trek mtb marlin 6

Trek Marlin 6 Review: Is This Bike Worth Buying?

trek mtb marlin 6

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What do you want from your MTB? Is it a bike that you can take to work every day? Something light that you can easily transport if needed, something with multiple speeds that will allow you to commute with ease?

Or are you after an adventure, a bike that you can have fun with? If you live near mountain trails, for example, you might want a bike that can handle a few bumps in the road. In that case, you’ll want something tough with great suspension that can easily deal with tougher terrain.

Bottom Line Up Front: So, we would recommend it overall ( you can pick it up online directly via Trek here ) – particularly if you’re on a tighter budget and you want to upgrade it later on down the line. It’s one of the best out of the box budget buys.  

Why Go With the Marlin 6? | Trek Bikes

The Marlin 6 is a GREAT budget pick to get started. An excellent all-around mountain bike, with room for plenty of cusomizations and upgrades later. Only if you need it.

Table of Contents

How does Trek stack up against other companies?

Trek is known as a brand to be trusted. Thanks to years of quality craftsmanship and its long alliance with Lance Armstrong, Trek is considered to be a solid brand in the mountain bike space.

In terms of price, Trek offer a range of different options – from around $450 for the FX (a basic hybrid bike) right up to $12,500 for the Madone SLR 9 Disc brakes eTap suspension lockout (a state-of-the-art racing bike). The Marlin 6 is on the lower end of the price scale.

Trek are quite similar to Diamondback in their price range. Although Trek do offer a lot of expensive bikes (which is to be expected given their expertise), they have more budget options than Fuji and Cannondale.

What kind of bike is the Marlin 6 ?

Trek Marlin 6 is designed to be a multi-purpose real mountain bike: it’s built with mountain biking trails in mind, but it’s also great for commuters, with extra features like rack and fender mounts.

It could be the perfect choice for you if you want to hit the trails at the weekend, but also need a bike to commute to work in the week. It’s not built to go downhill or for heavy trails, however.

It’s also an entry-level bike (for mountain biking) – this means it’s a lot more affordable than some other bikes on the market.

The Main Features of the Marlin 6

Let’s take a look at some of the features of the Marlin 6.

What is the Trek Marlin 6 made from?

The Marlin 6 is made from aluminum, making it a pretty lightweight bike. There are seven sizes to choose from, so you should be able to find one that fits you. It comes in orange or silver.

What are the wheels like?

Depending on which size you buy, the wheels are either 27in or 29in – this is to help the larger bikes to have a smoother ride (with minimal impact to standover height). This is great because the larger wheels allow you to have a better riding experience on slightly rougher terrain. The wheels are heavy, however, which caused some users problems as they tried to pick up speed.

The wheels are Bontrager Connection 32-hole double-walled, and the tires are Bontrager XR2.

What other features does it have?

The Marlin 6 is designed to be able to handle lighter trails and cross country moderate terrain – so you won’t be able to hit the hardcore trails with this one. It does offer multiple gears (24 speeds / shift levers) with a rack and fender mount, however, which makes it ideal for commuting or mixed use riders.

How does the Trek Marlin 6 perform?

Some people found the Marlin 6 to be a little stiff and unresponsive, with the wheels reducing the responsiveness quite drastically at times. This makes it less comfortable to ride on trails, as it doesn’t seem to perform well on drops, with limited softening. However, in terms of riding on smoother, flatter terrain, it seems to perform nicely. A great entry level bike for mountain biking.

Check out how Marlin 6 Compares to Marlin 7.

What are the specs of the Marlin 6?

In terms of specifications, here are the main things you need to know:

  • Fork – SR Suntour XCT fork, 100-mm travel fork
  • Crankset – Shimano
  • Derailleurs – Shimano Altus
  • Brakes – Tektro M290 disc brakes (hydraulic disc brakes and brake levers)
  • Saddle – Bontrager Evoke 1

What warranty will I receive if I buy it?

Like all Trek bikes, once you register it, you get a lifetime warranty against manufacturing defects.

Trek Marlin 6 is suited for…

  • Riders on a tight budget but want a versatile crossover bike
  • Those who want to try a bit of trail riding but also need a bike to commute to work/ride on flatter terrains (cross country mountain bike)
  • A solid floor of great performance (from great brakes, excellent drivetrain, dropper post, silver aluminum alloy…)

Trek Marlin 6 is not suited for…

  • Anyone wanting to tackle tougher trails
  • Those that don’t want to upgrade/change parts on their bike to improve the riding experience

What do users think of Trek Marlin 6?

There are a range of views here. Many people find that it works very well on flatter ground, and they enjoy the large wheels and multiple speeds. Quite a few users decided to change the grips and pedals  (for different types of pedaling), which made riding the Marlin 6 a bit more enjoyable.

Generally, it’s considered a good bike for the price, and people say it is a good bike for customization – so if you want a bit of a ‘blank slate’, you can tinker with it to your heart’s content.

On the other hand, people found that braking and sudden turns put stress on the suspension fork legs, making them stick – and that it generally feels like a stiff, not very responsive ride on trails. Small jumps and dips in the trail were quite unforgiving for some people, which is a shame. A few people mentioned that the undampened suspension also made for a less comfortable riding experience on trails.

So, mixed opinions – it could work for you if you want to give trails a go, or if you’re willing to customize it, but it’s mostly suited for commuting (with kickstand and all).

The Pros and Cons of the Trek Marlin 6

Here are the best and worst bits about this particular model:

  • Great price point ( see here for latest )
  • Very customizable
  • Handy for commuting
  • Doesn’t ride as well on trails
  • Can be a bit stiff and unforgiving

Frequently Asked Questions

Let’s take a look at some of the most commonly asked questions about the Marlin 6.

It weighs around 31.77lbs.

The maximum weight for riders is 300lbs.

People suggest you can ride the Marlin 6 on blue and green level trails with no problems. However, there may be more suitable bikes out there for you if you plan to hit the trails a lot.

Most users don’t recommend it – it can deal with small drops okay, but it isn’t designed for jumps.

Yes – it comes in a variety of sizes, too, so you should be able to find one that suits you.

Yes, there are two choices – orange and silver.

Where can I find Trek bikes?

What are the Best Trek Marlin 6 alternatives?

