Are you ready to get out on the road with a bike? Perhaps you want to have a new bike that you can use for commuting back and forth to work or school. Maybe you are looking for a bike so you can get some exercise? You might simply want a bike to enjoy getting out on the weekends and exploring the city and some of the parks with paved trails. There are countless reasons that you might be looking for a road bike today whether you want one for yourself or you are looking to buy one as a gift.
Those who are seeking a beginner road bike will have quite a few options available, of course. You might think, “finding used bikes near me seems like a good option.” However, if you are only looking at used bikes or discount bikes, you might not end up getting one that is truly suited to your needs. You could also end up spending money on a bike that will not last. Therefore, it makes sense to truly get a sense of the best entry level road bikes available. Get to know the options for starter bikes, and then make it a choice on which one is right for you.
Over the course of this article, we will be looking at nine of the best beginner road bikes on the market today. You should be able to find a few options from the list below that will work well for you. In addition, we will be covering some information on how to choose the right bike, taking care of your bike, and more.
Table of Contents
- 1 The Best Entry Level Road Bikes Compared
- 2 Tommaso Imola Endurance Aluminum Road Bike, Shimano Claris R2000
- 3 SAVADECK Carbon Road Bike
- 4 Pure Cycles Classic 16-Speed Road Bike
- 5 Vilano R2 Commuter Aluminum Road Bike Shimano 21-Speed 700cc
- 6 Cannondale CAADX SE 105 Disc Bike
- 7 Salsa Journeyman Claris 650 Bike
- 8 Co-op Cycles ARD 1.2W Women’s Bike
- 9 Jamis Ventura Comp Femme Bike 2016
- 10 Kona Wheelhouse Bike
- 11 Why Buying New Is Better than Buying Used Bikes?
- 12 How to Choose the Right Bike Size
- 13 Caring for Your Bike Properly
- 14 When Should You Replace Your Bike?
- 15 Time to Find Good Starter Bikes that Work for You
The Best Entry Level Road Bikes Compared
|Name||Size Options||Frame Material||Color Options|
|Tommaso Imola Endurance Aluminum Road Bike, Shimano Claris R2000||XXS, XS, S, M, L, XL||Aluminum||Black, white, and burnt orange|
|SAVADECK Carbon Road Bike||XS, S, M, L, XL||Carbon Fiber||Blue, grey, orange, and red|
|Pure Cycles Classic 16-Speed Road Bike||S, M, L, XL, XXL||Chromoly steel frameset||Bonette Blue, Dornbrush Grey, Trentino Red, Veleta Black|
|Vilano R2 Commuter Aluminum Road Bike Shimano 21-Speed 700cc||S, M, L||Double-butted aluminum||Black with green design elements|
|Cannondale CAADX SE 105 Disc Bike - 2019||S, M, L||SmartForm C2 Alloy||Deep teal|
|Salsa Journeyman Claris 650 Bike||XXS, XS, S, M, L, XL||Aluminum||Dark olive|
|Co-op Cycles ARD 1.2W Women's Bike||XS, S, M, L||Double-butted aluminum||Black matte|
|Jamis Ventura Comp Femme Bike 2016||XS, S, M, L||Double-butted aluminum||Twilight|
|Kona Wheelhouse Bike 2019||XS, S, M, L, XL, XXL||Reynolds 853 butted Chromoly||Green|
Tommaso Imola Endurance Aluminum Road Bike, Shimano Claris R2000
While this is considered a high-quality beginner road bike, it provides a substantial amount of performance and has far more to offer than the standard starter bike that you might find in one of the big box stores. This bike features a quality Shimano groupset and it goes well beyond what most people expect from a beginner road bike.
Let’s look at some of the benefits. With this option, the bike will have hidden cable routing, along with an updated crankset. Having the cables routed under the bar provides not just a clean and streamlined look, but it also ensures that the bike will shift easily. There are many discount bikes available that utilize a mix and match of components from third-party manufacturers, and that means the performance declines. You never have to worry about that when it comes to this bike. From top to bottom, it is one of the top options you will find for the money.
The 24-speed bike features rim brakes and 24 speeds. The bike is available in several colors, as well, so you should be able to find something that will work well for your aesthetic preferences. One of the other benefits of this bike is the level of comfort it can provide. The design of the bike helps to provide a relaxed position no matter the riding style you use. There is a shallow handlebar drop that helps to facilitate this. The tires are wider on this bike than previous versions, as well. The wider 25mm, 700cc road bike tires provide risers with more control on turns.
