Looking to bring your rides to a whole new level with full suspension mountain bikes for trails? Well, read on.
We’ve gathered some of the best full suspension mountain bikes you can actually buy. Consider these if you want to take your rides up a notch. Here, you can find bikes from under $1,000 to much higher price points, with top-notch quality components.
These are versatile workhorses that you can use to discover the best trails hidden all around the place.
If you are looking for the best eMTBs, then click here
— For Beginners —
What is the best affordable full-suspension mountain bike? Do you know? We do.
Here we have Cannondale Habit 4 which introduces mid-range riders to the dual suspension world with ease. Habit 4 is meant as a stepping stone in the full suspension world, especially for riders who plan to stick around.
It comes equipped with a SRAM SX Eagle 1×12 drivetrain with a wide-range 11-50T cassette and a 30T crankset.
When it comes to the colors, this Co-op model is available in a beautiful Slate Grey paint job!
Cannondale Habit 4 is by far the best full-suspension mountain bike for trail enthusiasts who are interested in learning the ropes of riding front and rear squish.
Thanks to an aggressive head tube angle, the handling is precise and perfectly suitable for challenging trails and descents, which is what most riders aspire to do.
It has 140mm of front travel provided by a RockShox 35 Gold RL fork. The rear shock is a RockShox Deluxe Select+ from the same quality class with 130mm of travel. A dropper post is included in the package as well.
Habit 4 is equipped with Shimano MT200 hydraulic disc brakes which means a lot on the trails when you’re attacking sketchy descents and need precision and power.
This bike is available in four sizes and rolls on 29″ tires that are 2.5″/2.4″ wide, so it’s suitable for short and tall riders.
Get it if you want limited costs but unlimited fun. Or take a look at other Habit models and see what they have to offer.
Co-op Cycles DRT 3.3
Co-op Cycles DRT 3.3 is a good-looking trail bike intended for intermediate riders and those who are still learning the ropes of hitting jumps and speeding around berms.
This is an all-around capable model that does well on singletracks, in parks, and even on downhills thanks to its large 29″ wheels. Though, keep in mind that the XS and S frame sizes come with 27.5″ wheels, which guarantees an ideal fit for all types of riders.
The front and rear suspension will dampen vibrations when you’re riding off-road and give you a lot more control and grip when the terrain becomes rough. The RockShox Revelation Motion Control RC fork offers 120-130mm of travel (depending on the frame size), and the same goes for the RockShox Deluxe Select+ rear shock.
Co-op Cycles DRT 3.3 is a fantastic full-suspension bicycle for trail enthusiasts who want size-specific wheels and the best bang for their buck thanks to an affordable aluminum frame.
DRT 3.3 also comes with a 1×12 Shimano SLX drivetrain that consists of a 10-51T cassette and a 32T crankset. A granny gear like that will never leave you lacking the right cadence for any hill. The stopping power is ensured by Shimano SLX hydraulic disc brakes with plenty of strength that is not often seen in this price range.
All in all, Co-op Cycles DRT 3.3 is a bargain as it gives you more than enough in terms of performance and style but doesn’t leave you without a dime in your pocket!
— For Trails & Racing —
Best for Technical Descents
The brand-new 2021 Devinci Troy C GX is an attractive and capable trail bike that will make itself visible on the trail in numerous ways. The most important of those are speed, great components, sturdy 29″ wheels, and versatile capabilities.
Devinci Troy is a full carbon bike that offers outstanding value for its price which is reflected in the carefully picked parts. Moreover, it has tons of travel, which makes it a serious contender on the trails.
If you’re an experienced trail rider or you’re planning to become one, the Troy bike is right for you. It offers 150 mm of front and 140 mm of rear travel with its Fox Float 36 Performance Elite fork and the Fox Float X2 Performance Elite rear shock.
If you want to have a bike that’s capable of bombing any descent, you should aim for a bike with plenty of travel and even more stopping power, such as Devinci Troy.
Related: Best Gravel Mountain Bikes
Devinci Troy has a super-slack 65-degree head tube angle that allows the bike to react the moment it gets input from the rider.