There are a few alternatives we can recommend if you don’t want the Marlin 6:

Diamondback Overdrive – This is a great bike at a similar price point to the Marlin 6. The wheels have great traction (making it great for trail riding), and it has a comfortable seat. It’s also very easy to assemble out of the box, making it a good choice for beginners.

Diamondback Bicycles Overdrive Hardtail Mountain Bike | REI

The classic returns this year with 27.5” wheels, 24 speeds, a plush four-inch Suntour suspension fork, and powerful disc brakes. Big knobby tires grip every root and rock, keeping you confident and in control as you explore the trail. Whether you're a diehard hardtail aficionado or looking for a solid starter mountain bike, the Overdrive doesn't disappoint.

Trek Marlin 5   – This is great for beginner riders and offers similar features to the Marlin 6, including the alpha silver aluminum frame. You can get it for as little as around $500 , which is great if you’re on a tight budget. Again, it’s great if you want a bike that can handle the commute (commuter road riding) as well as some mild-to-moderate mountain bike trails (road and trail).

Marlin 5 | Trek Bikes

Marlin 5 is a trail-worthy daily rider that's perfectly suited for everyday adventures, on and off the trail. A front suspension fork with 100mm of travel, 21 speeds, and mounts for a rack and kickstand make it an ideal choice for new trail riders or anyone looking for a comfortable, stable commuter with the ruggedness of a real mountain bike.

Kona Blast – this is a tough bike that comes in at under $1,000 but can handle some tougher trails than the others on this list, thanks to the robust frame sizes (also aluminum frame) and excellent suspension. It can also handle some good jumps, too, so if you want to go on more adventures with your bike, it could be worth the extra money.

Conclusion – is the Trek Marlin 6 worth buying?

The Marlin 6 is going to appeal to a specific type of person. If you’re on a tight budget, you want a bike that can handle mild trails and you want to use it to commute to work, then the Marlin 6 is a great bike for you.

Also, if you’re willing to tinker around with it, you can slowly upgrade it to improve your riding experience over time. This is a great bike if you’re new to the MTB world and you fancy customizing a bike for the first time (as a more novice rider).

However, you do get what you pay for, and in this case, this budget bike doesn’t stack up very well against its more expensive counterparts. It’s not as fun to ride as other bikes we’ve reviewed, especially on rocky, bumpy trails. If you want a hard-wearing bike that you can have an adventure with, the Marlin 6 isn’t going to be for you.

Bottom Line: So, we would recommend it overall ( you can pick it up online directly via Trek here ) – particularly if you’re on a tighter budget and you want to upgrade it later on down the line. It’s one of the best out of the box budget buys.  

If you can afford to spend a few hundred more dollars and you don’t want to bother with customization, we’d recommend investing in a different model that is a bit more comfortable to ride such as the Diamondback Overdrive .

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trek mtb marlin 6

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Trek Marlin 6 review

Smooth start turns shockingly bruising in the rough

Russell Burton

Guy Kesteven

Size-specific wheels, range of paint jobs available

Punishingly stiff frame and handlebars, undamped fork, some poor finishing kit

trek mtb marlin 6

Trek is one of the world’s largest and most successful bike makers, but its entry-level mountain machine offers something of a bruising introduction to the global superstar brand.

Multiple choice

If you like a choice of paint jobs, then the Marlin 6 is a refreshing rarity at this bargain-basement price point, in that it offers an alternative (orange) paint option and comes in a class-leading range of sizes. It also switches wheel size depending on frame size with 13.5 and 15 bikes rolling on 27.5in wheels and 17.5 through 23in frames fitted with 29in wheels.

The thinking behind this is that most mountain bikes now use 27.5in wheels for a balance of easy handling and smooth roll, but going 29in on larger sizes can offer a more proportionate, smoother ride.

trek mtb marlin 6

We found the handlebar to be brutally unforgiving

According to this theory, the shallower contact angle of the bigger wheels when they roll into a root or rock on the trail should make for a significantly smoother ride in the rough. The increased wheel weight and smoother roll should also give better speed sustain.

Because 29er wheels don’t intrinsically cost any more to build than 27.5in wheels it’s potentially a great solution for making budget bikes easier and more efficient to ride on more technical terrain.

Unfortunately the relatively small volume – particularly rear – Bontrager treads minimise the smoothness and momentum gains of the Marlin. Despite longer chainstays and a skinny seatpost, which should create more flex, the Alpha alloy rear frame is still a super stiff and inert structure that batters rather than bounces over even slightly rough surfaces.

Add the slow response of the heavier wheels and high overall weight, and the Marlin is something of a slog to get going and then keep going.

Aches and pains

Unfortunately the front end actually compounds the control and comfort problems of the rolling chassis. On mellow trails the softly sprung SR Suntour fork with 85mm of useable travel seems like a pleasantly plush companion.

Initially positive thoughts literally explode in your hands off the first drop or sizeable obstacle though. That’s because the return stroke of the fork is totally undamped and there’s no softening top out bumper either. That means the fork cannons back with a brutal metal-on-metal smash that was loud and violent enough that we genuinely thought it had snapped off the bike going down the first set of steps.

trek mtb marlin 6

Low-volume Bontrager tyres nullify the smoothness and momentum gains of the Marlin

Braking or turning places more stress on the skinny 28mm fork legs, causing them to stick rather than move smoothly. The inch-diameter handlebar is also so unforgiving that we checked it with a magnet in case it was steel rather than alloy. The ergo-shaped grips don’t have locking collars either so they twist and potentially slide off 660mm wide handlebars that are already too narrow to provide enough technical terrain leverage.

While Trek’s concept of appropriate wheel sizing is a basically good idea, the high weight reduces responsiveness to an unacceptable degree. Add those under-width bars, loose grips, undamped suspension and the brutally stiff frame and the Marlin 6 really isn’t a catch – even at this price.

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2022 Trek Marlin 6 Review

  • by Riding With Ryan (Official)

2022 Trek Marlin 6 Review

In this 2022 Trek Marlin 6 review I’ll explain why this is the best beginner XC mountain bike on the market. When you are cross country riding, or even trail riding, having fast and snappy handling is extremely important. A geometry that supports a good climbing posture and efficient pedaling are also top priorities. The 2022 Trek Marlin 6 has all of the above, and more!

