The world over, mountain biking is being considered way more seriously than ever before. Increasingly, it is replacing most other forms of workouts. It is not just a mode of the workout, but also a means of transport and a sport too. As a result of the growing popularity of the sport, you also have a wide range of options amongst the mountain bike.
Manufacturers are literally riding on the popularity bandwagon to offer as many variants as possible. Today you have a wide range of manufacturers coming up with different features in these mountain bikes. The best thing is they are also available in a wide price range. So there is some option that fits every kind of budget. Even under $300, you have a sufficient variety of dependable products. Often pricing and quality go hand in hand, but sometimes you can get real value buys on a budget.
That is exactly why choosing the best mountain bike under $300 can be a challenge. You have to look for options that do not compromise quality or user comfort and at the same time, can offer you a reasonable choice within a specific price range. Given the degree of exercising in a bike, the comfort of the biker is crucial. That alone will offer them the tenacity and the ability to continue with the sport for an extended period. Moreover,
We decided to look for the most compelling options under $300 and created this handy list of the best mountain bike under $300. We have rated these products on the basis of quality, comfort and overall performance. We have also taken into account the various degrees of comparison and efficiency and then selected these.
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1. Schwinn Men’s Protocol 2.7 Mountain Bike – Dual Suspension Frame
Durable, lightweight and powerful, this is surely one of the best mountain bikes under $300. The Schwinn Men’s Protocol 2.7 is a powerful front fork bike and has a plush rear shock. This is ideal for steep single tracks that need both power and tenacity. So riding on your favorite trails is set to become a lot simpler and much easier with this new bike.
This bike comes equipped with a full suspension frame, and as a result, the ride is never as bumpy as before. So your ride is a lot smoother than before, and you are able to power forth. The alloy cranks are a welcome addition. They make the bike a lot more lightweight, but at the same time, it can maintain its balance. This also helps in optimizing the gear power.
It can easily tackle most rocky trails without resulting in too much fatigue for the biker. So if you enjoy your time amidst the scenic trails and enjoy a good workout to start your day, this is perhaps the best way to go ahead. The aluminum suspension also makes the bike a lot more durable despite the rough terrain.
One of the best highlights of this mountain bike is the 21-Speed Shimano EZ-Fire trigger shifters. This is where the bike derives its power and speed. It helps the bike maintain its agility and at the same time enables easy gear shifting. So, all in all, you have an extremely smooth experience and a memorable ride. Both the front and rear brakes in this bike are disc brakes that offer strong friction and the ability to stop the bike easily whenever required.
The wide tires along with the strong suspension add to the comfort. The tires are a good 2.25 inch wide and provide a firm grip on the mountainous terrain. The alloy cranks also cut down the hassle of maintenance.
- Firm and durable bike with low maintenance
- The strong suspension absorbs bumps well and offers a smooth ride
- Wide knobby tires helping in keeping the ride smooth and offer a firm grip on rough terrain
- That said, some users pointed out that there is a flaw in mounting the front wheel with brake pads interfering the overall quality of the ride. That apart, most users appear to be satisfied with the quality of the ride and the maintenance involved therein.
2. Merax Finiss Aluminum 21 Speed Mountain Bike – Shimano 21-Speed Derailleurs
This is another lightweight and super sturdy bike for the mountain trails. It is built in a way to provide maximum power and speed while maintaining the overall bike balance. This bike is popular for its speed and the comfort and ease of biking that it represents. It is an absolute rough and tough machine for the rough roads.
The suspension of this bike with 800 mm travel capacity needs special mention. It just does not absorb the bumps on the road but also gives the biker a sense of ease. You feel like gliding through the gravel and rocks. The shifters too, Shimano EF51 with 21 Speed is a perfect option for the rough roads. This helps you maintain your agility and speed even on rough roads. Easy switching of gears further helps in maintaining the overall ride momentum to a large extent.
The Shimano FD-TZ30 Front Derailleur and mechanical disc brakes are other great positives about this bike. The Aluminum crank also helps in cutting down the weight of this bike. However, compared to many other expensive brands, these are slightly heavy bikes. But remember you are getting it at a steal. No wonder it is one of the best mountain bikes under $300.
- A steady and smooth bike for the gravel-filled mountainous terrain
- Strong breaks and smooth shifters help in fast and improved gear shifting
- The frame and the aluminum crank aid the challenges of a mountainous road
- The front shock is a big negative as per many users. They feel this offsets the quality ride that most other features guarantee
- The quality of the tires also comes across as a red flag for some users. They feel, compared to the other features, the company has really compromised on it. This has affected the overall efficiency.
3. Vilano Mountain Bike Ridge 2.0 – Maximum Stopping Power
If you are looking for a functional and fun bike, this is one of the best mountain bikes under $300. It is lightweight and well suited for trail riding, but at the same time, it is an extremely versatile one. You can use the same bike for riding around the town after the trails or go for work too. So in that sense, it is an entry level mountain bike that can also be put to several other usages.
The moment we discuss mountain bikes, it goes without saying that the suspension ridge needs special mention. This aluminum double-butted bike has 26 inches suspension fork alloy without any lockout. The Shimano EF-51 shifters have 21 seed options with smooth gear changing facilities. That, in many ways, adds to the quality of the gear shifting and overall ease of riding the bike.
The rear and front derailleur further ads to the convenience and the flexibility that this bike promises. Under $300, this offers a reasonable amount of strength and poise, and a good entry level bargain buy for many users exploring mountain biking. Overall, this is an affordable, easy maintenance bike that can offer you a quality experience.
