What is a MTB bike

5 types of mountain bikes simply explained

Hardtail or fully - what's the difference?

The term hardtail or fully does not denote a specific mountain bike shape, but distinguishes the suspension of the bikes.

Fully = Full Suspension MTB (full suspension)

When the Fully are Front wheel and the rear end sprung. The full suspension compensates for bumps in uneven terrain and the ground contact is held more easily by the front wheels when going uphill and by the rear wheels when going downhill. The suspension also protects your back.

A fully is suitable for:

  • high speeds
  • demanding and steep terrain
  • Jumps and drops
  • Disadvantages of the fully compared to a hardtail:

  • heavier
  • more expensive due to more massive components
  • more maintenance-intensive
  • display

    Hardtail (unsprung rear wheel)

    With the hardtail is only the front fork sprung. There is no suspension on the rear end. A hardtail is suitable if you:

  • want to be fast and agile on the go
  • Biking mainly on forest roads and flat stretches
  • 5 different types of mountain bikes explained

    Not all mountain bikes are the same. There are different disciplines and each of them has produced its own type of mountain bike. The boundaries are often fluid, mainly you can distinguish the bikes by their suspension travel.

    Cross Country Bike

    The bike is mainly used in cross-country races. The races usually take place on:

  • little paved roads
  • Forest paths
  • Dirt roads
  • Gravel paths
  • Meadow paths
  • Because of smaller inclines and descents
  • With cross country mountain bikes there is mainly one good maneuverability and Power transmission with low weight and a sporty seating position in the foreground.

    Frame: stiff and made of carbon
    Suspension: Hardtail
    Suspension travel: 100 - 120 mm

    All Mountain Bike & Enduro Bike

    The All mountain bike is designed for the widest possible range of possible uses in the mountains. It is suitable for

  • simple and longer tours in the flatlands (due to the light construction with approx. 10-14 kg)
  • Uphill driving
  • Downhill runs on easy and moderately difficult trails
  • Small jumps and drops
  • Suspension: usually fully
    Suspension travel: 120-160 mm

    You can reduce or lock the fork travel on many models. This makes driving uphill easier for you.

    The Enduro bike its properties lie between an all mountain bike and a freeride mountain bike. It is designed for an even larger area of ‚Äč‚Äčapplication:

  • faster descents than the all mountain bike
  • higher jumps than the all mountain bike
  • easier uphill than with a freeride mountain bike
  • Downhill it is similar to the riding characteristics of a freeride mountain bike. For this, the suspension travel has been extended and the Enduro has wider and more grippy tires.

    Suspension travel: 140-180 mm

    Downhill mountain bike

    The downhill mountain bike is made for that

  • so fast as demanding trails as possible steep gradient and Obstacles to overcome.
  • The shape of the downhill mountain bike is unmistakable: low steering angle and completely lowered saddle, for an optimal center of gravity.

    This type of mountain bike is quite heavy at 18 kg, as the frame has to be stable to withstand the high loads of extreme jumps. The tires are thick and have good grip. Going uphill is practically impossible on a downhill mountain bike.

    Suspension travel: 180 to 250 mm

    Freeride mountain bike

    The structure is similar to a mixture of downhill and cross country mountain bikes. It's made for

  • very steep terrain
  • technically demanding obstacles
  • extremely long and high jumps and drops
  • display

    The freeride mountain bike is a little lighter than the downhill mountain bike, but still not a featherweight. Very stable components are used so that the mountain bike can withstand the extreme jumps (up to 20 meters). As a result, the bikes are usually expensive.

    Suspension: Fully

    Suspension travel: 165-200 mm

    Some freeride mountain bikes are suitable for uphill riding, although the distinction between freeride enduro and freeride enduro is slowly becoming blurred.

    Fat bike

    The Fat Bike is made for difficult surfaces. Are with him

  • Snow,
  • Sand and
  • very loose substrates
  • You can recognize the Fat Bike by the very wide tires. At 4 to 4.8 inches, they are twice as wide as conventional mountain bike tires.

    Usually the No suspension. The wide tires are driven with little pressure and thus take over the spring properties.

    Which is the right mountain bike for me?

    Which mountain bike is right for you depends on where you want to be and how much adrenaline you need for a successful day.

    Crossing the Alps & tours

    For a long tour in the mountains or crossing the Alps, you need a mountain bike that can handle almost any terrain and any incline. Plus, it shouldn't be too difficult so that you can cover long distances with little effort. This is perfect for that

  • All mountain bike

  • If you don't want to miss out on having fun on the trails during the tour, choose one

  • Enduro
  • Fun in the snow and sand

    In order not to lose fun in a lot of snow or sand, you should definitely opt for a mountain bike with thick tires. This is best suited here

  • Fat bike
  • In our article "Cycling in winter" you will find helpful tips for fun and safety in snow and ice.

    Comfortable uphill & downhill on exciting trails

    If you intend to climb mountains comfortably and reward yourself with an exciting descent, choose one

  • Enduro
  • Adrenaline on steep and demanding trails

    Going uphill is out of the question for you, you prefer to be in the bike park or on trails that you can reach with the lift. Downhill you are looking for the ultimate flow and adrenaline rush.

  • If you want speed, choose this Downhill mountain bike.
  • For extreme slopes and technically very demanding trails: Freeride mountain bike.
  • The decision has been made - what now?

    Do you know which mountain bike is right for you but have no idea how to start mountain biking?

    It is best to start with a mountain bike course, because the risk of injury on trails from inexperience is high. In the courses you will learn important riding techniques, but also how to change the bicycle tube or adjust your bike correctly, for example. You can often find courses in local sports shops, clubs, or mountain bike manufacturers.

    To make mountain biking fun, the right clothing must of course not be missing. You can find long-sleeved and short-sleeved jerseys for mountain biking in our online shop. In our 3D configurator you can even design your jersey according to your wishes.


    Photo credits: Cover picture: RyanJLane / iStock, picture 1: GibsonPictures / iStock, picture 2: GibsonPictures / iStock, picture 3: yanik88 / iStock, picture 4: RyanJLane / iStock, picture 5: sergeyryzhov / iStock, picture 6: piola666 / iStock, Image 7: GibsonPictures / iStock