Best Mountain Bike Under 1000 Review – Top Rated Models with Buying Guide
Are you looking for the best mountain bikes under 1000 but can’t decide on a particular model? The choice is understandably tough, with so many rigs to choose from. To make your decision process easier, we’ve looked at plenty of models and tried to pick the best rated mountain bikes under 1000 in terms of the build and components they feature. When it comes to great parts and low price, the Diamondback Bicycles Hook 27.5 Hardtail Mountain Bike is probably a choice that’s on the top of the list of many, and for good reason. This bike has a sturdy hand-built aluminum frame, a 120mm Suntour fork, 27.5-inch wheels with all-terrain tires, and SRAM 1×8-speed drivetrain. In case this model is out of stock as it’s such a popular choice, you might also want to consider the Schwinn Bonafide Mens Mountain Bike 29-Inch Wheels since it’s also a pretty good choice.
This bike comes with an aluminum frame that’s strong and light, disc brakes, a single ring drivetrain, and SR Suntour XCM suspension fork which offers generous 120mm of travel for soaking up all those bumps. It also has double-wall alloy rims and grippy tires.
The Tektro Aries brakes are mechanical and hydraulic brakes would have probably been a better choice.
The Hook from Diamondback comes with a sleek frame, 27.5-inch wheels, a pretty good fork, SRAM 1x8-speed drivetrain, and other goodies, and that while maintaining quite a low price that any rider could afford.
The Bonafide has a sturdily-built aluminum frame, with a suspension fork to absorb shocks and 29-inch wheels to make jumping over rock gardens a breeze. You get 24 speeds and Shimano shifters and derailleurs for seamless gear transitions.
Some components could have been a bit better, and a 9-speed cogset would have been nice, for higher gear flexibility.
This bike comes at an affordable price, and even if none of the components are actually great, it does offer decent performance and the best part is that you don’t have to break your budget to get it and start riding.
Also To Consider
This bike has a frame that’s made of hydro-formed alloy tubing, and the front and rear suspensions are good at absorbing tree roots, bumps, and potholes. You get 21 speeds and the SRAM shifters and Shimano rear derailleur make for smooth shifting every time.
The bike comes with V-brakes, and at least some mechanical disc brakes would have probably been in order.
First of all, this model is cheap, especially when compared to other similar models. It has 26-inch wheels which are quite good for beginners as they offer improved handling, and the dual suspension system is definitely a bonus.
8 Best Mountain Bikes Under 1000 (Updated Reviews) in 2021
Finding the right bike but making sure that it stays within budget can be a hard task, with so many models available. The good part is that we’ve looked at some of the top mountain bikes under 1000 on the market and picked the most promising ones. You can find a mini-review of each one of them down below.
- 1. Diamondback Bicycles Hook 27.5 Hardtail Mountain Bike
- 2. Schwinn Bonafide Mens Mountain Bike 29-Inch Wheels
- 3. Mongoose Status 2.2 Mountain Bike for Men and Women
- 4. Schwinn High Timber Mountain Bike 7 Speed
- 5. Mongoose Impasse Mens Mountain Bike 29-inch Wheels
- 6. Mongoose Vinson Fat Tire Mountain Bike 24-Speed
- 7. Diamondback Bicycles LUX Comp Women’s Hardtail Mountain Bike
- 8. Motobecane Fantom Elite WTB 29er Hardtail Mountain Bike
- Our Comprehensive Buying Guide
- Frequently Asked Questions:
1. Diamondback Bicycles Hook 27.5 Hardtail Mountain Bike
This bike is quite inexpensive yet it features quality components that make it a sure choice for many. It comes with a low-slung aluminum frame that is tough yet lightweight. This hand-built frame has progressive geometry which enables it to stay stiff and provide great vibration response on the trails.
You get the SR Suntour XCM fork which offers a whopping 120mm of travel which is hard to beat in this price range. The SRAM single-ring keeps everything simple as there’s only the rear derailleur to worry about, so you can focus less on shifting and more on riding. The drivetrain is 1×8-speed, with the SRAM X3 cogset and SRAM X4 rear derailleur.
