From Sea Otter to Outerbike and beyond, 2016 was an banner year for the Singletracks review team. In fact, this year we rode on and wrote about more than 50 bikes. While over 35 of those reports were from a 1-2 hour test rides, 23 (featured in this article) were tested over the long-term, which is also almost twice as many as last year’s long-term list. Needless to say, it’s quite the page-clicker!
Also different from 2015 was the variety of bikes we punished this year. In addition to the handful of the typical XC, trail, and fat bikes, we took on some new categories including gravel grinders, bikes for tots, a downhill sled, and of course, plus bikes. And, in true, Singletracks fashion, what we don’t have on Specialized, Giant, or Trek, we make up for in newer, obscure, and arcane brands most aren’t familiar with like Chumba, BULLS, Advocate Cycles, and others.
So without further ado, here are the 23 bikes we punished, interrogated, scrutinized, raced, launched, schlepped, and for some, fell in love with, in an effort to reveal strengths and expose weaknesses, making your life easier when the time comes to weigh the decision (and your wallet) on a new rig. I know… someone’s gotta do it.
Categories are as follows, with pages in parentheses if you want to skip ahead: XC (2), trail and all-mountain (3), plus (4), fat (5), downhill (6), gravel (7), kids (8). Jump to the last page (9) for an extensive list of the bikes we test rode, with links back to their original reviews.