Readers’ Choice: The 5 Most Innovative Mountain Bikes of 2016


Each year, we survey you–our readers–to find out what you think are the best products of the year. Last year, we asked you what you thought was the most innovative brand, but for 2016 we modified that question a bit. Instead, we asked, “What is the most innovative mountain bike of 2016?”

Well, over 2,200 of you responded and came up with 710 different answers! After wading through the data, we compiled this list of the Top 5 Most Innovative Mountain Bikes of 2016.

5. Pivot SwitchBlade


When Pivot launched the SwitchBlade at the end of May, it was clear that this wasn’t a “me too” bike. The SwitchBlade was designed from the ground up to work with both 27.5+ wheels and 29-inch wheels. It can fit tires up to 3.25 inches wide in plus mode or 2.5-inch 29ers. It also has sub 17-inch chainstays and 135mm of rear travel. To pack all that in, Pivot went to 157mm rear spacing, which they call Super Boost Plus.

Key features/specs:

  • Travel: 135mm rear / 150mm front
  • Full carbon frame
  • 29 or 27+ compatible
  • 16.85″ (428mm) chainstay length
  • Available in XS and XL sizes
  • Pricing: $5,200 – $10,100