Trek Slash 8
Giant Reign X0
Q: Looking to get my first full-suspension bike (probably way
overthinking this) and was looking
at these two bikes: the Trek Slash 8
and the Giant Reign X0. They have
almost identical components and
are at the same price point. What
should I do?
—Rob, who is ready for the
world of full suspension
A: How do we answer this one?
Neither bike has any major flaw. Both
suspension designs are really good.
Both will take about the same amount
of time to set up and maintain. Both
are from solid companies that aren’t
going to change ownership or go away.
Either bike will serve you well.
You do mention that this will be your
first full-suspension bike; both of these
options would mean jumping head first
into the all-mountain world of longer
travel and slacker angles. If you are
looking to tackle steeper and more tech-
nical trails and are less worried about
getting up the climbs in a hurry, then
these bikes will suit you perfectly.
However, if you plan to ride the same
trails you do now on your hardtail and
just want a more comfortable ride, you
will have more fun on a 5-inch travel
bike like the Trek Fuel EX or Giant
Trance X. These bikes are lighter and
faster on the way up and are quicker-
handling so you won’t have to be pin-
ning it to get the most out of the slack
geometry of an all-mountain bike.
In either case, your pick should come
down to which company has the best
dealer in your area. We’d buy the brand
where the shop is going to spend some
time with you, set up the suspension
and dial in your position. That is what
will make the biggest difference over
the life of either of these bikes. Either
way, you are going to have some fun.