- Smooth gear shifting and comfortable ride on mountain trails
- Great value for money in terms of features
- String Vilano legacy of offering quality bikes since 2008
- That said there are some pockets of concern too. The 3-spoke rims may pose a problem on the very rough terrain.
- Some users mentioned that the front fork sinks bottoms out when it hits bumps
- The thick rim comes in the way of airing the tires
4. Merax Falcon Full Suspension Mountain Bike – Linear Pull Brakes
This aluminum frame, dual suspension mountain bike with linear pull brakes is a match winner at a bargain. Costing even less than $200, this bike can guarantee you one of the smoothest rides on really bumpy trails.
The linear pull brakes are very effective in sudden stopping and come with very high stopping power. The frame size at 19 inches further adds to the efficiency of the overall bike. If you compare the entry level bikes, this one is amongst the best mountain bikes under $300. It has one of the most extensive ranges of features that guarantee a superb service and ride quality.
The best part is that this bicycle arrives almost 85% assembled. Only the pedals, handlebars and the front wheel have to be installed, and the tires need to be aired. Maintenance for these bikes also becomes a lot less pesky than what you may have expected. This is one of the flagship products of the brand. Merax is, in fact, known for delivering quality but economical bikes since 1995. The founders of this company rightly identified the big void in the American market and started capitalizing in the need for consumer-centric day to day products.
- Sturdy, value buy with a host of features
- The linear pull brakes guarantee massive stopping power
- The bike comes over 85% assembled
- Easy maintenance and smooth overall ride
- A practical, versatile and multi-functional bike that can address may need together
- Though the product is packed with features, it is slightly heavy compared to many other options at this price point. But that said given the range of features, for under $200, this bike is an absolute winner.
5. Schwinn S29 Men’s Full Suspension Mountain Bike – Front & Rear Disc Brakes
If you enjoy biking on trails with friends, then the Schwinn S29 Men’s full suspension is one of the best mountain bikes to opt for. This bike is full of special features that enhance performance and at the same time ensure that you don’t have to overshoot your budget in any way. You get quality and performance within a budget in this bike.
This is a lightweight bike made of aluminum with the wheels about 29 inches in diameter. The wide tires help you stay in control and offer a commendable grip on the road. It creates the friction necessary to maintain a steady ride. In this context, one needs to specially mention the suspension fork used in this bike.
The SR Suntour suspension fork and the SR Suntour 3 piece crank together guarantee quality performance and dependable durability for an extended period. The SRAM 3.0 rear derailleur and SRAM 3.0 trigger shifters add to the complete package and help you experiment with 21-speed variations. It provides convenience, comfort, and superb agility to the users for an extended period. This is the reason that the brand keeps getting mentioned in any kind of comparison about efficient mountain bikes.
The brand, Schwinn has been around since 1895 and is remembered for creating many iconic bikes for both children and adults alike. In fact, in many ways, this brand exemplifies quality and comfort along with affordability for generations now.
- Great suspension enhances biker comfort during rough trails
- Versatile bikes well suited for kids and adults alike
- Strong grip on the road to make sure you have a steady ride
- Superior quality products enhance the level and degree of performance excellence that you strive for
- Some users have faced hassles due to packaging and delivery issues. This surely mars the overall experience of owning the bike
- Some build quality issues raised by some readers but overall this bike seems to promise compelling value for money proposition
Tips for Buying the Best Mountain Bike
Therefore, there are some very distinct features that are necessary if you want to buy the best mountain bike. They range from build quality to overall user comfort and performance on the terrain.
The gear shifters of the best mountain bike under $300 have to be all about optimization and power. The idea is to maintain the user’s comfort and yet not let the speed or the momentum suffer. Many mountain bikes do come with grip fit features that are supposed to aid the gear movement even faster, but this is primarily based on the individual biker’s preference.
The brakes as you can well understand are crucial. This is the most important safety feature for them. Imagine downhill without adequate brake control or brakes that don’t stop immediately. On the mountain trail, this can be even a life and death matter for the biker. So the best mountain bile under $300 has to sport a well-tested and a dependable brake system. That alone can determine the overall success of the biker on such difficult terrain. Disc brakes are amongst the most effective ones on this kind of mountainous roads. They go a long way in providing and safe and memorable ride.
Typically most mountain bikes come equipped with wider tires. These are supposed to offer a firmer grip and also guarantee better friction in case there is a sudden brake. This is pure physics at play, the correlation between surface area and force. Along with that, these tires also tend to be knobbed. This further works towards enhancing friction as well as stability. Typically during log rides, whether on concrete or gravel, they provide much better traction compared to others. So the best mountain bike under $300 should meet this requirement.
In the reviews that we included, almost all the bikes have aluminum structure. Do you think that this is mere coincidence? Actually no, the best mountain bikes under $300 tend to have aluminum structures. There are many reasons. First and foremost, aluminum is a lightweight and durable material. It is rather sturdy and can withstand a tremendous amount of wear and tear. Steel, carbon fiber and Titanium also promise strength and reliability, but aluminum stands apart as a functional and affordable take on long-standing reliability. In fact, it is quite suitable for most types of bikes.
Your budget matters a lot when you are buying a bike. Given the widespread demand, you have reliable quality and range at every price point. But once you have frozen your budget, the choice for the best mountain bike under $300 can be tricky. This is because price cannot be the only pre-condition. Comfort, convenience, and core strength are necessary for lasting quality and user satisfaction. It is important to choose options that are within your budget without compromising quality and safety. Yes, safety is the other most important factor when you are shortlisting bikes of your choice. The mountain trails can be quite treacherous. Therefore, it is imperative to go for only the best mountain bike under $300 that does not compromise your safety