Is Kona Fire Mountain Worth Buying? – [2023 Kona Fire Mountain Review]

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2023 Kona Fire Mountain Review

  • Price: $875
  • Frame: Aluminum
  • Wheels: 27.5/26×2.25″
  • Gear: 1×9

What we like about it: Tough aluminum frame, Microshift Advent 9-speed drivetrain, and flexible maneuverability.

What we don’t like about it: In a sprint, the speed can’t keep up with similar bikes.

Rating: (4.7/5)

Kona Fire Mountain
Kona Fire Mountain

Kona is a bicycle company from the United States, founded in 1988 with offices in Ferndale, Washington, and Vancouver, British Columbia. Rooted in the Pacific Northwest and rapidly growing locally, Kona has gained a lot of riders’ love for its outstanding quality and exquisite craftsmanship.

Kona mountain bikes are suitable for every adventurer, especially for those who want to conquer large all-mountain rides or even bigger downhills. This Kona Fire Mountain, as an entry-level hardtail mountain bike, is one of the best.

This outstanding hardtail mountain bike features a Kona 6061 aluminum frame, designed and manufactured with modern endurance race geometry in mind. Additionally, it’s equipped with an SR Suntour front suspension fork, Microshift wide-range 9-speed drivetrain with an 11-46T freewheel, and Tektro hydraulic disc brakes, providing excellent performance and perfect for riding anywhere.

Below, we’ll analyze the riding experience and specifications of the Kona Fire Mountain. If you want to learn more about bike reviews, you can follow us.

Riding Experience

As a dedicated off-road enthusiast, I look forward to my free rides every weekend. I’m looking forward to the crash with this Kona Fire Mountain and hope it will bring me more surprises. Another thing that needs to be prepared in advance is booking accommodation. This time, I still booked accommodation on Skyscanner, hoping for a good rest.

Off-road Riding

It was a beautiful weekend, sunny and not too hot, perfect for a wilderness ride. So, I decided to take it with me to explore the beauty of the mountain trails. The lightweight aluminum frame performed very well on these trails, even easy to say the least. Perhaps it was because the road was not too steep and did not cost me too much energy, the stable bodywork played an important role in this.

As we move forward, the road becomes winding and steep, and I need to spend more energy controlling the direction and body. It’s worth noting that the 100mm front suspension fork provides enough cushioning to absorb bumps and potholes on the road, making the ride comfortable. In this section of the road, Kona’s performance satisfied me. To pursue more excitement, I began to accelerate, passing through bare rocks and protruding tree roots. It was a thrilling feeling. And when facing downhill, Tektro’s hydraulic disc brakes gave me enough confidence, and I didn’t even slow down. Of course, please do not imitate if you don’t have enough riding experience.

Complete The Ride

After passing through this narrow path, the view became wider. The breeze blew on my face, taking away my sweat, and enjoying the sunshine. Appreciating this beautiful scenery, and feeling freedom, is the meaning of riding.

Overall, this hardtail trail bike with a center gear kit has exceeded my expectations. It didn’t try to scale back my riding experience to cut costs like other lower-priced bikes. Instead, as an entry-level hardtail, it performed well in corners and steep hills. Plus, over the years, the Kona has had a good reputation and after-sales service, so even if it is accidentally damaged, it can be replaced on time without having to spend a lot of time and money on repairs. I look forward to my next adventure with the Kona Fire Mountain.

Specification

The Kona Fire Mountain caught our attention with its super cool appearance. But what you should know is that it’s much more than that. As a versatile, agile, and stylish hardtail mountain bike, it’s perfect for singletrack off-road riding and cruising around local parks.

The Kona 6061 aluminum frame is widely used in mountain bikes, providing excellent and reliable performance that can withstand thousands of rides. The Fire Mountain’s 1×9-speed drivetrain ensures smooth shifting during rides. Additionally, the Tektro hydraulic disc brakes ensure excellent braking power and control in all weather conditions.

