Canyon has launched a new version of its cross-country full suspension, the Lux, targeted at mountain bikers who want a bit more all-around capability than is found in most XC race bikes. The new Lux Trail features 120mm of front and 110mm of rear travel and a longer, slacker front end than its pure-bred race counterpart. Does this make the Lux Trail a better bike for the average rider? Read on for the details and our first impressions.

Canyon Lux Trail Highlights
  • Longer reach, slacker head angle than the standard Lux
  • 120mm front / 110mm rear suspension
  • 67.5° head tube angle / 74.4° seat tube angle
  • Full carbon frame
  • Claimed frame weight: 1,905g (size medium with all hardware)
  • Price range: $3,999 - $6,999
  • Available: Late summer / early fall 2021 in North America
  • For more info: https://www.canyon.com/en-us/mountain-bikes/cross-country-bikes/lux/lux-trail/
Increased travel, increased versatility
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Canyon didn't just bolt on longer forks to the current Lux, add "Trail" to its marketing copy, and call it good. The Lux Trail uses a new carbon front triangle with updated angles. Each frame receives increase in reach of approximately 20-25mm per size and a 2.5-degree slacker head angle. This, combined with 120mm forks in place of the 100mm models at the helm of the standard Lux and a 10mm bump in rear travel makes the Lux Trail "light, fast, and capable" according to Canyon. The revised geometry and travel certainly make this model more appealing to a broader audience.

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According to Canyon, the longer front end adds approximately 30g to the standard Lux frame weight. The use of forks with 34 or 35mm chassis, higher volume tires, wider handlebars, and dropper seatposts on all models makes the Lux Trail more trail-worthy but also adds weight. The Lux Trail CF 8 we have in for test weighs 26 pounds without pedals. Speaking of dropper posts, there are some differences here between the Lux Trail models available in the United States versus the rest of the world. In the US, all Lux Trails will come equipped with 125 or 150mm dropper seatposts, instead of the 100mm Fox Transfer SL droppers featured on European builds.

"My European colleagues opted for the weight savings created by a lighter post with shorter drop. I think Americans are willing to carry around a couple more ounces in exchange for greater maneuverability on steep trails," Vernon Felton, Canyon's US Bike Product Development Director and Global MTB Manager, said.

"Canyon ultimately understands that riders in different markets may have different spec preferences, hence the occasional case where US bikes have slightly different spec than their European equivalents," Felton added.


Canyon Lux Trail Builds and Pricing
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The Lux Trail will be available in four trim levels in the US, including the special Emily Batty edition shown above.
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Lux Trail CF 9 Emily Batty Edition: $6,999
Lux Trail CF 8: $6,299
Lux Trail CF 7: $5,299
Lux Trail CF 6: $3,999

Of these four builds, I think the CF 8 does the best job of balancing performance, weight, and value.


Canyon Lux Trail CF 8 Ride Impressions
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I'm still getting acquainted with the Lux Trail CF 8, but it's quite clear that despite the down-country DNA injection of a longer front-center, slacker head angle, and boost in travel, cross-country racing is still this bike's dominant trait.

The rear suspension is taught and prioritizes efficiency and traction over comfort. In terms of handling, the Lux Trail is less rabid than the Lux, which performs best with a very focused pilot in a race-day environment. The Lux Trail is still very agile, but there's a larger margin for error during technical descents. The longer/slacker treatment makes the Lux Trail more suitable as a short-travel bike for everyday riding and a more forgiving companion during endurance races. Despite its longer wheelbase, the Lux Trail can still thread its way through tight switchbacks with ease and doesn't require undue input to keep the front end planted on steep climbs.

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One element of the Lux Trail's geometry that I'm not sold on is the longer reach. My size medium test bike has a reach of 460mm, which is 25mm longer than the standard Lux. This is an average reach measurement for modern medium trail and enduro bikes, although most of these bikes have steeper, 75- to 77-degree seat tube angles. The Lux Trail received the longer, slacker treatment upfront, without a corresponding steeper seat tube angle—both the Lux and Lux Trail share the same 74.5-degree seat tube angle. Though this seat tube angle is slack when compared to longer-travel mountain bikes, it positions the rider in a balanced, pedal-friendly position on a short-travel full suspension. My issue is that the traditional seat tube angle combined with the lengthened reach exaggerates the fit differences between these models, especially as the saddle height increases. What could this mean for you? I suggest sizing down if you're on the small end of the spectrum for a given size.

