Mountain bike pedals come in one of two basic types – flat platform pedals or cleated clipless pedals. While clipless give you greater pedalling efficiency and let you pretty much forget about your feet, flats give greater flexibility and are much better for learning new techniques.
While there are loads of mountain bike pedals on the market from around £10 up to £200 or more, you do get what you pay for and cheaper pedals are less likely to be serviceable and come with parts that will wear out a lot sooner.
We reckon the five mountain bike pedals we’ve picked here give excellent performance, value for money and are built to last.
British direct sales manufacturer Superstar are renowned for making quality bike parts at a price that is tough to beat. Their Nano-X pedals tick both of those boxes with comparable spec to the rest of the pedals here for far less cash.
The Nano-X has one of the biggest pedal platforms we’ve ridden and come with two sets of pins (long and longer) that allow you to customise the level of grip. Weight is reasonable at 434g per pair and they have 16 pins per pedal, but watch out should they strike a shin as they seriously bite!
Best price £44.99
Nukeproof Horizon Sam Hill
Nukeproof’s Horizon pedals are available in three different models with three different price tags – Comp, Pro and Sam Hill. The Nylon composite bodied Comps are the cheapest, followed by the Pros, then the top of the line Sam Hill model.
They weigh in at 434g with 20 tuneable pins per pedal giving a ton of grip. We’ve had been running a pair of Sam Hills for over a year now and they’re the most robust pedal we’ve ever ridden with only minor damage and free spinning bearings over hundreds of miles and some hefty rock strikes.
Best price £71.99
Pedals that protrude too much from under your shoe are more likely to hit objects as you ride, making the compact platforms (100x100mm) of RaceFace’s Aeffect pedals ideal for riders with medium to small sized feet.
With 20 well placed pins per pedal, there’s plenty of grip on offer. Should you need or want to, the Aeffect’s are pretty easy to strip down and rebuild too.
Best price £71.99
Spank Oozy Trail
While the Oozy Trails have a smaller (100x100mm) body, a hexagonal shape and only 18 pins per pedal, cunning design and pin placement means they still provide a massively supportive platform and are grippy as hell.
They’re also the lightest on test here weighing in at only 368g per pair. Our only very minor gripe is that the bearing sits in a bulge that butts up right up next to the crank arm so you have to run the supplied washer to allow it to spin correctly.
Best price £89.99
The Vault has been around for a long time and is regarded by many as the best flat pedal you can buy. It comes a dazzling array of colours and finishes as well as magnesium bodied and titanium axled versions for those with deep pockets.
The grip from the Vaults is as good as it gets and the thin platforms shrug off most rock strikes with their chamfered edges. Their bearings last an age too. A top quality pedal!
Best price £68.48