Bike weight seems to be a hot topic among bikers of all types—and it’s usually for good reason. It’s hardly the first feature you look out for when buying your first bike. However, as you fully join the biking community and start to upgrade your bike or its components, you’d find yourself talking about bike weight too.
- “How light should your bike be for enduro?”
- “How do I know if my bike is the right weight?”
And just like that, you’d start keeping your eye on your bike weight. So, if you’re new to mountain biking and wondering how much mountain bikes weigh, stick around.
This article is packed with all the information you need about mountain bike weight. I’ll address a few questions you might have such as how much the average mountain bike weighs and how much weight it can hold.
I’ll also look at the weight differences between a hardtail and a full suspension mountain bike. And lastly, which do you think matters more: rider weight or bike weight? We’ll see!
- How much does an average mountain bike weigh?
- Weight of different mountain bikes by category
- How much weight can a mountain bike hold?
- How much does weight matter on a mountain bike?
- What contributes to the weight of a mountain bike?
- How to make your mountain bike lighter
- Is there any weight difference between hardtails and full suspension mountain bikes?
- Rider Weight or Bike Weight: Which matters more?
- Final Word
How much does an average mountain bike weigh?
The average mountain bike weighs about 30 pounds.
Typically, the mountain bikes you’ll find at your local bike shop weigh between 21 and 37 pounds and that range depends on the kind of mountain bike you get.
So there’s no straightforward answer to the question of what an average mountain bike weighs as mountain biking has different categories.
The bikes for each category have special attachments and constructs that help them serve their purpose.
Unavoidably, all of these things affect the weight of the bikes and it varies from one category to another.
To make things clearer, below is a table of different mountain bike types and their weights.
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Weight of different mountain bikes by category
To give you a better understanding of what’s in the table below, I’ll give an explanation on the different kinds of mountain bikes.
- CROSS-COUNTRY/XC BIKES
This is a lightweight mountain bike. It is used to navigate long and steep climbs and requires as light a weight as possible. The frame of a cross-country mountain bike is extremely lightweight and made of aluminum or carbon fiber.
As its design allows it to cover off-road terrain, climb and descend from steep slopes, cross-country mountain bikes are not as robust as their other counterparts.
You will generally find cross-country mountain bikes with a weight of about 24pounds. XC bikes are currently the lightest type of mountain bikes in the market.
|Trek Procaliber 9.7
|2022 Canyon Lux Trail CF 7
|Vitus Rapide FS CRX
|Specialized Epic Evo
|Santa Cruz Blur XC CC X01 AXS RSV
- HARDTAIL BIKES
The average Hardtail Mountain Bike weighs between 20 to 30 pounds. Hardtail bikes are built to be lightweight and relatively simple. They do not have rear shocks, no extra tubes or pivots. Since their suspension is only situated in front, it makes them lighter and cuts down on bike weight. Makes it wonderful for smooth off-road and regular road rides.
|Santa Cruz Highball Hardtail 29 CC
|Diamondback Overdrive Carbon Comp 29
|Santa Cruz Stigmata Hardtail 700c
|Ghost Kato 1.6 AL 26
|Salsa Timberjack SLX 27.5+
- FULL SUSPENSION BIKES
The average full-suspension mountain bike runs between 30 and 34 pounds.
It can be said that full suspension bikes are the ultimate trail riding bikes because they’ve got both front fork suspension and rear shocks. This extra advantage makes them extremely versatile on the trail.
But there’s a downside to this advantage—added weight of a full suspension system.
|YT Izzo Core 3
|2022 Polygon Siskiu D5
|Marin Rift Zone 27.5 1
|2022 Marin Alpine Trail E1
|Merida Ninety-Six RC9000
- ENDURO BIKES
Enduro bikes are similar to trail bikes but can function better on a descending slope. They also have the same components as downhill bikes and are specifically designed to conquer tough mountain trails with ascents and steep descents.
For this reason, enduro bikes are robust, strong, and heavy. They weigh between 30 to 40lbs. Typically, these bikes come with steel or aluminium frames that contribute to their heaviness.
