Best Entry-Level Downhill Mountain Bikes- Introduction
A downhill mountain bike is designed to help you overcome sloping, rocky trails. As a beginner, you might wonder if it is worthwhile to get a bike specifically for downhill riding.
However, just imagine being unprepared while riding on an advanced trail. Suffice to say that you would have a harder time than a more experienced rider who is familiar with downhill riding etiquette and has the right equipment.
When shopping for a great downhill bike, you might realize that most serious downhill bikes are quoted at great prices. Thankfully, you can also find reasonable deals on bikes that are suitable for beginner to intermediate trails; these are the trails that have a few downhills and not much uphill.
The five entry-level downhill bikes here all give great value for their purchase price. Read on to find one which suits you!
Best Starter Downhill Mountain Bikes
1. Mongoose Impasse Men’s Mountain Bike with 29-Inch Wheels
Sure, it says it is a men’s bike, but you can switch out the seat for a women’s seat, and it would still be perfectly suitable.
This aluminum suspension frame bike with 29-inch wheels features SRAM twist shifters, a 21-speed rear derailleur, and alloy front and rear disc brakes. Its element suspension fork helps provide a smoother ride to increase control.
This model from Mongoose is a mid-level mountain bike with parts that provide decent performance, on par with some pricier bikes. Bikers who had this bike commented that they could easily upgrade with different tires and Shimano brakes to make it perform at a higher level.
The bike comes in two colors: black and silver. When you think lightweight aluminum, you might think light enough to carry around, but this bike weighs 44 pounds (20 kg).
It works well for a beginning or intermediate mountain biker, but you should not attempt advanced trails on this bicycle. You can adjust the seat to suit rider heights of between 5’9″ and 6’7″ (175-200 cm).
- Affordably priced
- Great for beginners testing out trails
- Rides smooth
- Limited color selection
- The frame is small for tall riders
- Some parts would need an upgrade for use on intermediate trails
2. Schwinn Traxion Mountain Bike
The Schwinn Traxion mountain bike features a hefty aluminum frame with full dual suspension and powerful Schwinn suspension forks, and 29-inch wheels that help soak up the bounces and bumps of trails and mountains.
Other features include front and rear Shimano derailleurs for smooth gear changes and 24 speed Shimano EZ Fire trigger shifters. You cannot adjust this 18-inch frame that’s designed to be one-size-fits-all.
You can adjust the seat, so you can use it for individuals varying in height from 5’8″ to 6’4″ (172-193 cm). The durable 21-speed bike gets some poor consumer reviews because its pedals pop off. This comes from poor installation when the bike comes unassembled.
If you take the bike to a bike shop for assembly, this will not happen unless you wreck the bike.
As a bike suited for beginner or intermediate cyclists, you will not break the bank purchasing this. You need to be able to lift 49 pounds (22.2 kg) because that is the weight of this bike. It comes in a choice of two colors: blue and gray.
- Affordably priced
- Quality shocks provide a smooth ride over rugged terrain
- Strong frame
- Bolts and brakes are easily damaged
- Issues with brakes’ proper functioning have been reported
- The ride may feel clumsy to some
3. Huffy 26″ Trail Runner Women’s Mountain Bike
This Huffy bike designed for women provides a tough steel frame in pink and black. It features linear-pull brakes, making it different from the typical disc brakes used on most mountain bikes.
Its 26-inch wheels combine with a suspension fork and Shimano derailleur for easy handling and a comfortable ride. This steel frame bike isn’t meant for advanced or intermediate trails, but you could ride it on beginner trails with simpler downhill obstacles.
It does feature small details like Krayton grips and an ATB saddle with contrasting stitching. It uses alloy linear-pull brakes rather than disk brakes. It combines a three-piece crank and 18-speed index shifters. This bike works well for beginner or casual mountain bikers.
- Affordably priced
- Well-built frame
- Smooth ride
- It can be difficult to adjust gears
- Limited color options
- Trouble with parts aligning on assembly
4. Gravity 2021 FSX 1.0 Dual Full Suspension Mountain Bike
If you need another alternative, try the Gravity 2021 FSX 1.0 with its black aluminum frame and 24-speed Shimano shifting technology.
This 26-inch frame dual-suspension mountain bike provides quick stops using its disc brakes front and rear. Its frame uses CantiBeam SinglePivot Technology to provide better motion for turns and hills.
Its suspension combines REAR adjustable coil-over cartridge and an Advanced Suspension Fork. For its price point, this bike does the job.
- Multiple colors to choose from
- Adjustable suspension
- Not designed for heavy trail use
- Tires are designed for roads rather than trails
- Full suspension is cumbersome and takes up too much space
5. Eurobike Full Suspension 27.5 Inch MTB
Eurobike provides a comfy ride on a dual full suspension 21-speed mountain bike featuring Shimano 21 speed shifters.
This bright orange 18-inch frame steel bike takes the trails on 27.5-inch tires and stops on a dime with MTB Disc Brakes. It is lighter than most of the other options, weighing only 40 pounds (18 kg).
It is not designed for intermediate or advanced trails, but you can take light trails with it. The adjustable frame and seat let you alter it to suit those of heights 5’7″ to 6′ (170-183 cm) and weighing up to 300 pounds (136 kg).
- Very affordably priced
- Great suspension system
- Solid frame
- Brakes and shifters are made of plastic
- Wheels are not extremely strong and may flex while riding
- It will require an out of box tune up
Of course, whichever bike you choose depends on your situation. If you have the budget to spare, go with the Eurobike for its high-quality design and parts. Since you can adjust it for height, it works for the majority of people. It weighs less than most of the other bikes, so it makes it easier to carry.
Not everyone has deep pockets to spend on a bike. For a more affordable option, you could go for the Huffy Trail Runner bike. Its frame size also works well for most heights. Since you can change the seat, you can make it suit your height. This really is not the bike for intermediate or advanced riders, but you can certainly hit the entry-level downhill bike trails with it.