Giant Trance X E+ Reviews

What's better than tearing down a mountain on a bike? Tearing UP the mountain on an Ebike. The new Giant Trance X E+ looks to deliver just that experience. They currently offer 2 models of the Trance X E+, that being the Pro 29 1 and Pro 29 3. The price difference is about $700, with the Trace X E+ Pro 29 1 coming in slightly higher at $5,850. For the extra price, you get pretty much the same bike. The only noticeable differences are the Fox suspension, upgraded drivetrain, and different tires. Here is a direct comparison that should be helpful in highlighting the other changes. All of the specs on either Ebike are almost identical, and the bonuses of the Pro 1 over the 3, in my opinion, get into some minute details that most people wouldn't necessarily use. However, everyone's case is different and if you need Fox suspension over the RockShocks, then it looks like the Pro 1 might be for you. The other difference here, that doesn't impact performance at least, is the color options. On the Pro 1, the color is Polish Silver/Black and the Pro 3 comes in Chameleon Mars/Black. Though we don't have many options in the case of colors, they do offer us a good choice in the sizing department, with options of S,M,L,XL. Their sizing guide can be found here, about halfway down the page. Giant utilizes a vast network of dealers some of which can be found on our Local Bike Shop Directory Page and others on Giant's Website. I haven't ridden this bike myself, but there are a few others who have, so let's check out what they had to say!

Rob Rides EMTB Video Review

Bikers Edge Video Review

Riding Sweep Video Review

[R]evolution MTB Video Review

Giant also makes a NON-Ebike version of the Trance E+, called the Trance X Advanced Pro. Though this is their acoustic version, I found Pinkbike's review to be a really fun watch! So, I've included it for your viewing pleasure.

Pinkbike Video Review

While I haven't reviewed this electric bike myself, I wanted to provide some insights and open things up for your feedback. I hope by providing several sources, with varying perspectives, allows everyone to come to their own conclusions. Sometimes short reviews and those created by shops only cover the good aspects and can come off like a commercial, so I've tried to be neutral and objective with these insights:

Pros, things that stand out as good:
  • The components that come with this build are pretty much top of the line, as far as performance goes. There are those slight variations between the 1 and 3, but either one seems like it will perform very well even on steep, or technical terrain. The E+ models of the Trance do have that longer chainstay, so there may be slight handling differences between the Trance X and Trance X electric models, but that shouldn't hinder you from hitting pretty much any trail you have access to. If I had to change anything on this bike, and this is just personal preference, I may look at different grips. I'm not a huge fan of that particular pattern, but if you're riding with gloves, or prefer that pattern, then it wouldn't be an issue.
  • The design of the bike is top-notch! Personally, I'm a huge fan of the design and overall style of the Trance X E+. I love how it has an almost minimalist appearance, with internally routed cables and minimal branding. It's a different look when we compare it to their Giant Stance E+ 2, which has prominent Giant branding on the frame.
  • The combined travel distance of the Front and Rear Shocks are 290mm. Which is wild! This is a huge upgrade from entry-level mountain bikes which have 180-190mm of combined travel. It’s important to set up your suspension correctly in order to have a safe and comfortable riding experience; otherwise, your suspension may cause more harm than good. I've been watching a lot of Kyle & April - Ride MTB, and they have a very informative video about setting up your suspension that I found to be especially good, in case the suspension setup process is a new area for you.
  • The price is also pretty good for the components you get, considering the benefit of dealer support. At $5,850 it sits firmly in the Mid-Tier range for performance eMTBs, especially when you consider that the Trek E-Caliber 9.9 XTR can reach prices just shy of $13,000 USD.
  • The battery here is easily removable to reduce weight during travel, or for giving us a plethora of options when we're charging this bike. There are a lot of eMTBs that don't have easily removable batteries, due to the engineering and design, such as the Specialized Turbo Kenevo SL, so having the functionality here is a welcome sight.
Cons, things that seem like trade-offs or negatives:
  • Although the standard sizing options are good to have, we don't have any color options within each model. So, if you're not a fan of silver, but want those extra features, you'd be out of luck there. Maybe we can see some more color options open up down the road. Though the looks of the bike are not necessarily more important than the overall function of the bike, it is nice to enjoy looking at something taking up space in your house or garage.
  • Although the weight of the bike is comparable to other eMTBs in this price range, it was mentioned as a complaint by other reviewers. Giant doesn't post the weight on their website, which I understand based on their statement on the website, though I would like to see a range or estimate weight so customers can factor that into their purchasing decisions if the overall weight is important to them.
    The most accurate way to determine any bike’s weight is to have your local dealer weigh it for you. Many brands strive to list the lowest possible weight, but in reality, weight can vary based on size, finish hardware, and accessories. All our bikes are designed for best-in-class weight and ride quality.
  • Having the mid-drive motor here meant they needed to have a longer chainstay to accommodate. Though the longer chainstay lends itself to being more efficient on the climbs, we do lose a little bit of maneuverability on the tighter turns and corners. I'm not sure if I would prefer a shorter chainstay or not, however, since we do have the motor assistance for going up hills, I would lean towards wanting more maneuverability since I'm getting that extra help in the climbs already.

