shock for enduro mountain bikes.
  • 29” tall tires have excellent rolling ability and greater traction.
  • SRAM Code R 4-piston hydraulic disc brakes are more sensitive and more confident in the face of challenges.
  • Fully equipped built-in storage device and water bottle holder make riding more fun.

What do we not like about it?

  • High-end component specifications make the price relatively high.
  • Maintenance needs to be more careful.
  • Tall and powerful character will make people of small size prohibitive.


  • What is the body weight of the Trek slash 9.8 GX?

The M model of the Trek slash 9.8 GX is 14.42 kg / 31.8 lbs.

  • What is the travel of the suspension on the Trek slash 9.8?

Trek slash 9.8 front suspension travel is 160mm rear and 170mm front.

  • What is the Trek slash 9.8 drivetrain?

The Trek slash 9.8 drivetrain is a SRAM GX Eagle 1×12-speed drivetrain.

Trek slash 9.8 GX Specs


FrameOCLV Mountain Carbon main frame & stays, internal storage, tapered head tube, Knock Block 2.0, Control Freak internal routing, Carbon Armor, shuttle guard, threaded BB, ISCG 05, 34.9mm seat tube, magnesium rocker link, Mino Link, ABP, Boost148, 160mm travel
ForkRockShox ZEB Select+, DebonAir spring, Charger 2.1 RC damper, tapered steerer, 44mm offset, Boost110, 15mm Maxle Stealth, 170mm travel
ShockNEW RockShox Super Deluxe Ultimate, DebonAir spring, Thru Shaft 3-position damper, 230×62.5mm
Max compatible fork travel180mm (596mm axle-to-crown)


Wheel frontBontrager Line Elite 30, OCLV Mountain Carbon, Tubeless Ready, 6-bolt, Boost110, 15mm thru axle
Wheel rearBontrager Line Elite 30, OCLV Mountain Carbon, Tubeless Ready, Rapid Drive 108, 6-bolt, SRAM XD driver, Boost148, 12mm thru axle
Hub rearBontrager alloy, sealed bearing, 6-bolt, 108T Rapid Drive, SRAM XD driver, Boost148, 12mm thru axle
Skewer rearBontrager Switch thru axle, removable lever
RimBontrager Line Elite 30, Tubeless Ready, 6-bolt, Boost110, 15mm thru axle
*TireSize: S, M, M/L, L, XL
Bontrager SE5 Team Issue, Tubeless Ready, Core Strength sidewalls, aramid bead, 120 tpi, 29×2.50”
Size: S, M, M/L, L, XL
Bontrager SE6 Team Issue, Tubeless Ready, Core Strength sidewalls, aramid bead, 120 tpi, 29×2.50”
Tire partBontrager TLR sealant, 6oz
Rim stripBontrager TLR
Max tire sizeFrame: 29×2.50″ Fork: See manufacturer


ShifterSRAM GX Eagle, 12 speed
Rear derailleurSRAM GX Eagle
CrankSRAM GX Eagle, DUB MTB Wide, 30T, 55mm chainline, 170 length
Bottom bracketSRAM DUB MTB Wide, 73mm, BSA threaded
CassetteSRAM Eagle XG-1275, 10-52, 12 speed
ChainSRAM GX Eagle, 12 speed
Max chainring sizeMax: 34T, Min 28T


SaddleBontrager Arvada, austenite rails, 138mm width
*SeatpostSize: S
Bontrager Line Elite Dropper, 100mm travel, MaxFlow, internal routing, 34.9mm, 345mm length
Size: M, M/L
Bontrager Line Elite Dropper, 150mm travel, MaxFlow, internal routing, 34.9mm, 440mm length
Size: L
Bontrager Line Elite Dropper, 170mm travel, MaxFlow, internal routing, 34.9mm, 485mm length
Size: XL
Bontrager Line Elite Dropper, 200mm travel, MaxFlow, internal routing, 34.9mm, 550mm length
HandlebarBontrager Line Pro, OCLV Carbon, 35mm, 27.5mm rise, 820mm width
GripsBontrager XR Trail Pro, alloy lock-on
StemBontrager Line Pro, 35mm, Knock Block, Blendr compatible, 0 degree, 35mm length
HeadsetKnock Block 2.0 Integrated, 72-degree radius (includes infinite-radius chip), sealed cartridge bearing, 1-1/8” top, 1.5” bottom
BrakeSRAM Code R 4-piston hydraulic disc
*Brake rotorSize: S, M, M/L, L, XL
SRAM CenterLine, 6-bolt, round edge, 180mm
Size: S, M, M/L, L, XL
SRAM CenterLine, 6-bolt, round edge, 200mm


BagBontrager BITS Internal Frame Storage Bag


WeightM – 14.63 kg / 32.26 lbs (with TLR sealant, no tubes)
Weight limitThis bike has a maximum total weight limit (combined weight of bicycle, rider, and cargo) of 300 pounds (136 kg).