If you are considering the 2022 Trek Marlin 6 as your next mountain bike there are a lot of things you need to know. The features, available upgrades and accessories on the Marlin are great, but don’t forget about maintenance. Take care of your chain and keep the bike clean to ensure a long lifetime. (Read: Bike Chain Lubricant Guide )

2022 Trek Marlin 6 Features

The Blendr Stem on the Marlin 6 ranges in length from 50-90mm depending on frame size. When paired with a 720 mm handlebar you have amazing handling ability at high speeds.

It may be important to some knowing the top tube comes curved on the extra-small and small frame options. It is not enough to make the bike look like a stagger or lowstep (step-through) frame. That curve is great for shorter riders looking for a comfortable stand-over height.

Aesthetically the Trek Marlin 6 looks amazing. It comes in some really cool color options and accessories with colored features really add to the style. I’m partial to the Nautical Navy with Orange accessories, grips and bottle cage.

Commuters will also love the Trek Marlin 6 thanks to several mounts available for accessories like racks and bags. The Shimano drivetrain provides smooth shifting, and the bike can stop on a dime thanks to hydraulic disc brakes.

Must Have Trek Marlin 6 Accessories

I’m a big fan of immediately upgrading the touchpoints on a bike. Those touchpoints are the pedals, saddle and grips. For pedals, the RaceFace Chesters ( Check Price on Amazon Here ) are popular. Ergon saddles have never let me down, but they might not be the right price point for the average Marlin 6 rider. Head to your local bike shop to see what feels good.

Whether you take a hydration pack with you mountain biking, or not, you need to add a bottle cage to your bike. There will be plenty of bike rides where a hydration pack is too much. It’s also nice to have a water option with some electrolytes in it. Even when I take my Osprey hydration pack, having a water bottle with electrolyte tablets is a must. Putting those things in a hydration pack makes future fill ups taste funny since you can’t clean a hydration pack the way you can a water bottle. Besides, not having a bottle cage on your bike looks ridiculous.

The final must have accessory on a Trek Marlin 6 is a phone or computer mount. For phone mounts, consider the type of cycling you will do. Pick the phone mount that will secure your phone, but not be a distraction on your handlebars. If you really want to look legit, ditch the phone mount and add a GPS computer on an aero stem mount.

Trek Marlin 6 Upgrades

There are several upgrades you can do to enhance your experience on the Trek Marlin 6 as parts begin to wear down. For starters, the SR SUNTOUR fork keeps the price of this bike down, but an upgrade will likely need to take place within the first few years of use. The RockShox Recon RL is a popular choice.

Another upgrade is adding a chain tensioner. While the new 1x drivetrain drops the chain a lot less than Marlin 6 bikes from previous generations, it still isn’t perfect. A chain tensioner will help keep your Trek Marlin 6 shifting like a dream even over rough terrain. The tensioner acts like a clutch similar to what comes in a high end derailleur.

Another part worth upgrading when the time comes is the tires. The XR2 tires that come stock on most Marlins are fine, but I prefer something more aggressive like the Bontrager SE5. Another option is choosing from a wide variety of Maxxis tire options. According to Trek 2.2″ is the maximum tire width the frame can handle.

Trek Marlin 6 Dropper Post

A dropper post is a seatpost that moves up or down. They operate similar to an adjustable height office chair. When descending downhill at high speeds you want your saddle down to prevent the saddle from bucking you over the handlebars. While climbing you want your saddle at the appropriate height to maximize your pedalling efficiency. The Trek Marlin 6 dropper post compatibility is based on your seatpost width.

The 2022 Trek Marlin 6 will need a 31.6 mm dropper post. You can find droppers with travel ranging from 60-150mm. Of all the available upgrades you can do to your mountain bike, adding a dropper post should be priority number one.

If you enjoyed this 2022 Trek Marlin 6 review, please let me know by leaving a comment down below.

8 thoughts on “2022 Trek Marlin 6 Review”

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I’m interested in the dropper seat post but from what I understand the dropper seat post cable will flow into the frame up front and come out the bottom of the frame under the crank. Unfortunately the 2019 Marlin bikes had the capability of running the rest of that cable upward from there and maintain the cable inside the frame but the newer Marlins they got rid of that feature. If you make mention of this feature upgrade does that mean you’ve done it and if so how did you do it ?

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I’ll be posting a video within the next few weeks adding the dropper to my sons bike. It can be done, in fact it is done, I still need to edit the footage though.

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Any update on that video? I’d be interested in seeing & learning about that mod

Someone stole my camera case with all my SD cards. I haven’t replaced anything yet so not sure when I will be posting videos again.

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Also interested on putting dropper post in Marlin 6 ’22.

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I’m interested in Trek frame sizes. For instance, if I want a Trek 19.5 frame size, what size should I buy?

A 19.5 is a large with Trek.

Thanks for your reply. Some other people also recommend I buy this one with an “L” Alpha size, which is recommended for people with a height of 5’9.7” to 6′ 2″.

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Trek Marlin 6 Gen 2 Review: Beginner’s Dream Mountain Bike

trek marlin 6 gen 2 mountain bike

The Trek Marlin 6 2023 is the newest iteration of the entry-level XC hardtail family designed for light trail riding, gravel paths, fire roads, and mixed-terrain commuting. 

The 2023 Gen 2 model is the same as the Trek Marlin 6 2022, only with different colors and a new name. Trek overhauled its naming system for the upcoming year, referring to the models by the number of generations there have been. So the latest version of a Trek bike has the highest ‘Gen’ number.

This Trek Marlin 6 review will cover the bike’s main specs and highlights, answer some buyer questions, and provide our verdict on who should buy one. 

How Much is the Trek Marlin 6?

Trek Marlin 6 price is $850 and sits in the middle of the price range of the five Marlin models. The cheapest model costs $630, and the most expensive is $1,330. Alongside the 820, the Marlin is Trek’s most affordable mountain bike family.

  • Shimano Deore 10-speed drivetrain
  • Rack and kickstand mounts
  • Progressive sizing 
  • Low-performance coil fork

Trek Marlin 6 Gen 2 Full List of Specs

Trek marlin 6 gen 2 full review.

In this section, we will cover the main features of the Trek Marlin 6 Gen 2 and what makes it stand out in the sub-$1,000 MTB category. 

Marlin 6 Gen 2 in dark red

Trek Marlin 6 Gen 2 is available in four modern paint jobs that will suit any type of rider.

What Type of Bike Is a Trek Marlin 6?