Unlike carbon fiber, aluminium and steel contribute a lot to a bike’s weight because they are heavier.
Another thing to note is that enduro bikes come with hardtail components. That means they have their suspension mounted in front.
|Nukeproof Giga 297 Carbon
|Cube Stereo 170 SL 29
|Specialized Status 160
|Trek Slash 8
|Vitus Sommet 29 CRX
- DOWNHILL MOUNTAIN BIKES
Like enduro bikes, most downhill mountain bikes are made of steel and aluminium which makes them pretty heavy.
In fact, some are made with titanium frames which are even heavier but way more durable.
A downhill mountain bike can weigh anywhere from 32lbs to 45lbs.
They are usually sturdy and can withstand heavy impact from sudden jumps or drops. Downhill mountain bikes are fitted with the full-suspension system and stronger linkage forks.
|Mondraker Summum Carbon Pro Team
|Dissent 290 Comp Nukeproof
|Supreme DH 29 Signature 2020
|GT Fury Expert
|YT Tues Pro Race 29
- ELECTRIC MOUNTAIN BIKES
These kinds of bikes too are known to weigh pretty high. Their heaviness can be linked to parts as well as the batteries attached to them.
The batteries on an electric bike allows you to enjoy biking in a variety of terrains. Electric mountain bikes can weigh around 40lbs to 60lbs.
|SCOTT Ransom eRIDE 910
|YT DECOY MX CORE 4
|FOCUS JAM² 7.0
|MERIDA eONE-SIXTY 10K
|ROTWILD R.E375 PRO
From the tables above, you can deduce that the right mountain bike weight depends on the user.
If you’re interested in climbing steep slopes, choosing a cross-country mountain bike with an average weight of 10.8kg or 24lbs is perfect! The weight allows the bike to endure long and steep climbs.
But if you’d love to go downhill, a downhill mountain bike is the one for you. So, different bikes for different categories.
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How much weight can a mountain bike hold?
Knowing the weight limit of your bike is of utmost importance. It prevents you from overburdening your bike with excess weight. On average, the weight limit for most mountain bikes is 300lbs.
However, their weight capacities vary because they are made in various sizes and different components.
While a mountain bike should at least be able to handle 200lbs, the weight distribution, wheel size, tires, and frame materials will all determine its weight limit.
Generally, a bike with bigger wheels and thicker tires should be able to withstand more weight.
Knowing the weight limit of your bike will help you avoid accidents that may arise as a result of a weakened frame or burdened components.
I recommend that you do research on the weight limit of a bike before purchasing. This will help you select the right kind of bike for your biking needs.
You should also note that bike components contribute to the overall weight of your bike. I’ll be discussing that in a bit.
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How much does weight matter on a mountain bike?
If you’re a beginner, the weight of your bike will probably not make a big difference. You’re just learning the ropes and your bike weight is the least of your problems. As long as your bike is durable and gives you sturdy support, you’re good to go!
As you get better, the weight capacity of your bike will become something to mull over. This is because weight matters for a few reasons. Here are some of them:
A lighter bike is a faster bike. The ease of maneuvering makes your ride easier. Less stress for you; less wear and tear on the bike. If you’re not concerned with speed and prefer to ride at a relatively slower pace, you don’t really need a light bike.
But if you’re into riding cross-country and fast rides, a lighter bike will do you a world of good. The weight can endure a long and steep climb. But if you love going downhill, a downhill mountain bike, which is one of the heaviest, is the perfect one for you. The extra weight keeps it sturdy as you conquer the slopes.
Basically, this brings us to the conclusion that weight does matter on a mountain bike and it’s mostly determined by the kind of biking the rider is interested in. So what type of a mountain biker are you?
What contributes to the weight of a mountain bike?
We’ve established that mountain bikes come in different sizes and weights. This is so because they are used for a variety of biking purposes.
To specifically cater to the needs of the biker, different brands use various materials which directly contribute to bike weight.
