Did you know that you can fold a mountain bike?
I’ll admit, I felt like a fool when I learned that such a product existed. I was so tired of mounting my bike on the roof of my SUV. It was a ton of work.
Learning that there was a product on the market that could save me from this awful chore was certainly welcome!
Once I got my first folding mountain bike, I never looked back. There are so many advantages to owning a foldable bike, and I tell everyone I know how much I love it.
If you’re wondering if a folding bike is for you, check out my reviews. You’re sure to find the answer one way or another.
1. Stowabike 26" Dual Suspension 18 Speed
Here’s a great folding bike to get started with.
It has a steel frame and a 26” suspension steel fork. You’ll also find steel v-brakes that will give you plenty of confidence as you cruise down those steep hills.
If you’re a hardcore biker, this might not be the right option for you. But if you ride bikes casually or just to coast through your neighborhood, this could be the perfect bike.
It’s not the fastest or fanciest, but if you’re looking for a folding bike that comes in under budget and performs well, this is the one for you.
2. Columba 26" Folding Bike
The Columba folding bike comes with plenty of extras, including 26” wheels and an alloy front and rear v-brake set.
The front handle system is quickly removable and you’ll love the steel kickstand for quick stops
If you’re not interested in assembling a bike, you’ll be happy to know that this bike arrives 90% assembled. You’ll be on the road in minutes. When it comes to folding it up, it only takes 10 seconds.
Here’s a quick tip though for taller riders. If you’re above 5’10”, ask about ordering a longer seat post.
3. Army Recon
Worried about a rough ride? Check out the Army Recon folding mountain bike, the best foldable bike with shock absorbers to provide you with a clean, smooth ride.
It has 21 speeds and folds completely in half for easy storage and transportation..
I do recommend upgrading tires on this bike when you can. It's not something you need to do on the first day, but you’ll surely appreciate the upgrade when you have the time and cash.
4. Montague Paratrooper
Here’s a folding mountain bike that’s designed to handle it all and then some!
The Montague Paratrooper folding mountain bike is super easy to transport and folds in under 30 seconds without any tools or special equipment.
It also has a safety lock that will prevent the frame from folding in on you when you don’t want it to.
I did find that the handlebar was a bit low on this model, so depending on my position, it could be a bit awkward. When I put too much weight on the front of the bike, it was harder to build up speed.
Overall though, I was really impressed with this bike as I used it for quick trips into town.
5. Xspec 26" 21 Speed
So few folding bikes address riders’ concerns about suspension, so it was great to see that the Xspec had both front and rear shock absorbers.
This folding bike has a weight limit of 220 pounds, so if you have a larger frame, make sure your own weight plus anything you might bring with or purchase while out on the road won’t put you over the limit.
This is also the best foldable bike when it comes to style. And I was able to put the bike together without even looking at the instructions.
The bike is a bit heavy, but this was something I got used to after a few trips up my stairs.
6. GTM 26" 7 Speed
Looking for the best folding bike that’s also a hybrid? This is the one for you. It comes 85% assembled and is very easy to fold.
You’ll love the adjustable handlebar and seat for a custom fit.
The lightweight frame and suspension fork make it easier to carry around. If you’re looking for comfort and durability at an insanely affordable price, this is the bike for you.
This bike is designed with children in mind, so I actually bought it for my 10 year old. He absolutely loves it and rides it to school on occasion. He’s allowed to fold it up and leave it in the office during school hours.
Some of his teachers have now considered getting their own!
7. Camp Alloy 26" Folding Bike
This 21 speed bike has just about everything you could ask for in a folding bike, and then some.
It has an alloy disk brake and removable front handle stem for convenience.
I also loved the extra mudguard included with the bike for free. The bike was really easy to assemble and it comes in a variety of colors.
I actually like to bring this bike camping with me. It fits in my small camper easily. I can unfold it and head through the campground in style and comfort.
8. Ancheer 26" Wheels 7 Speed
The Ancheer is one of my favorite folding mountain bikes on the market.
It’s so easy to fold and travel with. It’s become my go-to folding bike for trips on the train or subway.
Some folding bikes make it easy to tell that they’re different from a standard mountain bike. But this bike looks like the real deal.
What was more important is that the ride felt like the real deal, too. It wasn’t bumpy or uncomfortable at all.
I will warn you that this bike won’t come with any assembly instructions, but a bit of common sense is all you need to get it put together.
9. Gracelove 26" Folding 6 Speed Mountain Bike
This might sound silly, but want to know one of my favorite things about this bike?