Other positive aspects include powerful SRAM Code R hydraulic disc brakes, and a high mid-range SRAM GX Eagle 12-Speed rear derailleur.
Honestly, there are few bad things we can say about Devinci Troy. It’s a well-balanced trail bike that offers a lot of value for the money and looks super sleek as well.
Norco Sight A3
Widest 29″ Tires
A top-notch aluminum trail bike for around $3,600 can give you a lot in terms of on-trail performance, precision, and fun. Norco is shaking the market with this high-end aluminum trail machine that we can best describe as exciting! Of course, we understand it costs a lot of money, but it’s not that much when you consider the value you receive.
Norco Sight A3 is an outstanding trail bike that features 29″ wheels, stiff and responsive handling, and mid-range reliable Shimano Deore components.
When you’re on the trail and hit the downhill part of the track, all you will be worrying about is travel. Luckily for you, the Sight A3 boasts a RockShox Yari RC Motion Control fork with 160 mm of adjustable travel and a lockout option for climbing. Therefore, you will have maximum squish when the trail becomes the hardest.
The rear shock is a RockShox Deluxe Select R, which also has several levels of adjustability to fine-tune your ride.
The head tube angle on Norco Sight is 64 degrees, which is well balanced and helps make this bike ideal for steep climbs and technical descents.
On top of that, this Norco model comes with ultra-strong Shimano Deore 4-piston hydraulic disc brakes with massive rotors, as well as Maxxis Assegain/Dissector 2.5″/2.4″ tubeless-ready tires. It’s a combination that translates to confidence on the challenging trails.
All in all, not many bikes will give you as much as Norco Sight A3 for such an attractive price.
Revel Rail GX
Best Pedaling Performance
Revel Rail is one of the best full-suspension bikes for gravity riders you can get right now. It has super-long travel and super-slack geometry, so there are few downhill courses that will present a challenge for it.
The best thing about this bike is definitely the CBF suspension that can transform the bike either into a pedaling machine or into a descending monster. It all depends on what you need at the time. The RockShox Lyrik Select fork and the RockShox Super Deluxe Select rear shock offer 170mm and 165mm of travel, respectively.
Revel Rail is built around a lightweight carbon frame with a 65-degree head tube angle. This aggressive geometry will help you descend faster and tackle more technical trails.
Component-wise, the SRAM GX Eagle groupset puts 12 gears at your disposal. The SRAM Code R hydraulic brakes will stop you on a dime and help you control your speed easily. That’s possible thanks to massive rotors.
One of the more impressive parts of Revel Rail is its Maxxis Minion 27.5″ x 2.5″ (f) and 2.4″ (r) tires that grip any kind of surface. Plus, they are wrapped around Industry Nine Trail S Hydra
aluminum rims that are tubeless-ready.
Bottom line: Revel Rail is one of the best full suspension mountain bikes on this list for a reason! All in all, if you want some of the best components with a reasonable price tag, this carbon beast is the best FS bike for all-mountain and enduro courses.
Niner WFO RDO 3-Star
Crème de la Crème of Enduro Riding
Niner WFO RDO is a flagship carbon bike with a versatile nature that will allow you to use it for different types of riding. This bike is an improved version of the previous model, with 29″ wheels that put it in a completely different dimension when you’re out on the trails.
This Niner has a very high bottom bracket which means that you can finally start going more “over” obstacles than trying to find a way “around” them. It’s a great choice to tackle rockier terrain thanks to the higher ground clearance.
This bike costs a whopping 6K, but it has some mouth-watering components and offers world-class performance. What impressed us the most and what you’ll like the most is the Fox 38 Float Factory GRIP 2 EVOL fork and Fox Float X2 Factory EVOL rear shock. They provide 180 mm of travel and come with some handy adjustments.
Few things can get in the way of Niner WFO RDO 3-Star and hold their ground against its massive wheels, progressive geometry, and 180 mm of travel.
What also makes Niner WFO RDO special are the Schwalbe Magic Mary EVO and Hans Dampf tires. They’re 2.6″ wide and there’s clearance for even wider rubber in the frame. The SRAM GX Eagle groupset does not need any special introduction. The same can be said for SRAM Code R brakes.
