1. The most important thing about buying a new bike is to make sure it fits. The only way you'll know if the bike is right for you is to size up the bike and make sure that the bike's geometry matches your body's geometry. Ask questions and do some research.
mtn. biking 101
2. If possible, try to find a shop that will let you demo the bike on real dirt. Five minutes in a parking lot won't cut it. You wouldn't buy a car without a real world test drive, and a bike should be no different.
3. Don't belive the hype. Just because your favorite rider or best friend rides a certain bike, that doesn't mean that's the best one for you. Have an open mind and be realistic about your needs and ability.
Results 1 to 9 of 9
  1. #1
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    Trek Elite 8.5 vs Trek 4900

    Hi all.

    I need your advice regarding my future purchase. The bike will be used for light trails and commuting. I have limited options where i live and my LBS provides service for trek bikes. The 4900 is 900 USD (discounted) ant the elite 8.5 1500 (no discount). I know that the elite has a better fork but i can get the same fork for 200 USD to fit the 4900. Is the price difference justifiable? Which one would you choose.? Please see the details below:


    ELITE

    Frame

    Alpha Platinum Aluminium w/E2 tapered head tube, press-fit bottom bracket, internal derailleur cable routing, post mount disc brake

    Front suspension

    RockShox Recon Silver w/Solo Air, remote lockout, 100mm travel


    Wheels

    Wheels

    Shimano M435 hubs w/Bontrager AT-850 32-hole double-walled rims

    Tyres

    Bontrager XR1, 26x2.2"
    Drivetrain

    Shifters

    Shimano Deore, 10 speed

    Front derailleur

    Shimano Deore

    Rear derailleur

    Shimano Deore XT Shadow

    Crank

    Shimano M552, 42/32/24

    Cassette

    Shimano HG62 11-36, 10 speed

    Pedals

    Wellgo nylon platform
    Components

    Saddle

    Bontrager Evoke 1

    Seatpost

    Bontrager SSR, 31.6mm, 12mm offset

    Handlebar

    Bontrager Low Riser, 31.8mm, 15mm rise, 9 degree sweep

    Stem

    Bontrager Race Lite, 31.8mm, 7 degree

    Headset

    FSA IS-2, E2, fully integrated aluminium cartridge

    Brakeset

    Shimano M446 hydraulic disc brakes



    Saddle Bontrager Evoke 1
    Handlebar Bontrager 15mm Rise

    Handlebar Stem: Bontrager Race Lite
    Headset

    Wheels
    Rims Bontrager AT-850
    Tires Bontrager XR2 26x2.2





    4900

    Frame

    Alpha Gold Aluminium w/semi-integrated head tube, butted and hydroformed tubing, internal front derailleur cable routing, replaceable derailleur hanger

    Front suspension

    SR Suntour XCR-RL w/coil spring, preload adjustment, remote lockout, 100mm travel

    Sizes

    13.5, 15.5, 17.5, 18.5, 19.5, 21.5, 23.5"
    Wheels

    Wheels

    Shimano M475 aluminium hubs w/Bontrager AT-850 32-hole double-walled rims

    Tyres

    Bontrager XR2, 26x2.2"
    Drivetrain

    Shifters

    Shimano Deore, 10 speed

    Front derailleur

    Shimano Deore

    Rear derailleur

    Shimano Deore XT Shadow

    Crank

    Shimano M552, 42/32/24

    Cassette

    Shimano HG62 11-36, 10 speed

    Pedals

    Wellgo nylon platform
    Components

    Saddle

    Bontrager Evoke 1

    Seatpost

    Bontrager SSR, 31.6mm, 12mm offset

    Handlebar

    Bontrager Low Riser, 31.8mm, 15mm rise, 9 degree sweep

    Stem

    Bontrager Race Lite, 31.8mm, 7 degree

    Headset

    1-1/8" threadless, semi-integrated, semi-cartridge bearings

    Brakeset

    Avid Elixir 1 hydraulic disc brakes


    Thanks for your help

  2. #2
    Fat-tired Roadie
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    Did you ride them both?

    WTF are light trails?

    If light trails are singletrack, get the Elite.
    "Don't buy upgrades; ride up grades." -Eddy Merckx

  3. #3
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    I'd get the 4900 and upgrade the fork to a Recon Gold. Still under the price of the Elite and a better ride.

  4. #4
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    I rode both and didn't notice any difference. Maybe the elite had less weight. The geometry seems the same. My main concern is that the elite would be the better option for future upgrades, due to the better, lighter frame and the added benefit of the tapered head tube and the press-fit bottom bracket. However, i doubt it if i would ever be able to tell the difference so that the difference in price would be justified. Thanks again for your help.

  5. #5
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    If you want to get a frame to upgrade go for a Cobia, X-Cal or Marlin. The 29 size is a long term bike.

  6. #6
    Fat-tired Roadie
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    The tapered head tube and weird bottom bracket are both debatable in a short-travel, alloy-framed bike.

    On paper, there're geometry differences I think I'd care about, but this bike is for you.

    29ers are pretty cool. Try to get some saddle time on a couple before you buy.
    "Don't buy upgrades; ride up grades." -Eddy Merckx

  7. #7
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    I would take the Trek. I hate Avid hydraulic brakes. Shimano makes great hydro brakes all across their lineup, IMO. I'm not a fan of a lot of these funny new BB standards, though. Press fit BB's in particular. Tapered headtube is also one of those "meh" features on this sort of bike. I have no idea how you would ever notice the stiffness of a tapered fork steerer on that bike. The fork stanchions/lowers are going to flex more, anyway, since these short travel forks pretty much still all have regular QR axles, anyway. But it is what it is. The frame is going to be better and lighter, anyway, and have better parts hung on it all around.

    I thought the 11-36t cassettes were intended for 29ers to give them a comparable low gear as an 11-34t cassette on a 26er. Most of my 26er bikes these days have 11-32t cassettes, anyway. a 36t cog on a 26er is a pretty stinking low gear.

  8. #8
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    The elite has the alpha platinum aluminium frame which is used in their higher-end models like the superfly and the stache (although 29ers) so it may make more sense to change to better components as they brake on that frame rather than on trek's alpha gold frame. However, components are more or less the same on both the 4900 and the elite.

  9. #9
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    Those bike have been replaced by 29ers in the Trek dealers in my area. They will never return.
    You are in Greece so you have access to Canyon bikes-- a direct seller.
    The grand Canyon 29 AL and carbon lines are good value.
    Eurobike 2011 Demo Day Report: Canyon "Grand Canyon AL 29"
    Canyon Presents 2013 CF SLX Carbon Hard Tail 29"ers
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Trek Elite 8.5 vs Trek 4900-grand-canyon-al-29.jpg  

    Attached Images Attached Images  

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