Best Mountain Bikes Under £500

For new mountain bikers it’s a good idea to choose a cheaper model as you get up to speed with the sport. It makes sense before splurging on a more expensive and better-equipped bike.  However, opting to spend less on a mountain bike doesn’t mean that you have to sacrifice performance, style and comfort. That’s why we’re looking here at the Best Mountain Bikes Under £500, to make sure you get all of that and more.

A lot of the bikes on the market today that are in the sub-£500 bracket sport lightweight aluminum frames and good quality braking systems. As an example, a lot of brands are managing to squeeze hydraulic disc brakes into their budget models instead of the more difficult to maintain cable brakes. Even if you have to spend a wee bit more money for a mountain bike with hydraulic brakes it’s well worth the extra expense because you won’t fear spending time on the trail fixing problems common with a cable braking system.

Despite the reduced costs, bikers looking for a mountain bike under £500 should be aware that less expensive models lack the features and sophistication of more costly bikes.  For example, the best mountain bikes are extremely lightweight making them easy to climb hills and bump over obstacles.  Because bikes priced below £500 are made from heavier and more inexpensive parts, riders should expect these mountain bikes to accelerate slower and be more difficult to get up the steep parts.

But, you can still get a lot of bike for under £500. Let’s have a look at the best of the bunch.

7 of the Best Mountain Bikes Under £500

7: GT Aggressor 1.0

Ideal for the entry-level mountain biker, this GT steed is a no frills model that will allow a beginner to become accustomed to the sport.  As an introductory model, riders won’t be treated to the lightest material or hydraulic braking; instead, the GT Aggressor is a bike that a new rider can grow into.  The bike is made from aluminum and has a 24 speed Shimano drive train.

To get hold of one, find the GT Aggressor at Evans Cycles.

6: GT Timberline 1.0

Similar in price and features to the GT Aggressor 1.0, the GT Timberline offers the larger 29” wheels that will allow a rider to become accustomed to difficult trail rides.  Experienced riders understand the advantages of having a bike with large enough wheels to easily ride over large rocks or tree stumps.  The larger wheels make it easier to traverse difficult terrain while still leaving a new rider feeling like he has control of the mountain bike at all time.

Check out the Timberline at Evans.

5: Mongoose Tyax Expert

Designed for the in-between mountain biker who is not yet ready for a more advanced and sophisticated bike, but has more experience than a beginner model is meant for, the Mongoose Tyax Expert helps to fill that gap.

The bike is manufactured from lightweight aluminum and rides on 26” wheels.  The Mongoose Tyax Expert utilizes SRAM performance parts and components that are often only found in more expensive mountain bikes.  For example, the Tyax Expert sports SRAM X5 derailleurs and shifters that put this bike above most sub-500 models.  Furthermore, the Mongoose Tyax Expert has hydraulic disc brakes that are often only found in bikes costing closer to £1000.

Visit Evans to see the Mongoose Tyax in more detail.

4:  GT Avalanche 2.0

And so, another GT on the Best Mountain Bikes Under £500 list – they do make a good budget bike! Priced slightly higher than the aforementioned GTs, the Avalanche 2.0 is still a budget friendly options, but features a lighter weight frame and more advanced trail-dampening suspension.  Sitting on 26” tyres, the GT Avalanche offers an advanced aluminum frame that is designed to both cut weight and keep the cost of the bike low.

The mountain bike utilizes Rock Shox XC28 suspension – a great budget fork that dampens out the rough stuff while still allowing the bike to easily navigate any off-road trail.  More pictures and specifications of the bike can be viewed at Evans.

3: Carrera Vulcan Mountain Bike

Rated by a number of sources as being the best mountain bike for entry-level mountain bikers, the Carrera Vulcan combines excellent handling, acceleration and control at a great price point.  As a new mountain biker, riders don’t need the fancy features and expensive components found on more costly bikes.  Instead, riders need a bike that they can grow into as they become accustomed to riding different trails and learning about the components of the bike.  Consequently, the Carrera Vulcan features hydraulic disc brakes that are easy to maintain for new riders, 26” tyres and an aluminum frame.  Check out the bike at Halfords.

2: Boardman Medium Mountain Bike Comp 2012/2013

Designed by famed Olympic cyclist Chris Boardman, this mountain bike features a lightweight aluminum frame and top of the line parts at a value price.  Ideal for the entry-level mountain biker who is looking for a versatile bike that can just as easily tackle a challenging dirt trail or a smooth track, the Boardman is an excellent option.  Riding on 26” wheels, the Boardman keeps the rider low to the ground to maximize speed and accelerating without affecting control and stability.

Find yourself a Boardman Mountain Bike at Halfords.

And so to the Best Mountain Bike Under £500.

1: Trek 3900 DisC

Mountain biking enthusiasts who are looking for a reliable bike at a budget price will want to look no further than the Trek 3900 Disc.  Manufactured by one of the most sought after and recognized mountain biking companies in the industry, this model has many features that are commonly found in more expensive bikes.  According to Trek, the 3900 Disc is the best selling mountain bike in the world because it is versatile enough to be used on the trail, for commuting or a weekend ride.

Made from extremely lightweight aluminum, the 3900 has easy to maintain hydraulic disc brakes and 26” wheels that keep the rider close to the ground, but always in control.  For more information and pricing on the Trek 3900 visit Evans.

Let Me Know Your Best Mountain Bike Under £500

While this information is simply a guide, it will hopefully make your mountain bike shopping experience a little bit easier.  Remember, everyone’s different, but hopefully this will give you a good start. If you think I’ve missed anything off the list, just let me know – drop a comment below, or get in touch.

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Colin started mountain biking in the early 2000s and has haphazardly, and with barely increasing skill, dragged his bike around the majority of Scotland's trail centres since then. Colin has oodles of hard earned experience in how NOT to do things - listen, be warned and don't repeat his mistakes...   More about Colin... Google+ Colin