All mountain bike types at a glance
Everything around the MTB
You feel like exploring the world off the asphalt, you are tempted by the next adrenaline kick on endless trails in the bike park? Or you want to lose yourself in breathtaking nature? Then a mountain bike is the right adventure companion for you. There is a suitable mountain bike type for every purpose and off-road biker. You can find out everything you need to know about the wilderness hero on two wheels in this blog post:
1. what is a mountain bike?
Anyone who wants to go beyond paved roads on the full, which will miss one thing in racing bikes, trekking or gravel bikes: The suspension. It is the key unique selling point of a mountain bike, allowing us to lift off the ground meter by meter with both tires, easily negotiate sticks and stones on any terrain, and climb uphill without much effort.
2. what are the types of mountain bikes?
In a hardtail, only the front wheel is equipped with a suspension fork. The greater the suspension travel, the more uneven the terrain that can be conquered and the more upright you sit. Most often, hardtails are fitted with suspension forks under 120 mm travel, which conquer smaller obstacles and are still comfortable. It is a beginner's MTB that is easy to learn, perfect for bike tours over dirt and forest paths.
Cross-country bikes (also called "XC bikes") are designed for bike racing on gravel, dirt or forest trails. Their suspension travel is around 100mm, but they also come in full suspension variants. To maximize speed, they are kept as light as possible, often by using a carbon frame. Through 29-inch wheels you also ensure excellent rolling characteristics.
The dirt bike
The dirt bike is the hardtail of acrobats and tricksters. It has highest 100mm travel, the suspension fork is only to cushion particularly hard landings. Noticeable are the small wheelbases and frame sizes, which, together with the small wheels (24-26 inches), allow spectacular jumps in bike parks. In most cases, the gears are completely absent. They are completely unsuitable as a means of transportation, but that's not what these trick bikes are meant for.
Name-giving for this MTB are the impressively wide and robust tires. Fatbikes are available as hardtail and as fully, but sometimes suspension is dispensed with entirely because the thick tires, which are usually not even fully inflated, achieve a similar effect. They also provide grip on particularly loose surfaces such as snow, mud or sand. They are rather sluggish, but you can still get around with them.
As a collective term it stands for "full suspension", so all MTBs that are suspended both front and rear of the wheel. Often a hydraulic seatpost is also installed, thanks to which the saddle can be raised at the touch of a button depending on the terrain. According to the requirements, the grip is increased by larger lugs on the tires. Mullet bikes designed for downhill riding have larger wheels at the front than at the rear, which allows you to combine the best possible traction with maneuverability.
The all-mountain or trail bike
The all-mountain or trail bike is (surprisingly) the all-rounder among MTBs. Any terrain can be climbed with them, even uphill thanks to the lockable suspension elements. The front suspension travel varies between 110-140mm and even if these MTBs are available as hardtails, they are usually full suspension. As an all-rounder, it is ideal for weekend trips and versatile tours.
The enduro bike
With a suspension travel of 140-180mm enduros roll over rough scree and are ready for deep drops and long jumps. Thanks to long frame geometry with a flat steering angle, you sit upright, so you can pedal independently up the mountain, while rough descents are also no problem. At a massive 13 kg, however, it's not for weak calves or for long distances on flat terrain. The Enduro is the all-rounder for the brave.
The freeride bike
The freeride bike offers a suspension travel of 160-200mm. This can absorb long jumps, meter-deep drops and rolling over large stones. Very stable components are used for these massive loads. Mainly you ride on highly demanding terrain, which is why the freeride bike is more worthwhile for experienced riders. Uphill riding is fun with very few models, but downhill all the more so.
The downhill bike
Hard to believe, but the Freeride looks next to the downhill bike then but quite pale. A whole 180-250mm are possible with him and the very flat steering angle and a lowered saddle shift the body's center of gravity to the rear maximum. The resilient frame and the stabilizing double-bridge suspension fork weigh neatly, which is why driving uphill is hardly possible. Everything is designed to cope with rough slopes at high speeds.
3. which mountain bike is right for me?
A somewhat more budget-friendly and less maintenance-intensive is the hardtail. With him you have a faithful companion for the long tours on slightly uneven ground, the summit adventure and the rapid descent afterwards.
If you are looking for more adrenaline, also dare to go to the bike park and like it a bit rougher, then you should reach for the Fully. It is more expensive, but do not worry, often you tend to more travel than you actually need - and thus also pay for the more stable components. So here you can save without a guilty conscience.
Ultimately, all the models presented are mountain bikes that are primarily built for easy riding. You rarely make a true bad purchase as long as you use the bike and have fun with it.
