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The Marlin has long served as Trek’s entry-level mountain bike, matching a reasonable price with decent equipment.
With a few significant upgrades, the Marlin’s entry-level now starts a bit higher.
Riders can expect updated geometry, a new frame, increased tire clearance, and a rear axle system that “enhances stability and strength,” according to the Trek press release. Forks can be upgraded on most models for greater versatility, and there’s even a new XXS size for younger kids who want to start shredding with family and friends.
Trek Marlin Update: Details
The new digs begin with the Alpha Silver Aluminum frame, which Trek developed for “more compliant frames that retain the acceleration and affordability that have always made aluminum popular,” according to the bike maker’s website.
Updated geometry includes a slacker head tube, longer reach, and wider bars. A 100mm fork helps absorb the shock from roots and rocks, but can also be upgraded to a 120mm fork for sizes XS and up.
Taking advantage of greater tire clearance, the Marlin now runs 2.4″ tires offering “improved grip and comfort on rugged trails,” Trek said.
Another major addition is the Thru Skew rear axle system. It bolsters safety and wheel security by fastening the rear wheel to the closed dropout system, Trek claimed, while still adhering to the 135mm rear hub standard. The Thru-Skew uses a removable lever, which riders can store for a “cleaner aesthetic” during rides, the company said.
Internal cable routing also gets an update, Trek said, enabling compatibility with internally routed dropper posts. Thanks to internal foam tubes, the cables are also less likely to rattle on rough terrain. And speaking of noise reduction, a full-coverage chain stay guard reduces chain slaps, while shielding against scratches.
Trek Marlin: Pricing and Availability
With the addition of the XXS size, the Marlin now comes in a plethora of sizes, from XXS to XXL. The sizes also change depending on the needs of different-sized riders. The smaller frames, for example, include a curved top tube and accommodate 26″ wheels.
The upgrades apply to the Marlin 6, 7, and 8 models, which have MSRPs of $900, $1,000, and $1,300, respectively.
Still want the cheaper, older version of the Marlin? No problem. Trek will continue to sell the Marlin 4 and 5 models, which cost $630 and $740, respectively.