As the internet grew, so did the opportunities to make money with it. Many an enterprising business owner launched new brands and marketed them exclusively online.
Iron Horse is one of those brands that was struggling offline and found a home in the online world. The online strategy helped them stay afloat longer. They built quite a following based on their affordable prices and premium component builds.
Even the online world wasn’t enough to save the brand. In 2009 they filed bankruptcy and were acquired by Dorel Industries — the same company who bought Schwinn, GT and Cannondale.
There are still quite a few Iron Horse Models on the market. You see them on ebay and Craigslist all the time.
I’ve ridden several of them that my friends had. And they always seem to always work well and hold up well. They don’t have as good of brand name recognition as something like a Cannondale or Trek would, so you can often save a lot of money in comparison to these more well-known brands.
And you are getting the exact same, high-quality components.
The Maverick 4.2 Pro was one of their more entry-level mountain bike models. It mostly has a Shimano Acera derailleurs and shifters. These hold up well, and I always tell riders to use it until the components break (or are destroyed on an amazing ride) and then upgrade to the Shimano Alivio.
The biggest downside is the Maverick’s full suspension system. This system tends to have a lot of play in it and makes it more challenging to climb hills. You get a lot of bounce whenever you stand up and try riding under pressure.
This suspension does help when doing downhill, and on technical, bumpy sections, but the tradeoffs can limit your riding if you need to do a lot of climbing.
You can improve your experience by upgrading to a fox 550 rear shock (if you can find one). This can help limit your bouncing and give you a better ride.
The other downside is that this machine only uses 26″ wheels. Most serious mountain bikes these days use either 27.5″ or 29″ wheels.
The bottom line is that this bike will take a beating and is upgradeable. However, with the soft suspension, I’d be inclined to go with a used 27.5″ hardtail.