The 27.5-inch DB SL-7 double-wall aluminum alloy rims are strong yet light, and they come with grippy all-terrain tires that will serve you well in many conditions. Braking power is ensured by the Tektro Aries mechanical disc brakes.
If you’re looking for a bike that doesn’t cost a ton but which doesn’t sacrifice quality in order to keep a low price, then the Hook from Diamondback is a strong choice.
The frame is hand-built with aluminum alloy tubing so expect it to last for a long time and endure all the abuse you can put it through.
The 27.5-inch wheels are large enough to pedal efficiently and go over large obstacles but still retain great maneuverability. That’s especially true due to the all-terrain tires.
You get a 1×8-speed drivetrain that will keep things simple and enable you to concentrate on the ride more.
The Tektro Aries brakes are mechanical and some riders would have probably hoped for at least entry-level hydraulic brakes. Still, this is quite a cheap ride.
You only get a single chainring and 8 speeds in total which might prove quite limiting in certain cycling scenarios.Buy from Amazon.com
2. Schwinn Bonafide Mens Mountain Bike 29-Inch Wheels
Just as its name suggests, this is certainly a bona fide bike. It doesn’t have all the bells and whistles of high-end bikes, but it does its job, still has pretty good components, and the price is one that shouldn’t pose many problems to just about any budget. It comes with an aluminum frame that’s elegant in its simplicity, and you can bet that it will also last for a long time.
The suspension fork isn’t the greatest but it soaks up bumps, just as it’s supposed to, and it doesn’t add too much to the total price of the bike. You get 24 speeds to suit climbing, descending, and anything in between, while the Shimano EZ Fire triggers ensure that shifting goes smoothly, as do the Shimano derailleurs.
The wheels are 29 inches in diameter while the 2.25-inch tires are knobby and should offer adequate grip on most dry surfaces.
The mechanical disc brakes will help you control the bike and stop at a moment’s notice so that you stay safe and confident in your abilities even when the riding gets tough.
The frame is built of aluminum alloy which is hardy and strong but still quite light so you know you get a quality bike that’s probably going to last for a long time.
The 29-inch wheels are a nice addition as they allow you to pedal more efficiently. The rims have double walls and are made of aluminum so they’re tough and durable.
The all-terrain tires are also perfect since they suit many types of surfaces and conditions.
While the bike isn’t expensive by any standards, some components could have probably been a bit better in this price range.
The cogset could have probably had at least 9 sprockets, for more shifting flexibility.Buy from Amazon.com
3. Mongoose Status 2.2 Mountain Bike for Men and Women
Compared to many other models in its category, this bike is actually really cheap, and you wouldn’t believe that it also has rear suspension, so you can get a full-suspension build with a minimal investment. The frame is made of hydro-formed tubing which means it is strong and durable but without any weight penalty.
The bike comes with a strong fork that will keep your arms from getting sore while the rear shock will also soak up bumps so that your posterior and actually your entire body won’t ache after a couple of hours of riding on forest trails. You get 21 speeds to play with, thanks to the Shimano rear derailleur and SRAM twist shifters.
The wheels have a 26-inch diameter and the 2.125-inch-wide tires have an all-terrain knobby pattern so they should be quite good on a variety of terrains. The riser handlebar will help with keeping a comfortable position at all times.
The bike comes with an aluminum alloy frame that’s simple yet effective and it should probably last for quite a long time.
You get a dual suspension system that will make sure no matter how tough the terrain gets, you will be able to handle it and feel good at the same time.
The SRAM shifters and Shimano rear derailleur will help with smooth gear transitioning so you will be able to select the right gear ratio for every situation.
The 26-inch wheels may be small, but they offer great maneuverability and they are a great choice for beginners.
The fork is nothing to brag about and neither is the rear shock. However, you get dual suspension in a bike that’s really cheap, so what would you expect?
