2023 Giant Trance X E+ Advanced Elite 1 E-Bike

Where To Buy
Free shipping on orders over $50 (continental U.S. only).
International shipping available. Some exclusions apply.
Free shipping on orders over $50 (continental U.S. only).
International shipping available. Some exclusions apply.
Vital's SL eMTB Test Sessions - Giant Trance X Advanced E+ Elite Review
As one of two full-power bikes in our SL eMTB test, the Trance X Advanced was a fast-climbing, versatile performer with a unique component spec that offered plenty to be discussed.
Vital Review

Giant's Trance X Advanced E+ Elite is more than just a mouthful. It was one of the first e-bikes to offer riders a full-power motor in a lightweight package, delivering 85 Nm of torque at a 400% support ratio while weighing in at just 46.12 pounds. 


  • Giant's Advanced-grade composite frame 
  • Mixed wheels
  • 140mm of rear wheel travel // 150mm fork travel
  • Maestro suspension design
  • 400 Wh Giant EnergyPak Smart battery (200 Wh Energy Pak+ range extender available)
  • 85 Nm Giant SyncDrive Pro2 motor 
  • Integrated top tube display
  • RideControl Ergo 3 grip integrated remote
  • Five customizable assist modes via RideControl App
  • Headset or frame internal cable routing
  • Flip chip geometry adjustment
  • 65.5/65.7-degree head tube angle
  • 447mm chain stay length
  • Four build kits
  • Sizes: S-XL
  • Verified weight (size XL, Elite 1 build): 46.12 pounds (20.9 kg)
  • MSRP: $5,700 - $14,000 USD ($10,000 as tested)

Giant worked hard to give riders an agile e-bike without compromising on power. The secret sauce that allows for this previously unheard-of combination is the EnergyPak 400 watt-hour battery. Co-developed with Panasonic, the battery features all-new, larger but lighter lithium-ion cells. The cells have a higher max discharge capacity, making it possible to deliver 85 Nm of torque from a battery that is half the size of others. The battery is paired with Yamaha's latest SyncDrive Pro2 motor which has the same power as Giant's full-size e-bikes. The refined motor weighs significantly less and has 37mm more ground clearance.


Motor power was tuned for a natural, near-instant delivery thanks to Giant's Smart Assist technology. It uses sensors and algorithms to calculate the exact amount of assistance needed at any given moment. There are five assist modes on tap, and you can tweak the peak torque, support ratio and acceleration rate of each mode in Giant's RideControl App. A simple integrated top tube display has lights that indicate the mode and battery life, and a wired assist remote toggles between modes.


The Trance X Advanced has 140mm of rear wheel travel combined with a 150mm fork. We'd define its geometry as modestly progressive. It isn't excessively long or slack but successfully balances being descent-focused enough with a comfortable pedaling position and a manageable wheelbase. There is a flip chip in the rocker link that provides two geometry packages, but we only rode the bike in the low setting. The stock position offers a 76-degree seat tube angle and a 65.8-degree head tube angle. All sizes roll on mixed wheels to help further liven up the bike. The smaller rear wheel also allowed Giant to achieve a 447mm chain stay length despite having to fit the lower link of their Maestro suspension design around the motor. It should be noted that chainstay length does not change with frame size. 


Giant offers four builds with a retail price ranging from $5,700 to $14,000. Of course, prices will vary depending on when you are shopping, so check Giant's website for the most up-to-date pricing. Sizes run from S to XL, and all builds use the same Advanced-grade carbon front triangle with internal routing that enters through the headset and frame. All models also feature a carbon rocker link, while the cheapest build is the only one to use an alloy rear triangle. We tested the Elite 1 build that retails for $10,000, making the Trance X the second most expensive build, tied in price with Transition's Relay and Trek's Fuel EXe. Build highlights include a FOX 36 Performance Elite Live Valve fork, a Float X shock, SRAM Code R brakes, Giant Carbon wheels, and a first-gen SRAM GX AXS drivetrain. 

Full power meets light-ish—the Trance X was a unique bike due to its size, component spec, and strong motor power. While it did not lust for descents as much as Cannondale's Moterra SL (the other full-power bike in the test), its evenly spread abilities provided solid performance throughout the entirety of a ride. But how does it stack up to the other SL eMTBs in the cateogry? 