Comparison Chart

Santa Cruz
$11, 1991×12SRAM Code
Click view
Pivot Switchblade
Ride GX/X01
$6, 7991×12SRAM Code
R 4-piston
29″x2.5″/2.4″Click view
Yeti SB150 C1$6, 5001×12SHIMANO
27.5″×2.5″Click View
Specialized Turbo Levo Comp$75001×12SRAM Code
Click View

Santa Cruz NOMAD X01 AXS vs Trek slash 9.8 GX

2023 Santa Cruz NOMAD R

When we compare the differences between the Santa Cruz NOMAD X01 AXS and the Trek slash 9.8, it becomes clear that the Santa Cruz NOMAD X01 AXS does not have a relatively friendly price. Although they have hydraulic disc brakes with the same stopping power, they also have a 1×12 drivetrain with the same range of options.

In terms of suspension travel, I have to say that the Trek slash 9.8 has a more inclusive design concept, and the consideration will be more complete and thoughtful. The travel of the rear is 160mm and the front is 170mm has a higher adaptability for climbing or descending.

The Santa Cruz NOMAD X01 AXS has a very long 170mm of travel consistently across the board, which I think is more beneficial for some gentler terrain. There is also an interesting difference, the Santa Cruz NOMAD X01 AXS uses electronic shifting on the drivetrain, which means it will reduce manual fun while increasing sensitivity. So I guess that has a good explanation for why it’s more expensive.

I would personally prefer a more traditional ride, and if I had to give you a choice suggestion, I would prefer the Trek slash 9.8. It is more tolerant of riders, whether you are a seasoned veteran or a rookie with little experience.

Learn More: Santa Cruz NOMAD X01 Review – The Limits Of Man And Bike

Pivot Switchblade Ride GX/X01 vs Trek slash 9.8

2022 Pivot Switchblade Ride GX

If you are interested in the Trek slash 9.8, then you will definitely pay attention to the Pivot Switchblade Ride GX/X01, and the price of the two is basically the same. Compared with the key data, I think Trek slash 9.8 will do better in terms of design concept.

In contrast, the Pivot Switchblade Ride GX/X01 is quite satisfactory. I’m not sure about some of the constant bumps in the ultra-enduro, and how well it handles the big shocks. The solutions I wanted to know didn’t make me see clearly, and they lacked the surprise that caught my eye.

So, from the fun and experience of my riding, I would choose the Trek slash 9.8.

Learn more : Is Pivot Mach 5.5 Carbon Race X01 Splendid? – [Pivot Mach 5.5 Carbon Race X01 Review]

Yeti SB150 C1 vs Trek slash 9.8

2022 Yeti SB150 C1

Compared to the Trek slash 9.8 with longer rear travel, the Yeti SB150 C1 has the same front travel. This means that the Yeti SB150 C1’s shorter rear travel may not perform as well as the Trek slash in certain terrains. For example, there are some big bumps in the middle of a fast climb.

Compared with the material of Yeti SB150 C1, the oclv carbon fiber material of Trek slash 9.8 is also more targeted, which will give consumers more confidence in their choice. In terms of the geometric design of the body, I think the rear shock absorber of the Trek slash 9.8 can exert more telescopic performance. In comparison, the Yeti SB150 C1 will look relatively cramped.

Although the price is very similar, in terms of the superior performance of some components, I think the Yeti SB150 C1 is too monotonous, which is also lacking for riders in terms of riding fun. All in all, Trek slash 9.8 surprised me even more.

Specialized Turbo Levo Comp Alloy vs Trek slash 9.8

2022 Specialized Turbo Levo Comp Alloy

With the development of the times, electric vehicles are also a trend. The Specialized Turbo Levo Comp Alloy isn’t really expensive, after all, there are a lot of electrical components that make up a large portion of the price.

Secondly, the weight of the aluminum frame used is not comparable to the oclv carbon fiber material of the Trek slash 9.8. Compare the key components. For example, the travel of the suspension, compared to the Trek slash 9.8, is much shorter (150mm rear, 160mm front).

Considering the electric energy, there is also a more concerned issue, that is, the maintenance and charging of the battery. If you’re a rider who doesn’t like to pay attention to this issue, the battery will cause you a little trouble.

Of course, the Specialized Turbo Levo Comp Alloy is also more novice friendly due to the use of electricity.

In summary, it must be said that if you are a traditional rider like me, then this car may not bring you the satisfaction of sports. A considerable part of its performance and components are consistent with ordinary off-road bikes.

In case, the above comments are helpful to you, please remember to share the subscription. Have a great day!

Learn more:Best Mountain Bikes Under $2000

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