After fielding about 1,500 responses, the results are in! Here are the best bikes of 2021, according to our readers…

With over 150 new bikes announced on this site in 2020, it’s no surprise that there were a lot of great options to choose from. We listed 30 of the models that we thought looked particularly interesting in a survey last week and quite a few of you added your opinion. Thanks to everyone who participated. We received around 1,500 responses and there are a lot of interesting choices to ponder. Here are the top three picks in three categories:

Drop Bar Bikes

Decathlon Riverside 920 Touring

The new Decathlon Riverside Touring 920 is an aluminum drop bar touring bike with 29 x 2.25″ tires, 33 mounting points, and a build kit geared toward off-road travel. It was hands down the most popular bike in the survey, more than likely due to its well thought out specs and extremely reasonable price tag. We hope to get a hold of one for a review. In the meantime, you can find the original Dispatch here.

Riverside Touring 920

Kona Sutra ULTD

According to Kona, the ULTD is a “continuation of a dream to make a drop bar bike as badass as possible.” And based on the specs and geometry, the ULTD steps up the Sutra range’s dirt game quite a bit. As it happens, we’re currently testing one, so stay tuned for a review. And, you can find original Dispatch with all the specs here.

Kona Sutra ULTD

Fairlight Secan 2.0

Similar to the Fairlight Faran 2.0 (which we’re testing right now), the new Secan 2.0 has a lot of interesting specs and features, including clearance for large 27.5 x 2.3″ tires, loads of mounts, and a unique steel frame. We hope to test one of these and compare the two. Find the original Dispatch here.

Fairlight Secan 2.0

Hardtail Mountain Bikes

MOOTS Womble

We were kind of surprised—but also not overly shocked—to find the high-dollar MOOTS Womble at the top of the list for hardtails. There’s no doubt that USA-made MOOTS titanium frames are something special. And with clearance for 29 x 2.6″ tires, a more progressive geometry than other MOOTS hardtails, and a name inspired from an IMBA Epic in the Ouachita Mountains, the MOOTS Womble looks quite promising for both trail riding and as a versatile multi-day companion. Find original Dispatch here.

MOOTS Womble Titanilum Hardtail

Breezer Thunder

We definitely weren’t surprised to see the new Breezer Thunder get a lot of votes. It made our own list as well. With clearance for 29+ tires and loads of mounts (including three-pack seat stay mounts), the new Breezer Thunder packs a lot of features and a relatively modern geometry into a $1,500 package. Find the original Dispatch here.

Breezer Thunder

Cotic SolarisMax

Despite only having photos of the frame, the new Cotic SolarisMax was also a popular choice on the list. According to Cotic, it has a “subtle and traction-rich ride feel, with plenty of space for bags and bottles for long days in the saddle.” The SolarisMax has clearance for 29 × 2.5″ or 27.5 × 3.0″ tires and is made for a 130mm fork, which provides a head tube angle of 65.7° and a 74.7° seat tube angle. Find original Dispatch here.

2020 Cotic SolarisMax


Kona Hei Hei

The Kona Hei Hei has long been a popular cross-country full-suspension bike. For 2020, Kona revamped it with a slightly longer and slacker geometry to make it more versatile and appealing for riders looking for a do-all trail bike with a bent for speed. And with a massive frame triangle for a full-suspension bike, the Hei Hei looks like a promising bikepacking rig to boot. Find original Dispatch here.

2020 Kona Hei Hei CR DL

Transition Spur

We’ve also had our eye on the Transition Spur, a short-travel 29er built around 120 millimeters of suspension and 29 x 2.4″ tires. Transition positions it as an “all-country” bike to “effortlessly explore, seek, and pursue the mountain.” With three pairs of bottle mounts on the frame, a lightweight and efficient design, and a compelling trail-worthy geometry, it looks like a great option for long days in the backcountry and multi-day rides and races. Find original Dispatch here.

Transition Spur

Revel Ranger

We’ve heard good things about the Revel Ranger, so I’m happy to see it make this list. With a 115/120mm (front/rear) suspension platform, clearance for 29 x 2.6″ tires, a geometry designed specifically for long rides, and a massive frame triangle with three bottle mounts, the Ranger almost seems perfect for a crossover bikepacking/trail bike. Find the original Dispatch here.

Revel Ranger

Thanks to everyone who participated. Note that there were quite a few great write-ins, too, such as the Poseidon Redwood, the Esker Japhy, and the Fairlight Faran 2.0. Note that we are in the process of reviewing the latter two. Stay tuned…



New Bikes

Please keep the conversation civil, constructive, and inclusive, or your comment will be removed.