Over time, mountain biking has gained popularity as a sport. The market is flooded with many mountain bike brands designed for different riding styles. One such type is the downhill mountain bike. This is a special type of mountain bike ideal for downhill cycling. Since different mountain bikes are meant for diverse riding styles and applications, it is important to clearly understand the various designs of downhill mountain bikes to ensure you choose the one that fits your riding styles and needs. The best downhill mountain bike should be strong, durable, and stable.
In this article, we review some of the best downhill mountain bikes to help you in buying the appropriate bike for you.
Downhill Mountain Bike FAQs
Buying a new rig is not an easy task. As with most products, you will find many confusing options in the market. If you are going for your first downhill mountain bike, it can feel easy to skimp on some of the most significant features and focus on the price. We have prepared this review to help you choose a quality bike that reflects your preferred biking and suits your budget.
1. What Is a Downhill Mountain Bike?
A downhill mountain bike refers to a model of mountain bike with a design that makes it ideal for cycling down rocky and steep trails. Its main difference from the ordinary mountain bikes is the fact that these bikes are durable and stable to sustain the downhill movement over rough terrain.
2. What Does the Bike Do?
Cycling downhill requires more precision, stability, and appropriate skill. A downhill mountain bike is durable and sturdy in construction, which gives the bike capable of going down the steepest of trails without worrying about loss of control or balance.
3. How Does the Bike Work?
A downhill mountain bike can take the knocks from a high-speed slope because of a heavier frame and an extended suspension. The bike uses special features, such as an aligned geometry, a precise braking system, and widened tires to give it better stability and ease of handling than an ordinary mountain bike.
4. Where Can You Buy Them?
You will find plenty of options from online retailers like Amazon and can check them out personally in any bike shop.
5. How Do I Choose One?
Downhill mountain bikes differ in terms of the features. Your choice of the best downhill bike for you should not only be informed by your tastes and preferences, but also by the bike’s features such as durability, geometry, and quality of construction. Pro-level bikes will have more gears, will reach higher speeds, and can do steeper slopes. If you want to get something that you can also be used off the trail, try looking for a bike with a little less suspension.
How We Reviewed
Every downhill mountain bike on this list was judged using different measures such as the frame, suspension, and the price. We dug into every detail of the bikes’ features and performance. We also looked at other hardware factors such as the brakes, gears, rims, and tires. We listed some of the pros and cons of each product to help with your decision.
Overall Price Range of This Product (and Similar Products)
There are different buying choices and how much you spend almost always reflects the quality that you will get. However, there is a decent downhill mountain bike to suit every budget. For example, one model on this list will cost you around $2,900, while there is another one that costs $7,600.
What We Reviewed
Here a list of the best downhill mountain bikes we reviewed.
- Giant Glory 2
- Santa Cruz V10 S
- YT Industries Tues CF Pro Race
- Mondraker Summum Carbon Pro
- Specialized Demo 8
- Pivot Phoenix DH Carbon
- Commencal Furious Race
- Trek Session 8
- Canyon Sender CF 9.0 LTD
- Scott Voltage FR 710
Giant Glory is known for quality when it comes to downhill mountain bikes. The Glory 2 is a step down from the Glory 1, with more basic features at a convenient price. The bike is a proven workhorse, keeping you more confident when taking the slope. It comes in a strong and lightweight aluminum frame with a 200mm-long suspension system.
It is designed to accommodate 27.5” giant wheels set to a long wheelbase to give you more control over the terrain.
- Strong and durable construction
- Great handling for downhill races
- The suspension system is efficient
- Swift pedaling
- Too heavy on uphill rides
- Shock exposed to the elements
The V10 S is built with the right specs to handle everything you might demand from a downhill mountain bike. It comes with a carbon frame and a professional-grade suspension system. The bike allows you to swap tires and deliver traction where you need it. Everything else is in perfect shape, including the gear setup, brake system, and rims.
