Trek is a bike brand that offers you affordable mountain bikes to start your cycling career. One of its low-cost mountain bikes is Trek Marlin 4. But is Trek Marlin 4 a good bike?
Trek Marlin 4 is good because it comes with a quality alpha aluminum frame, wide knobby tires for optimum off-road traction, seven frame sizes to suit all heights, and an impressive lifetime warranty, among other remarkable features.
Trek Marlin 4 is a decent hardtail mountain bike suitable mainly for beginner riders. You can use it to explore the mountains, or even better, as your daily commuter bike.
Though the bike is cheap and affordable, it comes with excellent high-end parts that make it durable and sleeker, just like the high-end types.
This Trek Marlin 4 Review will look at Trek Marlin 4’s best features and a few concerns of the bike as it’s not faultless.
Let’s get started but before then, let’s look at who the bike is best for next:
Who Should Get Trek Marlin 4?
Trek Marlin 4 is an entry-level hardtail mountain bike that suits beginner trail riders. So, if you are new to trail riding and mountain biking, Marlin 4 is perfect for you.
But still, Marlin 4 doubles up as a commuter bike, which you can use to dash daily to school or work. Furthermore, if you only want a bike that you can ride around your neighborhood, then Marlin 4 makes the cut.
However, if you are a pro-rider looking for something swift and high-end, Marlin 4 is not the best choice because it has a few low-end specs.
Is Trek Marlin 4 A Good Bike? The Good and The Bad
Below are some fantastic features and components that make Trek Marlin 4 worth it:
1. Quality Alpha Silver Aluminum Frame
Trek is historically known to use high-quality frames on its bikes, and the manufacturer doesn’t disappoint with the Marlin 4.
Marlin 4 comes in an alpha silver aluminum frame resembling the high-end carbon frame.
For starters, alpha silver aluminum is physically strong and durable. Thus you can go over rougher trails and ride aggressively with this bike. Moreover, its more robust build allows you to lead up to 300 pounds.
The frame also doesn’t rust, which means you can use the bike in wet conditions.
More importantly, alpha silver aluminum is relatively lightweight, making the bike comfortable for beginners. Its overall weight is 30.82 pounds, which is not the lightest but is fair for a mountain bike.
2. Wide Knobby Tires with Robust Rims
Trek equips its Marlin 4 with quality Bontrager tires from its sister company, Bontrager. The tires come in 2 diameters; 27.5 and 29 inches.
These Bontrager tires are knobbier in profile and about 2.20-inch-wide to offer you sufficient traction. They enable you to ride on slippery surfaces safely and confidently.
The knobby tires also come with double-wall Bontrager connect rims that make them stronger and more rigid to ride off-road.
Even better, the rims come with two holes featuring stainless steel spokes that strengthen them. That allows you to ride on challenging terrains confidently.
3. 7 Frame Sizes
Trek Marlin 4 comes in 7 frame sizes to suit cyclists with different heights. See all the seven frame sizes and their matching inseams and heights on the Trek Marlin 4 size chart.
|Frame Size||Inseam Length (inches)||Rider’s Height (inches)|
|XS (Extra Small)||27.0” – 28.9”||4’9.1” – 5’0.9”|
|S (Small)||29.0” – 30.9”||5’1.0” – 5’4.9”|
|M (Medium)||31.0” – 31.9”||5’5.0” – 5’7.9”|
|M / L (Medium/Large)||32.0” – 33.9”||5’8.0” – 5’10.9”|
|L (Large)||34.0” – 34.9”||5’11.0” – 6’1.9”|
|XL (Extra Large)||35.0” – 35.9”||6’2.0” – 6’4.9”|
|2XL (Extra-Extra-Large)||36.0” – 38.0”||6’5.0” – 6’8.0”|
Smaller frames (XS & S) feature 27.5-inch wheels, while larger frame sizes come with 29-inch wheels. That allows shorter riders to comfortably ride the small-frame Marlin 4 and taller cyclists to take on large-frame options.
4. Comfortable Geometry
Marlin 4 small and extra-small frame sizes have a curved top tube, which gives them a shorter standover height. Plus, they enjoy shorter-reach brake levers. Such geometries make the two frame sizes best for shorter guys.
The larger frames have a flatter top tube to enjoy a more extended standover height. Plus, they enjoy longer-reach brake levers. As a result, they suit taller guys better.
5. Impressive Lifetime Warranty
Trek takes pride in its superior bike frames and offers limited lifetime warranties for all. That is one thing that you cannot get from most bike brands. So, expect Marlin 4 to come with a limited lifetime frame warranty.
Note, however, that the lifetime coverage remains active as long as the initial purchaser owns the bike.
Other Specs that Make Trek Marlin 4 Good
Other impressive specs that this Trek Marlin 4 bike review focuses on include:
a) Excellent Mechanical Disc Brakes
Trek Marlin 4 comes with powerful mechanical disc brakes from Tektro. The brakes come trail-ready and give you a crisp stoppage when tackling sharp descents.
