Merida has had plenty of capable road bikes in their range and just sped things up this summer with an all new Reacto. But while they make a great carbon cyclocross bike, they had yet to jump into the gravel market with both wheels. That changes with the new Silex, an all new frame platform for the company delivering all surface adaptability in a new gravel road bike designed to work with either 700c or 650b wheels. With carbon & aluminum versions on offer, comfortable endurance geometry, and enough bosses to bolt on any accessory for an adventure, Merida says the Silex is most versatile bike they’ve ever made…

Merida Silex gravel road bike

Merida Silex carbon all-road adventure gravel road bike climbing

courtesy Merida, riding photos by Daniel Geiger

Versatile was the buzz word in Merida’s R&D when they were designing the all new bike, building off the idea of developing a bike that was equally at home on or off-road. Build the Silex just as well with drop bars or a flat bar, with 1x or double drivetrains, and 700c wheels or 650b. That way the Silex could adapt to whatever the individual rider wanted out of the all road, all surface adventure bike.

Merida Silex carbon all-road adventure gravel road bike geometry

Modern mountain bikes inspired the geometry for the Silex. That means long toptubes with short stems(80/90mm), taller headtubes for a more upright & comfortable position. Merida’s engineers didn’t like to see so many people sacrificing steering stiffness to get the fit they wanted. So they stretched the headtubes out to make spacer stacks obsolete. That way you keep the steering precision that should make the Silex more controllable off-road, ready to tackle any terrain.

Tech details

Merida Silex carbon all-road adventure gravel road bike frameset detail

Tire clearance is a big part of the versatility of the Silex. It officially fits a 42mm wide 700c tire or 50mm wide in 650b. Take that to 700c x 35mm with full coverage fenders. Those might be conservative numbers though, as Merida says they have fit 2.25″ Schwalbe Thunder Burts on the bike, and even 47mm WTB Horizons with fenders.

Merida Silex carbon all-road adventure gravel road bike front riding

Standards wise the Silex is disc brake only with flat mounts, and uses 12mm axles front & rear. The bike uses a pressfit BB386 bottom bracket, tapered steerer, and 30.9mm seatpost (with a wedge-style clamp on the carbon bike.) It gets full rack and fender mounts front & rear, plus bottle cage bosses inside of the front triangle, under the downtube, and one on each fork leg. The bike also includes fully internal cable routing, with continuous guides inside the frame, and a removable braze-on front derailleur mount.

Merida Silex carbon all-road adventure gravel road bike frame bag bikepacking

Merida spec’s all of the complete Silex bikes with a semi-slick Razzd gravel tire developed as a partnership between Maxxis-Merida. They also get 160mm rotors, Merida’s Carbon Team S-Flex seatpost, and can be fitted with a customized set of Silex-specific frame & seat bags for bikepacking.

Complete bikes

Merida Silex carbon all-road adventure gravel road bike 6000 complete

The Silex gravel road bike is available in three carbon models and five aluminum models, that all share the same full carbon fork and geometry. The bare carbon frame weighs in under 950g (1050g with paint for a medium, 500g for the fork.)

Merida Silex aluminum all-road adventure gravel road bike 300 complete

While the aluminum frame brings that up to 1500g for a painted frame. The bikes are available in a five size range XS-XL with steeply sloping toptubes for huge standover clearance.

Merida Silex carbon all-road adventure gravel road bike cornering

Merida sees the new Silex as a bike looking for an adventure. The Silex looks to be a light and capable gravel road bike for any track less travelled, whether for a mountain biker looking for a road bike up to occasional bouts with singletrack or a roadie looking to get a bit more off the beaten track.



      • Dinger on

        Salsa Warbird? Niner? There’s a bunch of stuff out there. What does the 3T Exploro offer that the rest of the market has missed?

        • Smale Rider on

          3T exploro is the only one that any manufacturer has bothered to make it aero. This is a significant advantage given the distance and amount of headwinds encountered.

          • bruto on

            Aerodynamics of the frame are irrelevant if you’re going to run tires wider than the rims and possibly use frame bags
            and 90% of the frontal section is the rider anyway

            also, look at Carbonda CFR505 if you’re interested in a gravel frame with clearance for 27.5×2.0 and more

            • Dinger on

              Carbonda claims 650b/47mm, less than 2.0″, though I agree with most who will, you don’t need tires that big for gravel. If the gravel is that rough, ride an MTB and use suspension.

    • Dinger on

      “That means long toptubes with short stems(80/90mm),”

      This also solves the toe-overlap problems that come with trying to fit very small people onto bikes with 700c wheels.

      • Smale Rider on

        Small sized bikes already generally come with short stems as well. Toe overlap is best solved with short cranks, which manufacturers fail to mass produce. I run 160s, I still get overlap in extreme yaws.

        • Eddiepliers on

          I don’t know why companies now lonher hive standover numbers as its an important factor when smaller people like myself choose a bike.

          • Tomi on

            Don’t really understand where your standover issue lie. We’ve all been kids using traditionnal straight top tube bikes and we never had any issues with standover. If you can sit on the saddle why would it become an issue especially with a sloping top tube ?

            Besides, standing over your bike is not the proper way to ride a bike. You are supposed to put your feets on the pedals.


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