The Trek Marlin 6 MTB is a modern-looking cross-country hardtail with a 100mm coil suspension fork, perfect for beginner mountain bikers. Unfortunately, the rudimentary suspension limits the Marlin 6 to relatively mild trails. Nonetheless, it makes an excellent day-to-day bike for commuting, transport, and leisure.

Alpha Silver Aluminum Frame

Trek uses its Alpha Silver aluminum frame for the Marlin 6. Thanks to the company’s consistent design and materials innovations, these frames outperform the similarly-priced competition in compliance and comfort. 

Marlin 6 Gen 2 internal cable routing

Internal cable routing means Marlin 6 looks sleek and neat, while it also protects the cables from excessive wear and tear.

The frame has quick-release axles, tidy internal cable routing, and mounts for a rack and kickstand, allowing you to equip the Marlin for commuting or bikepacking. One unusual feature of this bike is the curved top tube on the smaller models (XS, S) that lowers the standover height for a better fit. 

Is the Trek Marlin 6 Good for Jumps?

No, the Trek Marlin 6 isn’t good for jumps. Unfortunately, as a cheap hardtail, this bike uses a low-performance coil-spring Suntour XCT 30 fork with 100mm of travel (80mm on XS). This fork performs poorly on bumpy trails but is adequate for day-to-day riding and light off-roading .

Thankfully, the fork has preload and hydraulic lockout settings, but the headtube isn’t tapered, meaning it will be harder to upgrade.  

Shimano Deore 10-Speed Drivetrain

The standout feature for us is the Shimano Deore M4100 10-speed drivetrain. The Trek Marlin 6 is one of the only bikes with this hardware at $850 or below. In addition, an 11-46t cassette and 30t chainring provide plenty of gearing for steep gradients. 

Trek Marlin 6 Gen 2 shimano deore drivetrain

Shimano Deore 10-speed drivetrain is a standard in this price range across the industry, as it provides plenty of gear range and smooth gear shifting.

Generally, sub-$1,000 mountain bikes have cheaper drivetrains that shift poorly and lose efficiency quickly. However, Deore M4100 is durable and smooth-shifting , and the single chainring makes it easier to maintain. 

Tektro Hydraulic Disc Brakes

Another excellent inclusion for a bike of this price is hydraulic disc brakes. Although entry-level, Tektro’s HD-M275 brakeset with 160mm rotors performs well at this price range and for a bike of this spec. 

Hydraulic discs allow you to stop safely in wet weather and with plenty of power and reliability in most situations. However, if you plan on tackling advanced trails, neither this bike nor the brakes are adequate. 

2.20″ Tires and Progressive Wheel Sizing

The Trek Marlin 6 has Bontrager XR2 Comp tires for handling hardpack trails, gravel paths, and pavement where traction is relatively predictable. These XC-style tires roll fast and provide decent grip but will slip and slide in wet trail conditions. 

Marlin 6 Gen 2 wheels and fork

Even though the tires are not tubeless-ready, they are wide enough to provide plenty of traction in varying conditions that come with modern mountain biking.

The XS and Small sizes of this bike have 27.5″ rims, while the others use 29ers. Progressive sizing makes the Marlin fit more consistently across rider heights. Unfortunately, the wheelset and tires are not tubeless-ready. 

Trek Marlin 6 Gen 2 Sizing Chart

  • XS — 4’9″-5’1″ / 145-155cm
  • S —  5’1″-5’5″ / 155-165cm
  • M —  5’5″-5’8″ / 165-173cm
  • M/L — 5’8″-5’11” / 173-180cm
  • L —  5’11”-6’2″ / 180-188cm
  • XL —  6’2″-6’5″ / 188-195cm
  • 2XL — 6’5″-6’8″ / 195-203cm

Who Is Trek Marlin 6 Gen 2 Best Suited For?

The Marlin 6 Trek MTB is best for beginner mountain bikers who want to start learning the skills and techniques of the sport on light trails. In addition, cyclists who want a bike for comfortable day-to-day use, running errands, and mixed-terrain commutes will enjoy the Marlin 6. 

Marlin 6 Gen 2

We recommend the Marlin 6 Gen 2 to beginner to early-intermediate mountain bikers who mostly stay on light trails and rough dirt and gravel roads.

Again, this bike is limited by its cheap fork, so if you want a bike to grow into and challenge your mountain biking skills, you may want to check out one of the higher-end Trek MTBs. 

Other Trek Marlin Bikes We Reviewed:

  • Trek Marlin 4 Gen 2 Review
  • Trek Marlin 5 Gen 2 Review
  • Trek Marlin 7 Gen 2 Review
  • Trek Marlin 8 Gen 2 Review

Is Marlin 6 Gen 2 a Good Buy?

We think the Trek Marlin 6 Gen 2 is a solid choice at just $850. The new-style frame and geometry make it look like the real deal, even if it can’t handle hard riding. 

Marlin 6 Gen 2 in black and yellow

Most of the Marlin 6’s components are excellent for the price range, including Shimano’s Deore drivetrain, hydraulic disc brakes, durable Bontrager tires, and a quality frame with solid ride characteristics. 

Don’t miss out on this excellent deal if you’re looking for a cheap do-it-all bike that’s at home on pavement, light mountain trails, and everything in between.

Buy from Trek Bikes

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About the Author

trek mtb marlin 6

Jordan Grimes

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Trek Marlin 6 Review: Sufficient for Beginners, but…

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This article is an in-depth review of the Trek Marlin 6 , an entry-level mountain bike.

I interviewed one of its owners. We discussed several aspects you might be interested in knowing before purchasing, such as whether the price matches the quality, its advantages and disadvantages, and more.

KEY TAKEAWAY

Marlin 6 is a good MTB for beginners . It uses a modern 1X drivetrain that is simple but offers limited gears (10spd only). Marlin 6 is ideal for non-demanding terrain like flow trails but not the best choice for more challenging terrain due to its short fork travel of 100mm and the absence of a dropper post. Feel free to buy it here or read on for more info.

About Tomasz

Hi, I’m Tomasz, and I’m 31 years old. I’m an active person who loves sports, especially cycling. I enjoy riding on quiet paths away from big cities, especially in mountainous and forested areas. Cycling makes me happy.

Trek Marlin 6 photographed at the open pit mine.

Trek Marlin 6 Summary

Trek currently offers Marlin 4 up to Marlin 8 . The higher the number, the more high-end (and expensive) the bike. Below is the summary of Marlin 6.

