Riding Trek's 2011 Session 88: First Impressions

Sep 21, 2010 at 0:16
Sep 21, 2010
by Mike Levy  
 
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From a distance Trek's 2011 Session 88 looks very similar to last year's model, but a closer look reveals some major changes. Included in the list is an entirely new tube set with different profiles, as well as some slick frame mounted fork bumpers. The biggest addition to the package may be hidden from sight though, that being a Fox DHX RC4 shock that features some very special custom valving that drastically alters the rear suspension's performance. Inside you can see the photos and read about the 88's changes for 2011, as well as listen to audio explaining the hows and whys of the new Fox damper tuning.

Read on...

2011 Trek Session 88



Watch the video to learn more about the 2011 Session 88

Views: 12,859    Faves: 21    Comments: 8



Do bikes get any more stunning than this looker? This is Trek's 2011 Session 88, a machine that apparently has no qualms about both looking great and being fast as hell. While the 88's lines look very similar to previous year's offerings, there are many big changes that have been made in the name of all out speed and control. Trek has employed a brand new large diameter downtube that has a much taller (and more aerodynamic) cross section, a lighter toptube and seattube, new box section stays that give added tire clearance, and even some very clean looking integrated fork bumpers. That's all well and good, but you tech heads out there may be most interested in the very special tuning that has been done to the Fox DHX RC4's insides, which you can read and hear more about down below. All the new frame and shock changes are great, but I know some of you are still staring at the new bike's graphics instead of reading these words. You'd be mistaken if you thought that the bike has a matte gray finish to it, it's actually bare brushed aluminum with red and white highlights and finished off with a protective clear-coat. Can a bike be considered hot? Apparently so.
Do bikes get any more stunning than this looker? This is Trek's 2011 Session 88, a machine that apparently has no qualms about both looking great and being fast as hell. While the 88's lines look very similar to previous year's offerings, there are many big changes that have been made in the name of all out speed and control. Trek has employed a brand new large diameter downtube that has a much taller (and more aerodynamic) cross section, a lighter toptube and seattube, new box section stays that give added tire clearance, and even some very clean looking integrated fork bumpers. That's all well and good, but you tech heads out there may be most interested in the very special tuning that has been done to the Fox DHX RC4's insides, which you can read and hear more about down below. All the new frame and shock changes are great, but I know some of you are still staring at the new bike's graphics instead of reading these words. You'd be mistaken if you thought that the bike has a matte gray finish to it, it's actually bare brushed aluminum with red and white highlights and finished off with a protective clear-coat. Can a bike be considered hot? Apparently so.

The view from down below isn't bad either. You're looking at the downtube and protective fender on the '11 Session 88. Those of you who are intimately familiar with the previous iteration of the 88 should quickly spot the very different shape of the downtube. Gone is the square shape of last year, in its place is a rounder downtube with a much taller profile that has added strength that allows lighter tubing to be used elsewhere in the frame, as well as being more aerodynamic. Do you remember the wind tunnel testing that Trek did with the 88? You're seeing the results here, and while aero concerns may yield only small gains in the real world, it is very cool to see Trek taking it into account. Rather than just sitting back and being happy, Trek's engineers looked at the effects of adding the new downtube had on the rest of the frame and realized that a lighter toptube and seattube could now be used without sacrificing an ounce of strength. Remember, it's all about the total package.
The view from down below isn't bad either. You're looking at the downtube and protective fender on the '11 Session 88. Those of you who are intimately familiar with the previous iteration of the 88 should quickly spot the very different shape of the downtube. Gone is the square shape of last year, in its place is a rounder downtube with a much taller profile that has added strength that allows lighter tubing to be used elsewhere in the frame, as well as being more aerodynamic. Do you remember the wind tunnel testing that Trek did with the 88? You're seeing the results here, and while aero concerns may yield only small gains in the real world, it is very cool to see Trek taking it into account. Rather than just sitting back and being happy, Trek's engineers looked at the effects of adding the new downtube had on the rest of the frame and realized that a lighter toptube and seattube could now be used without sacrificing an ounce of strength. Remember, it's all about the total package.

