The Best Value Bikes of 2016

This year is brimming with blinged out, high-zoot, lightweight and thoroughly badass mountain bikes. Those adjectives, however, don’t always share real estate in the same sentence with words like “value.” So, what the hell, here’s a list of some bikes that I think present a good value. They aren’t “cheap,” they might not even be “affordable,” but they are all a hell of a lot of bike for the buck.

All bikes

Pivot Announces Mach 429 Trail


Pivot's new Mach 429 Trail was inspired by the capability–and limitations–of the Arizona company's cross country race bike, the Mach 429SL. The 429SL is still very much a race bike, but there's no doubt that it begins to cross the aisle from leg-shavers to seat-droppers. It was this fun factor that the 492 Trail was born from.

First Look: Yeti Beti SB5C and ASRC


Female influences have been a constant throughout Yeti Cycles' heritage–over the years it's sponsored some of the fastest women in the sport, the likes of Juli Furtado, Marla Streb, Tara Llanes, Jill Kintner and Rosara Joseph–but until now it hasn't marketed a bike specifically for that demographic.

BMC Announces 650b Speedfox Trailcrew


BMC has released details on their new 650b all-mountain bike.

Ibis Mojo HD3 Special Blend | Dual Tester


Ibis' new Mojo HD3 was one of the favorites among our testers in this year's Bible, but the model we tested was on the pricey side. This one sells for about half as much, and rolls on the same carbon chassis.

First Ride: Focus Spine


The Spine is a new short-travel ripper from Focus. Have a look and check out our initial ride impressions.

First Ride: Focus SAM Carbon


Initial ride impressions and details on the new carbon version of Focus' all-mountain bike.

Ghost Riot 9 LC | Dual Tester


Only a few names like BMC and Lapierre have crossed the pond in recent years, and they rarely grab much of a foothold here. But 22-year-old German brand, Ghost, is getting a bit of a leg up from REI.

Tested: 2016 Specialized Stumpjumper FSR 29


Specialized announced its 2016 Stumpjumper today, and it has a huge hole in it.

Specialized Rhyme targets lady shredders


The women’s version of the Stumpy sports a carbon frame with alloy rear triangle, a different paint job and saddle, shorter cranks, narrower handlebars and a lighter tuned rear suspension, but the geometry is identical to the 650b men’s bike.

Preview: Giant Trance Advanced 27.5 2


There are carbon frames that cost nearly as much as this bike--Giant's least expensive carbon Trance model. So what's the catch? Are the parts crap? Here are some first thoughts after a few months aboard the Trance Advanced 27.5 2.

Giant Stance 0 Review | Trail Tested


This sub-$3000 bike packs a lot of value. But how did it perform on trail?

Intense Tracer T275 Carbon Pro Review | Dual Tester


Our testers were hard-pressed to resist the drop-dead looks of Intense's Tracer.

Preview: Niner RIP 9 Carbon 2-Star SLX


For 2015, Niner introducted a half carbon/half aluminum version of the Rip 9, which means you can get into a carbon Rip 9 beginning at $2,200 for the frame and $3,300 for the “1 Star” model. Here are some impressions on the slightly (and smartly) up-spec'd "2 Star" version of Niner's all-purpose machine.

First Impressions: Specialized Rumor 650b


Specialized has tweaked its popular Rumor women's-specific trail bike to give it a few modern touches like snappier geometry, more travel and 27.5-inch wheels. The changes reflect Specialized's evolving philosophy to offer multiple wheel sizes on its popular mountain bikes, whereas the company was previously firmly planted in the 29er camp.

2016 Jamis Dragonslayer 27.5+


What better way to get back to our mountain biking roots than with a steel hardtail? With trail geometry and the added grip and confidence that plus-size tires bring to the table, we imagine the Dragonslayer will be a full-on grin machine.

First Look: Specialized Fuse and Ruze 27.5+ Hardtails


The cat is out of the bag; here are Specialized's "6Fattie" hardtails.

Sea Otter Classic: Product Gallery


The Sea Otter Classic represents the start of the race season in North America, and serves as a venue for brands to show their latest wares to thousands of consumers roaming the aisles of the outdoor festival.

Blueprint: 29+ and 27.5+ Bikes – Innovation or Industry Scam?


What's the deal with 27.5+ and 29+? Why is the bike industry suddenly pushing another new wheel size? And, most importantly, is it worth your time and money? Get your answers in this latest video installment of our Blueprint series.

Chromag Rootdown Review | Dual Tester


You don’t need to read the Chromag logo to recognize that this 29er hardtail measures wins in units of fun, not on the stopwatch.

Rocky Mountain Blizzard Review


We put Rocky Mountain's Blizzard to the test to see how the aggressively angled fatbike performs on snow-packed trails.

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