Written by 1:29 am MTB, MTB Gears

Best Mountain Bike Saddles (Reviews & Buying Guide)



best for enduro riding and multiple sitting positions
WTB Pure Black saddle
-Saddle dimensions: 273mm x 147mm
-Weight: 297g
-Rail Material: Chromoly
-Cover material: Microfiber cover
-Cutout:  NO
  • Sleek design
  • incredibly comfortable
  • great padding
  • Curved tail can create some discomfort
Best for technical trails and riders who want the experience of a leather cover
Brooks Saddles B15 Swallow
-Saddle dimensions: 270mm x140mm
-Weight: 560g
-Rail Material: Chrome plated steel
-Cover material: Leather
-Cutout:  No
  • Incredibly tough leather cover
  • Comfortable
  • Versatile design
  • Quite heavy
  • leather is difficult to keep clean
Best for all-mountain riding
Fabric Scoop Saddle
-Saddle dimensions: 142 x 282 mm
-Weight: 206g
-Rail Material: Chromoly
-Cover material: Nylon
-Cutout:  NO
  • Sleek design
  • great comfort
  • affordable
  • Available in only one width
Best for long-distance and also mountain rides
-Saddle Dimensions: 285x 155 mm
-Weight: 245g
-Rail Material:  TiNox
-Cover material: Microfiber
-Cutout:  NO
  • Available in a number of widths
  • ergonomic design
  • Takes a bit of time working out where you are
Best for the rider looking for great level of comfort in long-distance rides
Ergon SMC4 Sport Gel
-Saddle dimensions: 381 x 130 mm
-Weight: 300
-Rail Material: Chromoly rails
-Cover material: Microfiber
  • Cutout: YES
    • Gel pads offer great pressure relief
    • larger and flat surface areas
    • comfortable
    • experienced riders may find it quite uncomfortable
    Best for technical terrains and backpacking riders who are looking for the best low profile saddles
    Brooks England Cambium C15 Carved
    -Saddle dimensions: 270 x145mm
    -Weight: 395
    -Rail Material:  Stainless steel
    -Cover material: organic cotton canvas
    -Cutout:  YES
    • Timeless design
    • lightweight
    • suitable for fast pedaling
    • Comfortable
    • Comes with no padding
    • relatively hard to get used to
    Best option for off-road adventures
    PRO Turnix Off-road Saddle
    -Saddle Dimensions:281 x 138mm
    -Weight: 234g
    -Rail Material: Stainless Steel
    -Cover material: reinforced carbon
    -Cutout: NO
    • Its neutral shape makes it incredibly easy to move
    • Curved sharp head might not be comfortable for everyone
    Best for riders looking for great performance and comfy trail saddle
    Madison Flux Saddle
    -Saddle dimensions: 142mm x280mm
    - Weight: 283g
    -Rail Material: Cro-mo rails
    -Cover material: Synthetic leather cover
    -Cutout: NO
    • strength
    • durable
    • great padding
    • great shock absorption
    • Quite expensive compared to its alternatives


    WTB Pure Black saddle

    • Saddle dimensions: 273mm x 147mm
    • Weight: 297g
    • Rail Material: Chromoly
    • Cover material: Microfiber cover
    • Cutout:  NO
    • Pros: Sleek design, incredibly comfortable, great padding
    • Cons: Curved tail can create some discomfort


    Brooks Saddles B15 Swallow

    • Saddle dimensions: 270mm x140mm
    • Weight: 560g
    • Rail Material: Chrome plated steel
    • Cover material: Leather
    • Cutout:  No
    • Pros: Incredibly tough leather cover. Comfortable, Versatile design
    • Cons: Quite heavy, leather is difficult to keep clean


    Fabric Scoop Saddle 

    • Saddle dimensions: 142 x 282 mm
    • Weight: 206g
    • Rail Material: Chromoly
    • Cover material: Nylon
    • Cutout:  NO
    • Pros: Sleek design, great comfort, affordable
    • Cons: Available in only one width