I love details and have no shame admitting that I'll happily toil for hours over the smallest part on my personal bike, which is why I'm getting all aroused by these small black rubber additions to the '11 Session. What are they, you ask? Built in fork bumpers that keep your stanchions from coming into direct contact with your frame. They do the same job as the rubber bumpers that are found on all double crown forks, but unlike those, they won't rotate or slide around and will always be in correct spot. A much cleaner solution I must say. While they may look to be simple, glued on pieces, they are actually a structural part of the frame and are connected to each other via a threaded fastener that runs through the downtube. Trek's engineers have said that rather than the tube's strength being compromised by having two holes on each side, it is actually more robust with the addition of the bolted together bumpers.
I love details and have no shame admitting that I'll happily toil for hours over the smallest part on my personal bike, which is why I'm getting all aroused by these small black rubber additions to the '11 Session. What are they, you ask? Built in fork bumpers that keep your stanchions from coming into direct contact with your frame. They do the same job as the rubber bumpers that are found on all double crown forks, but unlike those, they won't rotate or slide around and will always be in correct spot. A much cleaner solution I must say. While they may look to be simple, glued on pieces, they are actually a structural part of the frame and are connected to each other via a threaded fastener that runs through the downtube. Trek's engineers have said that rather than the tube's strength being compromised by having two holes on each side, it is actually more robust with the addition of the bolted together bumpers.

If you know Trek, you probably know ABP. If not, ABP is short for Active Braking Pivot and is exactly what it says. The chainstays and seatstays pivot directly in line with the rear axle which lessens the amount of rotation between the caliper and rotor, making for a more active system under braking. The less the distance changes between the caliper and the rotor as the suspension compresses, the more active the bike will be under braking. Simply put, it is a sort of built in floating brake. If you haven't spotted it yet, look at the rear wheel dropout in the photo above. You're also looking at the 88's rear pivot as well. ABP is used throughout Trek's full suspension line and has proved to be an excellent way of reducing braking effects on the suspension, something that is especially important on a World Cup caliber race bike like the 88.
If you know Trek, you probably know ABP. If not, ABP is short for Active Braking Pivot and is exactly what it says. The chainstays and seatstays pivot directly in line with the rear axle which lessens the amount of rotation between the caliper and rotor, making for a more active system under braking. The less the distance changes between the caliper and the rotor as the suspension compresses, the more active the bike will be under braking. Simply put, it is a sort of built in floating brake. If you haven't spotted it yet, look at the rear wheel dropout in the photo above. You're also looking at the 88's rear pivot as well. ABP is used throughout Trek's full suspension line and has proved to be an excellent way of reducing braking effects on the suspension, something that is especially important on a World Cup caliber race bike like the 88.

While the frame sees some significant changes, the alteration that should have the biggest effect on the '11 Session 88's performance is the work that has been done inside its Fox DHX RC4 damper. Trek's Advanced Concepts Group (ACG) has their own purpose built facility in Southern California that focuses on suspension performance, who working with the Trek World Racing team, have spent well over a year and a half working on this specific shock tune. The goal was to create not only a more active ride, but also one that uses its mid-stroke more intelligently, mainly being able to absorb more of the terrain while already deep into its travel. This is the perfect example of racing improving the breed - this shock tune was used by the TWR world Cup team at the Canberra World Champs and now you can benefit from it. Listen to the audio to hear Jose Gonzalez, lead suspension engineer at ACG, explain the 88's custom shock tuning.
While the frame sees some significant changes, the alteration that should have the biggest effect on the '11 Session 88's performance is the work that has been done inside its Fox DHX RC4 damper. Trek's Advanced Concepts Group (ACG) has their own purpose built facility in Southern California that focuses on suspension performance, who working with the Trek World Racing team, have spent well over a year and a half working on this specific shock tune. The goal was to create not only a more active ride, but also one that uses its mid-stroke more intelligently, mainly being able to absorb more of the terrain while already deep into its travel. This is the perfect example of racing improving the breed - this shock tune was used by the TWR world Cup team at the Canberra World Champs and now you can benefit from it. Listen to the audio to hear Jose Gonzalez, lead suspension engineer at ACG, explain the 88's custom shock tuning.

Audio Loading...