4. where can I find my next mountain bike?
At buycycle. It's obvious. Safe, uncomplicated, with free shipping and return policy. Browse through our website, for every wish we surely have a bike for you. If you need some advice or have any questions, you can always contact the buycycle team. Until then we wish you: Happy browsing, happy cycling!
What types of mountain bikes are there? | buycycle
You want to explore the world off the asphalt? Are you looking for the next adrenaline kick on endless trails in the bike park? Or the breathtaking nature in the regional forests? In any case, an MTB is the right companion for you. It will take you to the most exciting places and support you on your exploration tour. The right type of mountain bike is produced for every purpose. Here you can learn everything about the different types and the questions about them:
What is a mountain bike? What is the difference with a trekking bike?
Basically, there are different bikes for different purposes. With a road bike, long distances over flat ground are no problem. Road bikes are bikes with thin tires and a sporty geometry. These bikes are made for fast riding on the road and are not meant for off-road adventures. Who is also off the road and would like to explore more there relies on an all-road or off-road bike. There you distinguish especially between trekking bikes, gravel bikes and mountain bikes. Trekking bikes have wide tires, which give stability even on meadows and gravel. However, they are hardly suspended - so they are nothing for trips on narrow trails. Gravel bikes are very reminiscent of a road bike, but with much wider tires. The tires allow you to ride alongside the road. However, gravel bikes also have no (or minimal) suspension. If you want to ride faster, you should go for a mountain bike. Through your own physical strength, your mountain bike lets you climb mountains in the terrain and overcome hill and dale without any problems. You can take off with both tires meters from the ground. Mountain biking is a welcome break from the hustle and bustle of everyday life. A leisurely after-work tour over field paths, many meters of altitude on an alpine crossing or riding technique and action on the trails - everything has its appeal. Your project will be especially fun with appropriate support. Different demands on a mountain bike require different types of construction. The right model is waiting for every area of use.
Whether all-mountain, cross-country or enduro, the special feature is the suspension. A downhill ride over scree requires more suspension travel than an excursion over nearby forest trails. A distinction is made between mountain bike types with simple suspension on the front wheel, or full suspension, i.e. a further suspension element in the rear. The frame geometry is also crucial. It changes the seating position. For steep descents, for example, it is suitable to shift the body's center of gravity over the rear triangle of the mountain bike. The design of the MTB frame helps with this. The wheel size or the mounting of the bike components also influence the seating position.
What are the types of mountain bikes?
Here we look at the different types of mountain bikes and their features.
Hardtail is the name for a bike that has a suspended front wheel. It does not have a rear shock. The suspension fork is lockable on most models. The suspension travel of the fork can vary greatly. Most manufacturers install suspension forks under 120 mm travel in hardtails. Smaller potholes and roots can be rolled over. The greater the suspension travel of the suspension fork, the more upright the seating position of the rider. In order to still be able to sit comfortably when riding uphill, one forgoes higher suspension travel. The most common frame materials are carbon or aluminum. Carbon frames can achieve particularly low overall weights of the MTB. This is reflected in the usually higher price. A fall can lead to cracks in the carbon fibers. Before the frame finally breaks, it can still withstand quite a bit. Aluminum frames are tried and tested and robust. Heavier, but cheaper. The frame can bend in crashes, but it does not usually break.
Hardtails can be purchased with wheels in different sizes. Rims with a diameter of 27.5" or 29" are common. While the wheel size 27.5 "allows particularly agile driving, 29-inch wheels are considered smoother running. They better compensate for vibration caused by bumps. In practice, the maneuverability of 27.5" tires is minimally better. 29" offer significantly better rolling characteristics, as well as longer ground contact. This leads to increased traction. Practical accessories such as luggage racks are usually dispensed with in order to save weight. Of course, you can still retrofit it. The hardtail is particularly popular for cycling tours over field and forest paths. Due to the low weight, uphill riding is also easy. Longer tours can be easily managed due to the comfortable seating position. Nevertheless, the hardtail is often underestimated as a piece of sports equipment. Due to the lack of a shock absorber, it is only considered suitable for limited off-road use. It does not roll over larger obstacles as smoothly as a Fully. Thus, more attention should be paid to the driving technique. For beginners who are interested in riding on dirt roads, it is ideal for learning the technique. Technical riding also makes challenging trails possible with the hardtail. It is less maintenance-intensive as the Fully, because it contains fewer suspension elements.