    Ergon SMC3 COMP

    •  Saddle Dimensions: 285x 155 mm
    • Weight: 245g
    • Rail Material:  TiNox
    • Cover material: Microfiber
    • Cutout:  NO
    • Pros:  Available in a number of widths, ergonomic design
    • Cons: Takes a bit of time working out where you are


    Ergon SMC4 Sport Gel

    • Saddle dimensions: 381 x 130 mm
    • Weight: 300
    • Rail Material: Chromoly rails
    • Cover material: Microfiber
    • Cutout: YES
    • Pros: Gel pads offer great pressure relief, larger and flat surface areas, comfortable
    • Cons: experienced riders may find it quite uncomfortable


    Brooks England Cambium C15 Carved

    • Saddle dimensions: 270 x145mm
    • Weight: 395
    • Rail Material:  Stainless steel
    • Cover material: organic cotton canvas
    • Cutout:  YES
    • Pros:  Timeless design, lightweight, suitable for fast pedaling, Comfortable
    • Cons: Comes with no padding, relatively hard to get used to


    PRO Turnix Off-road Saddle

    • Saddle Dimensions:  281 x 138mm
    • Weight: 234g
    • Rail Material: Stainless Steel
    • Cover material: reinforced carbon
    • Cutout: NO
    • Pros: Its neutral shape makes it incredibly easy to move
    • Cons: Curved sharp head might not be comfortable for everyone


    Madison Flux Saddle

    • Saddle dimensions: 142mm x280mm
    • Weight: 283g
    • Rail Material: Cro-mo rails
    • Cover material: Synthetic leather cover
    • Cutout: NO
    • Pros:  strength, durable, great padding, great shock absorption
    • Cons: Quite expensive compared to its alternatives



    Truth be told; just like when you are shopping for a new mountain bike GPS, there is a lot that goes into buying a new saddle for your mountain bike. For an industry that has seen designers create the best and avail to riders, singling out what works is no longer easy. Thankfully, there is something you can do about. Here are top considerations you need to factor in when you are buying a new saddle for your ride.

    Type of Riding

    Road biking 

    If you are racing and most of the riding you will be on the road, a narrower saddle will be useful. You may also want to go for great amount of padding, for enhanced comfort.

    Mountain riding

    For this, there will be a lot of movements and change of positions, and a saddle with great padding might be all you need. It must also come with a streamlined shape to allow you to move real fast. The cover must also be durable. Things can get really technical and the chance of being involved in an accident is incredibly high.


    Just like road biking, for commuting cycling, you need your saddle to come with great padding. Additionally, if you are going to ride for hours in the sun or rain, the cover of the saddle should be weather resistant.

    Bike Touring

    With this, you are going to travel for miles and miles, and for that, you might want to strike a perfect balance between road and mountain saddle. The saddle must also be able to provide great level of cushioning. After all, you are going to sit on it for hours and you don’t want to hurt your bones.

    Cover Materials

    The kind of material that has been used is important and must be factored in at all times. Currently, most saddles come made from synthetic materials. You can also find leather, but you should be ready to dig dipper into your pocket for it. Ideally, when it comes to saddle cover materials, it doesn’t matter what you pick; you just need to ensure the seams or reinforcing planes doesn’t in any way chafe. Plus, mountain bikes are faced with a lot of dangers. You are likely to be involved in a crush and going for a tough wearing cover is paramount. Here is quick look at the most popular materials you will find in the market.


    One of the most popular materials used on saddles. This is basically a sort of a mix of different materials; it could be gel padding and a cover or just molded shell and foam. There are quite popular because of a number of reasons.

    They are incredibly lightweight

    Require less or no maintenance at all

    No break in time required


    This is typically very thin leather that looks almost like synthetic material you will see on most saddles. In fact, you can easily mistake it for a synthetic material. However, this material is pure leather. It is normally stretched and seamlessly suspended on right in between the rails of your metal frame. It is tough and durable


    This is another popular material used on the saddle and we guess it is because of the high level of comfort it comes with. Cotton materials have been designed to stretch and possibly move a bit while you are riding. It offers impeccable comfort and excellent control when you are pedaling. Another big benefit you can net from the cotton saddle is that it requires a pretty much shorter break-in period than leather.


