Mountain biking is an amazing hobby, and one of the best adventures you can experience with a pair of wheels. If you enjoy mountain biking, or you’re looking into trying it out as a new hobby, finding the right bike is an important part of riding. If you’re looking for a durable bike that also won’t cost an arm and a leg, the Cannondale Catalyst is a great option for a wide variety of reasons!
The Cannondale Catalyst is an affordable mountain bike, with entry-level features, but it’s perfect for both new and experienced riders. The Catalyst has a durable, high-quality base, which is good for making future upgrades on your bike. This will allow you to swap entry-level components with more serious and technical components.
The Cannondale Catalyst has a lightweight, yet strong, aluminum frame. This frame gives riders a better handle of the bike and it also provides a smoother riding experience overall. The Shimano drivetrain is equipped with 24-speed shift gears, which is great for both climbing and descending. The rims are made up of aluminum material, and the knobby tires help riders take-on bumps and other off-road obstacles. The brakes on the Cannondale Catalyst are hydraulic disc brakes, which provide smooth and controlled stopping power.
Cannondale Catalyst Models:
Cannondale Catalyst 1- This bike is the most expensive Cannondale Catalyst model. It features a fork with 100mm of travel available, as well as Altus and Shimano components equipped.
Cannondale Catalyst 2- This bike is similar to the Catalyst 1 model, but it doesn’t feature a hydraulic lockout system, unlike the Catalyst 1.
Cannondale Catalyst 3- This bike model has a preload option available on the front suspensions, as well as 24-speed shift gears.
Cannondale Catalyst 4- The Cannondale Catalyst 4 is great for casual trails and other off-road terrain, but it can only endure a limited amount of extreme conditions.
Cannondale Catalyst Brakes and Derailleurs
As previously mentioned, the brakes on the Cannondale Catalyst are hydraulic disc brakes, which are both strong and reliable. Some models of the Cannondale Catalyst are equipped with mechanical disc brakes, which are more standard, but not much different than hydraulic brakes. They also provide amazing stopping power, compared to V-brakes, and they’re perfect for taking on muddy and wet terrain. The Shimano derailleurs on this bike are slightly weaker, but they still do a decent job as long as you’re careful while shifting.
Cannondale Catalyst Frame and Drivetrain
The drivetrain on the Cannondale Catalyst is great for beginners, as it provides a standard range of gears. The bike’s frame is a strong 6061 Alloy aluminum frame, which is highly durable and lightweight, making it one of the biggest perks for this bike. The bike’s base frame is also long-lasting and great for upgrades, when you’re ready to step-up your components. The Cannondale Catalyst 3 model is also equipped with 24-speed shift gears which helps riders reach high speeds on all types of terrains. The bike’s geometry is versatile, with a higher saddle, which provides riders with a comfortable riding position.
Cannondale Catalyst Wheels and Rims
Some people believe the wheels on the Cannondale Catalyst could be wider, which may be true. But, the tire size doesn’t have a huge impact on the bike, and an upgrade is always possible! The rims on the Cannondale Catalyst are Alex DC rims, which can be heavier, but they’re also strong enough to endure tougher conditions.
Cannondale Catalyst Fork
The fork equipped on the Cannondale Catalyst is one of the weaker points of the bike. The suspension can be slightly unpleasant, and may seem to fall short of it’s capabilities. This also leads to harsher, less controlled riding, especially on rougher terrains. If you’re planning on upgrading components, the fork should be your first priority. The equipped fork is a cheaper SR Suntour component with a coil spring and no lockout function. Despite the lack of lockout function, there is a preload function, which allows riders to set it up somewhat to their preference.
Despite minor setbacks with some components, the Cannondale Catalyst is a great standard model, and well worth the money. The frames are reliable and durable, and they allow options for a wide variety of upgrades for your future in off-road riding. The wider, flat handlebars provide riders with grip and necessary control while riding, and the sturdy frame also improves balance. This bike has a very standard set-up, which is a perfect fit for beginners.
Cannondale Catalyst Main Specs:
Front Derailleur- Shimano Tourney
Rear Derailleur- Shimano Tourney
Rear Cogs- Sunrace, 11-34, 8-speed
Brake Levers – Shimano
Brakes- Tektro M280 Cable, 160/160mm
Shifters- Shimano Ez Fire
Frame- 6061 Alloy Aluminum, 1-1/8” head tube
Fork- SR Suntour, 100mm
Rims/Wheels – Alex DC
Hubs- Shimano Disc
Spokes- 14-gauge, stainless-steel
Tires- WTB BeeLine, 27.5 x 2.2
Handlebars- Cannondale C4
Tape/Grips- Cannondale Dual Density
Stem- Cannondale C4
Pedals- Cannondale platform
Saddle- Cannondale Stage 2
Seatpost- Cannondale C4
The Cannondale Catalyst bike models have many great features. These features include the lightweight, durable frame, brake systems, shifting gears, and more. The value and quality is well worth the price, and the overall components are standard, yet reliable. These bike models are perfect for beginners, but they are also a good option for experienced builders who want to utilize the excellent Cannondale build and eventually upgrade to more serious components.
The Cannondale Catalyst ensures that riders will have the agility to take-on all types of terrain, whether you’re riding on city streets or off-road trails. The chainstays, front suspension, flattened handlebars and seat absorb bumps and vibrations throughout all types of terrains. Combined with the treaded tires, these features give riders enhanced control and endurability. The overall appearance of the Cannondale Catalyst is also a feature that will make your bike stand out from others, in a good way. The frames also come in different sizes in order to accommodate a wide variety of riders.