The cross country bike
Cross-country bikes are also called XC bikes. Their suspension fork usually offers a suspension travel of around 100mm. There are also variants with full suspension, i.e. an additional damper. The total weight should be kept as low as possible. Carbon frames are often used. As a rule, the XC bike comes to about 10 kg total weight. The seating position is slightly bent forward. The cross-country bike allows you to get everything out of a ride. For this purpose, the installation of 29-inch wheels is common to combine speed with excellent rolling characteristics. This mountain bike is particularly popular for off-road races, such as so-called cross-country races. The surface should not be too rough, on gravel, dirt and forest roads, the XC bike is unsurpassed efficiency. This MTB is also designed for long climbs and descents. The rather low suspension is ideal for long tours. For the bike park or stony trails, the XC bike is not designed.
The dirt bike
An unusual hardtail is the dirt bike. It has the highest 100mm travel, the suspension fork is strongly pumped up. It should only cushion particularly hard landings. Tend dirtbikes have smaller wheelbases than other mountain bikes. The frame size is intentionally chosen smaller. Material for the frame is usually aluminum or steel. Thus, the bikes are very robust. The small wheels are conspicuous. 24" or 26" are installed, regardless of the size of the rider. This determines the seating position significantly. The dirt bike does without much technology. Gear shifts are unusual. In addition to a suspension fork, there is a coaster brake. With only one rear sprocket and one front chainring, the bike is always ridden in the same gear. Bicycles with one gear are called "Singlespeed" or "Fixie". The two variants of the 1-speed bicycle are distinguished by the wheel hub. In the case of the fixie, the hub is immovable, so each wheel rotation moves the pedals. The dirt bike's range of use is also unusual. Whether in fun parks like the dirt or skate park, on pumptracks or in the city. This MTB is excellent for spectacular tricks and jumps. It is designed for acrobatics and only conditionally suitable as a means of transport.
By the way, the BMX bike is similar to the dirt bike in many respects. However, it has no suspension and does not count as a mountain bike. Normally, BMX bikes are still a bit smaller, more maneuverable and very robust. For beginners who want to dare to do tricks, the BMX is particularly interesting. In terms of price, it is usually below the dirt bikes.
The fatbike is available both as a hardtail and with full suspension. In some cases, suspension elements are dispensed with completely, as the tires provide a similar effect. It stands out due to particularly robust and wide tires. In addition, these are not fully inflated. The rider's body weight is distributed over the wider contact surface on the ground. This provides grip on particularly loose surfaces such as snow, mud or sand. Due to the tires, the MTB moves rather sluggishly. However, you can still get around on asphalt with the fatbike.
Fully stands for "full suspension", or translated "fully suspended". These mountain bikes have both a front wheel with suspension and a rear shock. The suspension travel of the suspension fork varies greatly, depending on the type of mountain bike. A hydraulic seat post is often installed. It ensures that the saddle can be driven up at the touch of a button. Depending on the terrain, the seating position can be adjusted. Also important for the seating position is the steering angle, also called the steering head angle. The steeper downhill you ride, the flatter the steering angle should be. Obstacles can also be rolled over better. It applies, the more suspension travel, the heavier the total weight of the Mtbs by robust components and stable frames. Also in the Fully both carbon and aluminum are used as frame material. The tires increase according to the requirements in grip by large lugs and thus also in weight. Fullys, which are designed for downhill riding, are sometimes built with wheels of different sizes. So-called Mullet or hybrid bikes have 29-inch wheels at the front, the rear wheel measures 27.5". This makes the steering and seat angles even flatter. In addition, the idea behind these designs is to combine the best possible traction with maneuverability. In practice, this is exactly what is noticeable, but the feeling uphill deteriorates due to the changed geometry. In terms of price, fullys are usually above a hardtail due to the components. Fully is therefore a collective term for other mountain bike types that have full suspension. The most common types are explained below.
The all-mountain bike or trail bike
As the name suggests, the all-mountain is a bike that is as versatile as possible. Trail bike is a frequently used synonym. Both uphill and downhill, any terrain can be climbed with these bikes. There is the all-mountain bike also with simple suspension. Mainly it is traded with full suspension. The front suspension travel normally varies between 110-140mm. It is based on a lightweight construction, aluminum and carbon are common frame materials. Mainly it is found with 29-inch wheels. Due to the mostly lockable suspension elements, uphill riding is possible, even if there are faster alternatives on MTBs. Downhill, the all-mountain bike is designed for light scree and small jumps and drops. As an all-rounder, it is ideal for the weekend trip to the bike park, the crossing of the Alps in summer or the active vacation in the bike mecca of choice. For the landscapes within Germany, the suspension travel is sufficient in the vast majority of cases to be able to roll over obstacles in a damped manner.
