Road Bike Vs Mountain Bike – which one is for you?

Road Bike Vs Mountain Bike

There is a lot said about power demands of road racing but very miner has been written about power demands of mountain bike racing.

  • Road Bikes:

Road bikes are built in order to ride on pavement. Some bikes are built for short and fast ride, some for cross country rides, some are for adventure riding on back roads and some for rides around neighbourhood.

road bike

These bikes riding position is bent forward as compared to other bikes for less air resistance. Tyres are somewhat hard and skinny for quick handling and less air resistance. While they give comfortable ride but you have to make compromise with speed for need Vs comfort.

Due to its lighter weight makes it bit quicker in some aspect but make it less versatile.

  • Mountain Bikes:

Mountain bikes are usually ranges from mild to wild. From which some are suitable for casual cruses on all kind of surface, some for barrelling down the mountain, some for jumping off cliffs onto jumbled piles of rocks.

mountain bike

Some of which are for causal mountains are built more up right and gives more comfortable as well as easy riding than the serious rock bashers. The hard core models sacrifices comfort and gives more versatility, lightweight and tolerant for abuse.

The built aim of mountain bikes is to provide balance of comfort and performance that works for kind of rider you are.

  • Road Bike Vs Mountain Bike: Featured Road Bike
  • Racing:

As we all know road bikes are standardized bikes for bike racing, it became famous sports now days. So if you are racing lover then surely road bike will give you better option.

These bike feel comfortably feel quick and respond quickly but predictable to steering, but it still prove to be comfortable all day.

  • Rigidity:

For a road bike it is necessary to make sure that they are latterly stiff. This characteristic stands that it won’t display too much sideways flex from bottom bracket area. It is high point to remember any lateral movement in going to be only energy waste.

  • Fast Handling:

In order to act as a faster bike it depends on the frames used while making of racing bike. Steeper head along with seat tube angles providing them faster but less predictable handling characteristics. Longer top tube plus longer stem providing them aerodynamic position.

  • Sportive Riding:

Those people who are searching for competing in sporting style events may want characteristics of bikes which matches their need. In order to be used as sporting bike it must provide flexibility, durability and quick movement. All these things are the best part in road bikes because some of their models are specially designed for sporting purpose.

  • Low Weight:

For a bike to prove as a quick option for travel or day outs then bike should be on lighter side. Because bikes extra bulk may slow things down. Road bikes are designed in such a way that they will get flexibility to move easily without extra baggage on it.

  • Road Bike Vs Mountain Bike: Featured Mountain Bike
  • Suspension:

In mountain bikes you can find suspension on front or rear side or on both sides. This suspension feature of mountain bike give support in bumpy trail raiding, jumping and in most ways we need more substantial system for more aggressive mountain biking.

  • Shifting System:

It is one of the best features of mountain bikes because shifting system for a bike determines how gears are changed while riding. Paddle shifters, thumb shifters, trigger shifters and twist shifters are the type of shifting which included in mountain bikes.

  • Brakes:

Mountain bike has both rim brakes and disc brakes and both have their advantages as well limitations. With the latest technology disc brake provides stronger stopping force. They may be bit expensive than rim brakes but it surely gives more safe and easier bike riding experience.

  • Wheels:

This is one of the main factor when someone purchasing a bike. While looking at wheels things to remember like hub material, width, spokes and all other aspects. Mountain bike has wheels which gives comfort and good riding experience.

  • Quiet and Solitude:

Mostly mountain bikes trails are such a that they will take you to remote, peaceful places where you can get together with nature, meditate as well as enjoy great outdoors.

Road Bike Vs Mountain Bike: Factors

For each type terrain there is a bike designed to handle it. If you see pavement and trails have very different surface characteristics that demands specialized kind of bike. The road bikes made for pavement have a century of racing heritage where as mountain bikes were conceptualized much later.

  • Purpose:

Road bikes are primarily used on paved roads. These bikes are smooth to decrease rolling resistance and having lightweight construction.

Mountain bikes are primarily built for off-road cycling in non-paved environments. With the development of sports in the 1970 many mountain bikes come into existence and letter in 1996 cross country riding become Olympic sport.

  • Design:

Road bikes are designed to take weight and luggage while being comfortable with bike frame is providing rigidity over flexibility. It has heavy duty wheels to increase load capacity and also have multiple points made for attaching fenders, water bottles and rucksacks.


Mountain bikes come with lots of varieties with their type of terrain they are going to be used. Downhill Mountain bikes are gravity assisted time faced. Downhill races are usually held on steep, downhill terrain, resulting in high speed descents with extended air time off jumps. Free ride bikes were modified downhill bikes which utilized gearing that enabled rider to go up hills. 

  • Type:

Road bikes are made up of light weight aluminium frame drop handlebars and high pressure narrow tyres in order to decrease rolling resistance.

Mountain bikes have wide knobby tyres for good traction shock absorption as well as front and rear suspension. Downhill bikes are having more suspension travel and they are built with different bike components like yet light, strong frames, etc.

  • Off-Road:

Road bikes are basically designed for riding on pavements and casual uses, so they do not have sustained power to be ridden off-road. So they are surely not the best option for off-road riding.

Off road

Mountain bikes are designed with the aim of conquering off-road terrain like mud, dirt, snow, etc. These bikes are built with toughness, thick tyres and strong wheels that very much resistant from damage. Mountain bikes usually feature flat handlebars which places rider on up-right position and proved balance as well as control.

