Trek Mamba£700.00

Unusual build

BikeRadar score2.5/5

The Mamba’s frame is trail worthy, with stable geometry and a suspension fork offers the best control in the test. The 100mm-travel RockShox Tora with lockout, preload adjustment (to cater for different rider weights) and rebound damping was the highlight of the Mamba and turned out to be a favorite within the test. Unfortunately, advantage gained by the frame and fork are quickly offset by the bike’s concessionary spec. The Mamba is one of only two bikes in this test with a 3x8 drivetrain, and the tall 32-tooth cog limits its climbing prowess. Trek picked a strangely bent handlebar that's much more appropriate for a city bike, and has no business being on a mountain bike.

  • Standout features: Best suspension fork in the test, a RockShox Tora 29 w/G2 geometry, solid frame (both construction quality and geometry)
  • Pros: Best suspension fork; contemporary 29er geometry
  • Cons: Too many concessions – eight-speed, cable actuated disc brakes, square taper bottom bracket spindle; worst handlebar in the test; also heaviest of the hardtails in the test
  • Weight: 14.5kg/31.96lb. Wheelset: 5.31kg/11.7lb
James Huang

Technical Editor, US
James started as a roadie in 1990 with his high school team but switched to dirt in 1994 and has enjoyed both ever since. Anything that comes through his hands is bound to be taken apart, and those hands still sometimes smell like fork oil even though he retired from shop life in 2007. He prefers manual over automatic, fizzy over still, and the right way over the easy way.
  • Age: 40
  • Height: 173cm / 5'8"
  • Weight: 70kg / 154lb
  • Discipline: Mountain, road, cyclocross
  • Preferred Terrain: Up in the Colorado high-country where the singletrack is still single, the dirt is still brown, and the aspens are in full bloom. Also, those perfect stretches of pavement where the road snakes across the mountainside like an artist's paintbrush.
  • Beer of Choice: Mexican Coke
  • Location: Boulder, Colorado, USA
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