Is Trek Slash 9.7 A Perfect Selection? – [Trek Slash 9.7 Review]

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Trek Slash 9.7 Review

  • Price: $4,999  
  • Frame: Carbon
  • Tires: 29″ Aluminum
  • Gear: 1 x 12

What we like about it: It offers riders faster descent speeds and the courage to tackle big drops, providing an ultimate riding experience.

What we didn’t like about it: The design lacks a built-in chain stabilizer, which needs to be added later.

Rating: (4.9/5)

Trek Slash 9.7
Trek Slash 9.7

The Trek Slash 9.7 pairs a lightweight, stable bicycle frame with a robust 140mm FOX 36 front fork, a 130mm FOX Float Performance shock, Shimano SLX/XT drivetrain, and powerful 4-piston brakes to create a fast and enjoyable mountain bike.

In the following sections, we will analyze the riding experience, key features, components, specifications, and other versions of the Trek Slash 9.7. In the latter part of this article, we have also selected a few other bikes for comparison. If you want to learn more about bike reviews, you can follow us.

Riding Experience

When I got my hands on the Trek Slash 9.7, I couldn’t help but notice its substantial front fork travel, showcasing its off-road prowess. I was eager to experience its riding capabilities.

With the Trek Slash 9.7, I headed to Whistler Mountain Bike Park and booked a nearby hotel on IHG in advance. This is a very popular mountain biking park, and the route I chose was quite exhilarating, featuring numerous jumps and rugged downhill trails through the woods.


As I set out with the Trek Slash 9.7 towards the starting point atop the mountain, the overall pedaling sensation was swift. I locked the bike’s front and rear suspension, and every pedal stroke felt efficient, with no noticeable energy loss. The bike felt more integrated, and my climbing speed increased.

When I started to feel the effort in my pedal strokes, I knew it was time to adjust my pace. I shifted the gear lever to a higher freewheel gear. Pedaling immediately became easier, though it did sacrifice some speed. But at that point, I was more concerned about conserving energy.

Thanks to the excellent geometry and dropper post design, I could maintain a stable center of gravity with weight distributed evenly between the front and rear of the bike, making my climbing efforts feel more fluid.


After reaching the starting point, I unlocked the front and rear suspension of the Trek Slash 9.7. After a brief rest, I pushed off with the pedals. The tire noise on the ground sounded incredibly satisfying to me. Soon, I reached the first jump platform, pulling up the front wheel to maintain stability in the air. Upon landing, the ample front and rear suspension travel absorbed all the impacts and vibrations, ensuring a stable and safe landing.

During the rapid descent through the forest, the Trek Slash 9.7’s 29-inch oversized wheels easily tackled all obstacles, providing ample traction. The entire bike maintained a stable and rapid descent on this section of the trail, stimulating my nerves and making me want to ride even faster.

As I was about to enter a narrow path, the Shimano M6120 four-piston brakes delivered powerful braking performance. With just one-finger operation, I could achieve strong braking force. I could easily reduce speed and safely enter the narrow path. Although the 29-inch wheels may be less agile on the trail, the Bontrager XR5 2.5-inch wide, knobby tires offered decent grip. I could lower my center of gravity in turns, maintaining good speed without compromising agility.

In summary, the Trek Slash 9.7 excels in climbing, helping riders conserve energy. However, it’s during the descent that this bike truly shines, continuously exciting my senses and making me want to go faster.


The Trek Slash 9.7 is available in five different sizes (S – XL) with carbon fiber frames, catering to riders with heights ranging from 5’1″ to 6’5″. It nearly accommodates riders of all heights.

The Fox Rhythm Float 36 front fork and Fox Performance Float X rear shock provide 170mm of front travel and 160mm of rear travel, offering excellent support for handling all types of terrain.

The Shimano SLX/XT drivetrain components deliver smooth and lightweight gear shifting with fast, reliable responsiveness. The Shimano four-piston brake components provide strong braking performance, even in challenging conditions.


Other Versions

The Trek Slash 9.7 is an outstanding full-suspension endurance race bike, featuring a high-quality carbon fiber frame and components that meet the needs of all riders. However, for riders with a more generous budget and higher component requirements, we offer other versions of this bike.

Trek Slash 9.9 XTR

Trek Slash 9.9 XTR

The Trek Slash 9.9 XTR also utilizes Trek’s OCLV mountain bike-specific carbon fiber, known for its lightweight and durability.

For suspension components, it features top-tier RockShox Zeb Ultimate and RockShox Super Deluxe Ultimate RC2T shocks, capable of handling intense rough terrain.

In the drivetrain department, it boasts Shimano XTR M9100 top-tier drivetrain components, offering an incredibly smooth gear-shifting experience with high efficiency and precision.

On the braking side, this bike uses my favorite Shimano XTR M9120 top-tier four-piston brakes. These brakes provide powerful stopping performance with the ease of single-finger operation.