Trek Marlin 6 Main Features

  • Weight (w/o pedals): 31.11 lbs [14.11 kg]
  • Wheels: Bontrager Connection, double-wall, 27.5″ or 29″ depending on the bike size
  • Fork: SR Suntour XCM 30, coil spring (100mm travel)
  • Groupset: Shimano Deore (1×10spd)
  • Brakes: Tektro HD-M275 (hydraulic disc brakes) 
  • Tires: Bontrager XR2 Comp
  • Saddle: Bontrager Arvada

Trek Marlin 6 Pros & Cons

Below are the main advantages and disadvantages of Trek Marlin 6.

Trek Marlin 6 Pros

  • Renowned brand
  • Good price-value ratio
  • Available in 7 sizes (XS-XXL)
  • Compatible with racks 
  • Modern 1X drivetrain
  • Shimano Deore has a clutch system
  • Lock on grips

Trek Marlin 6 Cons

  • Limited color options
  • Limited gear range
  • Short travel front fork (only 100mm of travel)
  • Wheels are not tubeless ready
  • No dropper post

Tomasz’s Experience with Trek Marlin 6

What other alternatives did you consider before buying the Marlin 6, and why did the Marlin 6 win out in the end?

I compared various brands before purchasing the Marlin 6. I found that the Marlin 6 outperformed them in terms of accessories, workmanship, and price.

Have you bought the bike online or in a store? 

I purchased the bike from an online store, and it arrived fully assembled and adjusted, making it 100% ready to ride.

Wrapped but assembled Trek Marlin 6 on a pallete.

For what type of riding do you use this bike the most?

I exclusively use the Marlin 6 bike for cycling trails and adventure rides. I enjoy exploring off-the-beaten-track trails and paths, riding mainly on side roads, riverbank embankments, and through forests.

Trek Marlin 6 photographed in a forest.

How would you describe its riding characteristics?

I think the Marlin 6 bike has excellent riding characteristics. It’s very comfortable and rides exceptionally well. It’s sturdy and torsionally strong. The handlebars and shifters are comfortable and don’t tire out the wrists and hands.

Does the front suspension work well?

The front suspension of the Marlin 6 bike works very well. It absorbs bumps effortlessly, and even when locked on even ground or hills, it performs well.

Trek Marlin 6 shot from the front with the focus on the front fork.

Would you like to have more gears, or are you ok with the modern 1X drivetrain?

Modern 1X derailleurs have limitations, especially on long straight sections where you can feel the absence of a second sprocket in the front. In other words, the gear range on Marlin 6 is limited.

Trek Marlin 6 shot from the rear side with a focus on a drivetrain.

How comfortable is it on a scale from 1 to 10?

I think I can give it a solid 10 without much thought.

What is your overall feeling from the ride?

I am very satisfied with my riding experience on the Marlin 6 bike. It handles well, and I am glad I bought it.

Is there something you don’t like about it?

I don’t have any major complaints about the Marlin 6 bike, but there is room for improvement in the modern 1X drivetrain. As I mentioned earlier, it can sometimes feel like something is missing.

What do you like the most about it?

What I like the most about it are the construction of the frame, the colors, and the very comfortable steering.

Trek Marlin 6 photographed at the open pit mine.

Trek Marlin 6 Alternatives

The Trek Marlin 6 alternatives include bikes from the same family, such as the Marlin 4 (cheaper) or Marlin 6 (more expensive), and MTBs from other brands. I recommend checking out my articles on beginner mountain bikes or mountain bikes for under $1000 for more inspiration. 

Would you recommend buying the Trek Marlin 6?  

Yes. I recommend buying Marlin 6. This bike has exceeded all my expectations, allowing me to access otherwise difficult places. I highly recommend this bike to anyone looking for a bike in this price range.

Tomasz, thank you again for your time and for sharing your experience!

Trek Marlin FAQ

The main difference between Trek Marlin and Trek Dual-Sport is their intended use and design. Trek Marlin is an entry-level mountain bike series designed for off-road trail riding, while the Trek Dual-Sport is a versatile hybrid bike capable of handling a wider range of terrain, including pavement, gravel roads, and light off-road trails.

The main differences between Trek Marlin 4 and Marlin 6 are in the groupset and weight. Marlin 4 uses 3×7spd while the Marlin 6 has a 1×10spd drivetrain. The 3X drivetrains are becoming obsolete because of their complexity and high demands on correct shifting. That’s why I recommend spending more on Marlin 6.

The main differences between Trek Marlin 5 and Marlin 6 are in the groupset and weight. Marlin 5 uses 2×8spd while the Marlin 6 has a 1×10spd drivetrain. The 1X drivetrains are popular due to their simplicity, ease of use, and lower weight. I believe the Marlin 6 is worth paying more. Despite the narrower gear range, its use is much easier for beginners. 

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trek mtb marlin 6

  • Crosscountry
  • Rider Notes

2018 Trek Marlin 6

trek mtb marlin 6

A 27.5″ aluminum frame hardtail crosscountry bike with modest components. Compare the full range

For This Bike

View more similar bikes →

Based on frame geometry and build specs.

A bike with lower gearing will be easier to ride up steep hills, while a higher top end means it will pedal faster down hills.

Similar Bikes

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Add custom gearing

Bicycling

This cheap mountain bike is the perfect gateway drug to your next (trail riding) addiction.

Wide range of gears with 2x9 drivetrain

Wheels and tires aren’t tubeless-ready

Read Review

MBR

Jun 2019 · Alan Muldoon

The first of two 29er to make it into the sub 500 category, the Trek Marlin 6 certainly didn't behave like a fish out of water.

Top-rate frame quality, available in seven sizes Independent Shimano shifters

Cable and chain rattle. Rear tyre is too skinny

BikeRadar

Dec 2015 · Guy Kesteven

Violently uncontrolled fork and blunt frame lead a list of reasons that Trek’s Marlin is best kept away from real off roading. Buy if you're a glutton for punishment looking to get into mountain biking

Size-specific wheels, range of paint jobs available

Punishingly stiff frame and handlebars, undamped fork, some poor finishing kit

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Trek Marlin+ 6

  • AUS $ NZD $ USD $ CAD $ GBP £ EUR €

Size / XS, SM, MD, LG, XL

At a glance

Where to buy.