When you are buying a bike, even though you might consider it to be an entry level road bike, you want it to last. Buying a cheap bike means things break, but that’s not the case with this option from Tommaso. The parts are high-quality, as is the aluminum used in the construction of the bike’s frame. The bike even comes with a two-year warranty.
SAVADECK Carbon Road Bike
Here is another high-quality road bike that could be just what you have been looking for. This bike features a quality carbon fiber frame, fork, and seat post, and you will find that this helps it to be a very lightweight bike that is a pleasure to ride. In addition, the bike features Shimano speed control with a shifter lever, front derailleur, and rear derailleur. These elements will provide the rider with better operation and more efficient rides overall.
One of the interesting features of the bike is the fact that it was designed in a wind tunnel. The seat tube and the seat post, along with the stays have been contoured to be aerodynamic. In addition, the cable routing is fully internal with the bike, which makes the airflow even better. Ultimately, the design of the bike ensures quality handling better than what many would imagine from a beginner road bike.
These bikes feature Michelin Pro 700C*25C road tires. These are hard-wearing tires that are built to last, just like the rest of the bike. The bike is durable, it looks great, and it is also available in a range of colors, so you can find some great options that will work for your needs when it comes to style. Because the bike is durable and built to last, it should serve riders well for a number of years with proper care. If they ever want to move on and get another upgraded bike, they might want to consider offering them as a used bike to someone else who wants to get started.
This is one of the top entry-level road bikes you will find today, and it could be exactly what you have been hoping to find for your own use or as a gift. Make sure that you check the size when you order to be sure it will work for your needs.
Pure Cycles Classic 16-Speed Road Bike
Here is a great road bike for beginner riders who are looking for a quality option that is still within the affordable range without being considered a cheap bicycle in terms of quality. The bike happens to be lightweight but strong and durable thanks to the Chromoly steel frameset. This can work well for those who are just getting started and looking for a good starter bike, as well as those who have more experience.
You will be happy to note that this bike features Shimano Claris STI shifters, cassette, and derailleurs, which will provide excellent speeds and smooth rides. The Hutchison Nitro II tires are another one of the features that are sure to please with the bike. It features front and rear alloy caliper brakes, as well as a three-piece crank set. There is an adjustable drop bar with the bike, which will allow for more hand positions and a comfortable overall ride. The gel padded tape helps with this, as well.
The bike is easy to customize, as well, so you can use it to get you started and then look for ways to slowly add more advanced elements as you need them and as you grow as a rider. The bike’s durable frame has all of the attachment points and mountain points that you will need.
Here is a quality bike that is going to last for quite some time, as long as it is taken care of properly. It is durable, fun to ride, and one of the better options for a quality and relatively cheap bicycle. As with the other bikes that have been discussed on the list so far, you will have some great options when it comes to the color of the bike. You should be able to find one that suits your style.
Vilano R2 Commuter Aluminum Road Bike Shimano 21-Speed 700cc
This entry level road bike is known as a commuter bike, and it is one of the top options for a cheap bicycle on the list. You will not have the same color options with this bike, but you will still be able to have a quality bike that is durable and that can be the ideal option for taking to work or school.
This is a lightweight bike, which is always a benefit. It is made with a 6061 double-butted aluminum frame, and it features quality Shimano A050 thumb shifters, which will make it easy to go through the gears of the 21-speed bike. The front and rear derailleurs are from Shimano, as well. The bike is easy to assemble, and it actually comes partially assembled like many of the bikes on the list. When it arrives, you will need to flip the stem and install the front wheel, install the saddle, handlebars, and the pedals. You will also need to take care of truing the wheels and tuning the brakes.
The bike features quality tires and a double-walled CNC machined wheelset, along with a quality drivetrain that can work well for just about any situation. This can be a good bike for those who are just starting to get into cycling, and for those who need a bike that they can use as a commuter, or that they could use for riding around on the weekend.
Vilano has been offering bikes since 2008, and they have become known for providing quality bikes that are still affordable. For those who are seeking a daily commuter that they can get without worrying about breaking the bank, this could be a good option to consider. This is a great road bike for under $500.
Cannondale CAADX SE 105 Disc Bike
The Cannondale CAADX SE 105 Disc Bike is a beautiful bike that is a top of the line option. There are many elements of this bike that help to make it stand apart from other bikes. It can work well as a commuter road bike, as well as those who might be interested in starting cyclocross. It can work well for just about any need you might have. The bike has a quality design with the same fit, handling, and geometry as one of the higher-end options called SuperX. Those who ride the bike will find that it provides excellent handling capabilities, as well as great traction and stability. This is important for any type of riding.
