The All-New Trek Madone 9 Road Bike!
8am PDT 6/30/15 Trek officially unveils the all-new Madone 9 road bike! Here's what we know, updated as more info becomes available (as yet they're not available in stores). It's fast. Really fast. It's also comfortable. Really comfortable. That sounds pretty awesome! But, this is a "race" bike in terms of fit, so we're talking "comfort" in a relative sense (more on this further down). Also, it's not as light as the Trek Emonda or even the smooth-riding Domane & Silque models, because you can't build this level of aerodynamics without adding weight. How much weight? We're still working out the details, but we figure about .5 to 1.5lbs heavier than an equivalent Emonda. Still, the research is pretty strong that aerodynamics trumps light weight for anyone riding at race speeds, even up hills.
So, while Trek has a bike for everyone, this might not be the bike for you. If you need a pretty tall handlebar (relative to the seat), the highly-integrated setup of the one-piece bar/stem, as well as integrated cable routing, limit fitting options. This is, simply, not a "century riding" bike for most people. If your average speed on a moderately-hilly century is under 16mph, you would be better-served with an Emonda, Domane, or Silque. But if you're looking to ride with the fastest out there, maybe pick up some Strava KOMs along the way, this bike will make a significant difference!
More details just arriving; here's a link to the fit information for the H2 frame (taller bar option), and another for the H1 (nose-in-the-gravel) option. The Women's version (WSD) appears to be the same geometry as the H2. The geometry information confirms that this is not going to be the bike for someone who rides a current H2 geometry frame with a 17 degree stem.
If you can't fit this rocket, it's not as if you've been left out. The feel of an outrageously-light road bike, like Trek's Emonda, is tough to beat on a climb, and most of us (raising my hand) don't ride fast enough uphill to benefit from aerodynamics. But if you want something that will deliver nearly the efficiency of a time trial bike on flatter roads, without the discomfort and poor handling of a tri bike, the Madone 9 will deliver. For that reason, it's going to have a very strong appeal to the person whose only road bike is presently a tri bike with aero bars. And it will certainly appeal to virtually everyone racing, as the fit options will be very compatible with such use.
More to come, after we've gotten our hands on them and actually ridden on our local roads. --Mike Jacoubowsky, Partner, avid road rider (Trek Emonda SLR), Chain Reaction Bicycles