The bike comes with V-brakes. While there’s absolutely nothing wrong with pull brakes, one might have expected at least some mechanical disc brakes mounted.Buy from Amazon.com
4. Schwinn High Timber Mountain Bike 7 Speed
If you’re looking for a cheap bike to ride on both paved roads and forest trails, then this is a pretty good option. The bike comes with a steel frame that’s very strong and durable, and even if it is a bit heavier than aluminum, it will last longer, plus it’s a bit more forgiving due to its flexibility. With the Schwinn fork, you won’t feel all those bumps in the road so you’ll enjoy your outings.
You get 21 speeds so you can choose whichever is best suited for the terrain you’re riding on. The Shimano twist shifters allow you to smoothly change gear ratios and the Shimano rear derailleur is very helpful at that as well.
You get both front and rear pull brakes that offer decent stopping power and they are very easy to adjust and repair. You can choose different wheel sizes, although the 27.5-inch one seems to be the most popular.
The bike comes with tires that should work well on most dry surfaces and provide you with the grip you need to ride safely.
This model features a steel frame that, even though it is a bit on the heavy side, it’s supposed to be stronger and more durable than aluminum so you can count on it for years to come.
The Shimano twist shifters make things easy even for the beginner cyclist to choose the right gear ratios anytime.
There are multiple wheel diameters to choose from, starting from 24 inches and going all the way up to 29 inches.
While this bike is indeed inexpensive, the fact that it comes with pull brakes isn’t great. At least they’re quite easy to fiddle with and repair, in case you need to do that on the side of the road.
There are only 7 sprockets on the bike which might make it a bit more difficult to climb very steep hills, especially if you’re not exactly in shape.Buy from Amazon.com
5. Mongoose Impasse Mens Mountain Bike 29-inch Wheels
The Impasse is a 29er that’s ideal for men but not only, although the higher top tube does make it better-suited for them. You get a suspension fork that looks solidly built and it should soak up any bump or obstacle that a forest trail could throw at you.
There is also a rear suspension that will ensure a smoother ride and save your behind from a lot of pain and sores. The wheels are 29 inches in diameter and they have aluminum rims. They are also equipped with grippy Innova tires that should offer decent traction on a wide range of surfaces.
The drivetrain features 3×7 speeds so you can choose the one that’s best suited for the segment you’re riding. The SRAM twist shifters make changing gears a breeze. The bike also comes with mechanical disc brakes that will help you stop on a dime and keep you safe.
The frame is made of thick aluminum tubing and it has an interesting geometry that is also supposed to make it a lot tougher and it should serve you well for many years to come.
This bike has a suspension fork but also a rear shock which means you will now be able to ride on all sorts of off-road trails without a worry in the world.
The 29-inch wheels are large enough to allow you to go over many obstacles, and the fact that they are made of aluminum alloy makes them quite resistant as well.
The 3×7 drivetrain and SRAM twist shifters will help you easily shift gears and choose the right ratios for any terrain.
While the bike comes with dual suspension, don’t expect the fork and rear shock to rise to the level of high-grade components.
There are only 21 speeds which could be quite limiting, especially when trying to go over very steep inclines.Buy from Amazon.com
6. Mongoose Vinson Fat Tire Mountain Bike 24-Speed
In case you’re searching for a bike that is suitable for riding in the mud, on sandy beaches or in the snow, then you definitely need a fat bike such as this one. It is made by the legendary Mongoose company and comes with quality components, and the best part is that it is not at all expensive.
The ride features an aluminum frame which makes it light but extremely resilient. It is also quite stiff so you get a better vibration response on the trails. The fork is also made of tough aluminum and even if it is rigid, it will be able to handle lots of use and abuse.
The 3×8 drivetrain helps you with the right gears which you can select smoothly thanks to the SRAM X4 trigger shifters and Shimano rear derailleur. The 24-inch wheels are equipped with 4-inch fat tires that will provide the proper grip as well as soak up bumps.
This rig features a solidly-built aluminum frame that will hold well and offer the performance you can expect from a company such as Mongoose. The rigid fork is similarly sturdy.
