The Trek Domane SLR 09 eTap Project One is bristling with innovative technologies. We previously tested the all-rounder with its exclusive Project One finish in our gravel group test and are excited to see how it performs on the road. Can the IsoSpeed system convince us while riding on Mallorca?

For an overview of the test fleet head to the group test: The best road bike of 2020 – 13 high-carat road bikes in review

Trek Domane SLR 9 eTap | 8.08 kg (size 56) | € 11.299  | Manufacturer’s website

Developed to dominate the Spring Classics, the Trek Domane SLR 9 enters the race with a whole row of unique features. The update to the IsoSpeed system as found on the current Trek Madone is supposed to improve comfort with two separate systems. At the rear, the seat mast is decoupled from the top tube, allowing it to flex freely thanks to a pivot and an adjustable amount of compliance. Compared to its predecessor, the integrated damping is supposed to prevent a spring-like ping back to the unflexed position. At the front, Trek makes use of the same principle by decoupling the top of the steerer from the head tube, allowing it some freedom of movement. The joint integrated into the head tube prevents lateral movement so that the system shouldn’t have any impact on the handling of the bike. Additional comfort is offered by the vibration damping IsoCore carbon bars which fuse an elastomer layer into the carbon layup.

The Trek Domane SLR 09 eTap Project One in detail

The Trek has neatly integrated mounts for lights, mudguards and internally routed cables, lending the bike a tidy look. A compartment in the down tube takes over from your saddle bag, providing space for a spare tube, multi-tool, tire levers and a CO2 cartridge. The frameset has clearances for up to 700 x 38C tires and is manufactured using Trek’s highest-end 700 Series OCLV carbon. Our test bike with a 2×12 SRAM RED eTAP AXS groupset and Bontrager Aeolus Pro 3V wheels weighs 8.08 kg in size 56 and costs € 11,299.

Cantilevered
The seat mast is decoupled from the top and seat tube and its compliance can be adjusted. The mechanism to do this at the rear is hidden under the top tube. Clever!
Hidden away
Open the compartment hidden under the bottle cage and you’ll find enough space to stash a CO2 cartridge, spare tube, multi-tool and tire levers.
Data collection
If you need, Trek’s own DuoTrap sensor can be mounted on the chainstay. It measures speed and cadence and transfers the data to your phone or bike computer.

Trek Domane SLR 9 eTap

€ 11,299

Specifications

Seatpost Bontrager Integrated 20 mm
Brakes SRAM RED HRD 160/160 mm
Drivetrain SRAM RED eTap AXS
Stem Bontrager XXX 100 mm
Handlebar Bontrager IsoCore VR-CF 420 mm
Wheelset Bontrager Aeolus Pro 3V
Tires Bontrager R3 TR 700 x 32C
Gearing 48/35 T und 10–28 T 2x12

Technical Data

Size 47 50 52 54 56 58 60 62
Weight 8.08 kg


Form follows function
The cockpit has mounts for lights and a GPS as standard and the stem and bars can be easily swapped. Unfortunately, due to the IsoSpeed technology in the head tube, the cables have to enter the frame through the top tube.

The geoemtry of theTrek

Size 47 50 52 64 56 58 60 62
Seat tube 420 mm 450 mm 475 mm 500 mm 525 mm 548 mm 567 mm 586 mm
Oberrohr 509 mm 519 mm 530 mm 542 mm 554 mm 567 mm 579 mm 593 mm
Head tub 110 mm 130 mm 145 mm 160 mm 175 mm 195 mm 220 mm 245 mm
Head angle 71.0° 71.1° 71.3° 71.3° 71.9° 72.0° 72.1° 72.1°
Seat angle 74.6° 74.6° 74.2° 73.7° 73.3° 73.0° 72.8° 72.5°
Chainstays 420 mm 420 mm 420 mm 420 mm 420 mm 426 mm 425 mm 425 mm
BB Drop 80 mm 80 mm 80 mm 80 mm 78 mm 78 mm 75 mm 75 mm
Radstand 986 mm 996 mm 1.003 mm 1.010 mm 1.008 mm 1.022 mm 1.032 mm 1.042 mm
Reach 364 mm 368 mm 371 mm 374 mm 377 mm 380 mm 383 mm 386 mm
Stack 527 mm 546 mm 561 mm 575 mm 591 mm 611 mm 632 mm 656 mm

The adjustable IsoSpeed system almost replaces image stabilisation in your camera. Taking pictures while riding on empty roads? No problem!

