Dream Bikes: Trek Madone SLR 9 Disc
700 Series OCLV carbon
Madone KVF (Kammtail Virtual Foil) carbon
11-speed Shimano Dura-Ace Di2
Gearing: 50/34t chainrings, 11-28t cassette
Shimano Dura-Ace hydraulic disc
Bontrager Aeolus XXX 6 tubeless-ready disc
Bontrager R4 320 700x25c
The latest Madone is as elegant an aero bike as you’re likely to find in 2019, but that sleek frame is hiding some of the most complicated tech around.
There are special details everywhere: the Di2 battery and junction box under the bottle cage mount on the down tube; a two-piece bar and stem that maintains the same aerodynamic properties of the previous one-piece system, but offers a much wider range of fit combinations and about five degrees of bar roll; a mount on the seat post for Bontrager’s Flare R rear light; an adjustable IsoSpeed Decoupler, now also with a damper…
All of these combine to deliver an incredibly versatile race bike that you can tweak for performance or endurance, depending on what you’ve signed up for.
And what’s a dream bike without a dream paint scheme? The Madone is one of seven Trek models that are fully customisable via the Project One web portal. First, choose your preferred wheelset, saddle, tyres, bar tape and drivetrain. (Dura-Ace Di2 or RED eTap AXS? Decisions, decisions…)
Then comes the fun part: The software allows you to preview a custom paint scheme that will make sure you get noticed on your Sunday ride. There are some truly bonkers options, like Prismatic Pearl (a rainbow trapped inside a disco ball), Brushed Liquid Metal (which gives the unsettling impression that this 7.6kg race machine is made of the wrong substance), and Black Gold (which you should definitely order if you wake up every morning and roll around in piles of money).
With top-spec everything, you’re looking at a bike that rivals the Argonaut Road Disc in price. But the Argonaut is a fully custom bike, so you can understand how the price ratchets up, whereas the Madone is basically a stock bike with a fancy paint job.
Well; that would be the cynical view. In reality, when you see Prismatic Pearl in all its glory, your jaw slackens and your eyeballs are seared by the awesomeness. Trek has gone for absolute quality with their custom project, which is admirable from such a big company.
Project One is not for everybody, but it’s everything for some…
PRICE: R216 800
GET IT NOW: trekbikes.com