Best Hardtail Mountain Bike of 2020: Complete Reviews with Comparisons
Hardtail mountain bikes are designed to take serious punishment even though they’re not ideal for downhill speed riding. Hardtails are often the premier choice for jumping off dirt ramps or tackling slopes with high drops. But, the best hardtail mountain bike can do a lot more than just that.
The absence of rear suspension can sometimes be a blessing in disguise, especially to less-experienced riders. And, when all other components are properly aligned, a hardtail mountain bike is probably the most low-key and low-maintenance show of strength.
If you’re looking for a hardtail to ride to work or to attempt some daring feats during your free time, check out our favorite picks for both men and women. Read the reviews till the end for our recommendation on a hardtail mountain bike that might just make you want to ditch your car.
Hardtail Mountain Bike Reviews
1. BEIOU Hardtail Mountain Bike
If you’re all about speed, air time, perfect landings, and maximum safety, then a full carbon fiber hardtail mountain bike probably offers the best bang for your buck.
BEIOU opted for an ultralight carbon fiber hardtail frame for this bike, ideal for dirt jumping and even freeriding. The durability of carbon fiber is well known, as is its price tag. This mountain bike is available in three sizes: 17”, 19”, and 21” frames.
As far as control is concerned, you have nothing to worry about. The Shimano M6000 DEORE system gives you 30 speeds, enough to tackle just about any situation. The bike is also equipped with a Shimano hydraulic hidden disc brake system of impressive stopping power.
The wheel size is 26”. Although the diameter is 1.5” smaller than the more common 650B wheels, this size has been chosen carefully to work with the air suspension fork. The tires are thick enough to handle landings, which makes the size of the wheel less relevant with respect to shock absorption and dispersal.
Furthermore, smaller wheel size is always preferred when you need to go fast. Fewer contact points on the ground reduce friction for speed cycling (until you get up to road speed). This bike will please any average enthusiast, especially since it’s designed to cater to professional riders and rough track conditions.
2. Diamondback Bicycles Lux Women’s Mountain Bike
It comes as no surprise that most women would have a hard time riding men’s mountain bikes on the trails. Diamondback Bicycles knows this and came up with a women’s hardtail mountain bike that can handle high drops and high speeds.
The frame is made from 6061-T6 weapon-grade aluminum alloy. It is very rigid, long-lasting, and low-maintenance. It also has good vibration dispersal properties, which comes in handy if you’re a high flyer.
The wheels offer great traction. They’re 27.5” which may seem a bit big if you want to pick up speed before jumping off a ramp. However, the extra size helps minimize impact shock on landings. It also provides some comfort on the rear when using the bike on rocky terrain, a fair compensation for the hardtail design.
The Shimano 3×8 drivetrain and SR Suntour XCT cranks leave room for plenty of customization on flat trails, slopes, and urban roads. The Tektro Aries mechanical disc brakes have great stopping power.
What’s also nice to see is the somewhat beefier tires. The stability is impressive on mixed terrains.
3. Tommaso 2018 Gran Sasso Mountain Bike
Rolling over large obstacles like they’re nothing usually requires skill and also big wheels. Nothing gets past sticks, stones, potholes, and drops like a pair of 29ers strapped on a solid frame. With Tommaso’s 2018 Gran Sasso mountain bike, you’ll get the impression that the hardtail frame has been designed for any type of environment.
Proper configurations are sometimes hard to find. But Tommaso did a good job of putting together a complete hardtail bike that doesn’t need any aftermarket adjustments to its critical components. The 29er wheels are massive and fit perfectly on the frame.
The suspension is sublime at cruising speeds but can be adjusted to take on most of the impact force from hard landings too. The standard travel distance is 100mm for the Suntour SF15-XCM fork.
The handlebar design is slim and easy to grip which should allow more control when making turns on technical tracks. It should also be easy enough to hold steady after a ramp jump.
The 24-speed Shimano drivetrain gives enough versatility for climbing, speed, as well as slow maneuvering. That being said, the bike excels at climbing slopes with its big wheels and lightweight aluminum frame. All the while you’ll be backed up by confident brakes.
The disc brakes connect to a Shimano M315 hydraulic brake system. They have stopping power in all types of weather conditions. This is good news if you like to ride no matter the forecast. And, the lifetime frame warranty is always a nice bonus.
4. Dynacraft Alpine Eagle Women’s Mountain Bike
Not only is this hardtail designed for exhibitionists but it also ensures maximum comfort when riding around in the city. It picks up speed very fast and has a massive weight capacity despite the small frame.
Apart from the size, color, and price, you can hardly tell that this is a women’s bike. The hardtail frame design is just as rugged as you might expect from a full-sized mountain bike. And, the frame enjoys a lifetime warranty just as the suspension fork which just goes to show the manufacturer’s level of confidence.
When factoring in the frame size and the seat adjustability, the bike is suited for kids over 12 years old and most average-height women.
The V-brakes have good stopping power for linear pull brakes. Not comparable to disc brakes but they allow for better speed control when cornering. The Shimano derailleur and shifters give you access to 21-speed combinations so that you can enjoy riding comfortably wherever you are.
The seat has extra padding which helps minimize vibrations on the rear. Last but not least, the white and hot pink combination makes it both girly and confident at the same time.
5. Schwinn Bonafied Mountain Bike
No list of awesome mountain bikes would be complete without at least one Schwinn entry. The Schwinn Bonafied is extra tough, big, and ready to handle anything you throw at it. And, it’s surprisingly affordable given the manufacturer’s track record.
Right off the bat, you’ll notice the massive 29” wheels. They can help you stick hard landings while counting on the bike to minimize the impact force. Of course, the reliable fork suspension on the front end also does a great job.
As with all other bikes on this list, you’ll find Shimano drivetrain and shifters. You can play around with 24 speeds and not worry about quick adjustments and skipping gears.
The mechanical disc brake system provides reliable stopping power under any weather and trail conditions. Still, because of the hardtail frame design, some activities such as downhill riding should be avoided. Without rear suspension, things might get uncomfortable.
All in all, the bike is all about overpowering the environment. The large wheels have excellent climbing traction and the ability to roll over just about anything with minimal feedback. The 2.25” tires are high-threaded and designed for rugged terrain.
You won’t have to worry about stepping outside the city limits and outside your comfort zone on this one.
So what’s the best hardtail mountain bike in your opinion? If you too have chosen the BEIOU hardtail as the number one pick, then you already know how to separate the best from the rest. The carbon fiber frame and a multitude of other high-end critical components make this the most reliable bike for pros and casual bikers.
That being said, a budget option is always welcomed. If you’re looking for something to ride to work and to enjoy the occasional off-road riding, Schwinn’s Bonafied hardtail mountain bike offers good value for the money in this regard.
Last but not least, don’t forget that most mountain bikes are not unisex. Consider the Diamondback Bicycles Lux Women’s hardtail as an alternative for the fairer sex in your life. The bike can handle some serious hurdles and the small frame makes it easier to control for riders of up to 5’4” tall.