Helmet KASK PROTONE | Glasses Oakley Wind Jacket 2.0 | Jersey Veloine Tourmalet | Shorts Veloine Bib Shorts Rocacorba | Socks Rapha Pro Team Long | Shoes Giro Empire

The Trek Domane SLR 09 eTap Project One in review

In direct contrast to its competitors, the Trek Domane SLR09 accelerates solidly but not explosively. However, once at speed it turns out to be pleasantly efficient on the flats and maintains its momentum well on the downhills. The combination of solid straight line stability and good-natured yet playful handling invites you to get out of the saddle and turn off the asphalt onto the next gravel track. The front and rear of the Domane always manoeuvre willingly. On more technical descents, the bike lacks precision at the limit but always remains predictable and doesn’t complain. Trek’s IsoSpeed comfort system also works very well. Once it’s set up at the rear, it does it’s job without fuss or muss. Vibrations are effectively absorbed without robbing the bike of any liveliness. The 700 x 32C Bontrager R3 TR tires may not make full use of the bike’ generous clearances, but also effectively contribute to the overall comfort. Different to the OPEN, which has its origins in gravel and has been equipped for the road for this test, the Trek is a bike that comes from the road but can work on gravel. That means you’ll be able to ride a gran fondo or your local races competitively, yet still ride back home through the forest, off the beaten track.

Tuning tips: Put some saddlebags on and head out for an all-road bikepacking trip

Riding Characteristics

4

Agility

  1. cumbersome
  2. playful

Stability

  1. nervous
  2. confident

Handling

  1. demanding
  2. balanced

Fun factor

  1. boring
  2. lively

Comfort

  1. firm
  2. comfortable

Value for money

  1. terrible
  2. very good

Technical Data

Trek
Domane SLR 9 eTap

Size: 47 50 52 54 56 58 60 62
Weight: 8.08 kg
Price: € 11,299

Indended Use

Smooth tarmac 1
Allroad/Gravel 2
Everyday/Commuting 3

Conclusion

The Trek Domane SLR 09 eTap with its Project One finish doesn’t just look good. Every last detail has been considered, resulting in a coherent and fun machine. If you enjoy riding on compacted gravel, want to head out for long rides on chopped up roads or just want one bike to do it all, this bike is a great and exclusive choice. In the end, it’s the slight sluggishness and missing precision at the limit that cost the Trek the victory in our group test.

Tops

  • high level of integration
  • balanced comfort
  • clever features

Flops

  • lacking precision at the limit
  • comparatively less light footed when accelerating

For more info head to trekbikes.com

The test field

For an overview of the test fleet head to the group test: The best road bike of 2020 – 13 high-carat road bikes in review

All bikes in test: Argon 18 Krypton Pro (Click for review) | Bianchi Infinito CV Disc (Click for review) | BMC Roadmachine 01 ONE (Click for review) | Cannondale SuperSix EVO Hi-MOD Disc Dura Ace (Click for review) | Cicli Bonanno Futomaki Disc (Click for review) | FOCUS IZALCO MAX DISC 9.9 (Click for review) | LOOK 795 BLADE RS DISC (Click for review) | OPEN U.P.P.E.R. (Click for review) | Pinarello Dogma F12 Team INEOS Edition (Click for review) | ROSE REVEAL SIX Dura Ace Di2 Custom (Click for review) | Specialized S-Works Roubaix (Click for review) | Trek Domane SLR 9 eTap | VOTEC VRC PRO (Click for review)

Words: Benjamin Topf Photos: Valentin Rühl