The head tube angle is very slack at 64 degrees, which is just right for more aggressive rides. This slack geometry is excellent for riders who like testing their limits and choosing challenging lines.
In conclusion – if you want to win podiums in world championship races, Niner WFO RDO 3-Star is the bike that will help you do it.
Santa Cruz 5010
Best Race-Ready Full Suspension Trail Bike
If we had to use just one word to describe Santa Cruz 5010, it had to be FUN. If we could use two, then we’d characterize it as FUN and Capable.
Santa Cruz 5010 is a versatile high-end trail bike that can jump, descend, drop, and set rough and loose trails on fire.
The 5010 plows trails with a pair of Maxxis Minion 27.5″ x 2.4″ wide tires. These are some of the best tires you can find on any trail bike out there IMO.
The SRAM X01 Eagle groupset is a real treat in this price range — it gives you 12 speeds, a wide-range drivetrain, and precise shifting.
Braking is provided by SRAM G2 RSC hydraulic discs, combined with massive rotors that will disperse heat and enlarge the braking surface.
For those who like spending the day outside or even multiple days, Santa Cruz has allocated enough room for a water bottle cage on the frame.
All in all, don’t hesitate to get Santa Cruz 5010 if you want a high-performing and fun trail bike that’s ready for races and all sorts of mountain adventures.
Bottom line is that the 5010 is one of the best full suspension mountain bikes out there for the price.
— For Maximalists —
Diamondback Release 29 3
Best Carbon Trail Race Bike
Diamondback Release 29 3 is a hydroformed aluminum masterpiece of a trail bike. It has a long list of amazing features and massive 29″ tires to support you on your way to the top of trail riding. That’s why it is one of the best full suspension mountain bikes in the world.
First of all, we should tell you about the Fox 34 Performance Float fork with 140 mm of travel, which is more than enough to get you over any obstacle on a high-paced run down the trails. It also comes with a Fox Performance Float DPX2 rear shock with a 3-position lever for fine-tuning.
When you get this bike out on the trails and the suspension starts working its magic with the help of the huge 29″ tires, you will realize that Diamondback Release’s price is more than justified.
Related: Best Mountain Bikes
This Diamondback model also boasts high-quality Shimano XT components. It comes with a 12-speed drivetrain that will let you pedal where you thought it was impossible to do so before. The brakes are Shimano XT hydraulic discs, with 180mm front and rear rotors.
In conclusion, Diamondback Release 29 3 is the perfect aluminum trail bike to choose if you have big dreams but you need a tiny push up the steepest climbs.
Best Aluminum Enduro Bike
Salsa Blackthorn is made for fast rides on challenging trails that demand both guts and skills. It comes with 29-inch wheels, which makes it perfect for quick descents. It’s built from aluminum, so it’s affordable but still light and stiff.
The biggest highlight of Salsa Blackthorn is its suspension. Both the front and the rear suspension are capable and adjustable.
The fork is a RockShox 35 Gold RL with 160 mm of travel, whereas the rear shock is RockShox Super Deluxe Select+. You can select the perfect setting for any trail that you ride. All that to help you break boundaries and reach new heights on the trail.
Related: Best Fat Tire Bikes
Salsa Blackthorn has Shimano Deore components, including a 12-speed drivetrain with a 10-51T cassette. The Shimano Deore 4-piston brakes are paired up with 203/180mm rotors, so you’ll be able to stop on a dime anytime.
Salsa Blackthorn is one of the models from Salsa’s aluminum series aimed towards experienced trail riders who want to get as much bang for their buck as possible!
This bike comes with a relatively slack head tube angle, and in combination with the massive 29-inch wheels, so it’s able to conquer any rocks, tree stumps, and other obstacles you put in front of it.
In conclusion, if your ideal trail ride involves a lot of fast-paced trail riding and a lot of challenging downhills that get your heart pumping hard, Salsa Blackthorn will be your best friend.
