When it comes to purchasing a new bicycle, there are a number of things that you are required to consider, like what you will be using your new bike for, people whom you ride with, what they ride, what you had in the past, etc. It is very commonly recommended that if you generally rise in groups, you should certainly go for a bike which is similar to what others in your group have. For instance, if you go ahead with a cruiser or mountain bike, you will not be able to keep up with others if they have road bikes.
If you enjoyed riding a three speed when you were young, you can actually consider them again. And if your past experience with a mountain bike was not very rewarding, you can thing about going with a road bike now. Basically, it’s all about what your preferences are.
To help you make a smart decision among all the confusing number of options available in the market, we have created a list of some of the most common types of bikes that you can consider.
As their name suggests, road bikes are exclusively created to ride smoothly and fast on pavements. They generally have skinny, smooth tyres with drop-type handlebars. These bicycles can also be used for racing on the road. They are not generally capable of carrying very heavy loads and lighter in weight as compared to all the other types of bicycles.
Road bikes are further divided in several categories-
- Touring Bicycle- While these bicycles can be ridden on smooth pavements, they are also ideal for long-distance rides. They come with all the required mounting bolts which you will need for fenders and cargo racks. While they feature drop-type handlebars just like standard road bikes, the overall design of these bicycles is more relaxed to allow the rider to ride in a more upright position and enjoy a comfortable riding experience on longer distances.
- Cyclocross Bicycles- These road bikes are designed to be used on a variety of surfaces, like combination of unpaved trails, pavement, grass, gravel, etc. These bicycles have wider tyres as compared to standard road bicycles for enhanced traction. Even their brakes are different and help in preventing the accumulation of mud in the frame. They generally have better load carrying ability as compared to standard road bikes and are highly preferred as commuter bikes due to this feature.
- Triathlon Bicycles- These bicycles are designed to have maximum aerodynamic properties. Even the handlebars of these bicycles are designed aerodynamically and require the rider to crouch forward to reduce the resistance of wind against the body. Triathlon races generally allow staggered starts where the racers get to start on their own. However, these bicycles are not allowed for mass-start races.
The next category of bicycles is the mountain bikes that are designed for off-road trails. These bicycles have upright or flat handlebars and very low range of gears to allow the riders to easily pedal on steep trails. Most of these mountain bicycles feature suspension or shock absorbers. The mountain bikes that feature front suspension are known as hardtails and the ones the feature front as well as rear suspension are known as dualies or full-suspension mountain bikes. And the ones that do not feature suspension are known as rigid. Check out our list of Best Mountain Bikes.
Hybrid bikes are exclusively created to provide the benefits of mountain as well as road bikes. They have large seats that are padded, and upright handlebars to provide the riders with a comfortable position while riding. These bikes are generally recommended for casual rides on bike paths or in the neighborhood, commuting for short distances or for small errands around the town. While hybrid bikes can be used on paved roads, they are heavier as compared to road bikes. While you can also use them on paved as well as unpaved bike trails, rough off-road bike trails on mountains is not something where this type of bicycle is recommended. Go here to see our review of the top ten Best hybrid bikes.
Similar to hybrid bikes, cruiser bikes are also very comfortable and can be used if you
like to ride casually in the neighborhood or around town. These bikes generally feature balloon-type tires and their handlebars are more upright as compared to the hybrid bikes. Moreover, there are some cruiser models in which the handlebars are entirely swept back. They generally have the traditional coaster-type brake and are single or three speed. Check out our latest review of the Best Cruiser Bikes for 2017.
Contrary to the popular beliefs, there is no actual category known as “city bikes” and it is only a generic term. These bikes can also be called as urban bikes or commuter bikes, which most of the bikes mentioned in this post can be used for as well. However, a lot of people have a particular description of bike in mind when they think about city bikes. These city bikes have the features of both the cruiser bike and the hybrid bikes, for instance, their upright position of riding is of the cruiser bikes but their wheel size is that of hybrid bikes.
Moreover, city bikes can also have many other features that make it ideal for riding in simple, regular clothes as opposed to wearing something that is specific to cycling. For instance, they might have chain guard, fenders, skit guard, etc. We have curated a detailed review of the Best City Bikes.
BMX bikes are very popular with the kids as they have a small size. However, these bicycles are also highly preferred by a lot of adults involved in bicycle tricks and stunts.
This type of bicycle is generally recommended for people who want to cover some distance on a bicycle before taking a train, bus, or a boat for the rest of the journey. Moreover, a folding bike can also be used by people who do not have a lot of space to store the bicycle. These bikes generally have small wheels that make it a little difficult to handle as compared to other standard bikes.
These are some of the most popular type of bikes that you can consider if you are looking to purchase a new bicycle. Make sure that you clearly understand the advantages and drawbacks of the model that you are looking to buy to ensure that your purchase provides you with the desired outcome.