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Specifications

  • Frame Size: XS, Alpha Platinum Aluminium, curved top tube, tapered head tube, internal routing, rack, mudguard and kickstand mount, UDH, Boost148, 12 mm thru axle; Size: S, M, L, XL, Alpha Platinum Aluminium, tapered head tube, internal routing, rack, mudguard and kickstand mount, UDH, Boost148, 12 mm thru axle
  • Fork Size: XS, SR Suntour XCM 34, coil spring, preload, lockout, tapered steerer, 44 mm offset, Boost110, 15 mm thru axle, 100 mm travel; Size: S, M, L, XL, SR Suntour XCM 34, coil spring, preload, lockout, tapered steerer, 44 mm offset, Boost110, 15 mm thru axle, 120 mm travel
  • Motor Bosch Active Line Plus, 50 Nm
  • Battery Bosch CompactTube 400 Wh
  • Wheels Bontrager Connection, double-wall, 32-hole, 20 mm width, Presta valve
  • Wheel Size 29" 27.5"
  • Tires Size: XS, S, Bontrager XT3 Comp, wire bead, 30 tpi, 27.5x2.40""; Size: M, L, XL, Bontrager XT3 Comp, wire bead, 30 tpi, 29x2.40"
  • Chain Shimano LG500, 9/10/11-speed
  • Crank FSA CK-220, 165 mm length
  • Rear Derailleur Shimano CUES U4000
  • Shifters Shimano U4000, 9-speed
  • Brakeset Tektro HD-M275 hydraulic disc
  • Handlebar Size: XS, S, Bontrager alloy, 31.8 mm, 15 mm rise, 720 mm width; Size: M, L, XL, Bontrager alloy, 31.8 mm, 15 mm rise, 750 mm width
  • Saddle Bontrager Arvada, steel rails, 138 mm width
  • Seatpost Size: XS, S, Bontrager alloy, 31.6 mm, 12 mm offset, 330 mm length; Size: M, Bontrager alloy, 31.6 mm, 12 mm offset, 360 mm length; Size: L, XL, Bontrager alloy, 31.6 mm, 12 mm offset, 400 mm length
  • Stem Size: XS, S, Bontrager alloy, 31.8 mm, Blendr-compatible, 7-degree, 35 mm length; Size: M, L, Bontrager alloy, 31.8 mm, Blendr-compatible, 7-degree, 50 mm length; Size: XL, Bontrager alloy, 31.8 mm, Blendr-compatible, 7-degree, 60 mm length
  • Grips Bontrager XR Endurance Comp, lock-on

Q: How much is a 2024 Trek Marlin+ 6?

A 2024 Trek Marlin+ 6 is typically priced around €2,799 EUR when new. Be sure to shop around for the best price, and also look to the used market for a great deal.

Q: Where to buy a 2024 Trek Marlin+ 6?

The 2024 Trek Marlin+ 6 may be purchased directly from Trek .

Q: What size wheels does the 2024 Trek Marlin+ 6 have?

The 2024 Trek Marlin+ 6 has 29" and 27.5" wheels.

Q: What size 2024 Trek Marlin+ 6 should I get?

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There are two cycling routes of differing lengths and difficulty levels in the park. The first one is designed for quiet riding. It starts at the recreation area near the Ponomarka River and runs past Shibaevsky and Kuzminsky Ponds, Kotelniki Village, and Lytkarinsky Forest. The second one is for professionals: the main part of the route goes through quarries in the forest.

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NCM Milano Electric Bike Review

photo of the ncm milano electric bike

When you purchase through links on our website, we may earn a commission. Affiliate disclosure.

NCM make high-quality, but affordable electric bikes, in this review I will explain why I believe the NCM Milano is the best electric commuter bike for the money.

About NCM Electric bikes

NCM electric bikes are owned by Leon Cycle GmbH a German company based in Hanover. Their e-bikes are designed in Germany and manufactured in China.

Specification

The centrepiece of this Electric bike is the X15 geared rear hub motor: This reliable 250W rear electric motor is known for its durability and high torque output, enabling the rider to maintain 15.5mph for long periods. There is no compromise in handling with the small motor centred in the rear hub.

NCM Milano electric bike photos of saddle, rear wheel and handlebar grips

48v13ah Lithium battery pack with USB charging port for mobile devices: Bulky battery packs take up a considerable amount of space, but the Milano’s battery is integrated into the down tube of the bike, keeping the weight low and central, which helps to improve stability. The manufacturers claimed a maximum range of 75 miles seems a little optimistic. The total battery energy capacity is 624wh (watt hours), so if you were consuming 20wh per mile, your range would be 31 miles. My friend owns one of these bikes and gets an average range of around 40-50 miles.

NCM milano electric bike view of battery

This bike is built for comfort:  The Schwalbe touring tyres, Suntour front suspension, adjustable handlebar stem, Selle Royal ergonomic grips and saddle with suspension post all make for an incredibly comfortable ride, even over longer distances. The Shimano 7-Speed gears, index perfectly – shifting is crisp and precise.

photos of the ncm milano tyres, display panel and front light

Fully functional control panel display: The Das-Kit LCD gives you all the information you would expect from an e-bike display. including journey time and mileage. It also has 6 power levels of pedal assist, so you can fine-tune the power output to suit your ride.

NCM Milano electric bike lcd display

Excellent build quality: The NCM Milano is designed to look great but with no compromise on functionality and safety. The Tektro mechanical disc brakes with 160mm rotors provide adequate braking and the brake levers incorporate motor cut-off switches to ensure safe riding. The front and rear lights work off the battery and provide an extra level of safety – especially when riding in the winter. Internal cable routing finishes off the package neatly and not only looks great but protects the cables from the elements.

NCM milano electric bike dimensions

In my opinion, the NCM Milano electric bike offers exceptional value for money. It is unusual to see such a high-quality, well-made e-bike at this price point. What’s more the specification is excellent. The 48v13ah battery will certainly provide users with a realistic range of between 30-45 miles, or 31 miles using the 20wh per mile calculation. The claimed range of 75 miles may be a little optimistic for everyday use – it depends on how much you use the electric assist.

Tektro Mechanical disc brakes should provide adequate stopping power, while the Schwalbe tyres will provide a reasonable amount of puncture protection.

The attention to detail on this bike is great. The internally routed cables and the integrated battery pack make for a very clean finish, something you only usually find on more expensive e-bikes.

