Diamondback Response XE Complete Review & Ratings

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Ben Walker
Ben Walker
I have loved mountain biking ever since growing up in the Canadian Rocky Mountains. I love downhill, dirt jumping, and free-riding.

Diamondback has a reputation for bringing out solid mountain bikes for people either just getting into mountain biking or people who want an easy rider for paved trails and light off-road riding. For an entry-level mountain bike, Diamondback is one of the best brands out there today.

The Diamondback Response XE is no exception. With a front fork and 27-speed gears, the Response is great for going up, or down, hills. The disc brakes are a really nice feature and give the Response an edge over a lot of its competitors with v-brakes.

In this article, we’ll take a closer look at the Diamondback Response XE specifications, talk about some of its major pros and cons, and also point you in the direction of places you can buy it. Most Response XEs on the market are pre-owned as Diamondback no longer makes new Response XE bikes.

Size

The Response XE comes in 16, 18, 20, and 22-inch sizes so it’s a suitable bike for a good range of rider sizes. With an adjustable Outland seat post, you can further alter the sizing of the Response to perfectly fit your riding style.

Weight

Weighing in a 33.5 pounds, or 15.1 kilograms, the Diamondback is neither the lightest nor the heaviest mountain bike on the market. With mountain bikes, the weight of the bike is one of the features that separates the expensive from the budget bikes.
While the Response might prove a little heavy for smaller riders, most riders won’t struggle with the weight and will actually appreciate it as it makes the Response XE feel way more solid and safe than some of its competitors who sacrifice quality materials just to be able to say they’re light.

Gears and Brakes

The Diamondback Response XE comes with a Shimano Deore rear and front derailleurs. Shimano is one of the best component manufacturers in the world, so having their derailleurs really gives the Response and edge over the competition who often use cheaper, less well-made shifters and derailleurs.
Shimano also makes the brakes on the Response XE which comes equipped with front and back hydraulic disc brakes. It’s nice to see some quality brakes on an entry-level bike as many similarly-priced bikes come with mechanical disc brakes or even caliper v-brakes.


Suspension

The Diamondback Response XE has a front fork but nor back fork. This means it’s a hardtail mountain bike, good for cross country and light trail riding. The RockShox XC28 is a decent, low-costing fork. It’s coil-sprung and has a decent 100mm of travel.

Where to Buy
As the Response XE is no longer made, your best bet is to look on eBay, where you’ll always find a good selection of pre-owned Diamondback bikes. The prices range quite widely, so be sure to read the description thoroughly to get a good idea of what condition the Response is in.

Here are a few links to some of the best secondhand Diamondback Response XEs I could find:

BLACK DIAMONDBACK RESPONSE XE 29er

Black Diamondback Response XE 29er

Diamondback Response XE 29

Diamondback Response XE 29

18″ Diamondback-Response-XE

18-inc-Diamondback-Response-XE

New Alternatives to the Diamondback Response XE

Because you can no longer get your hands on a new Diamondback Response, we’ve included a list of similar bikes that are available as new models:

  • Raleigh Talus 4 – Great bike for intermediate riders: Aluminum frame, Rockton XC30 front form, Shimano derailleurs, 24-speed, Tetra M275 hydraulic disc brakes.
  • Cannondale Trail 8 – Great intro bike from a reliable brand: Lightweight and strong aluminum frame, 21-speed, SR Suntour front fork, Shimano derailleurs, and Tektro mechanical disc brakes.
  • Upland Vanguard 500 – Nice price with solid components: Aluminum frame, SR Suntour front fork, 27-speed Shimano derailleurs, Shimano hydraulic disc brakes.
  • Voodoo Nzumbi – Simple but effective and affordable: Aluminum frame, 9-speed, hydraulic disc brakes, and front fork.
  • Fuji Nevada 27.5 1.9 – Great all-rounder with a solid price: Suntour SF19-XCE front fork, lightweight aluminum frame, Shumano derailleurs, 21-speed, Tektro mechanical disc brakes, WTB Ranger Comp tires.

Diamondback Response XE
Hopefully, now you have a better sense of whether or not the Diamondback Response XE is the right mountain bike for you. With decent components and an even better price, it’s a great choice if you’re just starting your mountain biking journey or if you want something for nice, light trail riding.

Its Shimano gears and brakes and RockShox fork help give it the edge over many of its competitors and you’ll see plenty of customer reviews giving high ratings to the Diamondback Response XE.

Happy riding! 🙂 

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