Introduction to the Trek Emonda ALR 5

Cycling brings the rush of wind against your face, a pulse beating in time with the revolutions of pedals and the freedom to explore paths both old and new. The soul of this joy lies firmly embedded within your two-wheeled companion – your bike. Today, we delve deep into one such faithful friend – the Trek Emonda ALR 5. Hailed as a formidable player among road bikes, let’s embark on an exhilarating ride as we gather insights galore from our recent test ride and onto our definitive Trek Emonda ALR 5 review.

Overview of the Trek Emonda ALR 5

The heart and soul of any bike is its frameset, and the same precisely applies to the Trek Emonda. Starting from scratch, Trek has reinvented the frame focussing primarily on delivering value for performance enthusiasts like you and I.

Elaborately crafted with Hydroformed Alpha Aluminium technology, every contour and edge aboard this bike serves a purpose – strength combined with lightness. Moving away from carbon fibre construction, this aluminium skeletal system assures durability while shedding mass at greater affordability.

Every contour and edge aboard this bike serves a purpose – strength combined with lightness

Enhancements concerning aerodynamics hold key focus in this review. Trek debated that form should meet function; thus, each millimetre integrated contributes to riding efficiency: trailing edges have been reshaped, fork legs elongated to blend seamlessly with downtube surfaces and reduced seatpost diameter further smoothen airflow dynamics.

Addressing practicality concerns for cyclists braving harsh weather conditions or rough terrains, hidden mudguard mounts grace this model, which is a testament to their attention towards minute rider needs whilst maintaining clean aesthetic lines.

Analysis of the Trek Emonda ALR 5 Geometry and Handling

Let’s dig deeper into our Trek Emonda ALR 5 review by analysing its geometry and handling. With sleek lines etched across its aluminium bodywork, the bike reverberates with understated flair. This is not just about aesthetics though; there’s an expansive body of engineering underpinning every curve and line.

The Geometry: Lively

The Trek Emonda ALR 5 leverages what I call ‘smart geometry’. It straddles a sweet spot between aggression demanded by racing aficionados, and the comfort angle sought by weekend warriors. With its carefully selected head-tube angles, coupled with a respectfully decent stack-to-reach ratio, this road bike gives riders both aggressive-leaning positions as well as relaxed upright perches, making it a great first-decent road bike.

Complementing this responsive feel are smaller trail figures. This impactful dynamic enables quick steering inputs during high-speed descents or when navigating through packed pelotons.

The Handling: Smooth Operator

Delving into how it handles, my experiences with the Trek Emonda ALR 5 were nothing short of exhilarating. It reacted delightfully to shifts in weight and changes in direction – dwelling promise of feedback without alienating less experience riders. This sensitive responsiveness owes much to two factors:

  1. The Weight: The Emonda’s streamlined silhouette belies a feathery finesse that deftly harnesses power output while reducing fatigue over extended rides.
  2. Stiffness: An understanding balance between compliance and stiffness results in an intriguing mix of suppleness where needed and solid rigidity elsewhere.

In sublime harmony, these elements deliver one thing – confidence-bolstering predictability at high speeds on tricky terrain. I’m comfortable saying that the meticulously fashioned geometry amalgamated with splendid handling makes for a ride that is both exhilarating yet controlled. Whether you’re into fast-paced crit races, long-distance gran fondos, or anything in between, the Trek Emonda ALR 5 has you covered.

Components Breakdown & Build of the Trek Emonda ALR 5

In this part, I look into what makes the Trek Emonda ALR 5 tick. A close look at its components reveals an evident commitment by Trek Bicycles to offer their users reliable quality in this masterpiece.

The Heart: Frameset Material Composition

As we’ve already seen, the star of the show is the frame. In crafting this bike, Trek sidestepped traditional carbon in favour of aerospace-grade 300 series Alpha Aluminium for its frameset construction. With advanced hydroforming techniques combined with cold-forged, 3D manipulation of quadruple-butted tubesets, they were able to shape the aluminium just like carbon. Result? An ultralight bike – a feat achieved without compromising on durability or aesthetics. Hence, the ALR is the name; Aluminium Light Racer.