— For Women —
Norco Shore A2
Best Freeride Mountain Bike
Norco Shore A2 is a capable freeride full-suspension mountain bike. It’s intended for brave men and women who want to completely immerse themselves in the world of downhill riding.
It’s built around an aluminum frame with a tapered head tube, internal routing, a downtube guard, and exquisite suspension.
The fork is a RockShox ZEB R (180mm) with air spring pressure and rebound adjustments.
The RockShox Super Deluxe Coil Ultimate DH rear shock has plenty of adjustability as well. It allows you to customize how the bike behaves depending on the terrain and your riding style.
Norco Shore A2 also touts a Shimano Deore mid-range 1×12 drivetrain with a huge 10-51T gear range. You can climb a wall with it!
The star of the show is the Maxxis Assegai front and rear tires. They are 2.5″ wide, which means you will not be lacking grip no matter the terrain or surface.
Experienced riders will also know enough to appreciate Shimano MT520 hydraulic disc brakes that will embolden both male and female riders to take new and more challenging lines on their future rides.
Related: Full review of Rocky Mountain bikes
So, if you’re on the lookout for an affordable and capable freeride bike with massive tires and dependable components, Norco Shore A2 is the one.
Juliana Furtado CC X01 Reserve
Best Women’s Full-Suspension Bike
We can wrap up this list with an excellent women’s trail bike that easily proves its worth on the rides. Juliana Furtado CC X01 Reserve is a high-end full-suspension bike with a steep price and several aces up its sleeve.
If you’re a female trail enthusiast looking to have as much fun on the trails as possible and excel in different categories, Juliana Furtado CC X01 Reserve will meet all your needs.
This is a versatile 27.5″ carbon trail bike intended for a little bit of everything on the trail. It has 140 mm of front and 130 mm of rear travel provided by a RockShox Pike Ultimate fork and a RockShox Super Deluxe Ultimate rear shock. This setup will let you go absolutely berserk on the downhills. It’s more than enough to deal with most obstacles on your rides.
Juliana Furtado CC X01 Reserve has a slack head tube angle of 65.7 degrees. It is perfect for downhill trail rides. It ensures a nimble, springy, and responsive ride. You will truly feel the response of the bike to every bit of input you give it.
However, considering that Juliana Furtado has a bulky FS setup, it has a slightly higher weight as well. The SRAM G2 RSC hydraulic disc brakes do a fantastic job of supplying you with more than enough stopping power at demand.
All in all, if you have expectations and you want a well-equipped women’s trail bike that can do a little bit of everything, we believe that this Juliana Furtado model is the one.
Didn’t find it? Consider pre-owned Full Suspension bikes on The Pro’s Closet
But, which one should you choose?
We’ve analyzed thousands of bikes so far which has taught us a lot of details about them, so we can help you out to make the right choice.
Riders who want to excel on trails on an FS bike should choose Cannondale Habit 4. If you want one of the best freeride models and you plan to ride hard, choose Norco Shore A2 and you will get great value for your money. If you’re looking for a capable beginner or intermediate model with 29″ wheels, you can’t go wrong with Co-op Cycles DRT 3.3.
But, if you’re updating to a more capable carbon trail bike, Devinci Troy is for you. If your ideal type of mountain biking is trail and enduro riding, definitely check out the Yeti SB150. However, if you’re looking for a top-tier aluminum trail bike that you can use for racing and exploring, then Diamondback Release 29 3 is for you. We can’t recommend the Revel Rail anymore if you want a fun and versatile all-mountain/enduro bike that can do it all in the mountains.
If you have money to spare and you want a top-of-the-line carbon 29″ bike, Salsa Blackthorn will make you happy. However, if you want the best spec’d aluminum all-rounder that’s fun and challenging to ride, choose Norco Sight A3. Santa Cruz 5010 is a phenomenal trail bike that you can buy if you want an all-around great performer.
If you want the best suspension setup you can get on this list for the money and 29″ tires, then Niner WFO RDO 3-Star is the right pick for you. If you want the best women’s model and you have the money to spare, choose the Juliana Furtado CC X01 Reserve.