The Giant Trance Advanced 29 already delivered a convincing performance in last year’s trail bike group test. There was one problem though – the flagship Trance Advanced Pro wasn’t available. So this year we found out whether the higher-end spec makes it a dream bike?

Click here for an overview of the best trail bike in test.

Giant Trance Advanced Pro 29 | 29″ | 130/115 mm | 12.38 kg | € 9,499 | manufacturer website

Though there’s no huge Giant logo on the purple Trance Advanced Pro 29, its silhouette immediately gives it away. The flowing curves of the frame and the Maestro linkage are unmistakable! With only 115 mm of travel at the rear and 130 mm up front, this 29er was the apparent underdog of the test. But as you should know by now, it’s not always about the length but how it’s used. Priced at a whopping € 9,499, the Trance Advanced 29 is specced with the finest parts almost without exception. The wireless SRAM X01 Eagle AXS drivetrain and RockShox Reverb AXS dropper post perform brilliantly and ensure a clean look. The RockShox PIKE Ultimate fork is also a good choice for this bike. The 2.3″ MAXXIS Minion DHF and DHR II tire combination is equally fitting and serves to augment the bike’s direct and precise character. The wide TRUVATIV handlebars and matching short stem make for a beefy looking cockpit which instils you with confidence just looking at it. The lightweight Giant TRX-0 carbon wheels contribute to the bike’s low weight of 12.38 kg, making it the lightest on test.

Giant Trance Advanced Pro 29

€ 9,499


Fork RockShox Pike Ultimate RC2
Rear Shock RockShox Super Deluxe Ultimate RCT
Seatpost RockShox Reverb AXS 150 mm
Brakes SRAM G2 RSC 180/180 mm
Drivetrain SRAM X01 Eagle AXS 32/10-50
Stem Truvatic Descendant 50
Handlebar Truvativ Descendant Carbon 800 mm
Wheelset Giant TRX-0 Carbon

Technical Data

Size S M L XL
Weight 12,38 kg
Wheelsize 29"
Travel (f/r) 130/115 mm

Paint jobs are usually a personal preference but the colours of the Trance Advanced Pro 29 really impressed us all! However, the shape of the frame split opinion.
Light and efficient
Giant’s in-house TRX-0 carbon wheels make the Trance 29 lively and quick-accelerating.
In the past, the chainstay often got chipped. However, Giant have made improvements to the chainstay protector on the latest model – excellent!
Smart solution
Admittedly, we’re not fans of the plastic plugs that Giant typically use for their cable routing, because they are always come loose. However, the covers for the ports on the SRAM AXS equipped bike are a step in the right direction. A lot of other manufacturers simply leave them open.
Clean and confidence-inspiring
The Giant’s cockpit isn’t only impressively clean, the wide TRUVATIV bars make you feel in control of the bike and instil you with the confidence to tackle anything.
Firm and defined
The rear suspension is exactly like the body so many people strive for in the gym – firm and defined!

Geometry of the Giant Trance Advanced Pro

The geometry of the Giant Trance Advanced Pro is surprisingly progressive for a bike with only 115 mm travel. The long reach makes it nice and roomy, the head angle strikes a middle ground at 66.5° and the seat tube is sufficiently short at 454 mm. It’s striking that the head tube doesn’t grow between the sizes M and L, but a length of 110 mm is standard on many bikes in this category.

Comfort isn’t the Giant Trance Advanced Pro 29’s strong suit – but it accelerates faster than the other bikes on test!