Drivetrain and Brakes: Efficient Power Transmission

Recall that feeling of exhilaration as you glide down slopes or conquer steep ascents? You can give credit to your bike’s drivetrain for those moments. For the Trek Emonda ALR 5, there’s no disappointment here either; featuring full Shimano 105 R7000 drivetrain and brakes step up for an efficiently smooth ride.

Trek Emonda ALR 5 Drivetrain

Drivetrain Components

  • Front Derailleur: Shimano 105 R7000
  • Rear Derailleur: Shimano 105 R7000
  • Gear Shifters: Shimano 105 R7020
  • Brake Levers: Shimano 105 R7020
  • Crank: Shimano 105 R7000 (50/34T)
  • Cassette: Shimano 105 R7000 (11-34T)
The gear diversity provided by such high-quality pieces enables excellent gearing options across all terrains while keeping maintenance demands relatively minimal with their durable construction.

Rolling Comfortably On Two Wheels

The wheelset on any road bike plays a crucial role in determining both comfortability during rides and overall performance. Trek hasn’t taken this lightly, and in my experience, never does.

The Bontrager Affinity Tubeless Ready wheels have stood the test of time and continue to exhibit fantastic resilience, while also presenting a surprising weight advantage. The fittings don’t end there though as these are shod with Bontrager R1 Hard-Case Lite 700x25c tyres, adding another layer of comfort and sure-footedness on various road surfaces. The 25c tyres are predictable and Trek have resisted on adopting the 28c trend for the new Emonda.

Topping Off: Finishing Kit

To complete the build, we have an array of components from Bontrager – a reliable partner in Trek’s bike production process over several decades.

This kit includes an alloy handlebar that delivers precise control without discomfort, the Montrose Comp cut-out saddle for blissful rides, and a Blendr-enabled Elite stem allowing seamless integration of accessories like lights and Garmin bike computers to enhance your biking experience.

So far, it becomes clear that each piece not only contributes to building up the overall form and appeal but does so without leaving functionality behind.

Undeniably, such detailed dedication in composition is what sets the Trek Emonda ALR 5 apart.

In-depth Review of the Ride Impressions and Performance of the Trek Emonda ALR 5

So far we’ve heard about the bike’s setup but what’s it like to ride, afterall, that’s the whole point of a bike isn’t it?

Let me take you on a comprehensive journey into the heart of the riding experience offered by the Trek Emonda ALR 5. Embracing every aspect of its performance, from speed and responsiveness to comfort, stability, and climbing capabilities, we’ll explore what this road bike truly has to offer.

Trek have decades of expertise in their high-performance bikes – almost as many as I’ve been riding bikes – and has built the Emonda ALR 5 with an unwavering focus on delivering a fast cycling experience. With agile handling that pivots swiftly around corners, this bike does not falter when asked for instant increases in speed.

As any seasoned cyclist will tell you, immediate response is paramount to maintaining momentum during unpredictable rides; thankfully, it’s here that the Emonda ALR 5 shines. The specific combination of ultra-lightweight Alpha Aluminium frame paired with sleek Bontrager R1 Hard-Case Lite tyres enables a highly responsive ride under various conditions.

Whether attempting swift overtakes or navigating through city traffic, I found myself appreciating the sharp brakes that further supplement this bike’s impressive reactivity – helping maintain pace while ensuring safety.

Comfort and Stability

As our exploration continues down the lanes of ride quality and comfort analysis, we find that often these are areas where many performance-focused cycles struggle. The relentless pursuit for raw power sometimes leads to sacrificing user comfort, but let me assure you – this isn’t true in case for the Emonda ALR 5!

The best part about this machine is its ability to provide a smooth ride even across challenging terrains. This mainly stems from its balanced geometry integrated saddle design (Bontrager P3 Verse), which aims towards providing optimal seating comfort while maintaining proper aerodynamics. The specially designed handlebars residents vibration and offers a comfortable grip enhancing riding pleasure for long hours.