The construction of the bike, which uses SmartForm C2 alloy ensures that the bike is as lightweight as possible, while still ensuring that it is strong and durable. The bike features subtle rack mounts along with a removable seat stay fender mount and hidden fork fender mounts. The bike comes with WTB Riddler tires, and it can support tires that are up to 37mm wide. This bike features a low profile, as well as full carbon forks. It is easy to adjust and to have the bike run just the way you need.
This 22-gear bike features Shimano front and rear derailleurs, Shimano shifters, and Shimano rear cogs. The brake levers are Shimano, as well. There are many reasons to consider using this bike from Cannondale including the look, design, and the way it handles. It should be noted that the pedals are not included with the bike, and you will need to buy them separately.
Salsa Journeyman Claris 650 Bike
This is a solidly built, beautiful bike that could be a great solution for those who are looking for an entry level road bike that truly has a lot to offer. The design of the bike means that it can work quite well for many different types of riding needs. It will work just as well on gravel and backroads as it will streets. The frameset has mounts, which will make it easy for you to attach other items to the bike, such as fenders, rear racks, and even accessories for backpacking. These items are not included, but you can buy them separately and upgrade your bike to make it work well for your needs.
The drop bar allows the rider to change hand positions easily, which can reduce the amount of hand fatigue that is felt when riding for long periods. There is a full-length internal cable routing system, as well. This will protect the shifting cables and it can help with the performance of the bike. The bike has a 2×8 speed drivetrain with an FSA Tempo Adventure 46/30t crankset and a Sunrise 11-34t cassette. The flat mount disc brakes provide quality stopping power. The WTB Nano tires are over two-inches wide, which provides more control and can help with stopping power.
The bike features Shimano Claris shifters and front and rear derailleurs. This is a lightweight unisex bike that has a great look and plenty of great features to make it a solid option to consider. As with the Cannondale bike above, keep in mind that this bike does not include the pedals. They will need to be purchased separately and then added to the bike.
Co-op Cycles ARD 1.2W Women’s Bike
This bike is designed to fit the typical female body, which means it features a shorter top tube and stem, as well as a saddle that is designed specifically for women. In addition, it has handlebars that are narrower than what you will typically find when it comes to men’s bikes or unisex bikes. Even though these are minor differences, they can mean a lot more comfort for women who choose this high-quality road bike for beginners.
The bike features a quality aluminum frame and a full-carbon fork. This helps to ensure that the bike will be durable and that it will last with proper care. It offers dual-piston mechanical brakes that can provide you with the stopping power you need. The pedals for this bike are not included either and they will need to be purchased separately. The bike features a Shimano 105 2×11 drivetrain and provides smooth shifting, so you can enjoy a ride whether you are on a straightaway or you are climbing a hill.
Many riders will find that this can be a fantastic intro into cycling. For women who want to have a bike that is designed specifically to work with their bodies, this could be a good option to consider.
Jamis Ventura Comp Femme Bike 2016
Here is a quality 18-speed bike that could be a good choice for women riders, as well. This is a nice choice for those who might be out on the city streets and commuting to and from work or school, or who want to spend some time exploring the backroads. The bike is lightweight thanks to the aluminum frame. The carbon fork helps to reduce the vibrations from the road, making riding the bike, even for long periods, nice and comfortable. You will find a Shimano Sora drivetrain to provide you with 18 speeds, which will make it easy for you to enjoy your time on straightaways and hills alike.
The entry level road bike also features Shimano Sora front and rear derailleurs. The brakes are high quality, as are the Vittoria Zaffiro 700 x 25c tires. The handles are nice and comfortable, and this bike will be a pleasure to ride no matter where you might take it. Those who have been looking for a nice option for a women’s bike will find that this has the features and durability that could be a perfect fit.
Kona Wheelhouse Bike
The Kona Wheelhouse Bike features a Reynolds 853 Chromoly frame, which not only helps to provide the great aesthetics for the bike but also improves the overall ride characteristics. The front and rear thru-axles provide some added stiffness and rigidity, which can help with the control. The Kona carbon fork helps to deal with bumps and vibrations on the road, and the mechanical disc brakes ensure that you will be able to stop no matter what the conditions might be.