Equipped with a 100mm adjustable suspension and sturdy tires, the Fire Mountain greatly enhances your confidence when riding off-road. The 27mm rims are tough enough to give you the confidence to ride anywhere on the mountain. It also thoughtfully offers other wheel sizes for smaller riders. These excellent components are designed to give you the best riding experience.

What do we like about it?

  • Fast, agile, and versatile: this Kona Fire Mountain can bring you something even better. Whether it’s trail riding or daily commuting, it’s a good performer.
  • Microshift Advent 9-speed drivetrain: The classic 9-speed drivetrain ensures smooth shifts so you always have a comfortable speed.
  • Kona 6061 Aluminum: Tough, durable lightweight alloy that can withstand the wear and tear of frequent use.
  • SR Suntour shock fork: 100mm of fork travel brings enough cushioning to ensure a comfortable ride.
  • Tapered headtube: More girth at the bottom of the headtube allows for better distribution of impact forces, extending the bearing life of the headset itself and eliminating brake judder while providing confident steering performance.
  • Comfortable saddle: After a long ride, a comfortable saddle can greatly reduce the fatigue of riding.

What don’t we like about it?

  • Speed: In a sprint, the speed can’t keep up with similar bikes

FAQs

  • What is the tire size of Kona Fire Mountain and what kind of tires are used?

The bike comes in a 27.5×2.25″ size, with a 26″ option to accommodate different user habits. The tires are either WTB Trail Boss or Maxxis Rekon models.

  • Can the Kona Fire Mountain be used for daily commuting?

Although it is a hardtail crossover, it also performs well in daily commuting. It is just slightly less comfortable and faster than a commuter bike.

  • Is Kona Fire Mountain suitable for newcomers?

Of course, this is for beginners. Cheap price with excellent components, perfect for beginner players.

  • How to choose the right size?

Here we provide you with a size chart. But of course, this does not necessarily have to follow this standard. The best way to find the most suitable size is to test ride.

Rider heightSIZE
147cm – 155cmXS
152cm – 171cmSM
157cm – 183cmMD
175cm – 196cmLG
180cm – 196cmXL

Kona Fire Mountain Specs

Build

FrameKona 6061 Aluminum ButtedColors: Matte Midnight; Matte Faux Raw w/ Blue-Grey Decals
ForkSuntour XCR 32 or X1 LO-R or RST Omega Coil Spring 100mm
Rear Shockn/a
Bottom BracketFeimin 73mm
HeadsetFeimen HP-H868B
StemKona Control
HandlebarKona Aluminum Riser
SaddleKona XC
SeatpostKona Thumb w/ Offset 31.6mm
PedalsKona JS2
GripsKona Key Grip Slip on

Groupset

Rear DerailleurMicroshift Advent w/ Clutch
Front Derailleurn/a
CrankSamox, 28t
ShiftersMicroshift Advent
CassetteMicroshift Advent 11-46t 9spd
ChainKMC X9
Chain Guiden/a
BrakesTektro HDM275
Brake LeversTektro HDM275

Wheels

RimsAlex DP27K
SpokesStainless Black 14g
Front HubJoytech 100x9mm
Rear HubJoytech 135x10mm
TiresWTB Trail Boss or Maxxis Rekon 27.5/26×2.25″
Disk RotorsTektro TR180 180mm

Video

Comparison Table

BicyclesClick ViewDrivetrainFrame materialGroupset
2023 Trek X-Caliber 8Click View1 × 12AluminumShimano XT, Deore
Specialized ChiselClick View1 × 12AluminumSRAM SX Eagle
Liv Tempt 5Click View2 × 7AluminumShimano Tourney
GT Aggressor CompClick View3 × 7AluminumShimano Tourney

Kona Fire Mountain vs 2023 Trek X-Caliber 8

Trek X-Caliber 8
Trek X-Caliber 8

As another hardtail mountain bike option, the Trek X-Caliber 8 provides a slightly different riding experience compared to the Kona Fire Mountain. With superior component options such as XT and Deore, I enjoy its shifting performance and quick responsiveness for a smoother ride. However, to cater to beginners and cost-saving measures, the Kona Fire Mountain uses microSHIFT Advent. It has given me great satisfaction in its performance on singletrack.

