2017 Trek Fuel EX 29 vs 2017 Giant Anthem 2

Discussion in 'General MTB Discussion' started by Matt2007, Jan 8, 2017.

  1. Matt2007

    Matt2007 Cannon Fodder


    Im moving from a hardtail to a dual suspension and both of these bikes are at my price point.

    Does anyone have an opinion on either of these bikes, or both?

    Bike will be used for general trails and single track.

    Thanks, Matt
  2. Ivan

    Ivan Eats Squid

    Hi Matt,

    The only way you'll know is to test ride both bikes, which shouldn't be too difficult given they are from the two biggest bike brands.

    I haven't ridden the anthem, but the Fuel has become more "trail" (slacker, longer, more travel) than previous generations and is probably no longer similar to an Anthem.

    I owned the previous generation of Maestro suspension, so I don't think you'd can go wrong with either bike, but I do think the new Fuels are awesome bikes.

    Did I mention you should test ride?
  3. kiwiinmelb

    kiwiinmelb Likes Dirt

    I think the fuel plus is more the cross country bike like the anthem , and the fuel ex is more trail/fun orientated ,

    I was making a decision years ago between a trance and a rumblefish and picked the rumblefish because it fitted me better , have leaned towards trek since , they just seem to fit me better , giant I always feel I'm between sizes ,

    ride both and see what works for you .
  4. Paulie_AU

    Paulie_AU Likes Dirt

    I currently have a 2017 Anthem Advanced 1 as a loaner while the shock on my trance is being warrantied. I wouldn't say it is super XC as it rides all sorts of terrain very competently almost AM style. My only beef with the Medium is it needs a shorter stem to carve a little better on the more agressive trails. In three rides I have done about 1500m climbing and it does that well and I am happy to ride everything fully open (the trance really needs trail mode for climbing nasty stuff). I have also ridden some very messy rutted steep trails and that was fine too. Coming from a hardtail it would feel very plush.

    There are some crazy deals on 2016 Anthems currently if you look around. Depends if you want it to be a little more XC than AM.
  5. murf58

    murf58 Likes Bikes

    I currently have a 2017 fuel ex9.8 29er - had an anthem sx 27.5 before that (2016).
    I was very happy with the Anthem - especially the climbing, but I love the trek. Out of the box it was ok but I ditched the wheels for carbon twe's which really livened up the acceleration and handling and am now also running 1x11, it is an awesome bike that I will be hanging on to for a while now.
    Great for trail riding, the odd race and some longer XC type training rides - does it all well enough for me.
    I recommend you have a ride on one if you can.
  6. Matt2007

    Matt2007 Cannon Fodder

    Thanks for taking the time to reply all.
  7. mas2

    mas2 Likes Dirt

    I would choose the Fuel. Can do everything the Anthem can, just less race focused.
    Would be more enjoyable with the more travel too.
  8. danimal

    danimal Squid

    had my heart set on a 16 EX but didn't like the 9's yellow so waited for '17s. Demoed a 2017 9 and really didn't like it at all. Found it very slow to accelerate, manoeuvre and overall i couldn't get comfortable (yes, i had the correct size). I had the impression the back end weighed a tonne and couldn't really flick it around or have fun with it. after doing a loop that i know very well i was noticeably more fatigued than normal. not sure if this would have been different with the 9.8 model due to weight reduction. it did have heaps of cornering traction but that's to be expected with the OEM tyres fitted.

    Demoed a 2017 Anthem advanced 2, and didn't like it on the first day. I think perhaps after riding a 29er for so long i had forgotten how quick small wheels are to change direction so it felt a little skittish and nervous. However, it was a medium when i really needed a large so that didn't help on the first ride either. Second day of demo i had an absolute blast and ended up buying one. No complaints so far except for the Nobby Nic up front. fast, light, and fun. can handle anything i am game enough to throw at it. the redesign this year makes it much more capable than the old very XC focused anthem.

    I think it will depend largely on where and how you ride as always though. i ride brisbane trails that are largely XC pedally type trails (Bunya, Daisy Hill, Gap Ck, Mt Cotton, Cleveland) so i needed a bike that would provide fun on downs but not destroy the ride day because the ups sucked - the anthem is easily faster and more enjoyable to pedal uphill than the EX for me. Plus, I like a bike that is fun to throw around (even though mostly XC), will come off the ground easily and will be controllable when doing so. couldn't do any of those things with the EX and it felt just like a steam roller. The anthem felt great once my riding style adjusted back to smaller wheels.

    but, you gotta test ride mate. they may feel completely different for you, your style, your location. Lots of reviews around for the EX because they were released earlier. Flow reviewed the Anthem 2 which i had actually read after buying the bike and i agree with their assessment of the feel completely.

  9. Matt2007

    Matt2007 Cannon Fodder

    Thanks Danimal,

    I can't actually find many reviews on the Trek Fuel Ex 7.