- Amazing speed and traction
- Carbon frame available in lighter and denser versions
- Multiple frame sizes
- It is expensive
- No space for your water bottle
Coming from two successful World Cup campaigns, YT Tues is a proven performer in downhill races and rugged trails. You can choose between a carbon and aluminum frame, both of which are impressively done. It comes with 200mm of travel suspension and a proprietary braking system, giving you better control over the rig. The paintwork is neat, with more design options such as the MOB edition, liquid metal, and blood red.
- Competitively priced
- Smooth on uphill and downhill rides
- More colors and designs available
- Not stable on rough terrain
Mondraker brings their best technology to the Summum Carbon Pro. It features a few top-notch specs like a stealth Carbon frame and proprietary suspension system. A successful championship history makes it a popular downhill mountain bike in the pro and amateur circles. The brakes run on 203mm rotors while the rim will fit 27.5″ tubeless tires.
- Strong and durable carbon frame
- Handles every type of terrain
- Comfortably smooth
- Extremely heavy
The Demo 8 is real proof that Specialized succeeded in delivering one of the best downhill mountain bikes in the market. It uses a carbon fiber frame to make it lightweight and durable. A one-of-a-kind suspension system gives it better handling on different types of terrain, including the toughest ones. The brake system uses hydraulic plates to deliver specialized control over the front wheel.
- Stylish design
- Excellent handling on rough terrain
- High-precision brake system
- The wheelbase is a bit small
- More suited to professionals
The Pivot Phoenix is one of the lightest options in the market. It is a great choice for the aggressive rider with a knack for speed and stunts. The body features a superbly finished carbon frame and a 204 mm travel suspension. The bike’s frame will fit a pair of 27.5″ inch wheels, giving it more stability when running downhill.
Pivot offers a 10-year warranty on the bike, which tells you how much confidence they have in the quality.
- Great uphill climber
- Perfect downhill stability
- Extremely good looking
- Comfortable suspension
- The wheelbase is too long
- It is a bit of drag at low speeds
One thing that Commencal have done with the Furious is to build a different suspension for each frame size. This leads to a solid geometry on all the bike sizes. The small one is more straightened to accommodate lighter weight while the large ones a more tolerant to heavy riders. The chainstay is a bit shortened compared to most of the downhill mountain bikes, making it more agile on the rough.
- A stable geometry
- Swift on the pedal
- Perfect handling
- Fairly priced
- High kickback position drags the suspension
- Fewer color options
Session 8 is Trek’s answer to a competitive downhill mountain bike at modest prices. They’ve stuck to the same frame that has been used on their bikes since 2008. You can tweak the air fork to suit different downhill drives, supported by an effective coil spring. The brakes use a hydraulic plate system.
- More size options to choose from
- Amazing rear suspension
- Extra light for uphill cycling
- Too light for some downhill runs
- Less traction from the brakes
The Sender CF 9.0 will stand as a strong contender in any downhill race. The main frame is made from carbon fiber while an aluminum alloy features on the swing arm. The bike uses an air shock on the rear wheel, making it lighter and more adjustable. When it comes to a beautiful design, Canyon makes them extremely well, and the Sender can prove it from the sleek finish.
- The suspension offers pretty good comfort
- Lightweight for uphill cycling
- More sizing options
- Beautiful and easy-to-clean finish
- It takes a bit of learning to master the shock adjustment
The Scott Voltage FR 710 is a bit of a crossover between a downhill mountain bike and a travel rig. Its frame features an aluminum alloy, available in three different sizes, small, medium, and large. The shock suspension can be tweaked from 170 to 190 mm depending on your travel needs. The Voltage can hammer a downward slope at very quick speeds, but going uphill can be a bit of a challenge.
- Adjustable suspension
- Great downhill handling
- Built for tricks and stunts
- Friendly pricing
- Needs more muscle to ride it uphill
- It is a bit heavy
If you are shopping for your first downhill mountain bike, there is no better choice than the Scott Voltage FR 10. The adjustable suspension delivers a sweeping performance for different kinds of biking. The price is also at a fair point compared to many other options.
The Commencal Furious Race is our overall choice for the best downhill mountain bike. The varying suspension levels make sure that everyone enjoys the downhill ride regardless of bike size. All of the options have been made with lightness, stability, and speed in mind. The price is also competitive compared to many of the mainstream models.