It came with a kickstand! So few bikes do these days, so I always appreciate when a company throws one in.
Other than that, you’ll love the quality included with this bike, especially for the price.
It’s also pretty simple to put together and very lightweight.
I’ve literally ridden this bike for miles and never had a single problem. When you need an extremely dependable folding bike, Gracelove is a company you should consider before any other.
10. Generic 26" Folding 6 Speed Mountain Bike
This bike is an absolute steal. It’s a 6 speed bike, which is plenty for a folding bike.
It folds up easily and quickly and can be used by both children and adults.
I would say it’s more of a commuter bike than a mountain bike, but that doesn’t mean you can’t bring it to the trails with you.
I did have a small problem with the shifter when I first got it, but with a little adjusting I was able to take care of the problem myself.
When it comes to the best folding bike for new and experienced riders, this is it.
Pros and Cons of a Folding Mountain Bike
If you’re not sure about what makes a bike the best folding mountain bike, check out my list of pros and cons that I developed from experience. This should help you decide if you’re a folder or not. Let’s start with the pros.
Here’s an obvious pro of owning a foldable bike. You can store your bike just about anywhere! This is great if you live in a city. Your bike no longer has to take up your entire balcony or even your spare bedroom. Simply fold it up and store it away somewhere safe. You also don’t have to worry about theft as much, since you won’t be forced to leave your bike outside in a common space.
This leads us to our second pro. I bike to work a lot, and one of the biggest problems I had was that I worried about my bike being stolen during the day. It’s a lot easier for someone to steal a bike than for them to steal a car. Now that I have a foldable mountain bike, I just bring it up to the office with me and store it under the desk. If I bike to the grocery store, I can even put it in the cart. I no longer have to worry about becoming stranded in town because someone stole my bike.
Travel Longer Distances
It used to be that if I took my bike out for a ride and headed to town, I only made it as far as I was willing to pedal. But this changes when you have a folding bike. Now I can bike to the train station, fold up my bike, hop on a train, travel several towns over, and then unfold my bike and explore new streets and mountain bike trails. Having a foldable mountain bike has opened up so many more opportunities for adventure.
Now for a few cons, which there aren’t many of.
Folding bikes typically have smaller wheels than more conventional versions. This can leave you with a bumpier ride than other bikes. But if you choose one with a great suspension fork, you should be okay.
Not the Fastest
Foldable bikes aren’t known for their speed. While they’ll still get you to where you want to go, you might need to leave a bit earlier.
Some foldable bikes can reach some pretty steep numbers. Just know that you can find an affordable foldable bike with a little research and luck.
Folding Mountain Bike Vs a Conventional Mountain Bike
A folding mountain bike can be great for some but a nightmare for others. One type of bike won’t suit the needs of every rider out there.
So if you’re still not sure if you should make the switch, know that your concern is legitimate.
If you plan on spending the majority of your time in the mountains or on rocky trails, you may be limited with a folding bike.
They simply aren’t made for consistent rough rides. You'll find yourself struggling, which might outweigh the bonuses of a folding bike.
If you’re looking for great mountain bikes, check out my Diamondback bikes reviews.
But if you plan on biking through smooth parks or urban areas the majority of the time, a folding bike can be just what you need.
I would never suggest that a folding bike be your only bike, unless you’re incredibly tight on space. It’s great to have options so that you can take advantage of each bike’s perks when it makes the most sense!
What Is the Suspension Generally Like on a Folding Mountain Bike?
Generally speaking, I think you’ll find that the suspension of most folding mountain bikes is pretty amazing. But there are a few out there that leave you with an uncomfortable and bumpy ride.
My best advice is to do a bit of research into your top choices or try them out for yourself at a bike shop to make sure that the suspension is what you hoped it would be.
Are They Easy to Fold?
Absolutely! Each model is a bit different, but the basics are pretty much the same.
- Begin by lowering the seat and handles.
- Fold in the small parts, like the pedals and kickstand.
- Next, fold the bike frame in half.
- Fold the handles across the bike frame.
To open, simply reverse the steps. And here’s the best part: It only takes about 30 seconds to fold a bike. In some cases, even less!
A folding mountain bike gives you the best of multiple worlds. They make commuting easier, especially in urban settings, and allow you to own the mountain bike of your dreams without having to give up too much space.
If a lack of space has held you back from owning a mountain bike in the past, you no longer have an excuse.
So go pick up a foldable bike and hit the trails. You’ll be so happy you did!