Looking for the best hardtail mountain bikes under £1000? Well, here’s what we think…
Mountain bikes can be really expensive. Search for mountain bikes online and you will soon find some shiny things that cost about the same as a small hatchback car. As soon as you start seeing these prices you begin to believe that you really need to spend big to become a decent mountain biker.
And that’s simply not true.
If you’re new to the world of mountain biking and are looking for an entry-level bike that is going to allow you to get out and about, exploring trails and advancing your skills, the good news is that you don’t need to spend a huge amount. You can actually pick up a bike for just a few hundred pounds that will do exactly that. However, if you’re planning to use your bike a lot and are hoping to really get into the whole mountain biking scene, then it pays to spend a little bit more for a bike that is going to last you for a good few years. For this sort of bike, you can expect to pay somewhere between £500 – £1000.
We’ve put together a list of five of the best hardtail mountain bikes for under £1000 – all fully equipped and capable of getting you out there on the trails to learn your skills and enjoy your rides.
GT Avalanche Elite (£750)
GT Bicycles has been around since the ’70s and have been at the forefront of mountain bike development and innovation for decades. The GT Avalanche is their offering to those that want to get off the beaten path and start exploring trail centres and rugged routes.
There are several versions of the bike, ranging from the entry-level Sport version, right through to the Expert. The Elite version sits somewhere at the higher end of the range, but at this price point, it offers some serious value for money.
The bike features a fork with 120mm of travel, perfect for soaking up the rocky terrain that you’ll be tackling. And the triple triangle frame is perfect for keeping you comfortable and in control of the bike.
GT bring out a new version of the Avalanche every year, each one with slight changes to the design, colours and components. That’s great news if you want to have the very latest and best version, but even better if you don’t mind being a season or two behind the times as you can pick up 2019 or 2020 versions for bargain prices as bike shops make room for the new stock.
Specialized Rockhopper Elite (£850)
Specialized is a much-loved and highly-regarded brand when it comes to mountain biking. Visit any trail centre on a busy weekend and it won’t be long before you spot someone on a Specialized bike.
Well, that’s if they’re going slow enough to read the frames. These bikes are designed to be fast, light and agile and you’ll always want to push your limits while out on the trails.
With the Rockhopper Elite, you are getting a lot of bike for your money. Air-Sprung fork, hydraulic disc brakes and a Shimano Deore drivetrain. You” have everything you need for plenty of adventures ahead, and when the time comes that you feel as though you are hitting the trails harder and faster than the bike can handle, it’s a great frame to start upgrading components on.
And that matte black finish on the bike makes it look pretty impressive too.
Trek Marlin 7 (£800)
The Trek Marlin 7 isn’t just a capable bike aimed at beginner mountain bikers, it’s actually marketed as a beginner’s cross-country racing bike. So as you’d expect, this bike is designed to be fast and handle well. If speed is your thing, this one might be for you.
Trek claim to have spent the money on the components that make all the difference, such as the suspension fork and the drivetrain, giving this bike the feel of a much more expensive bike.
It’s designed with trails in mind, but also has rear rack mounts for those that want to use the bike for commuting too. For those looking for a fast and capable all-rounder, that could be a big plus.
Cube Aim SL Allroad (£850)
The Cube Aim SL Allroad is an interesting bike and is going to be the perfect bike for some people, but not for everyone. In some ways, you could describe this as the mountain bike equivalent of a gravel bike. It comes with a rear rack and a built-in light system, perfect for those who plan to use it as a commuter bike, but it also has a suspension fork, disc brakes and 2.25in tyres – so it’s going to be more capable off-road than any ‘normal’ gravel bike.
This bike is perhaps not the one for those that plan to spend their weekends tearing around trail centres. But, equally, those that love to just load up a bag and head out exploring for the day will absolutely love this bike.
Voodoo Bizango Pro (£925)
Voodoo bikes are exclusive to Halfords in the UK, and that’s good news for people who want to pop in-store and take a look at a bike before buying.
The Bizango Pro is the latest hardtail from the Voodoo brand, and it promises to push your riding to the next level and give you everything you need for epic days on the trails.
With RockShox fork and Shimano brakes and drivetrain, you know that you are in good hands. The bike has been set up for ‘proper’ mountain biking adventures, and that means that you’ll always have enough gears to get you up those monster climbs, but you’ll also have the gears you need to powering back down the hills too.
The bike also comes with a crash guarantee. If you crash your bike and crack the frame, Halfords will replace the frame for free, just charging for the labour costs to swap all of your components over.