Riding Impressions

I spent two full days on the 2011 Session 88 riding at Utah's Brian Head resort. While a fair bit smaller than some other lift accessed locations, Brian Head's terrain is nothing to laugh at. There are no smooth warm up runs here, just serious terrain that kept everyone on their toes. The rough and demanding tracks made for the ideal place to wrap ones head around the 88's suspension. Messing up here would be akin to hitting the reef hard while surfing - a whole lot of missing skin. I'm a loam lover just like the rest of you, but it was rad to get up to speed on this moonscape and it was insane how fast the rocks came at you. Did I mention that you get off the lift at 11,000 feet? It was hard work for this sea level dweller to cope with the thin air and I found myself having to concentrate on breathing as I made my way down the hill. I think I sounded very much like a plugged vacuum cleaner, but I was having a blast regardless.
I spent two full days on the 2011 Session 88 riding at Utah's Brian Head resort. While a fair bit smaller than some other lift accessed locations, Brian Head's terrain is nothing to laugh at. There are no smooth warm up runs here, just serious terrain that kept everyone on their toes. The rough and demanding tracks made for the ideal place to wrap ones head around the 88's suspension. Messing up here would be akin to hitting the reef hard while surfing - a whole lot of missing skin. I'm a loam lover just like the rest of you, but it was rad to get up to speed on this moonscape and it was insane how fast the rocks came at you. Did I mention that you get off the lift at 11,000 feet? It was hard work for this sea level dweller to cope with the thin air and I found myself having to concentrate on breathing as I made my way down the hill. I think I sounded very much like a plugged vacuum cleaner, but I was having a blast regardless.


A quick clip of myself on the 2011 Session 88

Views: 23,336    Faves: 9    Comments: 1


So how did the bike ride? I was very impressed, especially considering the demanding and unfamiliar terrain. Jumping on a new bike and riding hard on very foreign trails is always a challenge when trying to get a feel for any new bike, but I found the 88 to be a confidence inspiring machine. Those who are already familiar with the bike's neutral handling will be pleased to find that this hasn't changed. I have always been a fan of 88's quirk free personality, something that not a lot of DH bikes can brag about. The angles remain the same as previous years which results in a bike that is easy to move around when the time demands, but also happy to be straight lined through the worst a trail has to offer.  If I was happy that Trek didn't muck about with the 88's geometry, I was even more stoked about what was done inside the Fox DHX RC4 damper that is bolted to the bike. To be clear, I was pleased with how last years bike performed and didn't expect a drastic improvement over that bike's performance in this regard, but the Fox shock's action on the 88 for 2011 is substantially different from 2010 and earlier. The trails at Brian Head are littered with rock debris and there is nary a smooth bit to be found, which made the improved sensitivity of the rear end very evident. It is one thing for someone to tell you the changes and that you're sure to notice them, but it is an entirely different thing when they are this noticeable. After a few break-in runs on the bike it was very clear that the rear wheel was more eager to enter the first parts of its travel than the previous bike. But this is where Jose's and Fox's know how comes into play. Despite the forgiving early stroke, I didn't feel that under damped sensation that you'd expect to be associated with it. The Fox shock was also noticeably more forgiving when already deep into its travel as well. Picture coming into a boulder strewn section of trail of substantial length, with that first big hit using up much of the bike's travel. The next few hits come hard and fast and the average bike would be very susceptible to getting knocked off line or at least passing a harsh feeling through to the rider. The 2011 88 seemed to deal especially well in the situations, which isn't surprising considering that both Fox and Trek's ACG spent a year and a half working to remedy this issue. The result is a shock tune that noticeably lessens that harsh spike when hits come fast and hard when the bike is already deep into its travel. Having spent time on older Sessions, I can confidently say that there is quite a difference in this regard between the two.
So how did the bike ride? I was very impressed, especially considering the demanding and unfamiliar terrain. Jumping on a new bike and riding hard on very foreign trails is always a challenge when trying to get a feel for any new bike, but I found the 88 to be a confidence inspiring machine. Those who are already familiar with the bike's neutral handling will be pleased to find that this hasn't changed. I have always been a fan of 88's quirk free personality, something that not a lot of DH bikes can brag about. The angles remain the same as previous years which results in a bike that is easy to move around when the time demands, but also happy to be straight lined through the worst a trail has to offer. If I was happy that Trek didn't muck about with the 88's geometry, I was even more stoked about what was done inside the Fox DHX RC4 damper that is bolted to the bike. To be clear, I was pleased with how last years bike performed and didn't expect a drastic improvement over that bike's performance in this regard, but the Fox shock's action on the 88 for 2011 is substantially different from 2010 and earlier. The trails at Brian Head are littered with rock debris and there is nary a smooth bit to be found, which made the improved sensitivity of the rear end very evident. It is one thing for someone to tell you the changes and that you're sure to notice them, but it is an entirely different thing when they are this noticeable. After a few break-in runs on the bike it was very clear that the rear wheel was more eager to enter the first parts of its travel than the previous bike. But this is where Jose's and Fox's know how comes into play. Despite the forgiving early stroke, I didn't feel that under damped sensation that you'd expect to be associated with it. The Fox shock was also noticeably more forgiving when already deep into its travel as well. Picture coming into a boulder strewn section of trail of substantial length, with that first big hit using up much of the bike's travel. The next few hits come hard and fast and the average bike would be very susceptible to getting knocked off line or at least passing a harsh feeling through to the rider. The 2011 88 seemed to deal especially well in the situations, which isn't surprising considering that both Fox and Trek's ACG spent a year and a half working to remedy this issue. The result is a shock tune that noticeably lessens that harsh spike when hits come fast and hard when the bike is already deep into its travel. Having spent time on older Sessions, I can confidently say that there is quite a difference in this regard between the two.

