You’ve decided to buy a bike, and you’ve narrowed your search down to two brands, Trek and specialized. Which one of them offers more value for your money? It’s the classic case of Trek vs. Specialized. Well, Both of these cycle manufacturers are established and have their crowds of a loyal fan base. They both offer a diverse range of bikes across categories and budgets.
But there has got to be a clear winner between the two brands when it comes to deciding the reliability of their bikes, right? Frankly speaking, the answer isn’t a clear cut one. It is true that Trek houses more varieties of bikes than Specialized. But the bikes in both brands boast high-quality components. Plus, the bikes from both brands do not vary too much in terms of their price range.
Both Trek and Specialized have a wide range of road bikes, mountain bikes, and even kids’ bikes to their credit. As many characteristics as bikes from these brands share, they also have that many differences between them.
Before we get into the nitty-gritty of which brand has the better bikes, here’s a brief recap on what each brand stands for individually.
Trek Vs Specialized Bikes Comparison
An Overview of Trek
Trek bikes are most popularly associated with the legendary Lance Armstrong. It was on these bikes that this Cycling champ won all of his Tour de France championships. Therefore, it comes as no surprise that Trek is popularly known for their road bikes.
This American company made its entry into the bike market in 1976, but most of its bikes are made in Taiwan. Today, the brand has a commendable range of bikes for men, women, and kids. You can also be sure to find Trek bikes for every level of rider and for different riding terrains.
An Overview of Specialized
Specialized began its journey of manufacturing bikes with their iconic road and touring bikes. Then in 1995, it added on to its accolades with its range of mountain bikes. This range of mountain bikes was aptly named ‘The Full Force.’ Today, Specialized is synonymous with mountain bikes, with the company even sponsoring Loic Bruni, the downhill world champion.
When you are a beginner rider, it can sometimes be difficult to tell the minor differences between different bike models. But experienced riders are likely to notice even the slightest of differences. This happens especially for lower-end bike ranges. The high-end bikes typically boast quite visible differences in design, geometry, or components.
Regardless of that, bikes from Trek and Specialized both have their own unique appeal. So at the end of the day, which bike model or brand you decide to go with boils down to personal preference. Don’t hold back from checking out as many options of bikes from both manufacturers. Doing so will only benefit you.
To help simplify your quest for the ideal bike for yourself, we’ve compiled a list of differences between Trek bikes and Specialized bikes. Take a look:
Trek allows riders the flexibility to build a bike of your liking. You have the option to choose your bike’s fork, frame, and other parts so as to customize it. Pretty neat, isn’t it?
Specialized has a wide range of bike types and styles, but this manufacturer doesn’t offer customization services.
The Design of Their Bikes’ Rear Suspension
Trek takes pride in their Active Braking Pivot and Full Floater rear suspension designs. The Full Floater rear suspension design system works in a way that prevents the shock mount’s movement from increasing when you pedal. This way, there is more pedaling efficiency.
The Active Braking Pivot rear suspension design system works similar to the braking systems in modern cars. Here, the rear suspension allows more chatter, so your bike’s wheels skid less.
Specialized bikes generally use the Future Shock rear suspension design. Incorporating this design into their bikes helps riders journey over rough roads with ease. This design system also allows more control and stability for riders.
The Pricing of Their Bikes
Bikes from Trek or Specialized aren’t exactly cheap, especially if we’re talking about mountain bikes. Even so, both manufacturers offer lower-end bikes just as they do high-end ones. The price range of bikes from Trek and Specialized are almost on par with each other. In this case, the bike model or the type of bike determines its price.
The Materials They Use
In most cases, both Trek and Specialized use the same materials with their bikes. They both utilize premium aluminum for their lower-end bikes. And, they both save carbon fiber for their higher-end bikes.
Components & Parts
This is another area where both manufacturers find common ground. They both use SRAM and Shimano components for their bikes. So if you want a fair comparison of bikes from these manufacturers, the fair way to do so is to compare bikes that are on the same price range.
