Bike storage is a frequent issue for those living in small apartments. But you don’t have to give up the pleasure of riding just because you live in a restricted space. A foldable mountain bike and perhaps an innovative storage solution can be the answers to your needs.
Now, the main question that arises is, how does a folding bike perform? Is it worth the investment? Read our guide to find it out.
Or, if you’re in a hurry, click on the links in the table below to check the best folding mountain bikes on the market.
Folding bikes are a comfortable solution for those living in a small apartment and for commuters. But many cycling enthusiasts are concerned about their performance.
Yet, most folding bikes on the market are engineered to deliver a grade of satisfaction comparable to the regular bikes.
Read this quick guide to learn more about these machines, then check out the specs and features of the best folding mountain bikes on the market.
Regular Vs. Folding Mountain Bike
There is a huge difference between a regular and a folding mountain bike from the first glance. The former is a traditional machine built for performance. The latter is a tinier vehicle built for practicality. But this doesn’t mean you can’t have fun on a folding bike.
Moreover, both bikes come with their own sets of advantages and flaws. Here’s how they compare.
Regular Mountain Bikes
Regular mountain bikes are designed to improve the riding experience on off-road trails but are often used for multiple purposes, including commuting. Here are their main advantages.
On a downside, regular mountain bikes are large and heavy, near impossible to fit in a bus or subway, and difficult to store if you live in a small apartment or condo.
Folding Mountain Bikes
Folding mountain bikes don’t enjoy a great reputation, mainly due to the weight and complexity of the first models. But these bikes have evolved in the past decades and now they are renowned for their versatility.
The main disadvantage of the folding mountain bikes is the comfort. Most bikes come in standard dimensions and might not fit all body types.
How To Choose A Folding Mountain Bike
The first and foremost important thing to consider when choosing a folding mountain bike is the folding mechanism. There are three main types to consider. The mid-horizontal fold is the most popular but many cyclists believe it puts stress on the frame.
The triangle hinge vertical fold variety eliminates the problem of frame stress and these bikes usually come with built-in suspensions.
Lastly, there are the swivel fold bikes which are easy to fold and require minimal disassembly. Apart from these types, you can also consider the break-away folding bikes and the compacter models that feature two different folds.
Buying a folding mountain bikes is often dictated by the need for riding a practical machine. And weight can make or break the deal.
A foldable bike has to be easy to lift and carry; our suggestion is to choose the most lightweight model you can afford.
Folding bikes typically have small wheels, but the manufacturer tends to equip the newest models with larger wheels. Small wheels tend to be faster but less comfortable; since comfort is a more important characteristic, we suggest choosing a model that has large wheels.
Some folding mountain bikes even have regular size wheels which make the ride comfortable but the machine harder to carry around.
Another thing to consider is suspensions. Not all folding bikes have suspensions and this may not be an issue if you love hardtail machines anyway. But if you enjoy cushioned rides and the comfort of suspensions when hitting bumpy trails, you might have to invest in a specialty model.
There are great folding mountain bikes with suspensions to consider, but usually, they cost more.
Lastly, you’ll also have to consider the price. There are plenty of options for all budgets and expectations. The low-end bikes will only cost you a few hundred bucks but more often than not, you’ll have to compromise on weight and folding mechanism.
High-end models feature the newest technologies; they are easy to fold and unfold, lightweight, and comfortable.
But in this case, you’re looking at prices that tend to go around or over a thousand bucks.
Best Folding Mountain Bike
1. ORKAN Aomais 26" Folding Mountain Bike
One of the most popular folding bikes on the market – and our favorite too, Aomais by ORKAN is a 26-inch mountain bike designed for easy riding and easy commuting. The product is lightweight and easy to carry, it folds up in half, and is easy to bring on a bus or train.
A great quality and an excellent price make our top choice a splendid entry-level selection. The bike is unpretentious yet it is made of reinforced steel and it boasts selected components that guarantee durability and strength.
For example, the Shimano derailleur ensures an easy shifting, guaranteeing smooth rides. But that’s not the only positive trait.
We also like the adjustable seat height, the full suspensions and the power V-brakes that ensure control and stability.
2. Camp 26" Alloy Folding Mountain Bike
Sleek and compact, the Camp folding mountain bike is another 26-inch machine to consider. Coming with 21-speed gears by Shimano and a dual suspension frame, this bike is built with comfort and durability in mind.
A quick-release front wheel makes it easy to assemble and disassemble the bike whenever needed. Lightweight and compact, the bike is easy to transport by train or bus. Moreover, a generous weight capacity makes this bike perfect for most riders.
90% factory assembled, the bike is also easy to put together. It also boasts an alloy disc brake and a double wall alloy CNC side rim.
Another thing we like is the color choice. This bike comes in four different colors which include white, red, blue and black.
3. Kingttu G6 26” Folding Mountain Bike
Kingttu G6 is another folding mountain bike that impressed us. The unit comes with a 21-speed Shimano derailleur, a reliable Shimano shifter and other quality components that give this choice an exceptional value for the money.
Like the models above, this bike boasts 26-inch wheels and folds to the size of a traditional mountain bike. This makes riding particularly pleasant, ensuring comfort.
The free pedals and a comfortable seat boost the value of this bike. Made of aluminum, the bike is also fairly lightweight and easy to carry, although it is heavier than the Camp model above. In detail, this bike weighs 42lbs.
In terms of design, the bike presents an attractive aggressiveness; the unit is available in two color schemes. Like most 26-inch mountain bikes, this bike fits people with a height between 5’4” and 5’8”.
4. GTM 26" 7-Speed Folding Mountain Bike
GMT is another 26-inch folding mountain bike that comes with a suspension steel fork and a high tensile frame designed to make commuting and trail riding more enjoyable.
Delivered almost assembled, the bike is easy to fold in seconds and can be ridden on a variety of terrains. It boasts a responsive handling and extra-large tires that ensure stability and an athletic yet comfortable position.
Durability is ensured by a sturdy steel frame which is surprisingly lightweight. In fact, the GMT only weighs 34.2lbs.
Folded, the bike occupies a really small space and is ideal for commuting to work. The folded dimensions are 48x36x18 inches; moreover, the unit comes 85% factory assembled and is really easy to put together.
5. Stowabike 26" Folding Mountain Bike
Stowabike is another folding mountain bike we recommend. Like the other machines in this list, the Stowabike comes with a 26-inch steel folding frame and a suspension steel fork. The vehicle is easy to fold and transport, and a breeze to store.
Quality components ensure reliability. At the same time, this folding bike is strong and durable. The folding mechanism puts minimal stress on the frame despite the design.
Talking about the design, this bike comes in two attractive colors and is equipped with Wanda tires. It also has a steel disc V-brake.
An 18-speed derailleur ensures versatility and an easy riding on all types of terrains. in terms of weight, the bike weighs only 38.5lbs and withstands 177lbs.
Conclusion & Final Pick
Our favorite folding mountain bike is the Aomais by ORKAN. Unfolded, the bike has the same size as a regular 26-inch mountain bike, it suits most people, and is ideal to use on all types of terrains. Particularly suitable for commuters, the bike is also easy to transport and store.
Lightweight and compact, this bike also boasts quality components, including a Shimano shifter. Full fork suspensions guarantee smooth rides on all terrains.
Similar in many ways with the other bikes we proposed, Aomais also comes at a very affordable price. Undoubtedly, a folding mountain bike to consider if you’re on a tight budget but looking for a decent quality.