Shandro blasting through the gnarly. You think you're fast and then try and keep up with someone who really is fast, only to have your dreams shattered - I love it! This run was out of the park and offered a bit of everything, perfect for getting a feel for the new bike. The top had some serious rock sections that you could come in to much faster than you should, and the bottom had plenty of fast singletrack and tricky corners filled with loose chunder. This run took a full hour from top to bottom with our big group and I'm pretty sure that I had a shit eating grin during the entire time, it was simply too much fun! Andrew Neethling and Worlds Jr. silver medalist Neko Mulally were in the group as well and it was a blast watching them come through boulder fields that I tiptoe through. Getting to watch a DH race bike get ridden by top World Cup racers is something that every rider should experience at least once.
Shandro blasting through the gnarly. You think you're fast and then try and keep up with someone who really is fast, only to have your dreams shattered - I love it! This run was out of the park and offered a bit of everything, perfect for getting a feel for the new bike. The top had some serious rock sections that you could come in to much faster than you should, and the bottom had plenty of fast singletrack and tricky corners filled with loose chunder. This run took a full hour from top to bottom with our big group and I'm pretty sure that I had a shit eating grin during the entire time, it was simply too much fun! Andrew Neethling and Worlds Jr. silver medalist Neko Mulally were in the group as well and it was a blast watching them come through boulder fields that I tiptoe through. Getting to watch a DH race bike get ridden by top World Cup racers is something that every rider should experience at least once.

Now we're talking. I'm sure you've all had that one section of trail that will stick in your head forever. You're looking at mine. Surrounded by aspens and riding a bit over my head, you get a glimpse into my personal heaven with this picture.
Now we're talking. I'm sure you've all had that one section of trail that will stick in your head forever. You're looking at mine. Surrounded by aspens and riding a bit over my head, you get a glimpse into my personal heaven with this picture.

Visit the Trek website to see their entire range of bikes.


If you've managed to read all of the text above you'll know that I'm impressed with the new Session 88. It's light, has great geometry, and they have somehow managed to improve the suspension even over last year's impressive performance. Are you as stoked as me about the next generation 88? Let's hear what you think about the bike below!

All photos by Sterling Lorence
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128 Comments

  • + 12
 Lol, sugar coating the hell out of it, but whatever, it doesn't matter... TOO-F*CKIN-SICK!

I want!
  • + 8
 Not going to lie to you guys, my first two days on this bike impressed me immensely and I'm hard pressed to think of anything negative when talking performance.
  • + 10
 Hey it works in road biking... both the gimmick and the aerodynamics
  • + 1
 reks your an idiot
  • - 1
 I agree with Reks. Though some innovations are positive the wind tunnel testing sounded like hot air (no pun intended).
  • + 5
 I'm not arguing that it's sick, but really? wind tunnel testing and the frame bumpers adding strength? the gains that may or may not be achieved are incredibly tiny... like TINY!

unless you're bender and need the aerodynamics to produce a halfway predictable flight path through your 150 foot huck lol

Doesn't matter, i LOVE the bike!
  • + 7
 Uhhhh " Yeah, no kiddin. What a massive trek-asskiss-fest. Wind tunnel testing a DH bike is "very cool"?? yeah, right... more like cheesy and a gimmick." - That has to be the most uneducated comment I have seen on Pink Bike to date.

Lets put it this way, a company actually uses their resources to do testing that in end will push other companies to do the same thing and PROGRESS dh, and you guys bash it? What the hell is wrong with you.
  • + 4
 Yeah Infiltrator. Lets hate on companies that only make marginal improvements on already dialed bikes. Stuff like that sickens me too...
  • + 0
 I don't think he meant that, I think he meant, why even mention it, if it's already so dialed haha. Also, I think the man hours invested in wind tunnel testing would be put to better use in other research areas, like further improving the suspension or strenghtening the frame even more.