As always, I welcome feedback and additions to these pros and cons, especially from people who have tried or own the bike. If you see other great video reviews for the Trance X E+, please share them and I may update this post ongoing so we can get the best perspectives and insights.
 

hypersailor

Member
Region
USA
I have 980 trail miles on my 2021 Trance 2, 29er chameleon/mars/black. Came from an acoustic Trance X 2021 29er, the difference is shocking. Riding ski resorts in Utah, it's seriously UP, all the time. Incredible battery life, quiet, strong Yamaha motor is a major plus, excellent gearing. 52lbs, you get used to it. Riding up in 3 out of 5 modes is more than enough to keep a smart cadence, overtake other riders. I can do 4 miles up to 8,000', then cross country w/ more random ups, average 17 miles a day, the battery never under 50%. Downhill is crazy fun, just let it crush rocks, it's a straight-line train and I'm not a downhiller. Add in Diety flat pedals, Ergon grips and you never feel out of control. I feel strongly that Giant quietly put this model together knowing it would hit a homer, you can't find fault with its pricing, reliability and fun factor. I let riders try it, 30 yards in they are hooting like mad! The reviews are solid, the above Biker's Edge review is real, they are 'my go to Giant shop' and pull no punches. Rob Rides is top drawer, he rode in snow/water/mud, unlike me. 980 miles in added a new chain, new rear tire. The cons for Giant to improve are the app, it's nearly useless, buggy as hell. You will need a 1UP Super Duty rack, but this bike fits in my 2013 Forester. It's summer, I am aiming for 30+ mile days, which I thought were impossible, now it's 'how long have we been out here!
Giant E PCMR.jpg
 

steve mercier

Well-Known Member
I have 980 trail miles on my 2021 Trance 2, 29er chameleon/mars/black. Came from an acoustic Trance X 2021 29er, the difference is shocking. Riding ski resorts in Utah, it's seriously UP, all the time. Incredible battery life, quiet, strong Yamaha motor is a major plus, excellent gearing. 52lbs, you get used to it. Riding up in 3 out of 5 modes is more than enough to keep a smart cadence, overtake other riders. I can do 4 miles up to 8,000', then cross country w/ more random ups, average 17 miles a day, the battery never under 50%. Downhill is crazy fun, just let it crush rocks, it's a straight-line train and I'm not a downhiller. Add in Diety flat pedals, Ergon grips and you never feel out of control. I feel strongly that Giant quietly put this model together knowing it would hit a homer, you can't find fault with its pricing, reliability and fun factor. I let riders try it, 30 yards in they are hooting like mad! The reviews are solid, the above Biker's Edge review is real, they are 'my go to Giant shop' and pull no punches. Rob Rides is top drawer, he rode in snow/water/mud, unlike me. 980 miles in added a new chain, new rear tire. The cons for Giant to improve are the app, it's nearly useless, buggy as hell. You will need a 1UP Super Duty rack, but this bike fits in my 2013 Forester. It's summer, I am aiming for 30+ mile days, which I thought were impossible, now it's 'how long have we been out here!
View attachment 92804
Cool paint job !
 

Browneye

Well-Known Member
Fox boingers are a leg up. Usually there are other upgraded gears or brakes on the 1-version as well - I didn't look close. Usually the parts cost alone is more than the up-model added MSRP.

