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2022 Trek FX 3 Review

2022 Trek FX 3 review

This 2022 Trek FX 3 review covers everything you need to know about the best hybrid bike for 2022. The 2022 Trek FX 3 checks all the boxes: disc brakes, 1X drivetrain, tubeless ready wheels and more! Its a fitness hybrid, which means you can ride it like a flat bar road bike while staying comfortable, or use it to commute around town.

The FX 3 is the best value in the FX series. The FX 1 is heavy because it comes with a steel fork. There are some models of FX 1 that still have rim brakes. The Trek FX 2 has a similar price point to the FX 3, but the upgrades on the 3 are worthwhile. (We dive into those upgrades below!) Regarding the front fork, the FX 2 comes with an aluminum fork, while the FX 3 has a carbon fork. Carbon reduces vibrations, meaning the 2022 FX 3 will provide a more comfortable ride.

Trek FX vs Trek Dual Sport vs Trek Verve

The three most common hybrid bikes in Trek’s arsenal are the FX, Dual Sport, and Verve. Depending on how and where you ride, each model offers a unique set of features. The Trek FX is the Five-Star General for several reasons.

First, in a weight comparison the Trek FX is the lightest bike of these three hybrid models. The Dual Sport comes with a front fork suspension adding a lot of weight. That front fork isn’t good enough to classify the Dual Sport as a mountain bike because it has limited travel. There is more room for wider tires on the Dual Sport than the FX, but again, you aren’t going to fit a set of 2.6″ Maxxis DHF or DHR tires to make a full mountain bike conversion. At best, the Dual Sport is an over-equipped gravel bike.

The Trek Verve is also a heavier bike than the FX, and it doesn’t come with suspension. It still has a similar weight to the Dual Sport. Depending on frame size you can expect your Dual Sport or Verve to weigh in approximately 31-33 lbs, depending on frame size. The FX 3 weighs just 25 lbs, which means climbing hills and going fast will be a lot easier on the FX.

Trek FX 3 Maximum Tire Clearance

Speaking of tire clearance, the Trek FX 3 maximum tire size is listed at 38mm per Trek. Trek believes you need 6mm of clearance on each side of the tire. I run gravel tires that are 40mm wide on my FX 3 during the winter and when I know I will be riding a lot of gravel trails. They provide plenty of traction in all riding conditions, and adding an even wider tire would simply add unnecessary weight to the bike.

All three models come with rack and fender mounts. The only area the Trek Verve has the advantage is in adjustability. The stem is adjustable to an upright position, and dropped for riding aggressively. The adjustment is made with an Allen wrench. On both the Dual Sport and FX, you need to flip your stem for any adjustability. Even then you aren’t getting the same amount of adjustment range offered by the Verve.

Trek FX 3 Upgrades

There are a few upgrades covered in this 2022 Trek FX 3 review that you need to make before leaving your bike shop. The three main touchpoints almost always need an upgrade with any new bike. They are grips, pedals and saddle. This is the first new bike I’ve purchased that I am not upgrading the grips. The 2022 Trek FX 3 comes with Bontrager Satellite IsoZone Plus grips that are lock-on and ergonomic. IsoZone is a vibration dampening technology and simply put… it works.

2022 Trek FX 3 grips
Bontrager Satellite IsoZone Ergonomic Grips

2022 Trek FX 3 Touchpoint Upgrades

When it comes to pedals, I am an advocate for clipping-in. Clipless pedals are a must have, but even cyclists that ride flats will want to upgrade pedals on their Trek FX 3. The Bontrager City pedals do not have a lot of grip, and they are cheap plastic that isn’t durable enough for even a casual rider. I don’t believe one clipless pedal manufacturer has an advantage over the other. You should use the pedals that are easiest to get in and out of. Most bike shops will let you test a few options to help you decide.

The saddle on this bike is nice. Most beginner cyclists will complain it is too hard, but the firmness of the saddle provides increased efficiency. Also, soft saddles become more uncomfortable on longer rides, and once you buy a Trek FX 3 you will go on some long adventures. Rather than upgrading the saddle, try a pair of cycling shorts. If your concerned about the look, you can always throw a pair of casual shorts over top. The built in chamois cycling shorts offer is the number one way to increase comfort on your bike. My personal favorite is the Escape Quest short from Pearl iZUMi. Its a durable cycling short that costs $50 or less. (Check Current Price on Amazon Here).

2022 Trek FX 3 Tire Upgrades

As I mentioned previously, a good set of winter tires is a must for this bike if you plan on riding in all weather conditions. I really love the 700×40 Donnelly Gravel Tires. If you plan on riding a lot of gravel I highly recommend a tan sidewall. They hide the dust better than all black tires, and they look great. (Check Current Price on Amazon Here). The FX 3 comes with tubeless ready wheels, and the Donnelly tires are tubeless compatible.

Tubeless wheels and tires allow you to run a lower tire pressure without having to worry about getting a flat. Tubeless setups are also lighter than running tubes, so you cut weight off the bike which adds to your efficiency. Converting to tubeless is something I recommend doing before you leave the bike shop.

2022 Trek FX 3 Drive Train

Another reason I upgraded from my 2020 FX 2 to this 2022 FX 3 is the drive train. Like it or not, the biking industry is moving to simplified drive trains. That means getting rid of your front derailleur. Your rear cassette is manufactured with enough range that 2X and 3X drivetrains are obsolete.