The 24-inch wheels are made of aluminum alloy so they’re strong and light while the 4-inch tires will provide the right traction even in thick mud, snow, or on sandy terrain.
The bike comes with 24 speeds and thanks to the SRAM X4 trigger shifters, you’ll be able to shift gears easily so you don’t lose momentum.
The mechanical disc brakes are great at stopping the bike and they will offer you the control and confidence you need to ride like a pro.
The wheels have a diameter of 24 inches which is not that much, and at least 26-inch wheels would have probably been a bit better.
The bike has a rigid fork so you’ll have to rely on the tires to handle the shock absorption.Buy from Amazon.com
7. Diamondback Bicycles LUX Comp Women’s Hardtail Mountain Bike
The LUX from Diamondback Bicycles is a choice that shouldn’t be overlooked, especially due to its women-specific 6061-T6 aluminum alloy frame that has a low-slung geometry. That translates into generous stand-over clearance which means higher comfort, increased safety, as well as the ability to wear longer skirts while riding.
The rig has a Rockshox 30 Silver fork that offers 100mm of travel, which should more than suffice for all-purpose riding, especially off the beaten paths. The fork also features rebound and compression adjustments and there’s also a lockout feature for increased pedaling efficiency.
The DB SL-7 27.5-inch alloy rims are strong and durable and they are paired with 2.25” Schwalbe Rapid Rob tires that give adequate traction in all sorts of terrains. You get Shimano hydraulic disc brakes for great stopping power whenever you need it. The SRAM NX 1×11 speed drivetrain will give you plenty of range for climbing steep inclines.
The 27.5-inch wheels coupled with the DB Laser 720mm handlebar will give you enhanced handling and control so you will be able to negotiate tough terrains like a pro.
Thanks to the Rockshox 30 Silver fork, you get 100mm worth of travel which means tree roots, stumps, rocky terrain and the like won’t cause you problems anymore.
The Schwalbe Rapid Rob tires are quite good on different surfaces and the 2.25” width means they are quite grippy off-road but not very hard rolling on pavement either.
The Lux has a women-specific low-slung frame which makes it great for girls and women as it’s comfortable and sleek-looking.
The single-ring drivetrain is great for cross-country and off-roading but might prove a bit limiting when talking about riding on flat terrain and paved roads.
The lockout on the fork might not be so easy to operate, especially while you’re riding.Buy from Amazon.com
8. Motobecane Fantom Elite WTB 29er Hardtail Mountain Bike
While this might look like a simple bike, it’s actually quite a good option for riders who value performance and low price over all the bells and whistles of many modern models. This bike comes with a 6061 hydro-formed aluminum frame that’s not impressive but its precise geometry makes it very tough and long-lasting.
The RockShox Recon fork will give you plenty of shock absorption to handle rough terrain and spare your arms from pain. The wheels are built with WTB TCS rims while the WTB Bronson 2.2” or the Nano 2.1” tires are sticky and will give you the traction and grip you need for tight cornering, jumps, and anything in between.
The SRAM Guide hydraulic brakes provide awesome stopping power, especially thanks to the 180mm rotors. The bike also comes with a Shimano 30-speed Dyna-SYS drivetrain for improved shifting performance and enhanced durability despite lots of use and abuse.
The frame might have a simple aspect but don’t be fooled as the highly precise build, with 6061 hydroformed aluminum tubing and tapered headtube help it last a lot of wear and tear.
The bike comes with a RockShox Recon fork that soaks up bumps but also allows you to turn this hardtail into a road monster with the Lockout feature.
Thanks to the 29-inch WTB TCS rims, the wheels are quite sturdy while the WTB Bronson or Nano tires with a width of 2.2” and 2.1” respectively should provide enough grip for any situation.
This rig also comes with SRAM Guide hydraulic brakes and 180mm rotors so you can count on them to stop the bike or perfectly control descents.