In terms of geometry design, the Trek X-Caliber 8 is slightly more aggressive. This means it has a faster ride on the trails. On the other hand, the entry-level Kona Fire Mountain seems to have put more thought into this aspect. Its more relaxed geometry provides more comfort during rides, especially on less steep roads.

Learn More: Is The Trek X-Caliber 8 Worth Buying? [Trek X-Caliber 8 Review]

Kona Fire Mountain vs Specialized Chisel

Specialized Chisel
Specialized Chisel

The Kona Fire Mountain and Specialized Chisel both use hydraulic disc brakes. Their excellent braking performance can easily handle unexpected situations, and even in steep off-road rides, they have performed well with stable braking moments to ensure riding safety.

Of course, the biggest difference between these two bikes is the drivetrain. the Specialized Chisel uses the SRAM SX Eagle 1×12 speed drivetrain, which has a silky smooth shifting ability that performs well when facing some tricky terrain. The ability to handle steep hills makes for a more relaxed ride. The Kona Fire Mountain uses a Microshift Advent 9-speed drivetrain, which has fewer gearing options. Perhaps it was the fact that the terrain wasn’t too rough that didn’t give me much of a difference in how I felt on the actual ride.

If you don’t have a high budget, the Specialized Chisel may put some economic pressure on you. The Kona Fire Mountain will be a good choice.

Kona Fire Mountain vs Liv Tempt 5

Liv Tempt 5
Liv Tempt 5

As a hardtail mountain bike produced by Liv, it has always been unique in its design. The slender seat post, coupled with white paint, will attract more attention when riding. I like it because of its lightweight, and the aluminum frame performs well in off-road terrain.

However, it’s worth mentioning that this bike has a 2×7 drivetrain system and a mechanical disc brake system. Compared with the Kona Fire Mountain, the actual riding experience is slightly worse, especially when facing some muddy roads. As a novice, the 1×9 drivetrain is easier to handle, making it more convenient to operate.

I can only say that if it is used as a substitute, the Liv Tempt 5 would be a good choice. But if you are looking for a better riding experience, you might want to try the Kona Fire Mountain.

Learn more : Is Liv Tempt 3 A Good Choice? – [Liv Tempt 3 Review]

Learn more : Is Liv Tempt 4 A Good Choice? -[Liv Tempt 4 Review]

Kona Fire Mountain vs GT Aggressor Comp

GT Aggressor Comp
GT Aggressor Comp

If you frequently ride in steep mountainous terrain, then safety and comfort should be your top priority. The GT Aggressor Comp is designed for off-road riding with its lightweight aluminum frame and 27.5″ WTB Ranger Comp tires that perform well during rides.

However, it’s worth mentioning that the 80mm front fork travel doesn’t provide outstanding shock absorption compared to the Kona Fire Mountain. Additionally, the mechanical disc brakes don’t handle sharp turns as effectively. I prefer the smooth shifting and faster response of the Kona Fire Mountain’s 1×9 transmission compared to the GT Aggressor Comp’s 3×7 transmission, which is simpler. Although both are entry-level mountain bikes, if you want to enjoy a better riding experience, the Kona Fire Mountain is the better choice.

Learn More: Is GT Aggressor Comp Worth Buying? [2022 GT Aggressor Comp Review]

Summary

The Kona Fire Mountain performed well in our testing and is an excellent entry-level mountain bike. It not only greatly enhances your confidence when conquering rugged terrain but also provides a more enjoyable riding experience. If you’re interested in trying a higher-end hardtail mountain bike, please check out our related tests.

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