Best Hardtail Mountain Bikes in 2022

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Are you ready to hit the trails again in 2022? In that case you’ll want our Best Hardtail Mountain bike review.

But before we jump right in, a question.

What is a hardtail?

Quite simply put, a hardtail mountain bike is a bike that has no rear suspension.

Some bikes have shock absorbers on both front and rear wheels but a hardtail mountain bike only has “shocks” on the front wheel.

There are a great many advantages from riding a hardtail mountain bike, many of these will be discussed later on. At this time let’s just say that hard tails are lighter, easier to maintain, great over smoother terrains as well as faster on climbs. But let’s look at some bikes.

Mongoose Tyax Hardtail Mountain Bike

Our Top Pick
Mongoose Tyax Expert Adult Mountain Bike
$949.99
  • Sturdy and durable aluminum frame
  • Responsive drivetrain
  • Great braking system
  • Quality manufacturing throughout


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05/26/2022 12:08 am GMT

The Mongoose Tyax Hardtail Mountain Bike is our favorite machine in this category. It is our choice of best hardtail mountain bikes.

Offering  27.5” and 29” wheel options with a variety of tire widths and profiles, the Mongoose Tyax rates very highly with testers both new and not so new. The frame and wheel size options cater for riders between 5’2” and 6’2”.

Constructed from a light yet extremely durable aluminum frame, the  Mongoose Tyax weighs in at a little over 29lbs, one of the lighter bikes in our review today.

Fitted with Tektro hydraulic brakes which respond very quickly and with “feel” the Mongoose Tyax feels like a really solid package. 

Sporting the SRAM drivetrain with a 12 speed derailleur which is both direct and responsive.

The Mongoose Tyax is an excellent machine produced to a very high quality specification from an internationally recognised company. Designed with the more experienced rider in mind, the Mongoose Tyax delivers a top drawer machine. Fast and smooth, considering it’s hard tail, the Mongoose gives an exhilarating riding experience.

 What we like

  • Sturdy and durable aluminum frame
  • Responsive drivetrain
  • Great braking system
  • Quality manufacturing throughout
  • Ride of your life!?

What we don’t like

  • Some reports of “sticky” discs but we didn’t have any first hand complaints.

Mongoose Switchback Adult Mountain Bike

Best Budget Bike
Mongoose Switchback Trail Adult Mountain Bike, 21 Speeds, 27.5-Inch Wheels Aluminum Frame
$529.99

Capable off-roader

Slick gear shifting

Great Feel

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05/26/2022 12:07 am GMT

This bike has been around longer than most of its riders but still rates highly on our list of best hardtail mountain bikes. First introduced back in 1988, the Switchback has been the ever present entry-level hardback from Mongoose.

It had a durable but lightweight aluminum frame, 21-speed Shimano shifters and dérailleurs, disc brakes front and back.

The switchback comes in three sizes to suit riders from 5’3” to 6’2”, with 27” wheels and 2.1” tires.

The Switchback is a really sturdy hardtail bike from a renowned manufacturer, this bike feels at home on the trail and a really capable off-roader.

A good price on this machine will attract novices and folks on a budget too.

What we like

  • Keenly priced entry-level bike
  • Capable off-roader
  • Slick gear shifting
  • Great “feel”

What we don’t like

  • Not the greatest in the mud

 Huffy Hardtail Mountain Bike, Stone Mountain 26 inch

Huffy Hardtail Mountain Bike, Stone 21-Speed, Lightweight
$229.99

Shimano gears

Sturdy frame

Good build quality from a reputable manufacturer

Easy assembly

Easily adjustable

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05/26/2022 12:09 am GMT

Huffy certainly has the full range when it comes to mountain bikes. They have kids versions through to full adult bikes, in just about every color you can dream of.

Forgetting the colors for a moment, Huffy are producing some very good machines for a very good price indeed and this machine certainly deserves its place on our selection of best hardtail mountain bikes.

Their hardtail Stone comes with a durable steel frame, 21 speed twist gears with Shimano derailleur, front and linear pull brakes and quick release seat adjustment.

Although this is not a “top end”, the inclusion of the Shimano gears gives it the edge over comparably pricked bikes.

The Huffy is a very capable and well built bike from a company with over a century of experience behind it.

For a lower end bike this Huffy has a lot going for it.

What we like

  • Shimano gears
  • Sturdy frame
  • Good build quality from a reputable manufacturer
  • Easy assembly
  • Easily adjustable

What we don’t like

  • Too few gears for the more challenging rides
  • Heavier than aluminum frames bikes

Schwinn Mesa Adult Mountain Bike

Schwinn Mesa 2 Adult Mountain Bike, 21 Speeds, 27.5-Inch Wheels Aluminum Frame
$629.99

Lightweight durable frame

Sharp braking

Good off and on road

Quality build

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05/26/2022 12:09 am GMT

The Schwinn Mesa Adult Mountain Bike is the “next level” of hardtails. 

It comes with a durable yet light aluminum frame, 21 speed “Trigger” gears,Shimano RD-TY500 derailleur,front and rear disc brakes.

Again, the Shimano derailleur is fitted making this a high quality machine.