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Sizing quibbles aside, a few components on the CF 8 stand out to me as great choices for this bike. I was skeptical of the dual-lockout remote at first, but I find myself using it constantly—the efficiency of this rock-solid system is great for cranking up fire road climbs and sprinting on buff singletrack. In my opinion, Canyon North America has done an excellent job of tailoring build kits to the US and Canadian mountain bike markets. The de-Euroing of the Lux Trail with longer-stroke dropper posts really fits this bike's personality as a cross-country race bike that's both fun and efficient.
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Who is the Lux Trail for?
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The Lux Trail is not in the same family as short-travel trail bikes such as the Ibis Ripley, Santa Cruz Tallboy, or Revel Ranger. No, this is a long-legged XC bike akin to the Specialized Epic EVO, Santa Cruz Blur TR, and Cannondale Scalpel SE. This isn't a pro or con either way, simply a statement of the bike's handling and intended use. If you are looking for a light and fast short-travel bike that will mimic the feel of a longer-travel enduro bike, look elsewhere. If marathon and stage racing is your preferred form of type II fun, the Lux Trail is an excellent choice.

This is one of the new generation of XC bikes designed to keep pace with increasingly demanding racecourses. Canyon's elite athletes will still reach for the Lux for the majority of their events. (Although we can pontificate as to whether or not the Lux Trail would have saved
Mathieu Van Der Poel Olympic dreams in Tokyo). For the average amateur cross-country racer, the increased capability of the Lux Trail outweighs the heavier chassis and components.

Canyon Lux Trail FAQ
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Do you still have questions about the Lux Trail? Here's Canyon's FAQ about this new bike.

WHAT SET LUX TRAIL APART FROM CANYON’S NEURON MODEL?
On paper, these models look similar, but climb on the bike and you can immediately feel the difference. When you get on the Lux Trail the lightweight and more aggressive rider position may you want to hammer trails. It’s a bike that inspires speed above everything else. You can climb for days on the Neuron too, but the Neuron has a more well-rounded feel and upright rider position to it that’s well suited to adventure and exploration. Let’s put it this way, you get on a Neuron and you don’t immediately feel compelled to smash Strava records, whereas Lux Trail definitely goads you into going fast every time you ride it.

WHAT KIND OF TRAILS ARE “TOO GNARLY” FOR THE LUX TRAIL?
The Category 3 frame rating is really the only limit to what a skilled rider can do on the Lux Trail. Category 3, for refer- ence sake, is the same standard that the Neuron is tested to. The Lux Trail has the geometry you need to tackle tough trails, but the Lux Trail is a relatively short-travel, race-tuned bike, so you inevitably feel more trail feedback when you’re riding the Lux Trail at speed on particularly tough trails. The Neuron sports 20 more millimeters of rear suspension and allows you to plow through trails with a little less caution than the Lux Trail.

DO ALL OF THE LUX TRAIL MODELS SHARE THE SAME FRAME?
All models use the same mold and carbon lay-up.

THE LUX TRAIL SHARES THE LUX’S REAR TRIANGLE. DO THEY WEIGH THE SAME?
The two bikes share the same carbon layup, but the Lux Trail weighs about 30 grams more (for any given frame size) because the Lux Trail has a longer front end and, therefore, possesses more frame material.

IS THERE A RIDER WEIGHT LIMIT ON THE LUX TRAIL?
The Lux Trail can accommodate a total system weight (rider plus bike and gear) of 110 kilograms (242 pounds).

WHAT’S THE MAX TIRE SIZE THAT CAN YOU FIT ON THE NEW LUX TRAIL
We'd recommend the maximum tire size of 2.35/2.4-inches mounted to a rim with an internal width of 30mm rim. Tire sizes, of course, vary from one tire manufacturer to another, so we always recommend that riders double-check tire clearance immediately after installing their new rear tire.

For more information, visit:
https://www.canyon.com/en-us/mountain-bikes/cross-country-bikes/lux/lux-trail/