A few years ago you didn’t have to choose a wheelsize on a mountain bike – they all came with 26-inch wheels and that was that. But the world’s moved on (for the better!) and now you can choose between 27.5-inch and 29-inch wheels. This guide tells you what you need to know to choose the right wheel size for your riding.
29ers inspire confidence, roll over obstacles more easily and are stable at speed.
XC riders, downhillers and trail riders will all feel the benefits of a 29er.
Riding cross country on a 29er is fast. Riders can maintain speed well and tackle technical trail features smoothly. 29-inch wheels also help to reduce fatigue over longer rides.
Many downhill riders feel that 29ers are quicker and smoother. The grip provided by the larger tyres allows for late braking and good control.
Trail riders often choose 29ers due the combination of speed, confidence and stability. 29-inch wheels mean that many trail riders can tackle obstacles that would have been unrideable on 26-inch wheels.
27.5-inch are agile, playful and accelerate quickly. For riders who don’t quite want to go up to a 29-inch wheel, 27.5-inch wheels are a great choice if you want the most nimble ride.
27.5-inch wheels work well with long-travel frames and forks and aggressive trail bikes.
Bikes with 27.5-inch wheels tend to be really agile and easier to manoeuvre than larger wheeled bikes. So for tight, technical trails or trails that need big amounts of suspension, 27.5-inch wheels are a good choice.