Rest assured, even the fussiest of riders will find it hard to pinpoint any stability issues with Emonda ALR 5. Whether traversing high-speed descents or testing its cornering prowess, this bike gave me the confidence and assurance needed in those heart-racing moments!

Climbing Capabilities

Now let us ascend towards discussing this bike’s climbing performances. If you’re an avid climber like me, then prepare to be impressed. The Trek Emonda ALR 5 is nothing short of brilliant on ascents. Its slender frame paired with its competitive weight makes it a strong contender when facing steep hills.

With excellent power transfer capabilities due to the combination of compact gearing (Shimano 105) and stiff frameset, each pedal stroke translates into efficient climbing progress.

Several times during my test ride up local uphill courses, I found myself pleasantly surprised by just how efficiently this cycle handled sustained climbs.

In essence, whether you’re attempting swift accelerations on flat tracks, craving comfort during longer rides or tackling uphill battles – the Emonda ALR 5 leaves little room for disappointment. In my opinion, based on personal experience and detailed analysis, this bike masters versatility without compromising key performance attributes that rank important for various cycling scenarios!

Trek Emonda ALR 5 Frame - Image from

Summary and Overall Evaluation of the Trek Emonda ALR 5

The Trek Emonda ALR 5 is an increasingly popular choice among expert cyclists and beginners alike.

The first thing that sets the Trek Emonda ALR 5 apart from its competitors is undoubtedly its perfect mix of sophisticated geometry, fantastic handling, lightweight aluminium frameset, and a strong road performance. Its sleek design, coupled with aerodynamic enhancements in the recent model, offers significant improvements to both speed and fuel efficiency.

In all my cycling years, it’s rare to come across a road bike that encapsulates value for money like this one does.

High-quality Shimano components ensure durability while providing flawless shifting and braking. Plus, there’s no denying the agile responsiveness and comfortable ride this bike delivers time after time especially considering its climbing capabilities which is technically unparalleled in this price point.

Comparison with Similar Road Bikes

No two bikes are created equal therefore comparing them can be difficult, yet we all find ourselves doing just that.

Compared to similar road bikes such as Specialized Tarmac or Cannondale Supersize EVO, the Trek Emonda ALR 5 still holds its ground rather impressively. For instance selling at a relatively competitive price range than many of its contemporaries without compromising on component quality or frame technology.

While some might argue about how certain high-end models offer slight advantages over longer rides or harsh terrain conditions – truth is for an average rider who takes occasional terrains these differences often seem imperceptible. Hence even professional riders have begun endorsing the use of these growling beasts since they’ve experienced first-hand its invaluable performance levels during races.

Moreover, few brands can measure up to Trek’s commitment for continuous innovation while keeping user experience at the forefront. It’s to no wonder then – why countless cyclists continue framing their journeys around the delightful options this brand unfailingly offers: case in point being the truly exciting Emonda ALR 5.

To aptly summarise, rare are bikes that manage to live up to cost-effectiveness with impressive componentry, and superior performance as harmoniously as the Trek Emonda ALR 5 does. Thus making it not just a bike but a thoroughly rewarding experience for every ardent cycling enthusiast out there.

Trek Emonda ALR 5 Duotrap - Image from

Concluding Thoughts and Final Verdict on the Trek Emonda ALR 5

As we’ve journeyed through this extensive and in-depth review of the Trek Emonda ALR 5, it’s been a real pleasure to introduce you to this bike’s standout features. Now seems like the right moment to draw some conclusions and offer up my final verdict.

After experiencing its performance first-hand, I’m thoroughly convinced about the capability of Trek Emonda ALR 5 as a top-tier climbing bike. Its lightweight nature attributes much to this trait; stripping unnecessary weight off from every possible place has significantly enhanced responsiveness and handling. But make no mistake, its surprisingly generous comfort levels don’t sacrifice necessary stability.

