WHAT DO YOU GET BUYING MORE EXPENSIVE MOUNTAIN BIKE ?

Generally the cheaper priced mountain bikes are achieved through cuts in quality at every stage of component manufacture and subsequent bike build. A mountain bike as the name indicates is designed to cope with mountains: ledges, down jumps, rocks, rough ground and many other surfaces while being fast, nimble and responsive at the same time. If it’s going to be able to take this sort of abuse while performing well, then it needs to have a perfect geometry and well made, good quality components, or sooner than later it will just fall apart.


 

WHAT MAKES MORE EXPENSIVE MOUNTAIN BIKE BETTER ?

A bike is not an as simple toy as one could think. A basic geared bike with no “bells and whistles” consists of over a thousand pieces. The technology of this complex piece of machinery has been evolving over a hundred years and improving the quality of the mountain bikes. The technology basically is what you get buying a more expensive mountain bike. Here’s a short list of qualities that make more expensive mountain bike better than the cheap one.
 

GEOMETRY

GEOMETRY - MTB

Everything about a good modern mountain bike revolves around a good mountain bike’s geometry. Seat tube length, top tube length, head tube, standover height, fork length, wheel size. All these will be related to the feel you get when you first sit on a mountain bike and of course, will differ depending on the type of a mountain bike. The high-end mountain bike will have a geometry carefully conceived for its intended purpose.


 

WEIGHT

WEIGHT - WHAT YOU GET BUYING MORE EXPENSIVE MOUNTAIN BIKE

More expensive and refined materials and more time-consuming, manufacturing processes will reduce the weight and almost always will be the major contributor to increased cost. That’s whether you’re looking at group-sets, wheels, frames or even complete bikes. A lighter bike will always accelerate better, climb better and brake better. It does not necessarily mean you will get 5 kg lighter bike for your money. For example, the difference between Shimano’s top two tiers, Ultegra and Dura-Ace, is 258g. This 258g will cost you nearly £500 more. If you are competitive racer it might have some significance, if you are a Sunday rider, it will only make your bank account lighter.


 

DURABILITY

STRONG BIKE - WHAT YOU GET BUYING MORE EXPENSIVE MOUNTAIN BIKE

What makes more expensive mountain bike better is also durability. The more expensive technical components which are built with greater materials, precision, and refinement should also buy you a mountain bike that will manage to take some abuse. They should because wear items such as chain-rings and cassettes are often the reverse of this. Cheaper options are often made of heavier, but more durable steels, while the lighter and more expensive versions made of aluminium and titanium metals are softer and more prone to get damaged. If you are not a competitive XC rider you might also consider a good steel frame over lighter and more expensive aluminium and carbon materials. Although this might be a subject of speculations. The apparent benefit to more expensive group-sets will be seen in shifters and derailleurs. The cheaper options will often develop play and slop overtime, while the better parts tend to remain their qualities for longer. Chain-rings and cassettes ? Not all of riders will benefit from super expensive and light materials.


 

ADDITIONAL FEATURES

ADDITIONAL FEATURES - WHAT YOU GET BUYING MORE EXPENSIVE MOUNTAIN BIKE

Apart from offering extra gears, the more expensive bikes will offer additional features. As an example in Shimano’s Ultegra and Dura-Ace shifters, you will find the screw-adjustable brake lever position resulting in improved ergonomics. In another example, Shimano and Campagnolo are offering higher-end cranksets in a universal size that’s cross-compatible with semi-compact, compact, and standard sized chainrings. This means that if you want to change your chain-ring size, you can do it without having to change a new crankset. Also, a very useful feature could be a dropper seatpost. With a single push of the lever or button, it will fully extend during climbs for proper leg extension and drop down during descending, steep, technical trails.


 

PERFORMANCE

PERFORMANCE - WHAT YOU GET BUYING MORE EXPENSIVE MOUNTAIN BIKE

The money will also buy you a better performance. The mentioned benefits of reduced weight or increased durability combined with other technological improvements will definitely contribute to the way your bike behaves on the trail. Higher priced options will be most apparent at the gears, crankset and breaking.

The first one will result in a smoother, more precise, quicker shift between gears, and reduced effort at the lever. Something that you will notice once you’ve been on the bike for a few hours. Nowadays this area is determined by electronic gears where ultimate precision and speed are achieved by the simple push of a button.

In the second example, more complex designs and materials will keep the weight down, while increasing strength and stiffness of the crankset. These qualities will provide crisper shifting and much more efficient power transfer from the pedals to the rear wheel. Braking will add an entirely new list of benefits with prices going up. The more pricey brakes are not only stronger, but they offer better feel, control, and will stop you with less squeeze in your hand.


 

CONCLUSION

What you get buying more expensive mountain bike is not always what makes more expensive mountain bike better. You don’t need to buy £5000 mountain bike to enjoy your Sunday trips. But buying £300 bike couldn’t be a good idea either. In our opinion, the pricey top-level mountain bikes will be mainly of benefit to competitive riders and not so useful for the recreational riders. At least not for the value. An average rider will gain nothing from riding the trails on the bike that costs 1000£ more for having 2 kg lighter carbon frame. For an average rider, the most important factor apart from safety should be fun. Something that can have a very broad meaning and consideration, but it’s usually something that also can’t be bought at the cheapest price.


 

WHAT YOU GET BUYING MORE EXPENSIVE MOUNTAIN BIKE – BACK TO TOP

 

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