10 Best Mountain Bikes for Beginners – Buyer’s Guide

Choosing the wrong mountain bike being a beginner is not less than a nightmare. A lot of available options in the market and the high prices of the mountain bike make this selection more daunting. So you are here because you would probably be searching for a reasonable beginner’s mountain bike capable of serving almost all good features but by keeping things simple. Right?

You are absolutely at the right place because you’ll learn about the 10 best mountain bikes for beginners and the buying guide so that you won’t make any mistakes while purchasing.

Let’s move further without further pause!

List of Top 10 best Mountain Bikes for Beginners

  • Giant Talon 2
  • Trek – Marlin 4 
  • Schwinn Protocol 1.0
  • Diamondback
  • Mongoose Dolomite 
  • Co-op Cycles DRT 1.2
  • Trek 820
  • Liv Tempt 1 
  • Vitus Escarpe 29 CR 
  • Norco Fluid FS3

#1. Giant Talon 2

(Best Versatile Mountain Bike)

If you are searching for a highly advanced technological bike within an affordable range of price, then you will surely fall in love with Giant Talon 2!

This amazingly perfect bike has an ALUXX-grade aluminium frame, proof of its high durability and lightweight, excellent for mountain climbing. Its wheels have a size of 27.5″ with a width of 2.4″ that is broad enough to support the ups and downs of the hills. Its best in its weight and has a RockShox XC 30 fork with suspension travel of 100mm prevents the rider from all the shocks in the journey and making it fast and furious.

This bike has attained its pro-level due to its Tektro HDC M275 hydraulic brake system, which has an ultra-stopping capacity in every trail. Its classic off-road design is perfectly adapted to enhance the comfort with Shimano Alivio front and rear derailleurs.

The additional marvellous specifications include tubeless-ready wheels, Shimano 2×9 speed drivetrain, 29.5 lbs product weight, internal cable routing, quick release levers that make the removing of the wheels faster, gear indicator in the rear and front shifter. This fitness bike will take the racing experience to the next level!

Pros

  • ALUXX- Grade Aluminum frame 
  • 27.5″ wheels 
  • 29.5 lbs weight 
  • 100mm suspension travel 
  • Shimano 2×9 speed drivetrain 
  • Hydraulic brake system

Cons

  • Although lightweight feels heavy 
  • Needs some improvement 

Giant Talon 2

Giant Talon 2

  • Best Versatile Mountain Bike

2. Trek – Marlin 4 

(Best Recreational Beginner Bike)

If you are looking for an excellent beginner bike for the daily commute, then Trek – Marlin 4 is here with its all perfections!

This starter bike is amazingly equipped with a 29″ wheel size that gives an ideal height to the rider as they are broader hence perfect for giving stability to the ride and assuring the rider’s safety. The frame is made of Silver Aluminium available in magenta and grey colour, a highly durable and long-lasting material that supports riders in getting practice.

Its SR Suntour fork has a suspension travel of 100mm that makes this hardtail MTB type XC bike an efficient shock absorber and enhances the smoothness of the ride in the street bumps. It has 21 gears that are enough to support the initial rides. Shimano Tourney TY300, 7-speed rear derailleur, and Shimano TY300, 3-speed front derailleur provide an excellent handling capacity. Its Tektro mechanical disc braking system enhances the grip and high stopping power.

The additional components of this starter bike include Bontrager connection double-walled rims that enhance the wheel life, 3×7 drivetrain, and the 31.97 lbs product weight. Its on-trail high performance makes it worth buying!

Pros

  • 29″ double rimmed wheel size 
  • Alpha-Silver Aluminium frame 
  • 7-speed rear and 3-speed front derailleur 
  • 21-gears 
  • Mechanical disc brakes 
  • Suspension travel of 100mm

Cons

  • More suitable for daily commute 
  • No lockout feature 

Trek – Marlin 4

Trek - Marlin 4

  • Best Recreational Mountain Bike

#3. Schwinn Protocol 1.0

(Best Mountain Bike for Dual Suspension)

If you are looking for ultimate comfort during the ride, a full suspension bike offers you this named Schwinn Protocol 1.0!