You only need to apply less force on the lever, and the bike will come to a halt. That also decreases hand muscle fatigue, especially when taking longer descents.
Note, however, that even though the Tektro disc brakes are reliable, they are not as powerful as the hydraulic options you find on high-end Trek bikes. Nonetheless, you can always upgrade them.
b) Powerful Front Fork Suspension
Trek Marlin 4 comes with SR Suntour front suspension that absorbs bumps and any impact off-road. It has 100mm travel which is enough for casual trail riding and commuting.
Though the suspension adds weight to the bike, it makes the ride more comfortable
c) Decent Shimano Drivetrain
Trek Marlin 4 comes with a 3×7 Shimano tourney drivetrain that promises quick and seamless shifting off-road. Thanks to its 7-speed Shimano shifters and triple chainset, you have a combination of 21 gears, which is enough to take on less steep surfaces around the neighborhood.
d) Internal Cable Routing
Marlin 4 enjoys an internal cable routing, which essentially gives it a cleaner look. Its sleekness gives it the appearance of most high-end Trek bikes.
Moreover, the design protects the cables from unforgiving weather, ensuring they last you longer. It’s also due to the cabling design that the Trek MTB enjoys a slightly aerodynamic design to let you ride against the wind.
e) Blendr Stem
Trek utilizes the Blendr Technology on the stem to ensure that the bike stem is stronger enough to allow you to attach a few biking gears. That includes a bell, sport light, fitness tracker, and just about anything you may need on the road.
You can attach a kickstand mount, racks, and fenders to this bike, especially if you want to use the bike for commuting or to run errands.
g) Affordable Price
Lastly, Trek Marlin 4 (2022) model retails at $599.99 on the Trek website. That’s pretty budget-friendly if you consider Trek’s reputation and the specs this bike comes with. It’s truly a bargain, in my view!
Trek Marlin 4 is not faultless. Below are a few concerns that come with it:
· Lacks A Lockout Suspension Feature
Though Marlin 4 comes with an impressive 100mm Suntour fork, it lacks a lockout function, which you find on Trek Domane and other more high-end Trek bikes.
In that case, you cannot lock the suspension to enjoy a more confident ride uphill, especially on steeper gradients. Lockout suspension makes the bike rigid, and essential when climbing steeper terrains.
· It’s A Little Bit Heavier
Though the bike comes with an alpha aluminum frame, it’s not very lightweight. It weighs 32.0 pounds, making it the heaviest in the Trek Marlin family.
· Some Parts Need Upgrading
In particular, the brakes may need upgrading if you are a more serious trail rider or a regular commuter. The pedals are also slightly low-quality, needing upgrading. The tires may also need upgrading as they are not puncture-resistance.
People Also Ask
1. Is Trek Marlin 4 Worth It?
Trek Marlin 4 is worth it because it comes with a quality frame and trail-ready wheels. The bike also enjoys decent brakes and drivetrain and has a powerful shock-absorbing 100mm Suntour fork.
Even better, it comes in seven frame sizes, enjoying comfortable geometries to accommodate all heights.
2. Is Trek Marlin 4 A Mens Bike?
Trek Marlin 4 is a gender-neutral hardtail bike. Men prefer the larger frames because of their taller standover height, while women prefer smaller ones because of their shorter standover height.
3. Can I Use Trek Marlin 4 To Perform Jumps?
Unfortunately, NO! Trek Marlin 4 comes in a slightly rigid geometry that is not convenient for performing jumps. Furthermore, the tires are not puncture-resistant, which means they cannot take on heavy hits.
However, you can quickly lower the seat to push your weight backward to tackle the steeper terrains.
4. Is Trek Marlin 4 Heavy?
Trek Marlin 4 is generally not a heavy bike as it weighs 32.0lbs. It’s, however, the heaviest in the Marlin family.
5. How Many Speeds Does Trek Marlin Have?
Trek Marlin 4 comes with 21 speeds. That means that you can shift the gears easily according to the terrain you face.
6. Is The Trek Marlin 4 A Good Mountain Bike?
YES! Marlin 4 is a good trail mountain bike. You can ride it on most local terrain. Whether you ride on potholed streets, single-track roads, or navigating the forests, Marlin 4 is versatile, and durable, and you can easily accessorize it.
Is Trek Marlin 4 A Good Bike? Our Final Verdict
Trek Marlin 4 is overall a decent bike. It comes with decent components. So it is nothing short of a bargain for its price.
One thing to admire is the wide knobby tires from the Bontrager that rolls seamlessly on the unpaved roads. Another impressive thing is that the Marlin 4 comes in seven frame sizes to suit riders of different heights.
And lastly, Trek offers a limited lifetime warranty on the bike, and you can buy the bike confidently. So, even though there are a few concerns, Trek Marlin 4 is a good bike for its price.