Besides, Skin suits aren't allowed in UCI anymore, so why worry about aerodynamics?
  • + 3
 Maybe it is because skin suits are not allowed anymore that they chose to investigate things in the wind tunnel?
  • + 1
 Flying Squirrel suits- RockShox replacement for solo air lol
  • + 0
 @mike, true, but I would understand it more if they were thinking, well the riders are trying to be aerodynamic, why not make the bikes aerodynamic as well. I think number plates are still the biggest problem with being aerodynamic on a bike though. Good point though Mike, That might be it.
  • + 4
 I know of only one other sport where rules were changed purely for the sake of fashion and the corporate dollar:

beach volleyball (maximum bikini/brief size - i.e. you had to be scantily clad)

We should hang our heads in shame.
  • + 3
 The irony is that I think the smallest World Champ winning margin in history was when Palmer came second to Nico - and it was Palmer that popularised the moto look for DH. Up till then it was skinsuits and no visors. If Palmer had a skinsuit on he may have won.
[Reply]
  • + 5
 Sorry, but the wind tunnel testing is a massive red herring IMHO. A DH/FR/dirt bike (with rider) in a wind tunnel is about as artificial as it gets...no one rides like that (road bikes with a rider in a tuck position is a different question). 'Big' bikes are never going to be aerodynamic, no matter what you do. There's nobbly tires, spokes, exposed cables, clusters of cogs, levers and all manner of other appendages...and that's without the rider (with a peaked helmet), so putting a bike and rider in a wind tunnel, blowing smoke over them and looking at pictures isn't going to tell you anything except that there's a lot of drag. I've seen a few articles about Trek's wind tunnel tests, and they didn't seem to reveal anything outstanding, so for them to potentially market this bike as 'more aerodynamic' is 100% marketing spin. (BTW, I'm a qualified aerodynamicist).

That said, it does look very good, but I wish they'd just stick to the facts and not try to employ quack science! Knolly had this dialled with their OMFGSTFU pivot technology...bring back the anti-marketing, I say Wink

And BTW Trek, here's an idea that would help it aerodynamically...put a fairing round the front of the shock...that would help more!
[Reply]
  • + 5
 Hey trekbro you better hang onto your walmart bike then cause the rest of us like progression and new innovations. When have you seen one of these bikes implode like a coke can? Crazy!
[Reply]
  • + 8
 I'm eager to see if the changes will translate into more world cup wins
  • + 1
 That bitch just RIPS! Great job Trek on the frame update. Much improved from 09'. Bike still looks DOPE!
  • + 1
 yeah it did. gwinner
[Reply]
  • + 6
 I'm a big Trek fan, i have two at the moment so i'm not saying this as a Trek knocker. I think the frame is pig ugly!
[Reply]
  • + 2
 "The chainstays and seatstays pivot directly in line with the rear axle which lessens the amount of rotation between the caliper and rotor, making for a more active system under braking. The less the distance changes between the caliper and the rotor as the suspension compresses, the more active the bike will be under braking."

ummm ok. ill just go get my single pivot out of the shed then shall I? the distance between the caliper and rotor on that doesnt change at all. must be great under braking then eh?

