Over the next couple of months I will be testing the B’TWIN Rockrider 560s mountain bike from Decathlon in detail. But impressed with how it turned up I wanted to share a Decathlon bike delivery review. Also having had my first ride on the £699 B’TWIN Rockrider 560s, I thought you’d like to know my first impressions.
When you order a new bike online you are never that sure how it will turn up. Friends have told me stories of having to assemble a bike from scratch. Or even worse having a bike arrive mostly assembled, but put together so poorly that it was dangerously unrideable.
This was my first time ordering a bike online. Before making the decision to have it delivered to my home rather than collect from my local Decathlon store, I watched their below video. It is an obvious link on all Decathlon’s bike pages showing how your bike will arrive and what you need to do.
It was delivered in a huge box by DHL. As you can imagine I was as excited to unpack it as a kid at Christmas. I was even more excited to get out on my first ride on the B’TWIN Rockrider 560s.
As shown in the video the bike came with just the handlebars and pedals to attach and included the tools to do so. It took about 10 minutes to have it up and ready to ride – and most of that time was spent trying to get the bike out of the box!
Obviously the concern when buying a bike online is that its not assembled properly. So I did a quick test of the brakes and gears and everything seemed to be in working order. A good start to this decathlon bike delivery review!
Next I took it for a quick spin around the block. Going up and down through the gears they were set up perfectly as were the brakes and everything else seemed good. In fact the only thing that needed doing was to put a little extra air in the rear tyre. At this point I wanted to go out on a proper ride but other commitments got in the way for a few days.
A couple of days later and I had a spare moring to go out for a ride. I live in Newhaven in East Sussex, UK on the edge of the South Downs National Park. So there is plenty of riding on my doorstep.
I started with a climb up my road (a steep hill), which gave me the opportunity to use the suspension lock out. It is easy to use whilst riding uphill which is great, although you need to remember to unlock it before riding anything technical, as your grip is compromised on the left while you turn the wheel.
From here I headed to some woods near me that don’t have any official bike trails are pretty fun to ride. There are some steep sections, roots and logs to negotiate and plenty of tight, slightly technical single track. It’s a small area so there is nothing too long, but there is never anyone there so it’s a good place to ride.
The B’Twin Rockrider 560s handled it all with ease. On steep downhill sections the Tektro 160mm hydraulic disk brakes did a great job. Not only is there good stopping power but they provide plenty of control too.
Rutted paths and roots were gobbled up by the X Fusion Pro L rear suspension and the Rockshox 30 Silver Air front suspension. Both provide 120mm of travel which was more that sufficient to provide a smooth ride. The Rockrider is very nimble which made riding through tight trees easy and enjoyable.
There are a few small logs to negotiate and I found the B’Twin Rockrider easy to pop the front wheel up and over. It’s also pretty easy to bunny hop – although I didn’t use this to get over the logs as there was no space. I was very pleased with the performance of the rockrider in these slightly technical trails.
From here I did a 23km circuit which included riding up Firle Beacon – the biggest hill in my area. Now the Rockrider weighs just 13.4 kg, which is 0.6kg less than the Boardman MTR 8.9 – their top full suspension mountain bike. The B’TWIN costs just £699 which is less than half the price of the Boardman.
You can obviously get lighter bikes, but as a low cost full suspension bikes go it is really light. And I could feel this when climbing up Firle Beacon. Going up the steep side it is a very challenging hill, and although I didn’t find it easy I made it to the top without stopping, again the suspension lock out helped.
Everything that goes up must come down. From Firle Beacon there could be amazing downhill tracks, unfortunately there is nothing but normal bridleways. On the plus side there are some lovely long fast sections which the bike handled well and the brakes were strong when needed.
The suspension kept the ride very smooth and when needed the bike was nimble enough to maneuver at pace. I also found it fairly easy to bunny hop over obstacles. At the end of my ride there was a steep hill back up my road. By then my legs were shot but I managed to ride all the way home with a huge smile on my face.
I headed out tooled up in case anything came loose or needed adjusting. To be honest I was surprised to get home without having to fix anything on the bike. So my first ride on the B’TWIN Rockrider 560s has proved that Decathlon put bikes together very well.
And for £699 what a bike this is. There will be sterner tests in the weeks to come but my first impression is this is a very good bike. It’s never going to be as good as the £3500 Ghost FR AMR 8 LC I rode in the Dolomites last year, but it is not as far off from it as I would expect either.
What will be telling is how the components age and how the bike handles tougher terrain. Next stop Stanmer Park on the outskirts of Brighton for some proper bike trails. Read my long term B’TWIN Rockrider 560s review to find out how I got along.
To conclude this Decathlon bike delivery review I’d say don’t fret about it being difficult to assemble or that it will be poorly put together. It is quick and easy to complete the job, and except for 5-10 mins fitting the pedals and handlebars the bike was ready to ride and put together very well.
I hope you enjoyed this account of my first ride on the B’TWIN Rockrider 560s and Decathlon bike delivery review useful. You can pick up the B’TWIN Rockrider 560s for £699 here: www.decathlon.co.uk/rockrider-560s