Difference Between Mountain Bike and Road Bike


As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.

The difference between mountain and road bike is quite generous in their appearance. Both the bike has different uses. That’s why knowing their details can be helpful before buying. Earlier in this decade, the bike was more like a vehicle rather than an enjoyable. Now the bike has gotten more operational, more dependable, and more natural to ride because technology has been able to design bikes in different ways for different circumstances. Both mountain bikes and road bikes are the fair enough classification of a bike. Everyone should know about the operations they got. That’s why demonstrating the difference between mountain bike and road bike will help us to select the right one.

Here we are going to discuss the total differences between these two bikes. The two bikes have divergence on their using purpose. Also, almost every part seems different both of these bikes. A comparison table has given below to make the differences easier to you.

Comparison Between Road and Mountain Bike

By illustrating and narrowing down everything about a mountain and road bike, the purpose of using the bike will be clear to all of us. Every different part of the bikes helps to ensure smooth riding experience according to their ambitions. So, let’s start with the purpose of bicycles.

Mountain Bike

The bicycle has been designed for gaining control over the off-track terrain covering with dirt, mud, snow, gravel, etc. This type of bike has built for tough and rough conditions. That’s why it needs thick tires and a muscular wheel to take control over the rough terrain. You need to use a bike that’ll seem durable and lightweight at the same time. That’s the main reason behind making such a thing. Aluminum, carbon fiber, titanium, and lightweight steel are the main elements to build such a bike. Besides, as the cycle needs to absorb more shock, it offers a suspension system to come over the impact of vibration.

Road Bike

The velocipede is specially designed to be responsive on the plane pavement as well as lightweight. Instead of having thick wheels and tires, the road bike has thin 700c-sized wheels and tires. Skinny tires help to reduces rolling resistance and raise speed. The bicycle allows riders to cut short the time comparing to any other bicycle, especially mountain bikes. Aluminum and titanium are the primary materials using to make road bikes. The forward-leaning position is more aerodynamic and tolerates power transfer to the paddles.


Looking for a difference between mountain bike and road bike brakes? Obviously, there has difference between the brakes of these two. Mountain bikes often offer disc brakes rather than v-brakes. In the wet, muddy road, there is a change of lacking v-brakes.

On the other hand, road allows a shorter pull comparing to mountain bikes. The bicycle permits mechanical disc brakes and caliper of cantilever brakes mostly.


Difference Between Mountain Bike and Road Bike paddles are quite specific. Mountain bike paddles have small cleats that ensure easy unlock. It seems a common incident to fall from mountain bike riding trails. Unbale to unlocking cleats can turn into a painful accident.  On the other hand, road bike offers larger cleats which enable the contact between paddles and shoe sole. Mountain bikes have plane paddles, but you can change the paddles according to your choice.

Rear Cassette

Mountain bikes have cassettes that are offering multiple gear groups on the carrier to allocate the forces more uniformly. Moreover, mountain bikes have short splines that save weight. As opposed to, road bikes have a smaller cassette. Furthermore, the cassettes of road bikes offer more individual gears, and the deeper hub slinging allows greater force.

Front Derailleurs

The most common difference between road and mountain bike front derailleurs is mountain bike has 2 chainrings where road bike has 3. You can no able to switch the crankset of MTB as it won’t competent on a road bike. Road bikes have more chainrings, which allows more speed shifting into a heavier gear.


The MTB bikes have wide and plane handlebars while the road bikes have drop bars. Undoubtedly, the flat handlebars offer more control over the bike. You can easily use the brake with a finger. But the flat bar causes more strain on the wrists. On the other hand, drop down bars need less area to squeeze, thus resulting in more power.

Contrasting Table

Topic Mountain Bike Road Bike
Application Trails off-roads Travels smooth road.
Handlebars Wide and flat Dropdown design
Design Wide tires and wheels for traction and offer front and rear suspension for shock-absorbing. Narrow tires and dropdown handlebars indicate it is more aerodynamic.
Chainrings Usually, it offers 2 chainrings It offers 3 chainrings.
Types Cross country, trail, endure downhill Race, grave, endurance, touring.


1. what’s the difference between a mountain bike and a road bike?

The main difference between a mountain bike and a road bike is, a mountain bike is suitable for riding on harsh terrain, where road bike offers a ride on flat and smooth terrain. A road bike is ideal for highway riding.

2. Which bike is faster between a mountain bike and a road bike?

The speed will vary from 15-20% faster on a road bike if you switch from a mountain bike with knobbies. It differs only 2-3 mph. Road bike is specially structured for speed and long-distance travel, that’s why it the bike is faster in asphalt. But in mountains road bike cannot cope up with the speed of mountain bike.

3. Can I use a mountain bike in city riding?Yes, you can. Mountain bikes are suitable for both rough terrain and solid smooth road. You can use a mountain bike for daily riding from home to office or school or any other place.

Final Note

Both road bikes and mountain bikes are experts for different types of riding. You can not use a road bike for trailing rough and muddy terrain as the narrower wheels increase the possibility of slipping. Also, the ride won’t be comfortable. But with a mountain bike, it is possible to ride on both flat and rough terrain. Difference Between Mountain Bike and Road Bike identifies the best possible bike for you.

Leave a Comment