This perfect shock absorber bike has a 26″ wheel size with lightweight double-walled rims that gives a smooth ride to beginners of height ranging between 5’5″-6′. This product is equipped with a sturdy Aluminium frame of 16″ size with knobby tires gives a higher level of stability and ensures security during the ride.

The design is perfect in that it supports the rider on the bumpiest mountains and gives an enjoyable ride on the hard terrains. For optimized gearing, it has 3-piece Schwinn alloy cranks. This bike has Shimano Altus rear derailleur, and 24-speed Shimano EZ-Fire trigger shifters with a sheer versatile nature. High maintenance has a Promax disc braking system in front and the V brake in the rear with adjustable brakes; it gives high power for stopping. 

Additionally, the incredible components of the bike are the Schwinn saddle, chainset, seat tube, and 44.5 lbs weight suitable to carry 200 lbs and the amazing power of absorbing the shocks due to the suspension pivot. So what are you waiting for!

Pros

  • 26″ double rimmed wheels 
  • Aluminium frame with knobby tires 
  • Carry 200 lbs 
  • Promax front and rear brakes
  • Perfect for all terrains
  • Smooth-shifting 

Cons

  • No mounted carrier 
  • The seat is not much comfortable 

Schwinn Protocol 1.0

Schwinn Protocol 1.0

  • Best Mountain Bike For Dual Suspension

#4. Diamondback

(Best Hardtail Mountain Bike)

If you are searching for a beginner-level hardtail ride that can meet your desire with its efficient performance, then Diamondback is here in the market!

This wonderful bike is equipped with a 29″ wheel diameter and width of 2.1″ that are considered ideal because of their greater stability and easy-rolling over the bigger holes. Amazingly, it has a stylish frame made of 6061-T6 Aluminum with a size of 18″, which is superb and durable even on the rough terrain and the bumpy mountain bikes. It has a powerful braking system that is purely designed to ride the mountains. Its Tektro mechanical disc brakes have 160/180mm rotors. This 35 lbs bike has an SR Suntour fork with a suspension travel of 80mm. Shimano Acera 8-speed rear derailleur provides a various number of gears along with 24-speeds.

Moreover, this epitome of perfection contains a KMC Z82 chain that can cover a 3×8 speed drivetrain. Shimano trigger shifter, 14g steel spokes, rimmed wheels that provide extra protection to the wheels and ensure stability, platform pedals, consist of Shimano 11- 32T 8 speed, M-seres saddle, 30.9 mm seat post with the adjustable feature, with 85% assemblage. Get ready for this amazing hardtail ride!

Pros

  • 29″ wheel size 
  • 18″ 6061-T6 Aluminium frame 
  • KMC Z82 chain 
  • Shimano components 
  • Adjustable seat post 
  • 80 mm suspension travel 

Cons

  • The remaining 15% of the assembly is tough
  • Not comfortable for some 

Diamondback

Diamondback bike

  • Best Hard Trail Mountain Bike

#5. Mongoose Dolomite 

(Best Fat Tire Mountain Bike)

If you want a stable and comfortable ride on all types of roads with fat tires that moves on any surface, then we have a great bike called Mongoose Dolomite!

The marvellous feature of this bike is its wheel size with a diameter of 26″ suitable for all terrains with 4″ width; they give high stability and surpass all the hurdles. Its incredibly high tensile steel frame is more reliable, durable, and normal in size, i.e., 17″.

Within an affordable range, this bike has 7-speed Shimano Drivetrain with an extra smooth gearing system; it has 51.5lbs weight, so this product is considered ideal for larger riders. The dual mechanical disc brakes are perfect for absorbing the shocks, reducing the tension during the ride, and ensuring safety even on the slippery road with amazing speed and high performance. It is more suggested for the height range of 5’6″ to 6′.

The other features include knobby tires with a wider and plump rim of the wheels, paintwork making it more classy, high riding potential, cruise model pedals, and twist shifter, making the uphill and downhill ride the smoothest. These features convince you to fall in love with this product!