What particularly impressed me about the Emonda ALR 5 was how effortlessly it accommodates speed fluctuations. The ability to switch rhythms – from high-speed racing in an aerodynamic posture to uphill climbs – is flawlessly smooth. This kind of versatility could largely be credited to its advanced and sturdy frameset, which offers durable strength without adding excessive weight.

My assessment finds that although there might be other competitive options in the market, they often fall short against Trek’s meticulous attention towards detail: everything from its geometry design for optimal posture positioning, inclusion of mudguards ideal for adverse weather conditions, down to its balanced wheelset.

The lingering question here is – ‘Is it worth all those extra pounds?’ It’s true; The pricing may seem steep initially but looking at the long-term returns in terms of durability and superior ride quality makes it justifiable.

If your budget can accommodate it and you deeply value advanced ride quality, the Trek Emonda ALR 5 will elevate your cycling experience. Certainly, the Emonda range serves as an astute choice not just for seasoned cyclists, but also beginners seeking a beginner-friendly yet seriously powerful road-bike. My verdict? I wholeheartedly believe every penny spent is well worth it for the Trek Emonda ALR 5.

Considering Buying an Emonda ALR 5

If you’re contemplating investing in the Trek Emonda ALR 5, there are several aspects worth considering, so you can make an educated decision. The nuances involved go beyond its attractive aesthetics.

To start with, a fundamental characteristic to acknowledge is the robust aluminium frame of this bike. Unlike many other road bikes that prefer carbon frames these days, Emonda ALR makes a compelling case for premium-grade aluminium—a material praised for being both lightweight and highly durable.

When it comes to performance, the Trek Emonda ALR 5 sings its own praises. Its aerodynamic improvements significantly influence speed and responsiveness over various terrains, critical components to consider for any aggressive cyclists or professionals scouting their next racing machine.

Another valuable attribute adding to this bicycle’s appeal is its heightened comfort and stability on long rides or impactful terrains. Courtesy of its meticulously integrated IsoSpeed system coupled with balanced geometry delivers great handling even during most challenging rides.

This bike can also be appreciated by climbers due to superior climbing capabilities it offers. Thanks to the ultralight frame which would enable hill-climbing with less effort while ensuring optimal power transfer.

Lastly, keep in mind that quality often equates investment. While costlier than some rivals, those passionate about cycling will find plenty justifying the price tag of this feature-packed steed, from high-quality construction materials to advanced design elements promoting superior functionality. I’ve owned a Trek 6500 for over 20 years and having kept it well-maintained, it rides like-new.

However, every rider has distinct needs and preferences; therefore decide what criteria are most important before making up your mind. For instance:

  1. If lightweight is more crucial than budget
  2. Whether smooth riding experience triumphs over all excluding features
  3. If you desire a race focussed bike or one fit for leisurely weekend jaunts

To say that purchasing a new road bicycle like Trek Emonda ALR 5 demands careful consideration would be an understatement, it is, after all, an investment in your overall cycling adventure.

Trek Emonda ALR 5 Discs - Image from


Is Trek Emonda a good climbing bike?

Absolutely. One of the main elements making the Trek Emonda an excellent climber is its lightweight construction enhancing its uphill prowess. Specifically, its ultra-light frameset coupled with an aggressive geometry creates an ideal combination for aggressive climbing. The carbon frame in many models further reduces weight and contributes to efficient power transfer.

Is Trek Emonda lightweight?

Yes, indeed! A defining feature of the Trek Emonda series is its focus on creating exceptionally lightweight bikes without compromising on strength or performance. This remarkable lightness is achieved through careful selection of materials and innovative design often utilizing carbon fibre technologies in their higher-end models.

What is the difference between the new Emonda and the old Emonda?

The key differences lie mainly in three areas: aerodynamics, material usage and integrated technology. Recent versions of the Emonda have been refined for better aerodynamic performance offering a significant improvement over older models. Moreover, newer models have shifted from solely aluminium or carbon frames to implementing an Alpha Aluminium construction (as seen on ALR 5) that precisely places weight where it’s needed for balanced ride quality while keeping overall bike mass to a minimum. The upgraded version also boasts more integrated technologies like Blendr stem for seamless accessory integration.