the reason trek use apb is to seperate the caliper from the swingarm, essentially the opposite of what it says in the article
[Reply]
  • + 5
 Dam I gotta get one of these... I wonder if my bank will do a 50 year loan?
[Reply]
  • + 2
 like i said be4, coke can, it will implode this is no road biking Trek, those tubes need to be thicker, stop filling this young kids brains with weight weenie ideas, this is DH were people crash, we're not doctors to be paying 6500.00 for a bike after it breaks.
  • + 1
 hey trek bro, just lookin back on some old threads.. i ride a trek, my whole team does, infact our team of 18 is sponsored by trek. that means 18 bikes. none of them have "coke can imploded" yet
  • + 1
 have you read this whole commentary section? there is more complains about this frames cracking, than ppl saying their bikes held up the abuse. I understand that you can't say any bad about the bikes that the corp provides to your team, I wouldn't complain if someone gives me free or almost free bikes. I would not ride Trek not after sending my old bikes back more than 6 times....
If they work for your team, hey! that's awesome.
[Reply]
  • + 1
 God it is entertaining to read comments, or should i say arguments on pink bike! haha. I had the pleasure of spinning this bike around in the trek headquarters parking lot earlier this summer. That alone put a huge smile on my face! I can't wait to get my paws on one and point her down some gnar! Sick sick bikes.
[Reply]
  • + 1
 I know I absolutely LOVE my Session. Most amazing feeling squishy Bike I've ever ridden. Mine is actually currently for sale for 2500, outfitted with full Saint etc...check it out. Only got to ride it for a week too...damn shame I cant afford to keep it
  • + 1
 Dude... Your bike is sick.
  • + 1
 haha yea, it was the coolest thing I have ever ridden! You want to buy?
  • + 1
 You don't know how much I dig it. lol. Hoping it's still up when I have the money, I bet any day that thing will be gone.
[Reply]
  • + 1
 I talked to John Reilly at TrekWorld this year and he said not one of the frames they warrantied from 2009 actually caused any structural damage to the bike but for piece of mind they added the armor and the deflection. It is funny how perception of a bike can dictate the direction it is designed. As for the bike itself, every Session 88 I have ever ridden has felt absolutely great. They handle so well and they pedal like a dream.
  • + 2
 Oh and if Trek is already windtesting their Speed Concept bike over and over why not throw the Session in the wind tunnel and see the results.
[Reply]
  • + 1
 To Bikinis Bitchin, I totally feel for you. If mine got wrecked I'ld be bull$ht!!! I bought my Session 88 BEFORE all the tin can hype came out. So I had to try to figure out a way to protect my investment. I have posted this before and I'll share again, for those guys who do own Sessions now, Highland Mt in NH, use Sessions as their rental fleet. They explained to me that they use 2inch Clear Soft PVC Drainage Tubing from Lowes Hardwarw. Zipped tied to the bottom of the Down Tube and the top Tube. These Down tubes are wayyy tooo flat and thin on the bottom on the 09-2010's. If you notice Trek changed the 2011 DT shape to be more round for better rock deflection The Pvc is so thick that it cant sit flush against the frame and creats about 1/4 inch of buffer space and it's rounded. BUT I have felt some big thuds, NOT CLICKS, during runs and I havent found not one Dent as of yet. I ride Highland monthly and their bikes are dent free also plus their bikes are going on 2 seasons now. That said, I really Looove the way my Session rides.
Sorry for the rant, just trying to be helpful!! I can email pics if you need.
[Reply]
  • + 1
 I purchased an '09 frame and dented the downtube and recieved a crash replacement frame for about 2000$ Canadian. I have now dented/punctured my downtube on my '10 frame on a recent ride and didnt even feel it happen. Before riding the bike I put a layer of protective foam on the downtube and it still punctured. So after owning two frames in two years the only thing so far that Trek has offered is another crash replacement frame at cost and chalked it up to wear and tear. So for those of you interested, buyer beware, if you plan to use this for its intended purchase, you may have to buy another frame.
  • + 1
 I had a 2005 session 7... say what you want about that tank, but I cracked the frame on a weld last season, with in 4 days I had a 2010 Session 88 frame WITH the RC4 in it. I haven't hurt the 88 yet after 3 big crashes. all that being said, I LOVE TREK
[Reply]
  • + 1
 ok its like if you fall you are going to lose all your skin and then you go and ride for two days without even elbow pads on new and unfamiliar trails nice frame trek you have taken my 2010 to the next level I want to trade it in.
  • + 1
 I know, I know! I really should have been rocking more gear, the terrain was gnarly!
[Reply]
  • + 3
 Am I the only that doesn't think it looks that great. Old one looked nicer i reckon. Paintjob looks pretty gash and the funny shaped downtube looks pretty weird from side on.
[Reply]
  • + 1
 I demo'd this bike for a run at highland last weekend, and yes, it's awesome. It carries speed ridiculously well, and the small bump sensitivity is incredible. I ride an 09 session 88, so it was nice to be able to compare the two. I found myself just coasting and carrying a lot of speed on the 2011 session, in spots where on my bike I had to pedal fairly hard. The only thing I didn't like about it was that the handlebars were really low, and it gave me a feeling like I could flip over the bars any second, but that's changeable with different bars, stems, spacers...
[Reply]
  • + 1
 More aerodynamic down tube..... is that the down tube that sits behind the front wheel, fork and in the UK, rapid racer, with a bloke on it that has to wear baggies to race?

Rock deflecting down tube.... it just looks round to me, if it is that good at deflecting, why do you have to put a plastic protector on it if it? This deflected rock, where is it going to go???

No news of bearings that don't disintegrate every few rides.

Anyone else like the Trek (Bontrager) photos with Maxxis tyres on haha.