The bike is usually on a huge discount so quite affordable, but the same cannot be said about its full listing price. Be sure to get the discount before buying.Buy from Amazon.com
Our Comprehensive Buying Guide
Are you trying to find the best mountain bike under 1000 but there are too many choices on the market, many more expensive than that? Are you confused by all the specs mentioned on every bike page? Read our guide below and learn how to find a top mountain bike under 1000 and make sure it suits your needs as well.
When it comes to getting a mountain bike under 1000, you might expect to find lower quality components and materials, but that is not necessarily true. As far as frame materials go, you probably won’t be able to find a bike with a carbon fiber frame as long as it’s an inexpensive bike, but that does not mean that aluminum or steel aren’t good in their own right.
Some riders might actually like aluminum more since it does not crack or snap like carbon. Others might love the flexibility of steel, despite its higher weight, and the ability to get it welded just about anywhere, which is something you’d want when it comes to touring bikes.
All materials are good. Expect to find steel frames on cheaper bikes, but then again, if you’re into long-distance touring, especially off-road, then steel might as well be a good choice. Aluminum is the more popular choice though, and there are so many frame styles that you’ll find it hard to pick one.
When it comes to choosing the best mens mountain bikes under 1000 – but this also applies to women’s models – you also need to look at the geometry. The top tube should offer generous stand-over clearance, especially for beginners, to avoid hitting sensitive parts in case you get off the saddle in an accident or sudden stop.
Women will probably want to opt for a low-slung frame with a lower top tube in order to benefit from the safety and confidence it would provide, plus they could also wear a skirt much easier.
Hardtail vs full-suspension
If you’re on a tight budget, chances are that you’ll probably find more hardtail models than full-suspension ones. Still, there are some dual-suspension bikes that might be worth a look.
With hardtail bikes, you’ll most likely get somewhat higher-tier components compared to a similarly-priced full-suspension bike. It’s a well-known fact that the latter is usually more expensive, especially due to the rear shock, and the fact that the frame is more complex and more expensive to build.
As for the benefits, a hardtail will be easier to use and will perform better on the road, plus you could probably get the best mens mountain bike under 1000 and realize that it’s not too shabby.
Try to get a full-suspension rig at that price and you might realize that you’ll need to make some compromises, but they might be worth it if you really do need one of these bikes for off-road riding. A full-suspension bike will feel better going over rock gardens and when descending on downhill trails, but chances are you will still need to have a bigger budget to afford a decent one.
Wheels and tires
Read any mountain bikes under 1000 review and you’ll realize that most bikes nowadays come in three sizes: 26 inches, 27.5 inches, and 29 inches. The first is an older standard that’s being easily replaced by the latter two. However, 26-inch bikes are the cheapest so if you’re operating on a tight budget, it might be worth checking out one of these.
A bike with 26-inch wheels might also work better for teens and small people in general, plus handling is easier compared to the other two sizes.
The 27.5-inch standard is the middle-of-the-road choice, as it is big enough to offer a speed advantage but not too big to hinder maneuverability. Many cyclists, both professional and amateur, go for 27.5-inch bikes.
Finally, there are the 29-inch bikes that are great for big riders but also for those who value speed more than handling. It’s not like they’re hard to steer and control, but it can be more difficult to do that, due to the larger wheel diameter, especially when we’re talking about high speeds.
Drivetrains and shifters
If you’re looking for mountain bikes under 1000, the good news is that drivetrains and shifters are pretty good, unless we’re talking about really cheap bikes. You can normally find the old 3×7 or 3×8 drivetrains, and in the lower range, you’ll usually find twist shifters.
Of course, there are also quite a few models that come with single-ring drivetrains, such as 1×8, 1×10, or 1×11. These are very good for cross-country and especially for climbing steep sections, as they have enough gear ratios, and the more sprockets there are, the more likely you’ll get a big gear that allows you to crank up the power even when the riding really gets tough.
As far as general use goes, you’ll probably want at least two chainrings, if not even three as you will need quite a few gear ratios for pedaling downhill, uphill, and on flat terrain.