I would say that this particular Schwinn is a great bike across the range of riders, it can handle the tougher trails with ease whilst being a good ride on easier routes. This bike is perfect for the novice to experienced rider alike and a perfect bike for those who want to make the transition into more serious biking.

What we like

  • Lightweight durable frame
  • Sharp braking
  • Good off and on road
  • Quality build

What we don’t like

  • Seat comfort an issue with some riders
  • Mid gears can be jumpy without adjustment

Oture Hardtail Mountain Bike

Oture 21 Speed Bicycle Steel Frame,Front Suspension Disc Brake
$239.99

Good price

Excellent all-rounder

Easy assembly

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05/26/2022 12:06 am GMT

The Oture comes in at a good price (see link below for details) and for your money you get quite a capable bike.

Again the Oture comes with a steel frame which naturally makes it heavier than its aluminum counterparts but nevertheless this is a very good bike indeed.

The Oture is fine for the less challenging trails but even so handling on more difficult surfaces is good enough for the moderately skilled rider. It is also very good on the road which may make itself attractive to the occasional trail rider.

It has very good disc brakes front and back and with 21 speed gearing, fine for most surfaces.

The Oture certainly is worth looking at.

What we like

  • Good price
  • Excellent all-rounder
  • Easy assembly

What we don’t like

  • A little bit heavy

Hiland Hardtail Mountain Bike

Good Price
Hiland Mountain Bike 27 Speeds, Lock-Out Suspension Fork, Aluminum Frame 27.5 inch Wheel Hydraulic Disc-Brake for Men & Women

Excellent braking

Responsive gear change

Superb quality of build

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I don’t suppose anyone could have a list of the best hardtail mountain bikes without including a Hiland. 

The Hiland Slican boasts a lightweight and strong aluminum frame, dual hydraulic disc braking system, 27 speed derailleur gearing (3×9) and a lock out front wheel.

The Hiland also has it’s brake connections running through the frame and theoretically reducing the potential for damage or wear.

One thing you have to say about the Hiland is that it’s brakes are tremendous, giving the rider great control alongside superior stopping ability. On steep downhill trails the Hiland absolutely excels.

What we like

  • Excellent braking
  • Responsive gear change
  • Superb quality of build

What we don’t like

  • Made for trails, keep it off-road

Schwinn Bonafide Men’s Hardtail Mountain Bike

Schwinn Bonafide Mens Mountain Bike, Front Suspension, 24-Speed, 29-Inch Wheels, Aluminum Frame
$557.61

Shimano Shifters

Great brakes

Ready for rough terrains

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05/26/2022 12:07 am GMT

The second offering on our list from Schwinn. The Schwinn Bonafide mens mountain bike is a brilliant “mid-price” bike from one of the worlds best manufacturers.

The Swchwinn’s aluminum frame and front shockers absorb the bumps from the roughest of terrains to deliver a “relatively ” smooth ride. Don’t get me wrong, you still know your on a tough trail but the Schwinn makes you feel that you can tackle even the toughest course.

With it’s mechanical disc brakes front and rear, the Schwinn gives you confidence to take on that little bit more, and it’s Shimano shifter is a delight to use. The 29” tires give great traction in all conditions and wrapped around double wall rims to give strength where it is needed.

What we like

  • Shimano Shifters
  • Great brakes
  • Ready for rough terrains

What we don’t like

  • Price is creeping up

Things to consider when buying a hardtail

The first thing as always is to recognize what kind of rider you are. Are you a hybrid rider where you ride both on and off-road, your skill level (be honest with yourself here) and the kind of experience that you are looking for. All these factors and more will guide you to the right bike.

Get the right size

Okay this may sound a little bit obvious but it is a mistake that is made every single day of the year. Your first stop is your current bike,provided of course your current bike fits you well.

Try the bike and look at the manufacturers sizing charts. If you are in between sizes, the feeling is that you should go for the larger option. It is easier to modify a larger bike down than it is to modify a smaller bike up.

Benefits of buying a hardtail mountain bike

I suppose the first benefit of a hardtail mountain bike is that as a general rule they are less expensive than full suspension bikes, there are less components so that makes sense. 

The best hardtail mountain bikes are also lighter than their counterparts, less stuff on the back wheel reduces the overall weight, the bonus here is that this tends to make the best hardtail mountain bikes more responsive and maneuverable.

A further benefit of the lighter weight is that it makes uphill pedaling just a little bit easier. 

Other benefits include ease of maintenance, again less things for you to break and fix but the best thing is these bikes are great for jumps and excellent for building your skills.

They are therefore great for beginners.

FAQ Best Hardtail Mountain Bikes

Q. Can you downhill on a hardtail?

A.Yes you can. You will feel every bump if your backside is on the seat, otherwise it’s just a great downhill ride.

Q. Can hardtails jump?

A.You bet they can. In fact it’s easier to jump with a hardtail but they are, of course, a little unforgiving on landing!

Q. Are hardtail mountain bikes better?

A.That’s the great question. The answer is, it depends.

You knew I was going to say that, it really does depend on the individual rider. 

There is no doubt that the best hardtail mountain bikes are fantastic fun, you feel the ground (and air) below you. It is a riders bike.

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