I like the bump stops though.
  • + 1
 The bumper keeps your frame's value up. I'd live to have one. Especially since my mission routes it's lines down the downtube. I keep wondering when a rock is going to kill my rear brake.
[Reply]
  • + 1
 hi if any one can tell me why the trek race frame in the vid has a different seat angle, than the one that we are going to be able to buy does this mean the race frame the team are going to use maybe a bit litter???
[Reply]
  • + 1
 Ugly, me not like... especially the "Built in fork bumpers" - why use these, the fox has em on the fork and the hole there will *theoretically* add an unstable element to the frame...
[Reply]
  • + 1
 Trek never stops making the 88 better. I have a '10 and it is a god machine. I bet the 11 is insanity. They do need to cancel the Bontrager shit that comes with them... Their tires are garbage.
  • + 1
 Buy just the frame set and and ditch the Boncrapper parts. I run 823/ Sunn Ringle's w/ Maxxis tubeless and still keep my Session at 37lbs. The price for complete is 6000.00+ . Brand New Frameset alone is 2100.00. You can buy alot nicer parts with the extra loot. Complete bike purchase is a rip off. Especially when Trek owns Bontrager. I was lucky and found a brand new warrantied 09 for 1300.00. Aftr selling my Sunday frame, only cost me 700.00 The parts switched right over. When you break down the cost of the components listed on the 2011 individually you end up paying an additional 12-1300.00 for the frame when you buy complete. Do the math..I am sooooo glad I chose the Session though. Carries speed like no other bike. IMO
  • + 1
 I got the 2010 frame for free from Trek after I cracked my 2005 Session 7. I wish I had 823s, my bontrager wheels are heavy as hell..
[Reply]
  • + 76
 really nice stuff, to bad i'm poor
  • + 7
 ahh too many nice new frames to choose from this year!!! 2012 better not be real because god knows im not making enough money for this before then
  • + 1
 lol yeah, i didnt know they made tanks that looked like this
  • + 15
 Is it possible to take a loan out on a bike? Im mean think about it, walk in and ask how much do you want the loan for 6+ grand what for........a bike. Would they laugh at you? So many questions.
  • + 2
 lookin fast levy!!
  • + 2
 I want I Want I WANT!!
  • + 2
 Well IH4LIFE, they don't ask what your getting the loan for. The correct term for this would be a "Personal loan". A loan in which quite frankly... you can do whatever the hell you want with. I myself have one, and pretty much countless others. One of the reasons many countries including ourselves are in the pits for. Companies like CITI push money to anyone who asks.... and such much it guarantees massive debt... and or collections.
  • + 1
 shame it doesnt come with tha kashima 40's on it Frown
  • + 1
 you can buy bikes on finance from alot of places
  • + 1
 Damn thats durable.
  • + 1
 One girthy down tube :o
  • + 5
 don't get a loan on a bike...worse idea ever. By the next year its worth half what you paid, and paying interest on top of the principal is retarded. Not to mention if you get hurt it just sits there while you still pay on it
  • + 1
 "so now you will need to worry about your stanchions on your fork being damaged" - idk if i would say that on a vid to the public, brings some concers
  • - 1
 trek always look nicer then most other bikes Smile
  • + 3
 wow seem like trek makes a new session every ten minutes
[Reply]
  • + 2
 Aerodynamic over-sized tube: marketing hype
Stronger tube: solution to a tin foil frame that failed a lot
[Reply]
  • + 1
 Ordered my frameset today, am mildly no make that incredibly stoked! Doesn't arrive till december though but I think the bike looks sik as and cannot wait to ride her !!
  • + 1
 Dayum...December? I would be rocking in my chair 24/7 till it arrived.
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  • + 1
 mutch beter than the frame of 2010 and I hope that will be mutch stifer than the 2010 frame! But a very sick bike the session 2011!!
[Reply]
  • + 1
 Is it just me or does the rear wheel dropout look ridiculously skinny?