Size S M L XL
Seat tube 380 mm 431 mm 482 mm 507 mm
Top tube 592 mm 612 mm 632 mm 652 mm
Head tube 95 mm 110 mm 110 mm 120 mm
Head angle 66.5° 66.5° 66.5° 66.5°
Seat angle 74.5° 74.5° 74.5° 74.5°
Chainstays 435 mm 435 mm 435 mm 435 mm
BB drop 35 mm 35 mm 35 mm 35 mm
Wheelbase 1154 mm 1176 mm 1196 mm 1218 mm
Reach 426 mm 442 mm 462 mm 480 mm
Stack 599 mm 613 mm 613 mm 622 mm

The Trance Advanced Pro on test

Swing your leg over the saddle and the Trance’s light weight and firm suspension immediately motivate you to pedal harder. The bike sprints forward willingly while still offering sufficient traction for technical climbs. The bike is also very quick on flat terrain. When the climbing gets steep, you have to deliberately shift your weight and slide forward on the saddle to bring your weight forward – we would have preferred a slightly steeper seat tube angle to help keep the front end planted. The Trance is not the most comfortable bike on long rides but thanks to the efficient suspension, you’ll be able to cover lots of ground quickly.

Let it rip! For a bike with only 115 mm travel at the rear, it’s surprising what the Trance 29 is capable of.

Firm as the bike is on the climbs, it uses its travel effectively on the descents. 115 mm travel isn’t that much, but the Giant makes the most of it and can easily keep up with bikes that have significantly more reserves. On flat and flowing trails, the direct suspension and balanced geometry transform the Trance 29 into a rocket! However, if the terrain becomes steeper and rougher, you instinctively slow down. Here, the bike’s handling becomes demanding and unforgiving of mistakes but it still punches far above its weight (in terms of travel). We would have preferred an even lower top tube for more freedom of movement when jumping and tackling demanding terrain and as capable as the bike is, it would also be much better off with SRAM CODE brakes instead of G2s with 180 mm rotors.

Tuning tip: larger brake rotors

Helmet Smith Forefront | Glasses Oakley Jawbreaker | Jersey Fox Ranger Shirt | Short Fox Ranger | Kneepads Fox Launch Pro

How does the Giant Trance Advanced 29 compare to the competition?

The Giant Trance Advanced and the Norco Optic could almost be siblings. Both have very direct handling and the rear suspension converts every bit of rider input into propulsion. They both reward an active riding style but also become demanding in rough terrain. Due to its slightly longer geometry, slacker head angle and the steeper seat tube angle, the Optic is even more progressive and balanced overall. The added freedom of movement and the significantly more affordable price also speak for the Norco.

Riding Characteristics



  1. sluggish
  2. efficient


  1. cumbersome
  2. playful


  1. nervous
  2. confident


  1. demanding
  2. balanced


  1. harsh
  2. plush

Fun Factor

  1. planted
  2. poppy

Value for money

  1. terrible
  2. very good

Intended Use









Conclusion of the Giant Trance Advanced Pro 29

The Giant Trance Advanced Pro 29 is the perfect cross-country bike for downhillers. It’s an ultra-efficient bike for pedalling and its handling is very direct. Thanks to the progressive suspension, you can let it rip and have a ton of fun on simple trails. In tough terrain, the bike demands a firm grip to be kept under control. And don’t forget the hefty price tag!


  • direct and fun handling
  • quick acceleration thanks to its low weight
  • brilliant paint job
  • well specced


  • firm rear suspension offers little comfort
  • underpowered brakes
  • hefty price

For more information head to

The test field

Click here for an overview of the best trail bike in test.

All bikes in review: Cannondale Habit Carbon 1 (Click for review) | Canyon Spectral CFR 9.0 SL (Click for review) | Ibis Ripmo AXS (Click for review) | Nukeproof Reactor 290 (Click for review) | Norco Optic C1 (Click for review) | Orbea Occam M-LTD (Click for review) | Radon Slide Trail 10 (Click for review) | Santa Cruz Hightower CC X01 Reserve (Click for review) | Scott Genius 900 Tuned AXS (Click for review) | Specialized Levo SL Expert Carbon (Click for review) | Specialized S-Works Stumpjumper SRAM AXS 29 (Click for review) | Trek Fuel EX 9.9 X01 AXS Project ONE (Click for review) | Yeti SB130 TLR (Click for review) | YT JEFFSY CF PRO (Click for review)

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Words: Photos: Christoph Bayer, Finlay Anderson, Markus Frühmann, Jonas Müssig