The enduro bike
Between all-mountain bikes and freeriders are the enduros. With a suspension travel of 140-180mm, they roll over rough scree. Deeper drops and further jumps than are common with the all-mountain bike are compensated. One relies on long frame geometry with a flat steering angle. This results in an upright riding position. The mountain can thus be pedaled up independently, while rough descents are also no problem. Due to the comparatively higher weight of about 13 kg, however, many Enduro riders tend to use a shuttle service or the gondola to the chosen trail start. The Enduro is the all-rounder for bright characters. If you will, the big brother of the all-mountain bike. However, if you want to cover long distances on flat terrain, you should reach for a mountain bike with a stiffer frame. The following models are also designed for alpine terrain.
The freeride bike
The freeride bike offers a suspension travel of 160-200mm. Thus, very long jumps, meter-deep drops and rolling over large stones can be absorbed. Very sturdy components are used to cope with the massive loads of a full-blown freeride adventure. Mainly you ride the Freerider in the bike park or on very rough trails. Uphill riding is fun with the fewest models. For this, steep slopes can be overcome all the better. Since this terrain is technically highly demanding, the freeride bike is worthwhile rather for competitive athletes, cycling professionals and amateurs with years of experience. Rarely do excursions take you to surfaces that require such suspension travel.
The downhill bike
The freeride bike can still be surpassed in terms of suspension travel. A whole 180-250mm are possible with downhill bikes. A very flat steering angle and a lowered saddle ensure that the rider's center of gravity is shifted as far back as possible. Downhill bikes are also subject to high loads. With the large load capacity of the frame comes a lot of weight. The suspension fork has a double bridge. This also provides stability. Going uphill is hardly possible with a downhill bike. Everything is designed to cope with rough slopes at high speeds and to compensate for deep drops. Professional athletes therefore use this type of mountain bike for downhill races.
The e-mountain bike
Various types of mountain bikes are now available with an electric motor. Especially uphill, this is a relief. E-mountain bikes are an excellent support for reaching unique mountain peaks and viewpoints that would require great effort under their own power. E-fullys are particularly popular. The trip to the gondola or shuttle service can be saved by getting assistance uphill from the motor. Normal fullys are often too heavy to reach the high-altitude starting point of a trail several times under their own power. The e-fully allows a higher number of descents. Due to the usually very high total weight, it has a pleasant grip on the ground, which enhances the downhill riding fun. If the battery of the e-motor is empty, it becomes troublesome to ride uphill due to the high weight. The fun is limited - until the next battery charge.
Which mountain bike is right for me?
Do you want to do long tours on slightly uneven ground or reach the top of the mountain independently? In addition, the way down should be fun and lead over rooty trails? Then the cheaper and less maintenance-intensive hardtail can be the perfect choice for you. Do you feel like adrenaline, bumpy descents and full fun in the bike park? Then look around at the fullys of your favorite manufacturers. Often you tend here to more suspension travel and more stable components than you will ever use. Here you can save without sacrificing driving fun. Ultimately, all the models presented are mountain bikes that are built primarily for riding. You rarely make a real bad purchase, as long as you use the bike and have fun doing it.
Where can I find my next mountain bike?
Basically you can buy mountain bikes there are 2 ways to buy a bike:
- Offline / in the store: The classic variant, where you go to the bike store, test bikes and end up taking one home. The big advantage is that you can test the bikes and try them out. With a little luck, you also have a competent advisor at hand, which helps with the right choice. The disadvantage - you are always limited to the selection in the store and therefore see only a fraction of the mountain bike models. In addition, you usually pay a dealer margin on the wheels from the store.
- Online: The variant is becoming increasingly popular for buying a bike. You choose the right bike online and buy it. The bike is then conveniently delivered to your door and if you don't like it, you can return it within 14 days of receipt. The big advantage - you can choose online from all models from any manufacturer and benefit from the experiences of other buyers. The disadvantage - you can not physically sit on the bike before buying.
Whether offline or online, the bicycle market is booming and many models are out of stock. In addition, manufacturers are responding to the boom with steadily rising prices. Therefore, the used mountain bike market is becoming increasingly attractive. But platforms, such as Ebay classifieds and Co. offer little security when buying a high-quality mountain bike. The team of Buycycle has eliminated these uncertainties and established a platform for used premium bikes, where both selling and buying work safely and easily. One benefits from a Europe-wide shipping and return policy. In addition, from a secured payment. This can also be paid in installments - so financing is possible.
If you have any questions about buycycle or your new mountain bike in general, the buycycle team will be happy to help!