What do we like about it?

  • Shimano four-piston hydraulic disc brakes offer reliable stopping performance in all conditions.
  • The Shimano SLX/XT drivetrain system provides a smooth shifting experience with fast and precise responsiveness.
  • Trek’s mountain-specific carbon fiber is a more robust carbon fiber with unique materials and layup processes, advanced engineering, and higher testing standards.
  • Full-frame protection safeguards the frame’s underside from rock impacts, debris, and rough terrain.
  • Internal frame storage at the downtube allows riders to ditch the backpack and still carry ride essentials.
  • Active Braking Pivot enables our engineers to independently adjust suspension response to acceleration and braking forces. This means you can have more confident control when you need it most.

What don’t we like about it?

  • The design lacks a built-in chain stabilizer, which needs to be added later.


  • What is the weight of this bike?

It weighs 32 pounds 3.0 ounces (14,600 grams).

  • How are Trek bikes?

When you’re off-roading on a Trek bike, you’re bound to enjoy a pleasant riding experience. For those willing to invest in a high-quality bike, Trek is one of the top brands today. They come equipped with high-quality components and special features that give riders an edge on any terrain.

  • How do I choose the right size?

Here, we provide you with a size chart. Of course, you don’t necessarily have to follow this standard. The best way to find the right size is to test ride it.

Rider heightSIZE
5’1″ – 5’5″S
5’5″ – 5’9″M
5’8″ – 5’11”M/L
5’10” – 6’2″L
6’2″ – 6’5″XL



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 links, Mino Link, ABP, Boost148, 160mm travel shuttle guard, threaded BB, ISCG 05, 34.9mm seat tube, magnesium rocker link, Mino Link, ABP, Boost148, 160mm travel
ForkFox Rhythm 36, Float EVOL air spring, GRIP damper, tapered steerer, 44mm offset, Boost110, 15mm Kabolt axle, 170mm travel
ShockFox Performance Float X, 2-position damper, 230mm x 62.5mm
Max compatible fork travel180mm (596mm axle-to-crown)


Wheel front Bontrager Line Comp 30, Tubeless Ready, 6-bolt, Boost110, 15mm thru axle
Wheel rear Bontrager Line Comp 30, Tubeless Ready, Rapid Drive 108, 6-bolt, Boost148, 12mm thru axle
Skewer rear Bontrager Switch thru axle, removable lever
Tire Bontrager XR5 Team Issue, Tubeless Ready, Inner Strength casing, aramid bead, 60 tpi, 29×2.50”
Tire partBontrager TLR Sealant, 6oz
Rim strip Bontrager TLR
Max tire sizeFrame: 29×2.50″, Fork: See manufacturer


Shifter Shimano SLX M7100, 12 speed
Rear derailleur Shimano XT M8100, long cage
Crank Shimano Deore M6120, 30T ring, 55mm chainline, 170mm length
Bottom bracketShimano BB-MT501 BSA
Cassette Shimano SLX M7100, 10-51T, 12 speed
Chain Shimano SLX M7100, 12 speed
Max chainring size 1x: 34T, min 28T


Saddle Bontrager Arvada, hollow chromoly rails, 138mm width
*SeatpostSize: STranzX JD-YSP39, 100mm travel, internal routing, 34.9mm
Size: M , MLTranzX JD-YSP39, 150mm travel, internal routing, 34.9mm
Size: L , XLTranzX JD-YSP39, 170mm travel, internal routing, 34.9mm
Handlebar Bontrager Line, alloy, 35mm, 27.5mm rise, 820mm width
Grips Bontrager XR Trail Pro, alloy lock-on
Stem Bontrager Elite, 35mm, 0 degree, 35mm length
Headset Knock Block 2.0 Integrated, 72-degree radius (includes infinite-radius chip), sealed cartridge bearing, 1-1/8” top, 1.5” bottom
Brake Shimano 4-piston hydraulic disc, M6100 lever, M6120 caliper
*Brake rotor Size: S , M , ML , L , XLShimano RT66, 6-bolt, 180mm
Size: S , M , ML , L , XLShimano RT66, 6-bolt, 203mm
Rotor size Max brake rotor sizes – Frame: 200mm, Fork: see fork manufacturer


Bag Bontrager BITS Internal Frame Storage Bag


Weight M – 14.88 kg / 32.81 lbs (with TLR sealant, no tubes)
Weight limit This bike has a maximum total weight limit (combined weight of bicycle, rider, and cargo) of 300 pounds (136 kg).