Generally, the materials used for tires, fork, frame, and drivetrain make up the overall weight of your mountain bike. Interestingly, tires account for most of the mountain bike weight, while the drivetrain accounts for the least. Let’s look at these components.
Bikes with slim tires are unsuitable for bearing heavy load but fat ones are able to bear hefty weight much better.
Undoubtedly, these greatly bear the weight and impact of a bike. Wide diameter wheels tend to be brittle and cannot handle much load.
However, their smaller counterparts that come with steel alloy or aluminium prove to be solid enough to bear heavier weight.
As enticing as bikes made with titanium and carbon fiber frames are, their lightness has its downsides too.
These kinds of bikes tend to be too delicate for heavy loads. Aluminum frames are a great alternative as they can handle a decent amount of weight.
However, the best choice for bikes that are required to carry heavy load are those with frames made of steel or steel alloy.
If you require your bike to bear the punishment of rigorous mountain biking, a rigid bike is highly recommended. This kind of bike has only a rigid fork and no suspension. The stiffness of the fork lets it carry more load.
Seat and Handlebar
These two help evenly distribute the rider’s weight and load on the bike. If you need a bike for heavier stuff, make sure that your seat isn’t narrow. A narrow seat is not ideal to bear heavy weight as this can put pressure on other parts of the bike.
According to an article by Mountain Bike Action, the following are the general percentages that these components contribute the most to the weight of an average bike:
Wheels – 33.60%
Fork – 14.85%
Frame – 11.38%
By and large, the weight capacity of a mountain bike is determined by its design, the materials used and it’s size.
How to make your mountain bike lighter
Concerned about the weight of your mountain bike? Here are a few ways to make your bike lighter!
- Swap your stock wheelsets for new lighter ones to reduce weight. Additionally, you can change the inner tube to latex instead of butyl tubes which are a little heavier.
- Go Tubeless. The weight might be minimal but going tubeless to shave off a few ounces isn’t bad at all.
- Upgrade to Clipless Pedals as they are a lot lighter and will help take a lot of weight off the bike.
- Get a 1x drivetrain that not only simplifies shifting but can help you save some weight.
- Carbon frames are the lightest out there and if you really want a light bike, that’s what you should get. Just be ready to part with some big bucks.
- Minimalism is in right now to shave off unwanted weight, ditch all unnecessary parts like phone mounts, bottle cages, etc. The weight saved might not be a lot but a little goes a long way.
- Swap your rims for carbon rims. They are made of lighter material and weigh an average of 280 grams to 450 grams.
- If it doesn’t make you uncomfortable, get a lighter seat, handlebars and stem by switching to carbon.
- If you have many gears, you most likely have 3 chain rings which are made of heavy metal. Consider getting a compact crank so you can do away with one chainring for less weight.
Is there any weight difference between hardtails and full suspension mountain bikes?
Yes, there is. If you are comparing similar models from the same brand, there is about a 2 lbs difference between the hardtail and full suspension bike.
On one hand, hardtails have a rigid rear end for simplicity and pedalling efficiency, and a suspension fork to absorb bumps on the trail.
On the other hand, full-suspension bikes have a second spring and damper between the rider and the rear wheel to ease bike traction.
As a result of the extra component it has, the full suspension bike tends to weigh more. Consequently, the lightness of the hardtail appeals to uphill climbers and beginners.
Rider Weight or Bike Weight: Which matters more?
Personally, I think that rider weight is far more important than bike weight. The bike load capacity should be proportionate to your size and weight to ensure your safety when riding.
Once you get the perfect bike for the kind of mountain biking you enjoy, things can still go pear-shaped if your weight exceeds the bike weight limit.
Also, shedding weight off a bike has its limits. It may be easier to take off some weight off your own frame, and just skip the burrito!
I hope you’ve gained something from this piece about mountain bikes and their array of weight concerns. So, wait a minute before you go: as a beginner, it’s important to hone your riding skills first and deal with bike weight later.
If possible, start off with a hardtail bike. It’s lighter and easier to maneuver. When your skills get better, you can seek out the perfect bike that suits your taste and biking style.