First Journey: Trek’s New Gas EX Has Extra Journey & Extra Changes

First Journey: Trek’s New Gas EX Has Extra Journey & Extra Changes

The Gas EX identify first confirmed up in Trek’s catalog manner again in 2005 with simply 100mm of suspension, however, like different long-lived fashions, each iteration since has both gained journey, gotten slacker and longer, or acquired different updates to make it a extra succesful path bike. Seventeen years on and the 2023 Gas EX will get an analogous therapy, with an all-new 140mm-travel body paired with a 150mm fork and sporting way more adjustable geometry.

For riders seeking to get much more out of their path bike, that adaptability even extends to it being suitable with a 27.5″ rear wheel and a coil-sprung shock. And simply in case you hadn’t seen, it positive appears to be like loads like their also-new Gas EX-e.

2023 Gas EX Particulars
• Meant use: Path using
• Journey: 140mm rear / 150mm entrance
• Body materials: Aluminum, carbon fiber
• Wheels: 27.5″ and 29″
• Sizes: XS – XXL
• Attain: 400 – 545mm
• Weight: TBA
• Worth: $2,699 – $10,749 USD

Body Particulars

The Gas EX’s body is solely new and appears fairly totally different from the bike it is changing, particularly the meatier front-end and extra sophisticated design on the seat tube and backside bracket space. There’s additionally loads extra adjustability built-in to the brand new body, together with aftermarket angle-adjusting headset cups, two shock positions, coil-shock compatibility, and flip-chip pivot {hardware} which you can examine under.

Suspension: In the case of the Gas EX’s again finish, there are some things you will acknowledge and a pair you will not. Beginning with what’s new, Trek has bumped the journey on each finally ends up 10mm in comparison with the earlier model, with 140mm being paired with a 150mm fork making this the most important Gas EX ever. And whereas not one of the eight full bikes come inventory from Trek with one fitted, it is also the primary model that is suitable with coil-sprung shocks. Serving to on that entrance is a flip-chip on the decrease shock mount that tweaks the leverage curve; one setting provides bottom-out resistance or works higher with a coil, whereas the opposite is much less progressive to go well with an air can’s inherently rising spring charge.

You in all probability will not be shocked to see Trek’s ABP suspension format on the again of the brand new Gas EX. These three letters are brief for ‘Energetic Braking Pivot’ that describes the claimed benefits way more succinctly than I ever might. As an alternative of a Horst Hyperlink or having the pivot on the chainstay, ABP rotates concentrically across the hub axle.

Wheel sizes: Trek is promoting the Gas EX with each 27.5″ and 29″ wheels, placing the previous on each the extra-small and small-sized bikes. They’re additionally doing a small-sized body on 29″ wheels, whereas medium, medium/massive, massive, extra-large, and extra-extra-large will name come on 29″ wheels.

And if you wish to put a 27.5″ wheel on the again of your Gas EX, you may as well try this because of all this adjustability. With the smaller wheel reducing the bike, Trek says you will have to run a 160mm-travel fork and have the Mino Hyperlinks set to the excessive place to maintain the underside bracket from feeling too near the bottom.

Elevated Adjustability: Should you’re aware of Trek’s full-suspension bikes, you’ve got in all probability already seen the flip-chip pivot {hardware} that connects the seatstays to the rocker hyperlink. Trek calls these the Mino Hyperlinks and you will find an up to date model on this bike that provides the identical 0.5-degree head angle and 8mm of backside bracket peak adjustment. I’ve at all times thought these have been comparatively conservative adjustments to the geometry, however a bigger variance would require a extra impartial adjustment…

That is exactly what Trek has performed for 2023, with Trek providing headset cups that may be swapped out to alter the steering angle by a level in both course. The inventory cups provide a 64.5-degree head angle, however those that wish to go slacker (or steeper) should purchase a set of cups that does each. You put in them a method for 63.5-degrees or the opposite manner for 65.5-degrees. The higher cup will drop in, Trek says, however you will want a headset press for the decrease one.

These three head angle choices and two Mino Hyperlink settings make for six geometry set-ups, which is why Trek has a brand new geo configurator instrument on their web site that can assist you type out the place to place what. They recommend utilizing the Mino Hyperlinks to fine-tune issues: “You possibly can set up the headset cups within the slack place and use the Mino excessive setting to take care of BB peak and keep away from pedal strikes, all whereas conserving a 64-degree head tube angle. Want even greater and steeper? Use the Mino excessive setting and the steep head tube cup setting for a 66-degree head tube angle.

Different particulars: There’s additionally a 34.9mm seat tube, a threaded backside bracket shell with an ISCG-05 chain information mount round it, and the world’s longest downtube protector that ought to forestall injury from each rocks and tailgates. It is also good to see full-length inside housing guides from entrance to again that ought to make upkeep simple whereas additionally giving the body a tidy look. The downtube storage compartment has been carried over to the brand new design, in fact, and so they additionally added it to the brand new aluminum Gas EX body as effectively.