If'n you want more spread out dimensions, that's the Reign downhiller. Trance is an all-arounder.
Shorter travel is more cross-country oriented. Alloy frame is never going to be the lightest weight, but arguably insignificant on a Ebike. Yamaha drive is dabomb.

Giant gives best bang for the bucks for sure!
 

hypersailor

Member
Region
USA
I second that, and the 2022 Reign is out, at least in the video, it's a mullet. I'm wondering how many years before Giant replicates Orbea's Rise, go for lightness.
The Crest is the best.jpg
 

EnduroDad

New Member
I recently picked up a used Trance e+ 3 and absolutely love it. Novice mt. biker here, got the bike to ride local trails so I still haven't spent much time on the road yet.

The battery life is amazing and I find myself in the 1st or 2nd lowest power modes, the alternate Smart Assist mode is a bit too unpredictable for me. The latest Yamaha motor is smooth and torquey, even at walking speeds it delivers smooth power. Quiet too.

The 12 Deore 12-speed is overkill and I'm planning a tighter gearing range once this one wears out. Brakes are solid and don't seem to fade much on steep decents.

The compromises for this model are mainly the lower clearance from the bulge below the motor. I haven't yet had any significant impacts, but it's probably going to happen. At least it's well protected. There's a lot of talk about the longer rear triangle, maybe if I were an expert rider I'd have a different opinion but I think the tradeoff for better climbing is worth it. And this thing climbs! The other compromise is weight, but it's not on par with other bikes in its class.

(edit) One major issue: The Rockshox 35 Gold RL has some known design shortcomings including a rebound adjuster that doesn't seem to do anything. From the fastest to slowest settings, the result is essentially the same: No rebound dampening adjustment. I'm likely going to replace the fork at some point.

Some smaller issues: The dropper lever rubs me the wrong way and I'm not a big fan of the saddle.

I had a $5k budget and given the supply shortages I'm glad to have found mine for $4k used, only had 23 miles and still had all reflectors mounted.

Anyhow it's a solid choice for the price range IMHO. My first upgrades will be going tubeless, pedals and a new dropper lever. Otherwise I'm happy with the setup and will just replace components as they wear out or break.
 

Attachments

  • IMG_3940.jpeg
    IMG_3940.jpeg
    1.7 MB · Views: 52
Last edited:

Browneye

Well-Known Member
All my bikes get a WTB saddle. Cheap and good. You just have to find the one that fits you. My current fave is the ROCKET.

The Giant brand dropper is just okay. It has internal plastic guides that will shear the corners off on hard impact, allowing the seat to rotate. Then it will be loose/sloppy. You can get a refit kit, or just replace the whole thing with an upgrade - but they're not cheap. OneUp gets really high marks.
You could just replace the actuator with an aftermarket if you can find one you like. It's important to get it positioned to suit.
 

EnduroDad

New Member
Thanks for the tips @Browneye!

@Van T I don’t see any markings on it, came with the bike. I’ve only used my camelbak so I can’t say if it works. I’ll give it a try next ride.

Fork rebound update: I tried a tip from another forum - let the air out of the forks, invert the bike, pump the forks a few times, let sit for 30m. Now at least there’s a little rebound. Still not close to other forks, but enough to keep riding.

It could be the rebound side just needs a good bleeding. I’ll do an early service and see if I can bring it back.

I took the bike through Tamarancho in Marin (nor-cal) today and it did great. Technical climbs & decents, tight switchbacks with a teeny-bit of air-time on the flow trail.

I’m more impressed with this thing every ride!
 

Browneye

Well-Known Member
If it's not too much bother, I would drop it back to the dealer and have them service the forks, replace the shock fluid and fill to spec. There is a remote possibility it didn't get filled properly.
Seems like you drove a long way, so potentially you could do it yourself. Surely there are some how-to's and recommendations on proper fluid and volume.

We used to have to do this and replace the slider seals on our dirtbikes. Volume is critical - just 10cc difference in fluid level could completely change damping characteristics.

Rockshox, right? I'm sorry, I can't be more help on this, I have Fox on all my bikes and they've been flawless, so haven't really dug into fork servicing on eMTB'S yet.