    I have been sized as a large on Treks and had a coupe of different stores size me as a medium on the anthem so am a little confused as to sizing.

    I am leaning towards the Anthem 2.

    Does the difference between the 27.5 and 29 inch wheels determine the choice in bike?
  10. Ivan

    Ivan Eats Squid

    The short answer is no.

    Also, my experience of the feeling of the Fuel Ex was the opposite to Danimals, which is why I can't suggest a test ride enough.
  11. The Duckmeister

    The Duckmeister Eats Squid

    The new Anthem has gone a little bit that way too compared to the older models; slacker front end in particular kills a bit of the pure XC sharpness and makes it a bit vague & floaty, especially uphill, but it's not too bad (my reference bike '12 Anthem has a very steep 71-degree head angle, so anything will feel vague after that!). Revised Maestro geometry improves what's already been a good system for some time, somehow making it more rigid under pedalling in the middle gears, while softening the low-gear anti-squat a bit so it doesn't kick back as much on uphill bumps.
  12. The Duckmeister

    The Duckmeister Eats Squid

    New Anthem is less race-focused than older models, also with a tad more travel than before, so the line is still blurry between the two. Try both.
  13. The Duckmeister

    The Duckmeister Eats Squid

    It can do, as some rear suspension designs don't suit bigger wheels, hanging the rear wheel way out the back which makes handling sluggish. Maestro is one such system, which is why Giant didn't really stick with 29ers for too long, they just didn't work. They still make the Anthem in a 29" but it hasn't really evolved much since the original from 2011. The 27.5" version is a much better bike.
  14. swaz

    swaz Likes Bikes and Dirt

    Here is my experience with the Fuel and Anthem, similar to the quoted poster.

    I have a '14 Fuel ex 8 and it is fantastic downhill. Very stable and with a wider bar and shorter stem is is very confident. Which is what i wanted back in 2014. The thing is a pig around anything but the nicest bermed corner, it also very arse end heavy. The stock wheels aren't too heavy so I can only guess it is the linkage that is adding the weight. It is also a prick to ride up hill due to this.

    I rode a mates '16 29er Anthem X and that thing is just a weapon yet supple at the same time. Whipped around corners and went uphill like a carbon light weight bike should.

    The Trek has gone Enduro with their EX range as that is where the greatest market is at the moment. I am interested to test ride the Anthem 27.5 to see how I like it because I really love 29ers
  15. swaz

    swaz Likes Bikes and Dirt

    Trek's sizing is retarded, that accounts for the sizing differences.
  16. BLKFOZ

    BLKFOZ Likes Dirt

    The Trek Top Fuel is closer to the Anthem than the Fuel EX is.
    The lower spec alloy EX's weigh over 14kg but the carbon is considerably lighter, especially with carbon wheels.
    I guess you need to work out what riding you'll be doing and what sort of bike you want for that.
    I have an older Superfly FS which is 100mm front 110mm rear with carbon wheels and it pretty quickly gets out of its depth when the track gets rough and you're pushing hard. I use it primarily for XC racing and fireroad rides. I also have a Remedy for when I want to ride rougher stuff. If I had to get rid of both and get one bike, it would be a hard choice between the Top Fuel and the EX but I think I'd go the Top Fuel as I'd prefer a faster race bike.
  17. swaz

    swaz Likes Bikes and Dirt

    Looking at bikes in this genre and price range myself here are some of the prices of Treks with carbon wheels v's the Anthem with stock carbon wheels:
    Trek Fuel EX 8 rrp$4299 + $1300 for some TWE carbon wheels = $5600
    Trek Fuel EX 9 rrp $5200 + $1300 for some TWE carbon wheels = $6600

    Giant Anthem 1 rrp $5000 + $1300 for some TWE carbon wheels = $6300
    Giant Anthem Advance 1 rrp $5500 no need for carbon wheels because it already has them, oh and a carbon frame! Plus performance 34 forks.

    the bargain is the 2016 Anthem Advance which is going for $4k at some places, still!

    My mind is stuck on the 29er being able to roll over things better though...
  18. Paulie_AU

    Paulie_AU Likes Dirt

    I was riding the Anthem Advsnce 1 up rock stairs on the weekend. I am interested to know what exactly you need a 29er to roll over.

    FWIW I got my 2016 Trance Advanced 1 for $3900.
  19. swaz

    swaz Likes Bikes and Dirt

    Oh I didn't say it was an actual thing, just something I have stuck in my mind! Have ridden a couple of 27.5 bikes that have been more trail orientated and they weren't anywhere as good at rolling over stuff as my 29er brick

    They went around a corner better though...
  20. Paulie_AU

    Paulie_AU Likes Dirt

    Yeah cornering and flickability for the win. :rockon: Also pop. Makes for a fun ride.
    If I want boring K burning I will ride my roadie.

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