Test Sessions has long been Vital's way of placing a bunch of similar bikes head-to-head to see where each excels and what sets them apart to help riders better understand which bike best suits their needs. This year, we had eight SL e-bikes, and three testers. This article just covers what we thought of Giant's Trance X Advanced E+ Elite. To learn more about the other bikes tested, check out our complete SL eMTB Test Sessions 

Meet the Testers

L-R: Jason Schroeder, Lear Miller, Jonny Simonetti
Jonny Simonetti Lear Miller Jason Schroeder
  • 30 years old
  • 6' 4" (193cm)
  • Weight: 225 lbs (102 kg)
  • Years e-biking: 5
  • Riding Style: Skatepark inspiration. Try to stay smooth and pedal as little as possible. 
  • 32 years old
  • 6’ 3" (190 cm)
  • Weight: 185 lbs (83.9 kg)
  • Years e-biking: 3
  • Riding Style: “Freeracer” after 15 years of racing, I like going fast. But the airtime counter is really the only clock I’m paying attention to these days.
  • 29 years old
  • 6-foot (182 cm)
  • Weight: 180 lbs (81.6 kg)
  • Years e-biking: 4
  • Riding Style: Relatively upright with weight more rearward than most. Enjoys a sneaking straight line or ripping jump trail.

Jason's Impressions



  • Favorite motor in the test: smooth, natural power delivery with plenty of torque when needed 
  • Nice gap in power between assist modes makes them all useable
  • Durable and simple charge port cover
  • Top tube display is simple yet effective 
  • Very smooth, supple suspension platform when pedaling
  • Supportive and active rear suspension provides awesome traction and stability descending
  • The motor rattles slightly through rough sections 
  • RideControl App inconsistently connected to our phone
  • Mode switch buttons lack a definite tactile feel that makes it tough to tell if a mode change has been initiated
  • Poor value with component specs we tested that don't add to the performance of the bike
  • Still rides bigger and heavier e-bike like a full-size e-bike

What's The Bottom Line?

If you remove the weird spec on the Trance X Advanced E+ we tested, it's a very versatile mid-weight e-bike. I'd like to buy the cheapest build, put on some decent suspension and brakes, and treat the bike as my lighter-weight, full-power trail e-bike. Unfortunately for the Elite+ build we piloted, the one-piece bars were hard to look past (literally), the Live Valve didn't add any additional performance, and I would have rather received nicer brakes instead of carbon wheels. 

Component frustrations aside, the SyncDrive Pro2 motor was my favorite in the test. It operated in the background, matching my power naturally with fantastic torque when I would stomp on the pedals. There was always ample power to rip up steep climbs, and the motor let out a softer hum than Shimano's full-power EP801 motor. Riding the Trance X definitely opened my eyes to how much faster an 85 Nm motor feels compared to the 50-60Nm offered by Fazua, Specialized, and TQ. 

I wouldn't call the Trance X that we rode a lightweight e-bike. Yes, it was more manageable than a full-power e-bike and equally as maneuverable as the Cannondale Moterra SL in the test. But the bike was a lot to move around, and it was more fun to ride with a relaxed approach, letting its size dictate line choice. A motivated rider could still toss the bike around, but it would take way more effort than the dedicated SL e-bikes in the test. 

The trail-orientated geometry and smooth Maestro suspension platform complemented each other, allowing the Trance X to perform well in most situations. When climbing, the suspension was supple, making it easy to mash over bumps without getting unsettled in the saddle. On the descent, the suspension remained active, providing awesome traction and stability. Overall, I wouldn't say the bike was the best in any one area, which I think means that Giant succeeded in creating an all-around-performing bike. 

Jonny's Impressions



  • Quick to get back to the top thanks to full power motor
  • Excellent suspension performance descending and ascending
  • 400Wh battery drains quickly when using full power
  • Integrated bar stem adds level of complexity to setup
  • Better spec options for the money

What's The Bottom Line? 

Giant has put together a great all around platform with excellent bump eating performance. The FOX LiveValve electronic suspension system on our test bike felt almost unnecessary given how well the Maestro suspension platform pedals, taking the edge of bumps of all sizes under while under load and when descending. The unparalleled motor and battery combination is a unique way to bring weight down significantly without sacrificing power but the trade off is a shorter than average battery range. This is a great option for those looking to do shorter laps or complete rides in a short amount of time.

Lear's Impressions



  • Powerful, natural feeling motor
  • 36t chainring
  • Great small bump absorption climbing
  • Suspension is supple and active, creating control descending
  • Long front center offers tons of stability as speeds increase
  • Could use a bigger battery to fully take advantage of motor power and offer longer ride time
  • Assist remote lacked obvious 'click' 
  • Odd component spec choices
  • Headset routed cables
  • Doesn't like to change directions fast

What's The Bottom Line?

I have mixed impressions of the Trance X Advanced. On the one hand, it offered a supple, active suspension design that was incredibly smooth climbing and capable on descents. Its Yamaha motor was also one of the most impressive in the test, providing excellent power in a natural delivery. Unfortunately, its component spec held back its potential and lowered its overall value. 

The Trance X rode quite big and showed its weight more than some of the other bikes. This was a negative when trying to influence the bike or shimmy through tight sections. On the flip side, once up to speed and bombing downhill, its size, weight, and smooth suspension platform made for a calm, controlled ride. This combination of stability and unwillingness to react as quickly as the lighter SL bikes would best suit riders who plan to let the bike do the work for them descending and are okay just being along for the ride. On the climbs, the Trance X did burn up its battery faster than most of the other bikes. I wouldn't need a range extender to get proper-length rides out of the bike.

