Cyclo cross is enjoying a thriving resurgence, and hardy cross machines have become extremely popular as do-it-all steeds.
The Cronus CX Pro is one of two new cyclo cross carbon offerings from Trek, based on its now well-established and lightweight 500 Series OCLV carbon – the same platform it uses in its Madone 5 Series road bikes. The Pro plays second fiddle to the Ultimate, but at £2,200 it’s far from entry-level and there are plenty of features justifying the price tag.
Trek’s super-wide BB90 is at the heart of a very solid-feeling construction that’s substantiated further by its E2 tapered head tube. The geometry has been given the necessary tweaks, including a cross-specific Race X-Lite fork, to tease this frameset away from feeling overly ‘road-esque’ on the rough stuff, and it’s a resounding success.
Arguably, a disproportionate amount of the overall cost is in the frame and forks, but the SRAM Rival kit, Avid brakes plus Bontrager’s Race wheelset and finishing kit serve to prevent a sky-high price while still delivering functionality and reliability in abundance.
For my money, Trek has got the CX Pro spot-on. It proved its worth both in and out of competition, on and off-road, while I was getting myself acquainted with it. A very noteworthy feature, illustrative of Trek’s more versatile design brief, is the removable mudguard eyes that discreetly thread into the frame, instantly increasing its potential usefulness.
Actually, there's not much the CX Pro couldn't turn its hand to, so you can't go far wrong, whether or not you intend to pin on a number in a muddy field.
500 series OCLV
Trek UK, www.trekbikes.com
Bontrager Race Lite
Bontrager race Lite Anatomic compact
Bontrager Race X-Lite Carbon