mountain bikes vs road bikes
Bike info

Difference between mountain bikes and road bikes

It should be very clear to any reader as well it should include pluses and minuses of both types of bikes, advantages, and disadvantages too. It is also necessary to compare the major differences between two bikes i.e. mountain bikes and road bikes in terms of design, features, etc.

Anybody can describe the power or speed-strength of either bike but it is necessary to be brief about the capabilities and features of each. For example, if we talk about Mountain bikes then many people know that these are almost made for rough terrains like forests or mountains but how do they differ from road bikes which are very popular in India as well as abroad?

What are the major differences between both types of bikes?

Technically, bicycles are defined as “human-powered vehicles with two tandem wheels either in between or totally over the front axle and one wheel either in between or totally over the rear axle”. However, this definition is not a full and accurate description of today’s bikes. You can use your bike for doing almost every work that requires power.

The bicycles are now used for transportation purposes, sports, racing or cycling competitions, and many other activities but let’s take a look at the major differences between mountain bikes and road bikes.

Now let see a major difference between both types of bikes:

Frame construction

Road bikes are made with a lighter frame than MTB’s because it is meant to be ridden on smooth roads hence weight matters but what about MTB? These are designed for off-road terrain hence they have frames that are strong enough to withstand regular bumps, jumps, etc. These frames may not be lightweight but they are stable as compared to other types of frames.

Wheel size

In the case of Mountain Bikes, their wheels (27 inches) help them in traversing rougher terrains but road bikes have smaller wheels (26 inches) which are suitable for smooth roads.


Both types of bikes use different tyres as rims and spokes differ from each other. In the case of MTB’s, their rims are sturdier hence they have larger diameter tyres to get a better grip on rough terrain, while in case of Road Bikes these will be narrow hence they can’t tolerate bumps easily but due to narrow diameter tyres when you ride faster speed it is easy to make cornering.


Most road bikes have three-ring gears while some high-end models may also contain four-ring gears such that multiple gear ratios can be used while riding on flat surfaces. Mountain bikes have only two rings of gears but the sprocket size is larger than road bikes because wheels are heavier.


MTB’s brakes are powerful, consisting of side-pull calipers that can handle heavy-duty applications while in the case of road bikes they contain a dual pivot caliper which is not as robust as the former but it is better suited for smooth roads.

Having said that both bike types will give you different experiences riding on different surfaces and when we talk about mountain biking then it will provide you with more off-road riding opportunities while if you choose a road bike means your ride will be smoother. Both these bikes offer the almost same resistance to pedaling after all these don’t provide you with a weightless feeling.

The weight is not important only if you are comparing two similarly sized bikes because road bikes will be heavier due to their higher number of gears and stronger brakes but MTB’s overall weight is also quite high but it can provide you a better experience.

As discussed earlier that Mountain bikes are stable, they have fewer gears hence changing gears regularly may not be possible here while in the case of Road Bikes this thing is not a problem for them. Also, the seat post height adjustment feature is available in these types as mountain bikers prefer longer saddle height means they get more comfortable on their ride.

So which is better?

Of Course, it depends on your requirements and budget. If you want to buy a bike to use it only as a bicycle then Mountain Bike is suitable for you because road bikes are not meant for rough terrain applications so if you want to go mountain biking or off-roading in general then buying MTB makes more sense but if you just need a vehicle that would help you travel short distance than road bikes can fulfill the riding needs.