It won’t come as a surprise to anyone reading this that mountain biking can be an expensive sport. Riders in our forums are discussing just how expensive mountain biking needs to be and why so many riders appear to be on so-called “superbikes” AKA high-end mountain bikes.
Related: Best Mountain Bikes Under $1,000
One forum member using automobiles as an analogy notes that they see a lot more Ford Escapes and Honda Pilots than Porsche Cayennes and Range Rover Sports on the road, but the opposite appears to be true on the trail. They see a lot more high-end mountain bikes than entry and mid-level models on their local trails.
Other riders note that cars might not be the best analogy, since high-end automobiles are an order of magnitude more expensive than a high-end mountain bike—$100,000+ versus between $8,000-$10,000.
Another forum member points out that in comparison to other hobbies such as hunting, boating, and car racing, high-end mountain bikes are not that expensive, and have the benefit of improving your health. Riders also have different opinions of what constitutes a “high-end” mountain bike. Do you draw that line at $10,000 or lower at $5,000?
Finally, there’s the argument for diminishing returns as you reach the “superbike” level. “The longer I ride, the less I’m inclined to spend a lot of money on bikes, as it really doesn’t make that much difference once you get to a decent functional level,” one forum member points out.
This price version performance debate is often seen when riders decide between carbon versus aluminum mountain bikes and when they try to get the best mix of parts that balance price with performance, such as is the case when choosing the best mix of Shimano XTR, XT, and SLX components.
Where do you stand on the superbike debate? Click here to join the discussion in Mtbr’s forums.