Join Date: Feb 2005
Bikes: 83 Trek 500, 2x 90s Novara Randonee, Zion 737, Specialized Rockhopper, Nishiki Colorado, Univega Specialissima
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Lower the bars as much as possible before hand. The very upright position, along with bar position relative to steering axis, makes these things all kinds of squirrelly on a trail or at any sort of speed. There is a huge rearward weight bias, so the front tire loses traction easily and the handling does not insppire conficence. They'd be ok on gravel paths or hardpack dirt, but anything with roots to go over or tight turns, or any sort of hill to climb, could be unnerving.
Have her make tight turns and go down curbs when she's test riding them, then try the same on something like a Specialized Hardrock. Consider a Hardrock with maybe a riser bar and suspension seatpost.
Don't forget though, get a bike that she'll be happy riding now. If a Hardrock or whatever isn't comfortable to cruise around on, she'll never advance to riding trails with you, so be sure she gets off on the right foot and has a great riding experience from the start.