Pros

  • 26″ wheel size 
  • High tensile frame 
  • 7-speeds Shimano drivetrain 
  • Support varying heights 
  • Cruise control
  • High stopping power 

Cons

  • A bit heavier 
  • The seat doesn’t support overweight riders 

Mongoose Dolomite

Mongoose Dolomite Men’s Fat Tire Mountain Bike

  • Best Fat Tire Mountain Bike

#6. Co-op Cycles DRT 1.2

(Best Hardtail Mountain Bike)

If you are exploring a budget bike at an affordable price with quality features, thanks to the Co-op Cycles DRT 1.2, that will give you the ride you have never had!

Incredibly, the DRT 1.2 is equipped with the WTB trail boss wheels with a varying range, i.e., 27.5″ and 29″ suitable to support the riders of different heights and give the bike different sizes. This hardtail bike is made with an Aluminium frame that is light in weight and highly durable.

The gearset is of high-quality Shimano Altus along with the Alivio front derailleur. With the help of a rare shadow 9-speed cassette, you can get a wide range of 18 gears. The hydraulic disc braking system is perfect for increased stopping power in an immediate situation. The SR Suntour XCR fork has a suspension travel of 120mm. The dual-mode of suspension makes the ride comfy. The Tektro brake lever is easy to handle and smoothens the braking system. 

The additional features include; tubeless-ready rims of the wheels, Shimano Alivio rear hub, Shimano 15mm thru-axle front hub, and Shimano rapid-fire plus shifters. Its best use for the mountain makes it worth buying!

Pros

  • 27.5″ and 29″ wheel diameter 
  • Aluminium frame 
  • 9-speed cassette 
  • 18 number of gears
  • 120mm suspension travel 
  • Shimano components 

Cons

  • It can’t be set from a local store
  • Gears start popping

#7. Trek 820

(Best Budget-Friendly Mountain Bike)

If you are searching for a perfect beginner mountain bike with impressive features and durable performance, your wait is over because Trek 820 is here! 

This incredibly perfect bike has a wheel size of 26″ means you can freely give it to your child because it supports their ride according to their height. Its custom steel rack-mounted frame is highly reliable with the size of 13″ to 22.5″ with which you can travel anywhere either mountains, dirt, gravel or stones it is strong and light to handle at the same time. 

You can choose a frame from any of the six available choices according to your height. The frame has a load capacity of 300lbs. For effective padding, it has EZ-fire shifters. It has a rear hub of a 7-speed freewheel with formula FM31 alloy, the SR Suntour coil suspension with 75mm travel. 

The other significant Shimano components include Shimano Tourney TY300 rear derailleur along with front TY500 derailleur, Shimano TZ500, 14-28, 7-speed cassette, VP-536 nylon platform pedal, KMC Z7 chain, Shimano Tourney TY301 crank, Bontrager SSR grips, 1-1/8” threadless headset, and amazing Tektro alloy linear-pull brakes. Its lightweight 33.68lbs and lifetime warranty attracts customers worldwide!

Pros

  • 26″ wheel size 
  • Custom steel frame 
  • Frame sizes vary-13″ to 22.5″
  • Suspension travel of 170mm
  • Perfect for diverse terrain 
  • Superior construction 

Cons

  • Saddle sometime uncomfortable 
  • Considered little heavier 
  • Need some tuning 

Trek 820

Trek 820

  • Best Budget Friendly Mountain Bike

#8. Liv Tempt 1 

(Best Lady Specific Hardtail Bike)

If you are looking for a women’s bike model that fits the shape with perfect geometry, then special thanks to Liv Tempt 1, which offers you this!

This women mountain bike is equipped with double rimmed 27.5″ wheels with which a lady can enjoy every moment of the ride to its fullest. The bike is made of an ALUXX-Grade Aluminium material frame which is sturdy, reliable and has a long-lasting capacity to face hard trails.

The air spring fork has a suspension travel of 100mm for more comfort and shocks free rides. It has a variety of 11 gears suitable to support the journey according to the rider’s desire, and as a beginner, it gives a wide range of practice options. The front and rear hubs are Shimano QR with sealed bearing. The product has Tektro TKD 143, a hydraulic brake system that is perfect for giving a high stopping power immediately. It has a giant spot seat post with 30.9 mm with a Liv sport saddle. It has Shimano Deore 11 speed rear derailleur. 