Shimano Deore 1X10 Trek FX 3 Drivetrain
Shimano Deore 1X10 Trek FX 3 Drivetrain

The 2022 FX 3 comes with a 1X10 Shimano Deore drivetrain. Shifting is incredibly smooth, and there is plenty of range for climbing mountains in Colorado. With the high end drive train, carbon fork, and thoughtful upgrades the price is $150 more than the FX 2 (Read: Trek FX 2 Review), but the upgrades make the FX 3 an incredible value. The carbon fork alone is enough to justify the added expense, and the upgraded drivetrain makes the FX 3 a no brainer.

With the upgraded drivetrain you need to be able to stop faster too. Stopping is no issue with this bike thanks to the hydraulic disc brakes from Shimano. Disc brakes make stopping easier and faster in all weather conditions. There is no debate on the better brake, because disc brakes work better than rim brakes in every scenario.

If you enjoyed this 2022 Trek FX 3 review, consider reading:

You can also watch my video review of the 2022 Trek FX 3, including a step-by-step tubeless conversion here:

36 thoughts on “2022 Trek FX 3 Review”

  1. Hello, I’m very interested in the FX 3 before I buy can I get the handlebars up a few inches with an adjustment or replacing the stem with a longer one.
    Btw Your video was great I will go tubeless as u recommend.
    Thank you ,
    Charles

  2. Loved your review and ended you getting the bike, same color, thank you.
    Quick question, could you provide info on the water bottle holders? I love how they complement the FX3, both black and blue.

  3. Hi Ryan,
    Thanks for the review. I’m debating between FX2 and 3 (or even Dual Sport). Most of my rides will be on city roads, but my commute does have a few hills (yikes San Francisco!) and I do plan to ride on light trails and gravels occasionally. What would you recommend for this riding situation?

    Thanks,
    Abota

    1. I definitely recommend the FX 3. The Carbon fork on the 3 will be a big advantage over the FX 2 when you hit that occasional gravel, and the weight savings over the Dual Sport will serve you much, much, much, mmmmuuucccchhhh better than the Dual Sport on those hills. If you are worried about the comfort of the rigid frame you can always put a higher volume tire on the FX to get you more comfort.

  4. Do you ever use fenders? I’m curious if fenders still fit with your 40mm tires, which Trek says is already above the max of 38mm without fenders. Thanks!

    1. To each their own. If you feel like your ride is less enjoyable because you don’t have enough gearing for your terrain, then it’s a good idea. I would challenge you to go for a ride and tell yourself before hand that you will enjoy your ride even if that means working a little harder or going a little slower. I think you will find after a handful of rides the 1x is pretty good.

  5. Hello again Ryan, I got a bit of a paint chip on the top tube in the aqua blue part of my 2022 FX 3 Disc. Can this easily be fixed on your own or should I take it to a bike shop?

  6. Ryan,
    I’m looking at doing my first solo cross-country back-packing trip this coming season, starting in San Francisco and ending in Hilton Head. Because of carpel tunnel, drop bars/road bikes are not an option because of weight and angle it puts the riders wrists at. This limitation is what brought me to test ride the 2022 Trek FX Sport 4 Carbon & 2022 Sport 3 at my local bike shop.
    Question, do you think either of these are capable of making the trip and if so which one? I’m 6’1″and 215 lbs. Your thoughts would be greatly appreciated.

  7. Hello Ryan, two questions. Are you still using the stock seat or did you upgrade? Also, if you wanted to put a 12 cog rear cassette on, would there be enough room and what other parts would you likely have to change out. Thanks.

  8. Very helpful review. After years riding and loving a road bike I decided to make a switch (I’m 68). I read your review, talked to my local, trusted LBS and purchased a FX3. Now for a twist…I also bought a Giant Escape 1. So far so good, and it’s too early to compare and contrast, but I’ll be back shortly after a few more rides.

  9. Mr. Mark Douglas Goranson

    I am 65 and just started biking. I bought the FX 3 and love it. You can ride nice and easy or make the ride challenging.

  10. Two final questions Ryan. Can you recommend a pair of bike shorts that are not spandex? What kind of bike gloves do you wear while riding the FX3? I have a pair of Specialized gloves with padding on the inside and they don’t feel right with the ergonomic handlebars. Thanks again.

    1. I love the Lycra shorts from Pearl Izumi. If you don’t like that skin tight feel try a pair of mountain biking shorts. My favorite are made by Zoic.

      I go back and forth on gloves. With ergonomic grips I feel like I don’t need the gloves, but when I do wear them I wear either Pearl iZUMi or if I want full finger I wear Giro.

  11. Bought my FX3 in August of this year to help get back into shape. At 60, with beat up knees, running wasn’t working for me.
    I love this bike and feel great after a few months of long rides. My only complaint was the non- adjustable handle bars as I was feeling too much pressure on my hands. I purchased Surly Sunrise handlebars and installed them at max height and rolled them back a bit to get more upright and haven’t had any issues yet. The extra weight doesn’t seem noticeable to me.
    Love this bike.
    Great article BTW.
    Thanks,

  12. Hey Ryan,
    Great article. I am currently in the market for a new bike. I’ve only ever ridden mountain bikes and I’ve done what little I can to my full suspension Diamond Back to make it a smoother commute to work on city streets. I found an FX3 on offerup for a great deal, but im hesitant to pull the trigger. Can you advise as to what I would expect with that transition if I were to buy the FX3?

    Thanks

  13. Hi Ryan,
    I’m on the fence between this Trek FX3 and the Specialized Sirrus 3.0. The Sirrus has an aluminum fork and 1×9 Microshif. The brakes are Tektro. The advantage for the Sirrus is that is comes with 42mm tires and can run 45mm if you wanted to. Which bike would you pick? And do you think 42mm tires on the Trek would be possible for added comfort? Or perhaps the front tire could be 42mm and the back one 40mm? Thank you

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