What type of bike is the Trek Emonda SL5?

Trek Emonda SL5 falls under the category of road race bikes known for their speed and agility enabling riders to perform well both on flat roads as well as steep inclines. It’s designed to be significantly lighter than most competing bikes in its class, thanks to a high-performance full carbon frame and fork combination providing superb riding characteristic – swift, agile yet stable.

Why are Trek bikes so expensive?

There are several factors contributing to this including quality craftsmanship, cutting-edge technology, advanced engineering, research & development costs along with top-tier components. All these aspects contribute to superior performance, durability, and comfort that set Trek bikes apart from many other manufacturers.

Are Specialized bikes better than Trek?

Choosing between Specialized and Trek typically comes down to personal preference as both are respected brands offering a wide range of high-quality bikes. Broadly speaking, Specialized tends to focus more on sports performance while Trek is known for its extensive line-up catering for all riders’ categories–from beginners to professionals. Therefore which one is “better” will ultimately depend on your specific needs, preferences, riding style and budget.

Is the Trek Emonda ALR 5 a good first road bike?

Yes! The Trek Emonda ALR 5 can serve as an excellent entry point into serious road riding due to its optimal blend of performance features and affordability. Its lightweight yet robust frameset coupled with reliable components provides an enjoyable ride experience suited for those starting their cycling journey.

Trek Emonda ALR 5 or SL5?

Both models are great choices depending on your preference and budget. While both offer fantastic ride quality and performance, the key differences come in terms of construction material (ALR uses aluminium compared to SL’s carbon frame) pricing (ALR being generally cheaper). Both could serve according to rider’s purpose – competitive racing or recreational cycling.

Trek Domane AL 5 or Emonda ALR 5?

The primary difference lies in the intended use: Domane is designed more for endurance and comfort over long distances whereas Emonda excels at climbing thanks to its lightweight design – indicating it leans towards racing aspiration. Therefore, your choice should align with how you plan to use your new bike most frequently.

Image Credits:

Trek Emonda ALR 5 - Image from

Trek Emonda ALR 5 Specifications

Category Specification
Frame Ultralight 300 Series Alpha Aluminium, invisible Weld technology, tapered head tube, internal routing, DuoTrap S-compatible, flat-mount disc, 142x12 mm thru axle
Fork Trek Émonda SL full carbon, tapered carbon steerer, internal brake routing, flat-mount disc, 12x100 mm thru axle
Weight Size 56 - 9.04 kg / 19.92 lb
Weight Limit This bike has a maximum total weight limit (bike, rider, cargo) of 125 kg (275 lb).
Shifter Shimano 105 R7020, 11-speed
Front Derailleur Shimano 105 R7000, braze-on
Rear Derailleur Shimano 105 R7000, short cage, 30T max cog
  • Size: 47, 50, 52 - Shimano 105 R7000, 50/34 (compact), 170 mm length
  • Size: 54, 56 - Shimano 105 R7000, 50/34 (compact), 172.5 mm length
  • Size: 58, 60, 62, 64 - Shimano 105 R7000, 50/34 (compact), 175 mm length
Bottom Bracket Shimano BB71, 86.5 mm, PressFit
Cassette Shimano 105 R7000, 11-30, 11-speed
Chain Shimano 105 HG601, 11-speed
Hub Front Bontrager alloy, sealed bearing, CenterLock disc, 100x12 mm thru axle
Skewer Front Bontrager Switch thru axle, removable lever
Hub Rear Bontrager alloy, sealed bearing, CenterLock disc, Shimano 11-speed freehub, 142x12 mm thru axle
Skewer Rear Bontrager Switch thru-axle, removable lever
  • Size: 47, 50, 52, 54, 56, 58, 60, 62, 64 - Bontrager Affinity Disc, Tubeless Ready, 24-hole, 21 mm width, Presta valve
  • Size: 54, 56, 58 - Bontrager Tubeless Ready Disc
Spokes 14 g stainless steel, black
Tyre Bontrager R1 Hard-Case Lite, wire bead, 60 tpi, 700x 25 c
Max Tyre Size 28mm
  • Size: 47, 50, 52 - Bontrager Verse Comp, steel rails, 155 mm width
  • Size: 54, 56, 58, 60, 62, 64 - Bontrager Verse Comp, steel rails, 145 mm width
Seatpost Bontrager carbon, 27.2 mm, 8 mm offset, 330 mm length
  • Size: 47, 50, 52, 54, 56, 58 - Bontrager Comp VR-C, alloy, 31.8 mm, 100 mm reach, 124 mm drop, 40 cm width
  • Size: 54, 56 - Bontrager Comp VR-C, alloy, 31.8 mm, 100 mm reach, 124 mm drop, 42 cm width
  • Size: 58, 60, 62, 64 - Bontrager Comp VR-C, alloy, 31.8 mm, 100 mm reach, 124 mm drop, 44 cm width
Handlebar Tape
  • Size: 47, 50, 52, 54, 56, 58, 60, 62, 64 - Bontrager Supertack Perf tape
  • Size: 54, 56, 58 - Bontrager Gel Cork tape
  • Size: 47 - Bontrager Elite, 31.8 mm, Blendr-compatible, 7-degree, 70 mm length
  • Size: 50 - Bontrager Elite, 31.8 mm, Blendr-compatible, 7-degree, 80 mm length
  • Size: 52, 54 - Bontrager Elite, 31.8 mm, Blendr-compatible, 7-degree, 90 mm length
  • Size: 56, 58 - Bontrager Elite, 31.8 mm, Blendr-compatible, 7-degree, 100 mm length
  • Size: 60, 62 - Bontrager Elite, 31.8 mm clamp, Blendr-compatible, 7-degree, 110 mm length
  • Size: 64 - Bontrager Elite, 31.8 mm, Blendr-compatible, 7-degree, 120 mm length
Headset FSA Integrated, sealed cartridge bearing, 1-1/8" top, 1.5" bottom
Brake Shimano 105 hydraulic disc
Brake Rotor Shimano RT70, CentreLock, 160 mm

About & Author Mark Taylor

Welcome to, your source for all things cycling! I’m Mark Taylor, and I’m delighted to share my passion for cycling and decades of experience with you. is a cycling blog with advice on how to become a better cyclist, including fitness & nutrition tips, info on cycling sportives and cycling related product reviews.

Cycling Enthusiast for Over 50 Years

Cycling has been more than just a hobby for me; it’s a way of life. Like many cyclists, I’ve been riding bikes since I was very young and despite now being just a little older, I love it just as much. I’ve done my time on touring bikes, have cycled throughout the UK, including Lands End to John O’ Groats (yes, uphill!), across Europe and now have fun on a mountain bike in the hills of North Wales and mountains of Scotland, whilst also doing regular charity bike rides and Sportives across Wirral, Merseyside and Cheshire on my road bike.

20 Years of Blogging

For the past two decades, I’ve had the privilege of sharing my cycling adventures, insights, and expertise through blogging. has been a labour of love, where I’ve documented my personal cycling journeys, given my expertise on reviewed gear, and provided tips and advice for cyclists of all levels. I’ve recently created the UCI Cycling iCal to add UCI World Tour dates to a calendar in just a few seconds.

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My journey isn’t limited to cycling; I bring over 25 years of experience in the world of digital marketing. In this ever-evolving digital landscape, I’ve honed my skills & knowledge to understand what makes online content not only informative but also engaging and accessible.

Why isn’t just another cycling blog; it’s a platform where my deep personal passion for cycling meets my digital expertise. My goal is to provide you with informative, trustworthy, safe, reliable and inspiring content that enhances your cycling experience. Whether you’re a seasoned cyclist or just starting your biking journey, has something for everyone.