Other than that, great review. Bike looks like a lot of fun!
[Reply]
  • + 1
 I personally prefer the paint on the Session 8. Although that aluminum finish is starting to grow on me, kinda reminds me a bit like the finish on a macbook pro.
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  • + 1
 You would probably gain better aerodynamics by simply not eating that last candy bar before the race. Wind testing a dh frame?? Really?? But that bike does look nice.
[Reply]
  • + 2
 MikeLevy you must hate having to get to ride all these bikes all day, if you want ill take your job for you.
  • + 1
 It is a tough job, but I'm happy to do it. =)
[Reply]
  • + 2
 Not a fan! just an opinion............... though the good to see the fork bumps/downtube protector.
[Reply]
  • + 1
 Wow, what a bike! If you had the money would you buy the new 2011 Demo 8 or one of these??
[Reply]
  • + 1
 they come into UK 18th of october!!
cant wait, do you know exactly what the weight is?
  • + 1
 LUCKY! Pre-ordered mine on aug. 20th and it won't show up to the bike shop until oct. 25th! Can't wait to get this beast built up! Levy your write ups are the shit. You do good work.
  • + 1
 mine is getting delivered directly and should get it around the 20th, 18th is only the date they start shipping them over.
[Reply]
  • + 1
 Thanks Tr011, I can't wait I'm so pumped, I just want to rip up some trails.
[Reply]
  • + 1
 OMFG that looks like an amazing bike and aubbietrekrules i hope you enjoy your bike man
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  • + 1
 weird question but does anyone know what make the blue jersey that guys wearing is? ;P
  • + 1
 That's me. It is a Dakine jersey - love it!
[Reply]
  • + 1
 They really shaved the rear triangle, it must have insane small-bump sensitivity
[Reply]
  • + 1
 So basically the frame wont dent from a pepple now??? Good too see it wont be tin can design..
[Reply]
  • + 1
 omg. everyyear they find a way to top last years! both astetically and performance wise
[Reply]
  • + 1
 i want that guys job he gets to ride brand new bikes at bike parks all day it wouold be amazing
[Reply]
  • + 1
 Too bad that I hate my area's Trek Rep, otherwise I'd have to get this instead of another Specialized.
  • + 1
 Fuck the rep, maybe this bike will change peoples perspective of trek.
  • + 1
 Wish it was just that easy. I work for a Specialized and Trek store in the Chicago IL area. We have sent in requests for proprietary parts and still haven't gotten back a reply. As for the Rep, we have attended Demo Days and Trekworld (their personal Interbike) and have been virtually ignored, hence why none of my personal bikes are "Trek". Unfortunately, I'm not the owner otherwise I'd have been dumping Trek as one of my line up a long time ago, no matter how nice their bikes are.
Pretty as is pretty does. In this case, I'd love to check the 88 out but both the company and rep have been less than reliable.
[Reply]
  • + 1
 ya true that giantrider...... anyone know how much?????? or a least a vague idea?
  • + 1
 $6,300 MSRP U.S. $. Says so on their website. Smile
  • + 1
 Thanks, to much for me. wish I could afford it!!
[Reply]
  • + 1
 I just got mine, so sweet. Looks awesome up close. It's weight was 38.5 lbs. for a large.
[Reply]
  • + 2
 I love the bumper idea Big Grin
  • + 1
 anybody makin them for other bikes yet?
  • + 1
 Foes head it before Trek did
  • + 1
 Mountain cycle had it before them as well.
  • + 1
 is there a generic one that mounts via the water bottle mounts?
  • + 2
 Head to your local Wal-Mart and pick up stick on rubber bumpers that are meant to be used on the underside of furniture. They only cost a few dollars and come in all sorts of different sizes and shapes.
  • + 1
 Sweet idea. Will do
[Reply]
  • + 1
 I love the little details.
  • + 1
 me too, so clean and light looking.
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  • + 1
 first impressions?
god like
[Reply]
  • + 1
 that looks like one hell of a fast bike
[Reply]
  • + 1
 WOW :O that's sick! That's a bike i can only dream about at the moment Frown
[Reply]
  • + 1
 ahh what to get a session or a wilson
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  • + 1
 thats a nice bike with good ideas
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  • + 1
 Glad to see added protection on the underside of the downtube!
[Reply]
  • + 1
 Adding this bike to my list of dream rides!
[Reply]
  • + 1
 Super nice bikes. Can't imagine how they can make them better!
  • + 2
 Dropping the MSRP a bit would be a great start... Wink
[Reply]
  • + 1
 So sweet, just sick. Can't wait till my comes first week of November.
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  • + 1
 i got the 2010 and i do not like this 2011 one it has lost its cool
[Reply]
  • + 1
 holy balls that thing is sexy
[Reply]
  • + 0
 looks exactly like a mountain cycle fury!!! so beautiful.
  • + 1
 Ok, how the hell did you manage to make that comparison? They are nothing alike...
  • + 3
 its sarcasm mate. get some humour.
[Reply]
  • + 1
 JUST KILL ME~@#
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  • + 1
 so stoked to ride this!!
[Reply]
  • + 1
 Oh....My.....SICK Big Grin
[Reply]
  • + 1
 looks really expensive
[Reply]
  • + 0
 Looks like a Kona Stab more and more
[Reply]
  • + 0
 I agree with Reks.
[Reply]
  • + 0
 gotta say, I wonder if that fender could be made to fit my DB Mission! Smile
[Reply]

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