The fact that this bike has mudguards, a pannier rack, lights and a kickstand fitted, means that it is excellent for the daily commute in all weathers, or perfect for some weekend touring. The inclusion of a gel saddle and suspension seat post make this bike a truly comfortable and versatile all-rounder.

If you are in the market for an incredibly versatile and affordable e-bike this definitely ticks all the right boxes

A friend of mine purchased one of these back in the Summer and he was kind enough to let me take it for a spin. I can honestly say it was a revelation! The gel saddle was incredibly comfortable and the small X15 hub motor was quiet and smooth. It produced a lot of power for such a small motor, making climbing the steep Cornish hills a doddle! The brakes and front suspension were more than adequate for the back lanes of Cornwall.

I really cannot recommend this bike enough. It has to be one of the best value e-bikes on the market at the moment, and the specification is great.

The great thing about this e-bike is that it is a true hybrid – it is equally comfortable being ridden on tarmac or unpaved surfaces. It can even be used for some light off-road riding.

If you are in the market for an incredibly versatile and affordable e-bike this ticks all the right boxes.

Incidentally, NCM’s other 48v 250w bike is called the NCM Moscow , I will be reviewing this bike shortly. I have personally worked on and ridden a Moscow, and it is on par with the Milano for the ride and builds quality. It uses identical electric components but in a mountain bike-style frame.

trek mtb marlin 6

Meet Tony, a passionate e-bike advocate and enthusiast who discovered the life-changing benefits of electric bikes back in 2016. Tony’s technical experience within the e-bike field was gained while running a successful electric bike conversion business for 5 years in his home county of Cornwall, UK.

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46 Comments

boa taarde tenho uma biçicleta destas mas necessito de assistencia em Portugal. ela não arranca e não encontro uma ofecina que repare esta marca e com a garantia

Hi! Thank you for the review! I bought Milano a week ago, so far so good. I found the first assist speed to be stronger that I’d like it to be. Is there any way to rebalance those 1-6 modes within the given range, so it starts not as strong?

Don’t know if this is still open, but I really like the Milano plus, my only question, is how easy is it to remove the battery beneath that tube? Can it be done one handed? Cornwall my home!

Turning the key releases the battery catch, then you need to lift it slightly, move it forward and remove. I would imagine it’s possible to do it one handed, but it would be fairly tricky as the battery weighs around 3kg.

Let me know if you have any more questions.

Regards, Tony

bike seems well make and sturdy but i find the tyres are so skinny that when you are on slightly uneven surfaces even at a slow pace & i’m talking in number 1 setting it is dangerous and you could so easy fall off on a slightly uneven footpath. It’s ok on even ground but i wouldn’t let my wife ride it. I’ll try putting new tyres on it & see how it goes or it will be sold. In comparison i have another basic ebike in the states which is so stable this is nowhere close to and ride all types of tracks on it which is also a similar style. i would say I’m disappointed in it so far & feel its an accident waiting to happen.

Bonjour J’ai juste une question ,je mesure que 5 pieds !!!! Donc le small peut-il me convenir

Bonjour, Je pense que même la version 26″ est peut-être un peu trop grande. NCM recommande une hauteur minimale de 5′ 2″ de 160 cm.

Excellent review Tony,

I went ahead and bought the Milano and I’ve been very impressed with it so far. I was wondering if you’d know whether the 48v 16ah battery for NCM bikes would be compatible with the Milano model? I can’t seem to find a 48v 13ah battery anywhere.

Many thanks, Andy

An NCM Milano Plus battery should fit straight in. The 16Ah battery is the same size and uses lithium cells with a higher energy density.

Bonjour Je viens d’acheter ce vélo Mais je me pose la question, comment mettre en route la lumière avant ? Merci de votre aide

Appuyez et maintenez la touche « + » sur l’écran pour allumer le phare.

Bonjour Tony, Merci pour votre commentaire très instructif. Je souhaite acheter le Milano car après avoir étudier le marché des vélo électriques; il semble être d un excellent qualité-prix. J ai expérimenté le Veligo. Il me semble etre un peu similaire. Mais j ai une petite hésitation…si vous pouviez m éclairer…a t on sur le vélo le dos droit? Je pensais le prendre en taille L (28 pouces)(Je fais 1,74m) pour avoir une assise plus confortable. Je l utiliserai quotidiennement pour aller travailler. Pensez-vous que c est un bon choix? Ou devrais je m orienter vers un vélo de ville type Elops de Decathlon ou Sydney de Ubanbiker?(que je trouve tout de même assez cher) Merci pour votre réponse. A très bientôt, Linda

Bonjour, La taille fait référence au diamètre de la roue (28″). Tous les cadres NCM Milano sont identiques et correspondent à une taille moyenne. Cela devrait être parfait pour votre taille. La potence du guidon est également réglable, ce qui vous permet de monter le guidon encore plus haut si nécessaire. Salutations, Tony

I am seeing two different Milano Max models…N8C and N8R. They look exactly the same and with the same specifications. What is the difference?

I checked online for milano and price was 1189 Canadian dollar. On Monday I decided to buy it but unfortunately price went up to 1359$. I’m surprised as during holiday season everywhere else reducing their prices but your price was raised.

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COMMENTS

  1. Marlin 6

    Marlin 6 is a cross country mountain bike built to give you an efficient off-road ride with a suspension fork that locks out, and smoother-shifting 2x8 drivetrain. It's made for mountain biking, but it's also equipped with features like rack and kickstand mounts that make it a great choice for adventurous daily commutes.

  2. Marlin 6 Gen 2

    Marlin 6 Gen 2. 664 Reviews / Write a Review. $699.99 $849.99. Model 5259612. Retailer prices may vary. Marlin 6 is a cross country mountain bike built to give you an efficient off-road ride with a suspension fork that locks out, and a simple 1x drivetrain. It's made for mountain biking, but it's also equipped with features like rack and ...

  3. Marlin+ 6

    Marlin+ 6 is an electric mountain bike that's ready to power up your trail rides without breaking the bank. It's equipped with the same fun and confident geometry as the non-electric Marlin, with the added boost of Bosch's Active Line Plus drive system. A 120mm suspension fork soaks up rocks, roots, and potholes on your ride, while 9-speed ...