Range of Mountain Bikes
Trek’s range of mountain bikes covers cross-country mountain bikes, hardtail mountain bikes, aluminum mountain bikes, 27.5 m mountain bikes, carbon mountain bikes, entry-level and beginner mountain bikes, and 29er mountain bikes.
Take the Trek Procaliber 9.6 mountain bike, for instance. It allows you to experience the thrill of riding a carbon race bike that boasts IsoSpeed, all at a fairly affordable price. This bike is equipped with solid features, and it also provides you with the option to upgrade its parts easily if you want to.
Specialized’s range of mountain bikes includes cross country mountain bikes, trail mountain bikes, and BMX/dirt jump mountain bikes.
The Chisel Comp is a classic example of an exemplary cross-country mountain bike from Specialized. It impresses with its superior performance and budget-friendly price tag. This bike’s aluminum frame is responsive and facilitates easy handling when riding over technical courses. Getting you ahead of other riders are the bike’s fast-rolling wheels. Its wheels boast high-speed control when riding on difficult terrain.
Range of Road Bikes
Under its road bikes category, Trek houses performance, women’s, aluminum, lightweight, endurance, carbon, and disc brake road bikes. These bikes typically feature IsoSpeed or Aerodynamic designs.
This Trek Domane 5 embodies everything this brand aims for with its road bikes – versatility, speed, and a smooth ride. It features a carbon frame (OCLV), which has both rear and front IsoSpeed. This detailing helps smooth out bumps on the road and does its bit to reduce fatigue on long rides. The Domane SL5 road bike from Trek is ideal for riders looking for a racing bike that is quick and able to withstand long distances.
For Specialized, their range of road bikes includes performance bikes, triathlon bikes, and gravel bikes.
A Specialized road bike that justifies this manufacturer’s credibility is the Tarmac Disc Comp. It offers a stiff competition with its impressive climbing responsiveness and great descending capabilities. This bike comes with hydraulic disc brakes, which boast precise shifting and good stopping power.
Features such as its cartridge hubs, which are sealed, and its reliable wheels equip this bike to confidently aid you in conquering highways, challenging terrains, and street corners. This Specialized road bike also comes with 24 spokes on its front and rear. These spokes help maintain the bike’s weight and contribute to its durability.
Pros of Trek Bikes
- The manufacturer has an extensive range of bikes for all kinds of riders.
- Trek bikes can be customized in more ways than one.
- The brand is most popular for its road bikes.
Cons of Trek Bikes
- Trek bikes can be pricey compared to cycles from other brands.
Pros of Specialized Bikes
- Specialized is well known for its range of mountain bikes.
- Like Trek, Specialized also caters to riders of all levels.
Cons of Specialized Bikes
- Specialized bikes are more expensive than Trek bikes.
What are the Differences and Similarities Between Trek Bikes & Specialized Bikes?
Initially, Trek was mainly associated with making top-notch cross country bikes. The company changed the game when they started manufacturing other styles of bikes. Today, Trek boasts an impressive range of bikes for all sorts of riding feats – road bikes, mountain bikes, and hybrid bikes.
Not one to be caught lacking, Specialized entices with its own versions of top-notch bikes for every type of rider. They are best known for their mountain bikes, but they also make road bikes, turbo E-bikes, active bikes, and kids’ bikes. Specialized bikes are the ideal choice for you if you want precision, good quality components, strength, and aren’t afraid of financially splurging on a bike.
The Final Verdict
Every component in Trek bikes is carefully thought out to enhance the rider’s comfort and performance. Most bikes from this manufacturer feature hydraulic disc brakes and trigger shifters. They are also no stranger to Rockshocks forks and SRAM gears. Specialized bikes put up fierce competition with equally impressive features and components.
It’s okay if you aren’t willing to shell out too much cash on a Specialized mountain bike because the company offers lower-end bikes that promise just the same level of high performance. Detailing such as Suntour forks, mechanical disc brakes, and Shimano components make these lesser-priced bikes just as efficient as their more expensive counterparts.