The fewer the chainrings, the lighter the drivetrain will be, and if you get one of the single ring drivetrains, there won’t be any front derailleur which means saved weight and fewer headaches as there are less mechanical parts to need fixing, adjusting, and so on.
In case you want to get an idea about what sort of brakes you can find, you can have a look at a few of the mountain bikes under 1000 reviews above. In this price range, you will generally find fewer hydraulic disc brakes (the best rated mountain bike under 1000 usually have these) and more mechanical brakes.
These tend to be evenly split between pull brakes or v-brakes and mechanical disc brakes. V-brakes are usually found in really cheap rides, but as long as you keep them properly adjusted, you should have no problem with them.
Mechanical disc brakes take more time to fiddle with and go out of adjustment more easily, but if you’re lucky enough to get hydraulic brakes, chances are you’ll need to go to a mechanic for bleeding, at least until you learn to do it on your own.
Frequently Asked Questions:
Q: How do I find the best mountain bike under 1000?
First of all, you need to have a look at more than a few reviews and get a general idea about what sort of builds they have, the components, and so on. You can go down the easy route and just look at the ratings, but you also need to make sure that the bike fits you. Whether you get a hardtail or full-suspension bike depends on how much off-roading you do and of course, on your budget.
The best bike is also the right size, no matter how much it costs. Make sure that you consult some size charts for the frame, and pick the right wheel sizes. Don’t just look at the price, but also at the components, such as the fork, rear shock, if there is one, how many speeds the drivetrain has, what type of brakes the bike has.
Also, don’t be shy to check more than one model and hunt for discounts, as if you want a good bike and have less than $1,000 to spend, you’ll want a bigger discount to make sure you get something at least decent.
Q: What’s the cheapest mountain bike that I should get?
When it comes to bikes, and not only, the best is the one that you will actually use, regardless of the price. That implies that you will actually ride it and that it fits your needs and riding style. So getting the right frame and wheel size is important, but also the right type of bike.
For example, a hardtail bike is better for commuting and cycling on both paved roads and off-road trails, while a full-suspension rig will be much better for more aggressive off-roading.
As far as how cheap you need to go, it all depends on your budget. You don’t need to get the most expensive bike you can afford to enjoy it, but going under 300-400 bucks is probably not what you want, as below that, bikes tend to come with sub-par components that perform lousily and tend to break fast.
Also, make sure to read a few mountain bike under 1000 reviews and to check their price, so you’ll know what’s a really good discount when you see one.
Q: Can I get a full-suspension mountain bike under $1000?
It is true that a full-suspension bike is more expensive than a hardtail, but that does not mean that it is off-limits if you have just one grand to spend. Of course, you can’t expect it to have high-tier components and be ready to participate in the next Red Bull Rampage, but that does not mean that finding one with decent components is impossible.
However, you should probably avoid getting a very cheap dual suspension bike as you don’t want a fork that bounces like a spring and a rear shock that lags all the time. Try to look out for discounts, and read more than one mountain bike under 1000 review to make sure that you get one that comes with at least some entry-to-mid-level components.
If you do manage to find a pretty good full-suspension rig on the cheap, chances are that you will still need to do some upgrades later on, but then again, you will want to do that on your own anyway, as soon as you fall in love with cycling.
Q: What should I look for in a mountain bike under 1000?
If you’ve saved some money to get a new bike and the limit is 1000 bucks, you need to make some effort and check as many bikes as you can and look at their builds. The most important is the frame, as this will probably stay with you for years, while most other components will come and go.
The frame needs to be the right size and so do the wheels. You’ll also need to figure out whether you want a hardtail or a full-suspension bike. Make sure that the drivetrain fits your riding style. Go for 2x or 3x drivetrains if you’ll also commute a lot and perhaps go on long tours, or you can save weight and simplify things by getting a bike with a single ring drivetrain for off-roading.
Make sure that the bike comes at least with a decent suspension fork as these tend to be quite expensive to replace. Make sure the brakes are ok, the handlebar is the right width, and also check the grips, saddle, and other things that might make the bike more comfortable to ride.