Mountain bikes that combine sensational acceleration and cross-country speed to offer the ultimate off-road climbing experience
Top-rated lightweight mountain bikes
1. Specialized S-Works Epic AXS HT
Superlight and superfast on tastier trails
Weight: 8.6kgTravel: 100mm/HTGroupset: SRAM XX1 Eagle AXSPrice: $10,000 / £10.250
REASONS TO BUY : +One of the lightest full production frames, +Ultimate racer spec
- Specialized’s new S-Works EpicHT frame weighs in at 820g for a medium frame, with a rear axle and seat collar.
- (Averaging 760g/1.72lb sans), the S-Works EpicHT frame is one lightest mass-produced mountain bike chassis. It is available in a wide range of sizes, unlike the Unno. Each size also gets a slightly different “Rider-First” layout to provide the perfect ride feel.
- To provide a truly comfortable in-the-saddle ride, the super-skinny blade top seat stays are combined with a 30.9mm dampened Seatpost. The fork’s front is sculpted using a Brain-equipped, RockShox Ultimate fork.
- For extra stability, the fork crown has a shorter offset and the head angle at 68.5 degrees is relaxed. It’s a very composed charger for descents, thanks to the standard short for XC 60-70mm stems and 760mm handlebars. You have a wide range of dropper options thanks to the 30.9mm size Seatpost.
2.Orbea Alma M-Ltd
Orbea’s rigid racer stands out in both the scales and on the start line
Price: $7,999 / £7,649.00Weight: 8.7kgTravel: Fully rigidGroupset: SRAM XX1 Eagle AXSPrice: $8,999 / $8599 / $6918
REASONS TO BUY :Embrace forgiveness, +Customizable options for purchasing
- Orbea’s carbon fibre Alma OMR race hardtail, which weighs in at just over 1kg, isn’t too light. But they have done something extraordinary to make the bike lightweight enough to climb.
- Orbea’s Spirit Rigid fork, weighing 550g and a 100mm suspension unit, will bring your total bike weight down to well below 9kg depending on which fork you use.
- The super-flat, kinked top tube helps dissipate any extra shock from the front end. However, the long, tapered carbon legs provide a smoother ride than one would expect. there is still enough meat around the cranks as well as chainstays to allow for more flexibility. This is the best full suspension mountain bike under 1000 .
3.Mondraker Podium Carbon RR SL
Mondraker Podium Carbon RR SL comes among the good mountain bikes.
Weighs 7.8kgTravel: 100mm/HTGroupset: SRAM XX1 Eagle AXSPrice: $7,899/N/A
REASONS TO BUY
It’s incredible how light it is, Plus, the ride feels leaf-sprung
- Mondraker has updated the Podium hardtail to look more traditional, but it still retains its lightweight and “Forward Geometry” design. Mondraker claims it has made the world’s most lightweight production frameset.
- Forward Geometry, which was born on DH racing tracks thanks to the efforts of Cesar Rojo from Unno and others, was the inspiration for the current trend for super-short stems with extended reach frames.
- Mondraker was the first mainstream brand that used the concept across all its products, from cross-country bikes to gravity bikes. Although the Podium was created a while back, the geometry of the 2021 model has been updated. It now features a 463mm reach and 68.5-degree headtube angle. The stem is 70mm on a large.
- This hardtail is worth the money if you have the budget.
4. Santa Cruz Highball X01 Carbon CC 29 Reserve
The best lightweight hardtail for descents both up and down
Weight: 9.44kgTrack: 100mm/HTGrup: SRAMX01Price: $8,099 / £6,699
REASONS TO BUY
A smooth, practical ride with a super-smooth feel, Guaranteed for life, and +awesome wheel toughness.
- Santa Cruz’s original Highball hardtail race hardtail was so stiff that it could cause numbness in your feet in less than an hour if you were wearing the wrong shoes. It also rattled teeth on steep descents. We didn’t expect an easy ride with the new race rod.
- Santa Cruz has completely changed priorities with its new Highball, realizing that performance and fatigue are more important than the ultimate power punch. The 69.5-degree head angle remains very snappy, but the 450mm reach (larger size) helps to calm down control on fast flat sections.
- Frame compliance improves the bike’s ability to conform to trails for traction and reduces the risk of being rattled off or ricocheting from rocks and drops. The three bottle cage mounts and the threaded bottom bracket are built for long-term use. It can be removed from the existing frame up to 200g.
5. Scott Spark RC SL EVO AXS
Scott’s supreme full suspension racer/raver is now available with the ultimate component package
Weight: 10.1kgTravel: 120mm/120mmGroupset: SRAM XX1 Eagle AXSPrice: $13,999 / PS11,999
REASONS to BUY –Ultralight Race Weapon, Technical trails are still a lot of fun
- Scott has recently updated its Spark XC format. It is bold and modern, and it’s a great ride. You can get really agitated with it too. This latest version also features the best Spark suspension, which is chunder-calming and speed-breeding in its ‘Open” mode.
- The TwinLoc trigger can be pushed on the bar to toggle between a tauter, reduced-travel ‘Traction’ mode or full lock for sprinting. This response is also matched by the front fork.