The other amazing features include the bottom cartridge bracket, giant connect trail handlebars, Shimano Deore chain, and a 7-degree stem with high versatility. Its excellence for the lady ride makes it worth buying!

Pros

  • 27.5″ wheels 
  • ALUXX-Grade Aluminium frame 
  • 11 speed rear derailleur 
  • 11 gears 
  • Superior women bike 
  • 100 mm suspension travel 

Cons

  • Unisex ride 
  • Adjustments required 

#9. Vitus Escarpe 29 CR 

(Best Cheap Enduro Bike)

If you are looking for an enduro bike within an affordable range, then we are presenting you the desired bike, i.e., Vitus Escarpe 29 CR!

This incredibly amazing bike has an aluminium/carbon frame T700 carbon at the front triangle. An aluminium swingarm at the rear triangle ensures its sturdy performance even on the hard trails. Moreover, it is available in all sizes. Its ideal wheel size, i.e., 29″, makes the ride roll over the hurdles smoothly. 

The suspensions are of two types depending on the preference and the budget; they are either Marzocchi/Rockshox with 140mm front and 150mm rear travel. This MTB-type full suspension enduro bike has a 1×11 Shimano Deore drivetrain. This enduro featured bike has a front Shimano MT420 and a rear hydraulic disc braking system of Shimano MT410, which gives a perfect Vitus lock-on grip. It has a 12-speed rear derailleur with a rapid-fire plus rear shifter. 

Additionally, this marvellous bike contains a Nukeproof Neutron saddle, varying seat posts, SRAM UDH gear hanger, Shimano Deore M6100 cassette, Shimano chain, and crankset, Nukeproof Horizon riser alloy handlebars, Vitus Bolt seat screw, Shimano SM-BB52 bottom bracket that will take the riding to the next level!

Pros

  • 29″ wheel size
  • Marzocchi/Rockshox suspension systems 
  • Aluminium/Carbon frame 
  • Rapid-fire plus rear shifter 
  • Vitus lock-on grip 
  • Shimano components 

Cons

  • Bracket cable routing under the bottom 
  • The carbon frame is heavier

Vitus Escarpe 29 CR 

Vitus Escarpe 29 CR 

  • Best Cheap Enduro Bike

#10. Liv Tempt 1 

(Best for Each Trail)

Each and everything a rider wants in a ride with full suspension and superior trailing power can find in the best trail bike known as Norco Fluid FS3!

This marvellous featured bike has an Aluminium frame available in all sizes to guarantee its high stability and ultra-durability with sturdy moves. The amazingly perfect wheels with the size of 27.5″ increase the handling capacity of the bike with high performance in the mountains. This extra slacker geometry bike has XC bike full suspension.

The fork has a suspension travel of 130mm. The rear shocks suspension has a travel capacity of 120mm, on which the comfort and the smoothness of the ride depend. Its 12 gears with front Tektro HD-M275 Hydraulic brakes give the rider a broad range of options that he can use for practice. It has a high rolling capacity over the obstacles SRAM SX Eagle 1×12 drivetrain enough to take the rider beyond the horizon. 

Moreover, the bike is equipped with VP Lock-on grips, trigger dropper lever, the stem of 50mm in length, Tektro HD-M275 brakes lever, varying sized Seatpost, SRAM PG-1210 Eagle, 11-50T cassette, and Stan’s Flow D 32H rims. Have a perfect riding experience with FS3!