Comparison Table

BikesClick viewTravelFrame MaterialBrake TypeDrivetrain
Specialized Stumpjumper EVO CompClick View150mm rear, 160mm frontCarbonSRAM Code RS1 × 12
Santa Cruz NOMAD R / Carbon CClick View170mm rear, 170mm frontCarbonSRAM G2 RE1 × 12
Transition Patrol GX Code AlloyClick View160mm rear, 160mm frontCarbonAluminum1 × 12  
Canyon Spectral CF 8 CLLCTV KISClick View150mm rear, 160mm frontCarbonSRAM Code R1 × 12 Electronic

Trek Slash 9.7 vs. Specialized Stumpjumper EVO Comp

Specialized Stumpjumper EVO Comp
Specialized Stumpjumper EVO Comp

These two bikes are the flagship full-suspension endurance race bicycles for both parties.

Firstly, they both feature carbon fiber frames and utilize the same suspension fork. However, the former has a longer suspension travel, capable of handling larger drop-offs, absorbing more vibrations, and handling more significant impacts.

In terms of drivetrain components, the former is equipped with Shimano components, offering smooth gear shifting. Meanwhile, the latter features SRAM drivetrain components with crisp and precise gear changes.

Regarding the braking system, both of them are equipped with hydraulic disc brakes, providing powerful braking performance. They can effectively ensure braking capabilities even in the most intense riding situations.

In the end, both of these full-suspension endurance race bikes are exceptional. Either one is a good choice, and you can choose according to your personal preferences.

Learn More: Is Specialized Stumpjumper EVO LTD a Good Choice? – [Specialized Stumpjumper EVO LTD Review]

Trek slash 9.7 vs. Santa Cruz NOMAD R / Carbon C

Santa Cruz NOMAD R / Carbon C
Santa Cruz NOMAD R / Carbon C

They both feature carbon fiber frames and have similar suspension travel. However, the former equipped with Fox shocks offered better support, providing a greater advantage when landing after drops. On the other hand, the latter equipped with RockShox suspension forks excels in initial sensitivity, maintaining better stability on continuous rough terrain.

In terms of drivetrain components, the former, equipped with Shimano SLX/XT components, provides a more satisfying user experience compared to the SRAM NX components on the latter.

Regarding the wheelset, the combination of a 29-inch front wheel and a 27.5-inch rear wheel on the latter ensures a balance of versatility and agility during downhill riding. This is a feature I particularly appreciate.

Choosing between these two bikes is equally challenging. However, the former is priced lower than the latter, making it a suitable choice for riders with a tighter budget.

Learn More: Is Santa Cruz NOMAD X01 A Good Bike? [Santa Cruz NOMAD X01 Review]

Trek slash 9.7 vs. Transition Patrol GX Code Alloy

Transition Patrol GX Code Alloy
Transition Patrol GX Code Alloy

The carbon fiber frame on the former is lighter than the aluminum frame on the latter, making for a more agile ride.

In terms of suspension, the former is equipped with a Fox 36 front fork, which offers a longer suspension travel compared to the RockShox ZEB on the latter. This makes it more suitable for riding on rough and rugged terrain.

On the drivetrain side, I prefer the crisp and robust gear changes of the SRAM GX components on the latter. However, the Shimano components on the former are also reliable and excellent.

When it comes to the braking system, the SRAM Code RSC brakes on the latter provide more powerful braking compared to the hydraulic disc brakes of the Shimano M6120 on the former.

In summary, the components of the latter are indeed more robust than those of the former. However, the carbon fiber frame on the former has greater potential.

Learn More: Is Transition Patrol GX Alloy Fox Splendid – [Transition Patrol GX Alloy Fox Review]

Trek Slash 9.7 vs. Canyon Spectral CF 8 CLLCTV KIS

Canyon Spectral CF 8 CLLCTV KIS
Canyon Spectral CF 8 CLLCTV KIS

These are both full-suspension endurance race bikes. The former boasts longer front and rear suspension travel and is equipped with Fox suspension components, capable of absorbing more vibrations and tackling more challenging and complex riding routes.

In the drivetrain department, the latter is fitted with SRAM GX Eagle AXS components, offering crisp and precise gear shifts. The electronic version of the drivetrain is straightforward to adjust, making it convenient. Therefore, I prefer this drivetrain.

Regarding the braking system, the Shimano components on the former provide linear and lightweight operation, while the SRAM brakes on the latter offer a more crisp and precise feel.

In conclusion, between these two bikes, the Canyon Spectral CF 8 CLLCTV KIS is indeed a more cost-effective full-suspension endurance race bike.

Learn More: Is Canyon Spectral 29 CF 7 Worth Buying? [Canyon Spectral 29 CF 7 Review]


Above is my review of the Trek Slash 9.7. In our view, this is a well-rounded full-suspension endurance race bike with reliable components that allow for intense riding without the need for any upgrades. This is why we give it a rating of 4.9.

Of course, if you’re interested in other full-suspension endurance race bikes, we also review a variety of bikes at different price points, all of which are equally exciting. Feel free to check out our other reviews.

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