It’s getting to be the time of year when WorldTour teams are spotted on new bikes, and then, at the Tour de France, many brands launch their 2016 products. The first to get leaked is an updated Trek Madone which, according to the UCI list of approved frames, is the Madone 9 Series.
Trek’s global road brand manager, Michael Mayer, told VeloNews, “We are always in new development on new products with our race teams. Trek will provide complete information on new products when they are available to all riders around the world to enjoy.”
What looks like a Trek Factory Racing rider’s training bike popped up on the Slowtwitch.com Forum on Friday.
The photo is pretty low-quality, but it’s easy to spot several defining features. First, the new Madone looks far more aerodynamic than the current Madone. It features dramatically shaped tubes while still using a Kamm-Tail design with truncated tube shapes. The new Madone moves the brake up off the bottom bracket, where the current Madone’s rear brake lives, and tucks it tightly between the seat stays. We have no doubt that Trek is using direct mount brakes front and rear.
Up until now, the Madone, Emonda, and Domane have all shared the same proprietary seatpost design, but the new Madone will depart from that, again using a more aerodynamic shape.
There is a new, one-piece bar and stem as well, almost certainly from Trek’s component partner, Bontrager. The handlebar must work in harmony with the frame, as there are no cables or wires visible anywhere in this photo. We would expect that the brake cables enter the bars, and then into the integrated stem. From there, it’s a mystery as to how the brake cables wind their way to the calipers.
The other big change is the presence of a new version of the IsoSpeed decoupler that should smooth out the ride on the new Madone — a common complaint with aero road bikes. A promo video is running on Trek’s website along with teaser sketches of what we now know to be this Madone 9. It’s possible to make out what looks like a version of the IsoSpeed system adapted for the aero tube shapes of this new frame in those sketches.
We expect to learn more about the new Trek as the Grand Départ of the Le Tour approaches.