Trek has updated its top-end Madone SLR aero bike with a T47 threaded bottom bracket shell, it’s newest – and lightest – OCLV 800 carbon layup and, for the first time, it is now available in a minuscule 47cm frame size.
Though it is not explicitly mentioned in the press pack for the bike, it also appears there will be no rim brake option for the new 2021 Madone SLR.
The bike remains otherwise identical to the previous-generation model, which is just as well with the SL6 version of the bike taking our coveted aero road Bike of the Year award for 2020.
Threaded fun for everyone
The new 2021 Trek Madone SLR ditches BB90 in favour of a T47 threaded bottom bracket shell. Trek
Trek has been gradually phasing out its much-disliked proprietary BB90 bottom bracket standard in favour of the T47 threaded bottom bracket since the launch of the 2020 edition of its Crockett cyclocross bike.
With BB90, bearings were pressed directly into the bike’s bottom bracket shell. This relied on exceptionally tight tolerances to work well – which it often didn’t – and also limited riders to 24mm spindle cranksets.
T47 is pretty much a super-sized version of a standard threaded bottom bracket shell and is now used across most of Trek’s road bikes. You pay a small penalty in weight but the convenience of the system far outweighs this.
It’s worth noting that it is only the new SLR-level Madone that features a T47 bottom bracket for now, but it is likely that it will be introduced to lower-tier bikes in time.
Disc-only for 2021?
The Madone SLR looks to be going disc-only for 2021. Trek
All of Trek’s recently-released road bikes have moved exclusively to disc brakes, and the Madone SLR appears to be following suit*.
Though it is not explicitly stated in the press release, there is no rim brake-equipped version of the bike to be seen in the 2021 range.
This should come as no surprise – most riders simply do not want rim brake bikes any more, and you can hardly fault Trek for producing bikes that people actually want to buy.
Regardless, the nostalgic weight weenies among the BikeRadar team can’t help but shed a mournful tear as the era of top-end road bikes with rim brakes comes to a (worryingly) gradual and (actually not that well) modulated stop. RIP, rim brakes.
*(There is a rim brake frameset pictured in the press pack, but this appears to feature a BB90 bottom bracket shell, suggesting it will remain as a carryover from the previous-generation bike. We have contacted Trek to confirm this.)
OCLV 800 – Trek’s lightest-ever layup
The OCLV 800 carbon fibre used to construct the frame is Trek’s latest carbon, and brings new materials and new construction processes to the OCLV name. Trek
First introduced on the 2021 Emonda SLR, OCLV 800 is Trek’s latest and lightest carbon layup.
The new SLR-level Madone uses OCLV 800 in certain areas, resulting in a frame that is claimed to be 80g lighter than the previous generation in an unspecified size.
There is also a brief mention of a new “lighter team paint scheme” in the press pack for the bike, though what this actually contributes to weight savings on the bike is not specified.
Weights for complete bikes were not available at the time of writing. However, Trek claims that, through its Project One customisation programme, it is possible to configure the new Madone SLR “with the same ultra-light components that save Trek-Segafredo racers 450g of weight”.
Unsurprisingly, such upgrades come at a considerable cost; the top-end SRAM Red eTap AXS-equipped Madone comes in at a frankly astonishing £11,950 (approx $14,980/ €13,140).
Alarmingly, it would be easy to exceed this if you opted for one of the more elaborate custom paint jobs through Project One. Project One-per-center more like, eh?!
A Madone fit for anyone
For the first time, the new Madone is available with a 47cm frameset.
This will be welcome news to shorter go-fast riders, and we can only imagine how rapid an already impressively aero bike will feel with such a compact and low position.
2021 Trek Madone SLR range prices
International pricing and full specs for the new 2021 Trek Madone SLR range were not available at the time of writing, but we’ll be sure to update this article as soon as we have them.
Madone SLR 6 Disc: £6,250
Madone SLR 7 Disc: £7,500
Madone SLR 7 Disc eTap: £8,200
Madone SLR 9 Disc: £11,350
Madone SLR 9 Disc eTap: £11,950
Madone SLR Disc frameset: £4,210