How to choose a bike

Bike buying guide

Cycling isn’t just a fun and convenient way to get around. It’s also a great form of exercise and an environmentally friendly mode of transportation. Whatever your reason for cycling, choosing the right bike for your lifestyle isn’t always as easy as it seems.

There are different styles, sizes, price ranges, and additional features to consider before making a purchase. To help you make that decision a little easier, we’ll cover all the bases and break down our list by bike style, so you can make a choice that suits your needs.

What to consider when buying a bike

Style

Not all bikes are made the same. On the one hand you have mountain bikes designed with wider tires, advanced suspensions and frames designed to handle unpaved trails, while road bikes are sleeker and designed for speed on harder roads. smooth. Once you know what kind of riding you’ll do the most, you can narrow down your options.

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Both men’s and women’s bikes are available in a variety of frame sizes. Depending on your height and inseam length, you’ll want to find a frame that matches your measurements. Using a bike that is too small or too big can lead to decreased performance, rough handling and an uncomfortable ride. Useful graphics can provide a good starting point.

Price

The price of bikes can range from less than $100 for the cheapest models to several thousand for the high-end options. By setting a budget, you can significantly narrow down your choices. Casual cyclists looking for occasional jaunts around town probably won’t need to shell out as much as serious cyclists.

Additional Features

Additional features such as brake type, seat type, fenders, racks, etc. may also affect your decision.

Caliper brakes are the most common type of bicycle brakes, although disc brakes are another popular and reliable option.

Seats, also called saddles, vary depending on the type of bike. You can find everything from narrow, lightly padded options, which are common on performance road bikes, to the wider, plush options most often used on cruisers.

Some recreational bikes may be equipped with racks, baskets or fenders. However, you can also purchase these accessories separately.

What kind of bike should I buy?

Road bikes

Road bikes are lightweight, streamlined, and designed for high-speed cycling on paved roads. These bikes have narrow tires and often feature drop handlebars that allow for different hand positioning while riding.

Tommaso Imola Endurance Aluminum Road Bike

This versatile road bike is excellent for providing all-day comfort, especially in the middle of a long ride or a steep climb. Built with durable and long-lasting components, the Imola Endurance model offers excellent value for money.

Sold by Amazon

Vilano Shadow 3.0 road bike

Vilano Shadow 3.0 road bike

The Shadow 3.0 is a quality entry-level road bike with convenient STI integrated shifters for maximum control at a relatively low price. Available in different frame sizes, you can find the one that best suits your height.

Sold by Amazon

Eurobike OBK XC550 road bike

Eurobike OBK XC550 road bike

With 21 speeds and disc brakes for more responsive braking, this budget road bike is a bargain. Although the somewhat heavy frame means it won’t perform as well as higher end models, it’s still fantastic value for the casual rider or recreational road rider.

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Mountain bike

Unlike road bikes, mountain bikes have much thicker tires meant to grip a variety of surfaces. Although heavier and bulkier, mountain bikes offer better suspension systems and allow the rider to sit in a more upright position.

Mongoose Impasse HD Men's Mountain Bike

Mongoose Impasse HD Men’s Mountain Bike

Featuring a lightweight aluminum frame, full suspension, front and rear disc brakes and a 21-speed derailleur, you’ll be able to conquer rough terrain on and off the trail.

Sold by Amazon

Schwinn Traxion Mountain Bike

Schwinn Traxion Mountain Bike

The dual-suspension frame works well in soaking up bumps and rough road conditions. EZ Fire speed triggers allow you to quickly shift from high to low gear when approaching a tricky climb.

Sold by Amazon

Nishiki Pueblo Women's Mountain Bike

Nishiki Pueblo Women’s Mountain Bike

With three frame sizes to choose from, you can find the perfect fit with this Nishiki model. This affordable mountain bike is just as fun to ride on a bumpy gravel road as it is on a city street.

Sold by Dick Sporting Goods

Hybrid bikes

If you’re looking for a bike that can be used for road cycling but can still go off-road occasionally, a hybrid option might be the perfect choice. These types of bikes are perfect for daily commuters.

Schwinn Sporterra Adventure Gravel Bike

Schwinn Sporterra Adventure Gravel Bike

A quick-release saddle feature allows simple and direct seat adjustment. The multi-terrain tires are perfect for going from pavement to grass to gravel without a problem.

Sold by Amazon

Raleigh Bikes Detour Hybrid Bike

Raleigh Bikes Detour Hybrid Bike

Utilizing a frame that allows for a more comfortable riding posture, this hybrid bike will perform smoothly mile after mile. This model is ideal for daily commuting or occasional weekend rides, especially given its padded saddle.

Sold by Amazon

Schwinn GTX 3 Hybrid Bike

Schwinn GTX 3 Hybrid Bike

Complete with front shocks and seven gears for varying terrain, this hybrid bike can glide through forest trails while providing a comfortable experience for the rider.

Sold by Dick Sporting Goods

Cruisers

Beach cruisers are ideal for occasional and recreational use on relatively smooth, flat terrain. They usually have comfortable padded seats with a unique frame and handlebar design.

Sixtreezero Men's EVRYjourney Beach Cruiser

Sixtreezero Men’s EVRYjourney Beach Cruiser

Featuring a rear rack and matching fenders, this single-speed cruiser can handle flat terrain while providing a luxurious ride.

Sold by Amazon

Schwinn Sanctuary 7 Cruiser Bike

Schwinn Sanctuary 7 Cruiser Bike

If you’re looking for standout retro style that’s not lacking in modern upgrades, the Sanctuary 7 is a solid choice. The padded seat will keep you comfortable all day long, while the matching red fenders will block splashes of water and mud.

Sold by Amazon

Huffy Cranbrook Women's Comfort Cruiser Bike

Huffy Cranbrook Women’s Comfort Cruiser Bike

The Huffy Cranbrook Cruiser is a well-designed budget option that will get you where you need to go. Its spring saddle feature allows for a smooth riding experience, and the chain guard helps keep your chain clean and free of debris.

Sold by Amazon

Other models

Mongoose Legion Freestyle BMX Bike

Mongoose Legion Freestyle BMX Bike

BMX bikes are great for performing tricks in bike parks, but they can also be fun options for kids and smaller riders. Mongoose is a highly respected brand known for making quality BMX style bikes.

Sold by Amazon

IDS Home unYOUusual U Transformer 20"  Folding city bike

unYOUsual U Transformer 20″ IDS Home Folding City Bike

The design is unique, but what it lacks in classic appeal, this folding bike makes up for in portability. With the ability to fold and store in small spaces, it’s a great option for big cities where living space may be limited.

Sold by Amazon

Matthew Young is a writer for BestReviews. BestReviews is a product review company with a single mission: to help simplify your buying decisions and save you time and money.

Copyright 2022 BestReviews, a Nexstar company. All rights reserved.

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