What the price of a mountain bike really means

Getting the right mountain bike can be the difference in you soaring downhill or you holding on for dear life as you fear your bike is going to fall apart. So the question is, how do you know which is the right bike? A common misconception is that you can look at the price of a bike and know exactly what you are going to get. So if that is not the case, what does the price of a mountain bike really mean?

1. Are you sure you want a Mountain Bike

Before really embracing the sticker shock of mountain bike prices, make sure that you really want to buy a mountain bike. If you are going to mostly use it on a paved road or smooth terrain, a mountain bike is not going to work out for you.

2. A Show of Engineering

Your mountain bike will have to put up with some punishment so expect the price tag to reflect that
Your mountain bike will have to put up with some punishment so expect the price tag to reflect that

Some mountain bikes on the market cost about $10,000. Of course, everyone’s finances are different, but, perhaps obviously, the average mountain biker out there is going to grimace at that cost. A bike in that price range is going to have the highest quality parts and will most likely last you a long time.

The most expensive bikes are also usually the most technologically advanced, offering features like carbon Boost wheels and amazing drivetrains. The Yeti brand is known for producing high-priced, high-end mountain bikes, putting themselves in the position of the dream bike brand that biking enthusiasts would buy if they could.

3. Know what “Normal” is

Most of us are not going to even consider spending $10,000 on a mountain bike, no matter how much we love it. So it begs the question: what is the normal amount that you should be spending on a mountain bike? If we are being realistic, you are not going to find a worthwhile new mountain bike in a store for less than $1,000. If you are lucky, you may find a gently used mountain bike of high quality at a garage sale, but right out of a store, you shouldn’t consider anything under $1,000 if you are aiming to keep your bike for a long time while battering it up and down the mountainside.

Buying your bike during the off-season is often the best way to bag a bargain
Buying your bike during the off-season is often the best way to bag a bargain

Less expensive mountain bikes are typically priced lower because the company expects you to be replacing them every one to two years. The parts are inferior and the built is not as sturdy as a higher brand. If you are only going to go mountain biking once a year, you may get away with a less expensive bike, but you are still running the risk of it bending or falling to pieces on you on the way down.

4. Shopping Sales

If you have found a mountain bike that looks like it is high quality and a well-known brand, but it’s listed at below-market price, don’t assume the worst. After the prime biking season is over and the weather has gotten colder, bike shops begin to mark down their current inventory in order to prepare for new inventory in the spring. You may be surprised at the deals that you can get during the off-season, finding an excellent bike for 25 to 50 percent off while it is still new.

5. You have lots of Choices

Get advice from your local bicycle dealer
Get advice from your local bicycle dealer

You are not going to be locked into buying one brand over another. There are literally hundreds of mountain biking brands out there for you to choose from. This means that you need to take your time perusing them in order to find the bike that is right for how you are going to be using it. Talk to your local bike shop seller and get an idea of what you need before taking the plunge.

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marion-fernandez is one of the authors writing for Outdoor Revival