The bike features Shimano Tiagra shifters, front and rear derailleurs, crankset, and bottom bracket. It has a quality Kona road bar and road stem, cork tape on the handlebars, and a comfortable saddle. This is a nice looking bike that is an ideal option for the road. Those who are on the hunt for a quality beginner road bike should be happy with the features of this bicycle.
Why Buying New Is Better than Buying Used Bikes?
When you buy a used bike or a bike that utilizes cheap quality parts, it will end up causing problems for you. The used bike will not last as long as a new bike, especially if you do not take proper care of the bike. The same is true when it comes to cheap bicycles that you find in big box stores, for example. They are not built to last, and they won’t. They will not be able to provide you with the features and benefits that you can find from the top entry-level road bikes on the list.
The new bikes might be costlier at the outset, but it means you will not have to replace parts of them nearly as often. Ultimately, this tends to be a better option for you.
How to Choose the Right Bike Size
What size bike is right for you? While there are many different ways that you can figure out which size bike you should get, the first thing you have to do is determine just how large the bikes are that you are considering. Different companies will have differences in heights, but they will typically fall into a similar range. The following chart will help you have a better idea of what size bike will be right for you. The size is calculated from the pedal to the top of the frame, not including the seat or post.
- XS – 13-15 inches and suitable for those who are 4’11”
- S – 15-16 inches and suitable for those who are 5’3” to 5’7”
- M – 16-17 inches and suitable for riders between 5’7” and 5’11”
- L – 17 to 19 inches and a suitable option for people from 6’0 to 6’2”
- XL – 19-21 inches and suitable for those who are between 6’2” and 6’4”
- XXL – 21+ inches and is suitable for those who are 6’4” and taller
For those who are on the cusp of sizes, it is generally better to choose the size down rather than the size up. Why do you need to have the right bike size? If you have a bike that is not the right size, it will be more difficult, and even impossible in some cases, to ride. In addition, even if you are able to ride, you will find that it is not going to be comfortable, especially if you are riding for more than a few minutes. Rather than having an awkward and uncomfortable experience, you should make it a point to choose the right bike.
Caring for Your Bike Properly
When you spend money on a bike, you will naturally want to make sure that the bike lasts for as long as possible. The best way to do this is to provide proper maintenance for the beginner road bike and every other bike that you ever get. Here are a few tips that can help you to ensure your bike lasts as long as possible.
First, get in the habit of doing a pre-ride inspection. Every time you are getting ready to take the bike out, you will want to check for air in the tires, make sure the brakes are working properly, and check the chain and gears to make sure they are in good shape. Always be sure to keep the chain lubricated and clean. This will help to keep everything in good working order.
At least once every couple of rides, you will want to make sure that you are checking the nuts and bolts on the bike to make sure everything is tight. Even with a great bike, the vibrations of riding can cause things to get loose. You don’t want this to happen while you are riding, so check them regularly.
A little care and maintenance can go a long way in making sure your bike lasts and lasts until you are ready to move beyond a bike for beginners to something more advanced.
When Should You Replace Your Bike?
When you stay away from the terribly cheap bicycles that are on the market and you find one that is still a good entry level bike, you will find that they can last for quite some time. This is especially true if you take proper care of them, as noted above. However, there will still come times when certain parts of those bikes will need to be replaced. For example, you might find that the pedals are not performing properly after a couple of years, and you might need to replace them.
If you find that you have a chain that is starting to rust or kink up or have other issues, it should be replaced immediately. A chain that’s not working properly is an accident that is waiting to happen. The brakes should be replaced as soon as they show signs of failing, as well. There is no timeframe that will work for everyone when it comes to replacing parts of the bike. This is because people have different bikes with different parts, they care for the bike differently, and they may use the bike more or less often.
You should always take the time to examine your bike after every couple of rides, and always be aware of any changes in the way that it feels when you are riding. If you notice any issues, have them repaired right away. Replace any parts that are having problems. If your saddle is not comfortable, for example, get a new one. Your bike needs to be both safe and comfy while you are riding.
By choosing one of the top rated road bikes for beginners on the list above, you should have something that will be perfect for you for several years at least.
Time to Find Good Starter Bikes that Work for You
At this point, you should be in a much better position to find and choose a quality entry level road bike that will last for a long time and that will be fun and comfortable to ride. Take the time to look at the options on the list above and think about what you need for yourself or for the bike you plan on giving as a gift. As you can see, there are some wonderful options for road bikes for beginners.
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