I did reach my limit of comfort on the Trance X due to the smaller fork and weird one-piece handlebar before I felt like I had reached the limits of the bike itself. The FOX Live Valve also felt completely unnecessary. I think riders are better off getting the Trance X frame and e-components for as cheap as they can and then building up the bike with components they want to match their needs. 

A big shout out to TannusFeedback Sports and Maxxis for supporting Test Sessions! 

View key specs, compare e-bikes, and rate the Giant Trance X E+ in the Vital MTB Product Guide.


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Giant Trance X E+ Advanced Elite 1 E-Bike
Model Year
Riding Type
Enduro / All-Mountain
Sizes and Geometry
SM (Low, High)
MD (Low, High)
LG (Low, High)
XL (Low, High)
Wheel Size
27.5" (650b)
Other: Mullet
E-Bike Class
Class 1: Pedal Assist (Pedelecs)
Giant SyncDrive Pro2 (powered by Yamaha), 85Nm max torque
Giant EnergyPak Smart, integrated; EnergyPak Plus 250 Wh range extender compatible
Battery Capacity
400 Wh
Display: Giant RideControl GO multi-function on/off button with frame integrated LED display, ANT+ wireless compatible
Remote: Giant RideControl Ergo 3, grip integrated
Five customizable support modes with Smart Assist technology
Max Speed with Assist
20 mph (32.2 km/h)
Frame Material
Carbon Fiber
Frame Material Details
Advanced-grade composite front triangle with Modified Monocoque Construction; Advanced-grade composite rear triangle; Advanced Forged Composite upper rocker; molded chainstay protection
Rear Travel
Rear Shock
FOX FLOAT Performance Elite Live Valve, electronic adaptive, e-bike integrated, trunnion mount, 185mm length x 52.5mm stroke
FOX FLOAT 36 Performance Elite Live Valve, electronic adaptive, e-bike integrated, 44mm offset
Fork Travel
Head Tube Diameter
Straight, 1.5"
Internal cable routing
Giant Contact SLR Trail Carbon integrated bar/stem, 800mm width
Giant Contact SLR Trail Carbon integrated bar/stem, 7/8/9° Sweep Adjust System
Virtual length: 40mm (SM/MD), 50mm (LG/XL)
Giant Tactal Pro-E, single lock-on
SRAM Code R, 4-piston, 6-bolt rotors (220mm front, 200mm rear)
Brake Levers
SRAM Eagle AXS Rocker Paddle Controller, 12-speed, electronic wireless
Front Derailleur
Rear Derailleur
SRAM GX Eagle AXS, 12-speed, electronic wireless
MRP HD2 co-molded upper slider
Praxis Performance Carbon e-crank
Length: 160mm (SM), 165mm (MD/LG), 170mm (XL)
SRAM Eagle, X-SYNC, 36 tooth
SRAM GX Eagle, 12-speed, with Powerlink
SRAM GX Eagle XG-1275, 12-speed, 10-52 tooth
Giant TRX 2, hookless, 30mm inner width
Giant TRX 2 MTB, alloy, 15mm x 110mm (Boost) front, 12mm x 148mm (Boost) rear with 3-pawl 30 tooth freehub and XD driver
Giant TRX 2 wheelset
Front: Maxxis Minion DHF, EXO casing, TR, foldable, 29" x 2.5”
Rear: Maxxis Dissector, EXO casing, TR, foldable, 27.5" x 2.4”
Giant Romero, Neutral
TranzX Rad+ travel-adjustable dropper
Drop: 100-140mm (SM), 140-170mm (MD), 170-200mm (LG/XL)
Seatpost Diameter
Seatpost Clamp
Semi-integrated single bolt
Rear Dropout / Hub Dimensions
12mm x 148mm (Boost)
Max. Tire Size
Bottle Cage Mounts
One inside front triangle
Gunmetal Black/Black
Lifetime frame, 1 year paint and components
• Maestro dual-linkage rear suspension design
• Mixed ("Mullet") wheels: 29" front, 27.5" rear
• Geometry adjustable via flip chip in rocker link
• Internal cable routing; cables route through headset
• Drive system tuneable/controlled by Giant E-Bike app, which provides navigation, health, and fitness functions
• Includes tubeless kit (sealant, valves, levers, manual, tool)
• Includes EnergyPak 4A Smart Charger
• Giant EnergyPak Plus 250 Wh Range Extender compatible
• Giant Recon series e-bike lights (available separately) are direct-connectible
What do you think?
Where To Buy
Free shipping on orders over $50 (continental U.S. only).
International shipping available. Some exclusions apply.
Free shipping on orders over $50 (continental U.S. only).
International shipping available. Some exclusions apply.

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