Trek has just announced their new Session 9.9 DH bike, and while the new frame will be available with 27.5″ wheels as well, they are also releasing a 29er model. Following quickly on the heels of Santa Cruz and Intense who’ve both just released 29er DH bikes, we’re seeing the big wheels make a rapid entry into the World Cup circuit. Trek seems to think that 29″ wheels are the future of DH racing too, calling them “even faster-rolling [wheels]” in their release.
Above and beyond the 29er option, what’s new on the Session? Based on extensive input from the Athertons and the rest of Trek’s Factory Racing team, the reach is getting a bit longer, the bottom bracket is getting a bit lower, and the head tube angle is getting a bit slacker. That’s right, it’s the classic long, low, slack treatment.
According to Trek’s press release:
Session sports a 63 degree head angle out of the box, but it ships with one-degree-offset cups in addition to the standard zero-degree-offset cups to allow for an additional one degree of head angle adjustment in either direction. Mino Link offers additional adjustability, with another half degree of head angle adjustment and approximately 8mm of BB height adjustment.
The advances in suspension and air shock technology have allowed Trek to optimize the frame and suspension design further which, among other things, allowed them to remove the Full Floater design. Here’s how Trek characterizes the rest of the changes:
One of the most exciting updates to Session is the new Fox Float X2 air shock. Trek’s Suspension R&D team worked closely with Fox Racing Shox to optimize the new bike and shock together in a performance package that includes more versatility and tuning options than ever before. Updates to the new DH-focused Float X2 include progressive instead of digressive valves and enhanced spring characteristics, which complement new Session’s lower leverage ratio and longer shock stroke. All that engineering delivers a livelier ride with more control and support, especially in the midstroke, where suspension works the hardest.
These recent improvements to air shock technology allowed us to make another change: Session 9.9 no longer features Full Floater. The increased tunability of air shocks has diminished the relative benefits of the Full Floater design, and its absence allows for a stronger, stiffer, and lighter frame.
Of course, Session still features the classic Trek technologies that make all our bikes shine, including ABP, OCLV Mountain Carbon with Carbon Armor, and Control Freak internal cable routing. In the end, all this tech adds up to deliver a race-ready downhill rig that’s stiffer, more versatile, and just plain faster than ever before.
The Trek Session 8 27.5 model and the 27.5 alloy frameset are available now, for $3,999 and $2,099, respectively.The Session Carbon 27.5 frameset will retail for $3,999 and will be available in August. The Session 9.9 27.5 RSL complete will retail for $7,999 and will be available in September. And finally, the Session Carbon 29 frameset, which includes the a Fox Factory 40 FIT fork and Fox Factory Float X2 shock, will retail for $4,999 and will be available in October.