  4. Marlin 6

    Marlin 6 is a quality introductory cross country mountain bike with front suspension, 24 speeds, and a wide range of gearing for easier pedaling on climbs. It's built in Trek's trail heritage, but also equipped with features like mounts for a rack and kickstand that make it a great choice for daily commuters. Color / Matte Trek Black.

  5. Marlin 6 Gen 3

    Marlin 6 Gen 3. 8 Reviews / Write a Review. $899.99. Model 5277255. Retailer prices may vary. Marlin 6 is the perfect ride for progressing your skills on the trails. Its updated slacker frame geometry makes it easier to control on descents while the suspension fork takes the edge off bumpy trails. Integrated rack and kickstand mounts make it ...

  6. Marlin 6 Gen 3

    Marlin 6 Gen 3 is the latest version of Trek's popular cross country mountain bike, featuring a smoother Shimano drivetrain, stronger rims and brakes, and a more confident frame geometry. Whether you want to explore new trails, commute to work, or have fun with your friends, Marlin 6 Gen 3 is the versatile and reliable bike for you.

  7. Trek Marlin 6 Review: Is This Bike Worth Buying?

    In terms of price, Trek offer a range of different options - from around $450 for the FX (a basic hybrid bike) right up to $12,500 for the Madone SLR 9 Disc brakes eTap suspension lockout (a state-of-the-art racing bike). The Marlin 6 is on the lower end of the price scale. Trek are quite similar to Diamondback in their price range.

  8. 2021 Trek Marlin 6

    Specs, reviews & prices for the 2021 Trek Marlin 6. Compare forks, shocks, wheels and other components on current and past MTBs. View and share reviews, comments and questions on mountain bikes. Huge selection of mountain bikes from brands such as Trek, Specialized, Giant, Santa Cruz, Norco and more.

  9. Trek Marlin 6 review

    Smooth start turns shockingly bruising in the rough

  10. 2022 Trek Marlin 6 Review

    The features, available upgrades and accessories on the Marlin are great, but don't forget about maintenance. Take care of your chain and keep the bike clean to ensure a long lifetime. (Read: Bike Chain Lubricant Guide) 2022 Trek Marlin 6 Features. The Blendr Stem on the Marlin 6 ranges in length from 50-90mm depending on frame size.

  11. Trek Marlin 6 Gen 2 Review: Beginner's Dream Mountain Bike

    The Trek Marlin 6 MTB is a modern-looking cross-country hardtail with a 100mm coil suspension fork, perfect for light trails, dirt roads, and gravel riding. The Marlin 6 Trek MTB is best for beginner mountain bikers who want to start learning the skills and techniques of the sport on light trails.

  12. Trek Marlin 6 Review: Sufficient for Beginners, but…

    Marlin 6 is a good MTB for beginners. It uses a modern 1X drivetrain that is simple but offers limited gears (10spd only). Marlin 6 is ideal for non-demanding terrain like flow trails but not the best choice for more challenging terrain due to its short fork travel of 100mm and the absence of a dropper post. Feel free to buy it here or read on ...

  13. 2020 Trek Marlin 6

    The 2020 Trek Marlin 6 is an Cross Country Aluminium / Alloy mountain bike. It sports 29" wheels, is priced at $650 USD and has SR Suntour suspension. The bike is part of Trek 's Marlin range of mountain bikes. Marlin 6 is a quality introductory cross country mountain bike with front suspension and an upgraded 2×8 drivetrain that's light ...

  14. Marlin 6

    Marlin 6 is a quality introductory cross country mountain bike with front suspension, 24 speeds, and a wide range of gearing for easier pedaling on climbs. It's built in Trek's trail heritage, but also equipped with features like rack and fender mounts that make it a great choice for daily commuters. Compare. Color / Matte Waterloo Blue.

  15. 2019 Trek Marlin 6

    The 2019 Trek Marlin 6 is an Cross Country Aluminium / Alloy mountain bike. It sports 29" and 27.5" wheels and has SR Suntour suspension. The bike is part of Trek 's Marlin range of mountain bikes. Marlin 6 is a quality introductory cross country mountain bike with front suspension, 24 speeds, and a wide range of gearing for easier pedaling on ...

  16. 2018 Trek Marlin 6

    The Trek Marlin 7 Has The Heart Of A Race Bike. Dec 2019. This cheap mountain bike is the perfect gateway drug to your next (trail riding) addiction. Highs. Wide range of gears with 2x9 drivetrain. Lows. Wheels and tires aren't tubeless-ready. Read Review. Trek Marlin 6 review - MBR. Jun 2019 · Alan Muldoon. The first of two 29er to make it ...

  17. 2024 Trek Marlin+ 6

    The 2024 Trek Marlin+ 6 is a E-Mountain and Trail Aluminium / Alloy mountain bike. It sports 29" and 27.5" wheels, is priced at €2,799 EUR, comes in a range of sizes, including XS, SM, MD, LG, XL, has SR Suntour suspension and a Shimano drivetrain. The bike is part of Trek 's Marlin range of mountain bikes. As a pedal-assisted e-mountain bike ...

  18. Find a bike shop near you

    Trek and Electra bike shops are your destination for the latest Trek bikes, Electra bikes and accessories, Bontrager cycling gear, service and tune-ups for bikes of any brand, and professional bike fit services through Trek Precision Fit. Whether you visit a Trek-owned store or one of our awesome independent partners, you'll find amazing ...

  19. Hospital no 6 Moscow : r/chernobyl

    Sink-Em-Low • 4 yr. ago • Edited 4 yr. ago. I've always been fascinated with Hospital No.6 partly due to it's status during the Chernobyl Crisis. - Clearly Hospital No.6 had been received or experimented on patients with ARS since the 1950's. I have no doubt some of the engineers and sailors brought back from the K19 were rushed to Moscow.

  20. 6 biking routes in the parks

    Free. There is a 13.6-kilometer professional cycling track in Krylatsloye. It was built in 1979 especially for the Moscow Olympics as the world's only Olympic track within the city limits. The route is difficult, with steep climbs and long descents, but it can be covered in parts or combined with a simpler bike ride in neighboring Fili Park.

  21. NCM Milano Electric Bike Review

    In my opinion, the NCM Milano electric bike offers exceptional value for money. It is unusual to see such a high-quality, well-made e-bike at this price point. What's more the specification is excellent. The 48v13ah battery will certainly provide users with a realistic range of between 30-45 miles, or 31 miles using the 20wh per mile calculation.