    Naturally, when it comes to saddles the base basically controls the shape and how springy the saddle is. Most companies offer different widths or shaped shells to suit different physiques. Most saddles come with a nylon shell with a bit of carbon reinforcement.


    The amount of padding that has gone into a saddle is essential. It comes with a few practical benefits. Normally, padding helps distribute pressure you exert on the surface across the entire surface of the paddle.

    Currently, Polyurethane foam is the most popular padding material in the market right now. It offers an array of densities, giving you a firm and soft saddle.

    So when considering the kind of padding to go for, it is important to remember that those soft and deep might feel a little bit uncomfortable for beginners. That more contact and movements can increase heat and discomfort, as well, especially if you are going to remain seated on for a considerable length of time.

    Shape and Fit

    Truth be told, singling out the kind of feature and amount of performance you need is relatively a walk in the park. Getting the right fit, however, it a little bit tricky. The shape of your saddle can be really important. Ideally, those broad-like car saddles can be quite comfortable; however, they are incredibly limited when we talk of mountain bikes. We don’t see them on mountain bikes and instead, we have those long and thin saddles that are more practical on the trails.

    Normally, if you are a racer, a narrow profile will be a perfect choice for you. It doesn’t only help you save on weight, but allow more efficient pedaling. On the other hand, if you are a technically oriented rider, a narrow saddle is what you need. It allows you to easily slide behind, especially when you are tackling those incredible steep descents.


    These are those bars your seat post clamps onto right underneath the saddle. Most cheap rails come made from steel alloys. Those made of carbon make for an incredibly lightweight saddle.

    In other news, single rail saddles are fats gaining popularity among so many riders. They are fast being used on mountain bikes because they are incredibly lightweight and come with an outstanding level of adjustability. When it comes to rails, the material made from plays a key role when it comes to weight, cost, and strength.

    • Alloy: Mostly Chromoly, these types of rails are used because of the exceptional strength of the offer. They are lighter than steel.
    • Steel: If you are looking for something strong, steel is a perfect choice. It is heavy though and if weight is your biggest concern, you might want to go for another option.
    • Carbon: Incredibly lightweight just like titanium. Carbon comes with great vibration absorption properties. It is mostly found in those expensive saddles
    • Titanium: With this, we are talking about great strength and lightweight features. This material does a superb job when it comes to absorbing vibrations. It is quite expensive though.

    Your flexibility & style of riding

    Many times, how flexible you are will dictate what you need. To find out the level of flexibility you have, sit on the ground and try to find out how far you can reach with your two hands? Have far can you really get? Do you have difficulties reaching forwards? If yes, then you are less flexible and for that, a more rounded saddle will be a perfect choice for you.

    On the other hand, if you come with an incredible level of flexibility; as in you have great stable position when riding; the flat saddle is all you need. It offers more freedom for movement. Additionally, if you are flexible and you get a slightly curved saddle that will also come with awesome benefits.

    Grooves or Cut-outs

    Most saddles we have in the market now feature a groove or just a cut right at the center. This feature comes with some practical benefits. It helps reduce pressure and also heat from affected some of your most sensitive nerves and veins. In short, this feature brings a sense of comfort into the whole thing. There is no way you can go wrong with a saddle that has this useful feature.

    Saddle Position

    At any given time, make sure the saddle you choose is horizontal. Those saddles with the nose pointing too far down or up can get really uncomfortable. For example, a saddle which too far forward or even far back, can give you some neck problems and back or arms. You can actually make a few adjustments and try to nail that perfect position. However, make them as minor as possible.

    Try it before you pay for it

    A good number of saddle manufacturers provide their dealers with some great demo saddles. If you have a chance, give it a test ride before you have it packed. This will actually give you clearer picture of what to expect. During that test ride, find out the shape that gives you the highest level of comfort. In other cases, if they don’t have a demo saddle, you might want to deal with stores that have a liberal return policy in place. Should you go home with it and later realize it doesn’t suit you, you can easily switch if for another design. It cannot get better than that.

    Updated on January 22, 2021 by Ben

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