Whereas it looks as if Trek has put all of the issues onto the most recent Gas EX, there’s one which they left off: Knock Block. The headset-integrated steering cease is designed to maintain fork crowns from smashing into the straight downtube (that Trek says makes for a stiffer body) on a few of their bikes, however the 2023 Gas EX has gone again to a curvy downtube that gives loads of clearance. It is a good factor.


There aren’t any surprises in the case of what’s modified: the brand new Gas EX will get an extended wheelbase, longer attain, a steeper seat angle, and a slacker head angle.

Up entrance, the earlier Gas EX may very well be set as slack as 66-degrees with its 140mm-travel fork, whereas the brand new bike will be relaxed all the way in which to 63.5-degrees if you happen to’re utilizing the aftermarket headset cups defined above. Are your trails too flat and sluggish for that quantity? You too can steepen the bike as much as 66-degrees utilizing the identical cups, all with out drastically messing with the bike’s seat angle. Talking of seat angle, these are steeper throughout the board, with the massive sitting at 77.2 versus the previous massive’s 75.5-degree quantity.

Entrance-end size has grown a bit as effectively, with our large-sized check bike being 485mm (Mino low) versus 470mm for the previous bike. It begins at 400mm for the smallest bike and goes all the way in which out to 545mm for the most important dimension. Efficient prime tube size has performed the alternative, nevertheless, going from 634mm to 626mm for a big because of the steeper seat angle.

That is additionally the primary Gas EX that will get size-specific chainstays, and 4 lengths are used between the extra-small and extra-extra-large sizes. Very similar to Norco does, Trek accomplishes this by utilizing barely totally different fundamental pivot places moderately than manufacturing totally different chainstays; extra-small to medium sizes get a 435mm rear-end, medium-large and huge 440mm, extra-large 445mm, and the massive boi has 450mm chainstays.

9 (ish) Gas EX Fashions

There are 9 totally different 2023 Gas EX fashions that vary in worth from $2,699.99 to $10,749.99 USD, however solely eight of them are new bikes. That first worth is for the EX 5 that is really a carry-over utilizing final 12 months’s aluminum body, which suggests it has 130mm of journey and a 140mm fork within the form of a RockShox Recon Silver.

The brand new bikes begin with the aluminum EX 7 which prices $3,700 and aluminum EX 8 that goes for $4,300 USD. These get the identical options because the pricier carbon bikes, together with the storage compartment, angle-adjusting headset, and coil-compatibility. The EX 8, spec’d with Fox Rhythm 36 fork, an XT drivetrain, and Deore four-piston brakes, appears to be like like a sensible selection. Carbon fiber exhibits up subsequent with the EX 9.7 which will get a similar-ish spec however prices $4,700 USD.

If in case you have greater than twice that to spend, the 9.9 XX1 AXS will get all of the costly components and can set you again $10,749 USD.

Journey Impressions

First Journey: Trek’s New Gas EX Has Extra Journey & Extra Changes I used to be capable of sneak away from the hustle and bustle of Crankworx Whistler to get in a journey on the brand new Gas EX. There’s an aggressive path bike Subject Check within the works, so this yellow machine will probably be battling it out in opposition to different related contenders within the close to future.

The downhill portion of that first journey began off with a steep, chunky part of path stuffed with rocky stair steps, adopted by a blind drop into a really dusty chute. Fortunately I might spent a couple of further minutes bedding within the brake pads beforehand, and the difficult transfer went off with out a hitch. In its inventory configuration the Gas EX’s geometry feels prepared for absolutely anything – nothing concerning the match or dealing with of the bike instantly struck me as being misplaced.

There’s loads of traction on faucet for climbing, however there’s additionally extra help than the previous Gas EX – it is not as desirous to sink into its journey, with a greater platform to push in opposition to when standing up out of the saddle. The truth that the quantity of development will be elevated with out opening up the shock can also be a pleasant characteristic – that first journey was within the extra linear mode, and since then I’ve switched to the progressive setting so as to get extra end-stroke ramp up. I can use full journey when vital, however the further development helps preserve a couple of extra millimeters in reserve for larger hits.

That grip on the climbs interprets over onto the descents, the place the Gas EX has a pleasant fluttery really feel, calmly smoothing out the path chatter. I did discover that the built-in bar / stem combo felt stiffer than I might have most popular. Granted, my arms have been a bit crushed up from a number of actually large days of using earlier within the week, however I wasn’t the one rider who famous the extra-stiff really feel.

The Gas EX does really feel like a much bigger, extra succesful bike than its predecessor, which is not precisely stunning contemplating that it has 10mm extra journey to go together with that longer and slacker geometry. Realistically, the brand new Prime Gas has path manners which are nearer to the earlier model of the Gas EX, and the 2023 Gas EX rides extra like an up to date, big-wheeled Treatment.

With so many changes and doable configurations it is going to take various rides to actually work out the Gas EX’s strengths and weaknesses. We’ll dig deeper within the upcoming Subject Check, and I will even be placing collectively a mixed-wheel model with a 160mm fork to see the way it holds up over the lengthy time period.

Mike Kazimer

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