  • Need For Speed:

Road bikes are designed in manner to reduce rolling resistance which indirectly increases speed. They are designed to be lightweight and well responsive on smooth surface. But in case if you are looking it to ride on hard surface they are surely not right fit.

Need for speed

Mountain bikes can scramble over rocks and roots that would stop road bike in its track. Obviously with built design mountain bikes having they give impressive speed and resistance as compare to road bikes.

  • Wheels Strength:

If you are really doing comparison between road bikes and mountain bikes then the most important difference factor is wheel.

Road bikes use narrow tyres without lugs which provide proper control and grip on the pavement. They have quick and easy to maintain click bearing adjustment.

Wheels strength

Mountain bikes wheels comes around 26 to 29 inch option and always features tires with raised lugs. These lugs work as teeth for loose soil providing traction and grip where smooth tires on road bikes usually slip.

  • Road Bike Vs Mountain Bike: Specifications 



Road Bikes


Mountain Bikes

Description Designed for riding on paved roads Designed for off-road riding
Terrain Paved roads, Plain Surface Steep passes, Dirt tracks, Over rocks
Design Narrow tires to reduce rolling resistance, Light weight aluminium frame Knobby tires for shock absorption and traction, 30 gear speed for terrain types
Use Recreation, Conveyance Sport, Recreation


Roadster, Touring, Hybrid Downhill, Free ride, Cross country
  • Road Bike Vs Mountain Bike: Expect From Road Bike
  • Road Bikes are perfect solution for riding on smooth pavement
  • Built with lightweight slim tires and aerodynamic design
  • Withstand over rock over normal use
  • Provides comfort with well deigned cushions
  • It has higher handlebar positioning
  • Road Bike Vs Mountain Bike: Expect From Mountain Bike
  • Perfect solution for riding on rough terrain
  • Tires are wide and thick to ensure durability
  • Provides great resistance over significant shock
  • Heavier frame and suspension system
  • Withstand on steep and uneven road
  • Road Bike Vs Mountain Bike: To Make Choice Between Road Bike and Mountain Bike

Making choices from given options is now became a daily routine procedure. It is really mandatory thing while choosing bike for you is that you must be realistic about what you will be riding. If you want to go for fast and smooth then road bike will be your option, if it’s sleeper and bit rougher hybrid bike will do the trick. But main thing to remember that faster you go; your ride will be rougher.

Good quality mountain bike is built to withstand the huge forces exerted by biking trail, which keeps you safe and make you worry free while riding.

  • Road Bike Vs Mountain Bike: Why to go for Mountain Bike?

In order to find answer to the question of which bike to prefer, first of all it is necessary to decide what we will be doing with it. Once you get to the answer you will definitely going to the right choice.

  • Tarmac Road & Paved Areas:

It’s all about where do you stay and what type of terrain are in surrounding. Depends on this the type bike can be decided, as we already come know that road bikes are designed for the roads.

So if your local spots are more off-road than on then it’s high time before going for road bikes. If the root having path holes and rough tarmac repairs then mountain bike with pair of slick tyres can comfortably eat up path holes and glide over the ruts.

  • Canal Paths & Foot Paths:

If you have surfaces with packed dirt and loose material then these can be traversed by a road bikes but only with carefully.

In this case mountain bike will do the best job especially with lower profile tires, which is makes perfect way for such surfaces.

  • Mountain Tracks and Downhill Trails:

Mountain tracks give great fun but it is only possible with a good bike with hugely varied terrain, steep descents and crazy drops.

Down trails are designed for deadly rock gardens and descents you expect a rock climber. Such type of terrain demands lot of resilience and speed, so obviously here mountain bike is must.

  • Trail Centers:

Trail centers offers custom built biking routes for a range of abilities. For hardest trials need a quality mountain bike to handle the terrain. Trial centers are generally graded in colours.

Trail center

Out of all trials black trials are the hardest and most technical one with large jumps, big drops and also in faster mode, so in such kind of situations mountain bike always adds bonus.

  • Walking Trails:

Walking trails are ranges from flat surface to rough, Rooty, muddy, skinny trails way up a hillside. It becomes totally unpredictable about the trails you are going to face. In such kind of situations mountain bikes becomes best option.

In this case hybrid bike can be handle option but most hard one needs the quality mountain bike. When bumps get bigger than a stray stone and surface becomes soft enough that a smooth tyre will skid, you surely want flat tyre steed.

  • Road Bike Vs Mountain Bike: Conclusion

So after our whole study it is quite obvious that how mountain bikes give more compact choice while going for a bike.

  • Maintenance Does Not Hassle:

The more stuff you carry while biking, more likely chances of breaking. Then obviously more time you have to give maintaining it Mountain bikes have nothing to look after apart from chain and cogs. It is also easy to find what is going wrong when you feel there is something here and there.

  • In Budget Mountain Bike:

If you go with proper homework of bike which you are looking for you will definitely get mountain bike in descent price. Because many time what happens is that buyer does not have idea about what he looking for. So if you clearly know what you want you will get it within your budget.

  • Keep Life Interesting:

You will definitely going to enjoy your life with mountain bike. With mountain bike you are continuously shifting up and down, rising trails, going down the hills; which makes your life adventures, active and joyful.