Pros

  • 27.5″ wheels 
  • Aluminium frame 
  • Hydraulic brakes 
  • 12 gears
  • Slacker head angle 
  • Suitable for all trails 

Cons

  • Size is heavier 
  • Slow to get speed 

Comparison Table

ProductWheel Size (Inches)Price

Giant Talon 2

  • 27.5 & Frame Material is Aluxx – Grade Aluminum
Check Price On Amazon

Trek – Marlin 4   

  • 29 & Frame Material is Aluminum
Check Price On Amazon

Schwinn Protocol 1.0

  • 26 & Frame Material is Alpha-silver Aluminum
Check Price On Amazon

Diamondback

  • 29 & Frame Material is 6061-T6 Aluminum
Check Price On Amazon

Mongoose Dolomite 

  • 26 & Frame Material is steel
Check Price On Amazon

Co-op Cycles DRT 1.2

  • 27.5 & 29 Frame Material is Aluminum
Check Price On Amazon

Trek 820

  • 26 & Frame Material is steel
Check Price On Amazon

Liv Tempt 1 

  • 27.5 & Frame Material is Aluxx – Grade Aluminum
Check Price On Amazon

Vitus Escarpe 29 CR 

  • 29 & Frame Material is Aluminum/carbon
Check Price On Amazon

Norco Fluid FS3 

  • 26 & Frame Material is is Aluminum
Check Price On Amazon

Best Mountain Bikes for Beginners- Buying Guide 

The mountain bikes are such a crucial need of day to day increasing desire of riding. But as they are specified for the hills and the mountain climbing, their features are also different. Especially if you are a beginner, then you must look at these significant features in a bike!

1.     Wheel Size 

The traditional mountain bikes were equipped with the 26″ wheel size, but now the most preferred ones are 27.5″ or 29″ in diameter as they are larger, which is helpful in ultra stability and provides the rider more comfort while climbing bumpy hills. 

The 26″ wheels are extinct, and the 29″ wheel diameter supports the ride even on the off-road with high braking power. It helps in maintaining the speed and the inertia. And they are the best for downhill rides. On the other hand, the 27.5″ wheel diameter is recommended for people with a short height; it helps them maintain traction and better moves in the smooth and rough terrain with super speed and stability. 

2.     Frame Material 

The frame is the body of the bike that ultimately guides the rider during the whole journey, so it must be reliable and durable. There are different types of frame materials; all are good, but the preference depends on a budget of the buyer. If you want to purchase a bike in an affordable range, then an Aluminium alloy frame is the best. If you go a little up, then carbon steel and titanium frames will welcome you. But Aluminum frames are lighter and are the most suggested for beginners. 

3.     Frame Size 

Frames come in all sizes; small, medium, and large. But the appropriate frame is according to the height of the rider. So if you are a beginner, then first measure your height, and then according to this, select the frame of your need. But make sure your arms are not stretching and you are in a relaxed position while riding; otherwise, you will have to face the consequences in the form of stress and cramps. Usually, the seat and the handlebars are adjustable; this incredible feature helps a rider a lot. 

4.     Brakes 

Brakes are the most important element in a bike. Without them, bike riding is not secure. It helps in stopping in the emergency and the severe cuts on the mountains. 

Commonly, two types of brakes are used disc brakes and rim brakes; the disc brakes are expensive, and rim brakes are available at an affordable price. Formulate your budget and then choose the brake type. 

5.     Bike Size 

Bike size decides the level of comfort during the ride. The more appropriate the size, is more comfortable the ride is. But bikes come in different sizes in the market, but you can not choose a bike with a rough idea. You must try it before purchasing. Now deciding a bike size is easier and quick due to the bike size calculators and charts. 

6.     Suspension 

The mountain bikes may be equipped with a hardtail suspension or full suspension. The hardtail suspension that only contains the front fork is sufficiently available at an affordable price for regular rides. Still, if you desire to ride on the rough road and mountains, the full-suspension is recommended for higher security. 

Two more options are coil suspension that quickly absorbs the shocks during small bumps, and air suspension. You can set the sensitivity of the suspension with high accuracy with other required specifications.

Conclusion on Best Mountain Bikes for Beginners

Verdict

Mountain bikes for beginners should be simple, unique, and cheap. Because currently, you are at the initial stages. So such bikes will suit you better. You can choose any mountain bike from the list mentioned above without any doubt. Good luck with the start of a new riding journey!

Mark Webster is bike enthusiast and researcher in bike industry from last 15 years. Mark had been working in different bike manufacturing companies for research and development of new models. Mark has mission to make bike design safest for bikers. The dream of Mark is to make bikes too mainstream that we can reduce global carbon emissions.

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