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Best Entry Level Road Bike Reviewed
Cycling is by far one of the most popular sporting activities in the world.
From those who use their bike to commute each day to people who ride professionally, countless people across the globe enjoy the benefits of getting on two wheels.
No matter where you are, how old you are, or who you are, cycling is a universal activity, and all you need is a good bike to get yourself started with it.
Choosing the right entry level road bike before you start cycling is a crucial part of this journey. Poor quality bikes can lack the safety a new rider needs, with brakes, shifters, and other components that will quickly wear down when they aren’t used correctly, while also being less pleasant to ride than something that has been built with care and attention.
To help you to choose the right road bike to get yourself started with cycling, this post will be exploring some of the best entry-level road bikes on the market.
All of these bikes are excellent for beginners, providing affordable options that retain the features that an inexperienced cyclist will need. Of course, though, it always makes sense to do your own research to make sure that the option you choose matches your personal requirements.
Once we’ve taken a look at some of the best entry-level road bikes on the market, we’ll also dive into some of the key attributes you should be looking for in your first road bike. Not only will this make it easier to choose your bike, but it will also help you when you’re searching for new options.
Road bike frames are a very popular choice for modern cyclists. Many cities and towns have extensive paved cycle paths, making it easy to enjoy fast journeys and smooth rides on a bike with slim wheels and solid forks.
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Top Entry Level Road Bike Comparison Chart
Best Entry Level Road Bikes
Sporting vibrant orange and white decals set against a glossy black background, the Vilano Shadow 3.0 Road Bike is an eye-catching road bike for the price point.
Drop handlebars and a sleek saddle make the bike look just as at home on a track as it is on the road, while frame-routed cables finish the clean package. We’re looking at the 49cm frame variant, though 53cm and 57cm frames are also available.
When it comes to components, this affordable road bike offers a lot more than many riders will expect. 700c wheels are firmly gripped by lightweight caliper brakes with pre-fitted pads, and the bike even comes with a set of free pedals.
The 14-speed rear and front derailleurs are from Shimano’s popular Tourney range, and all the shifting is done with STI integrated shifters, saving you from moving your hands while riding your road bike.
The 6061 Double Butted Aluminum Aero Frame found on this bike is durable and solid, giving you confidence while riding the Shadow 3.0. That said, this entry-level road bike is a good option for those looking to get their hands on an affordable road bike.
It doesn’t have the latest features or technology, and you’ll be using an aluminum frame, but it has all of the essentials required for a good ride.
Next up, it’s time to look at the Hiland Road Bike 700c. This bike features a simpler design compared to the Vilano Shadow, with dark green text on a matte black background.
The matte finish on this bike gives it a premium look and feel that defies the price tag, with drop handlebars and a sleek saddle completing the look. This bike is available with 49cm, 53cm, and 57cm frames, but you can also adjust the saddle to make sure that you get the perfect height.
Like the previous bike on this list, this Hiland road bike comes with full Shimano components. The 21-speed front and rear derailleurs are from the Tourney range, while the brakes are simple and lightweight calipers.
The drop handlebars feature standard thumb shifts, with frame-routed cables giving the bike a sporty appearance. This bike has 700cm wheels; perfect for roads and smooth tracks.
As with many of the bikes you find in this category, the Hiland is made with an aluminum frame, making it light and easy to ride. All in all, this bike has quite a high range for a road bike, making it good for riders that want to both take it easy and enjoy the full power that their body can produce.
It’s time to look at another Vilano bike for the next option on this list.
Unlike the Vilano Shadow, the R2 Commuter Road Bike has 21 gears, while also coming in at a much lower price point.
The style of this bike isn’t as slick and modern as the others in this post, though many people will enjoy the rough and rugged green, white, and glossy black design of this road bike. This bike features drop handlebars and come with free clipless pedals.
Shimano Tourney has become a mainstay of the affordable road bike market in recent years, with many riders being very happy with the components from this range.
As such, this is another bike that features Tourney front and rear derailleurs, along with lightweight caliper brakes. Thumb shifters are used to cycle through the bike’s 21 gears, providing you with a comfortable and easy ride every time.
Unlike the other bikes on this list, this option does not include frame-routed cables, but it does have a sleek saddle and comes with free pedals.
Overall, the quality of this cheap road bike matches the price point. Of course, this definitely isn’t the best road bike for under 100, but its actual price is lower than 500, so it’s worth giving this bike credit for being able to provide so many features for very little cost.
The next option on this list is even cheaper than the Vilano R2. The LOOCHO 21-speed road bike has smaller wheels than many road bikes, coming in at around 50cm, making the bike smaller than many other road bikes on the market.
The bike is available in blue or red designs, with white accents and a glossy black background. Unlike many road bikes, this option comes with colored grip tape, giving you added style as you cruise on your new bike. This bike doesn’t come with pedals.
It would be wrong to talk about a road bike in this category without bringing up Shimano Tourney parts. Unlike many other budget road bike options, though, the Loocho actually comes with Tourney TZ front and rear derailleurs.
These components are usually found on hybrid and mountain bikes, and this means that your range will be better for hill climbing, though you won’t find it as easy to reach high speeds. The bike has front and rear disk brakes, offering an alternative to many bikes at this price.
It’s extremely hard to ignore the components on this bike. Many riders will be very happy with Tourney TZ components, and disk brakes are rarely found on bikes in this category.
Overall, this gives you a set of very reliable components that will offer a unique riding experience that will work well in many cities. Of course, though, it will be worth checking your measurements, as this bike has smaller wheels than many of its alternatives.
As the last entry-level road bike, we will be looking at, it’s time to explore the Eurobike Bikes HYXC550 Road Bike.
This bike is probably the most eye-catching on this list, with bright red and white decals on the frame, wheels, and handlebars. Drop handlebars with red grip tape are paired nicely with a red and black saddle, creating a very sporty bike that looks far more expensive than the price point it sits at.
Like the Loocho bike we just looked at, this road bike comes with Shimano TZ front and rear derailleurs, offering a wide range that will be great in cities with lots of hills.
Disk breaks are also found on this bike, though thumb shifters are used and you will have to move your hands to reach both the brakes and the gears. This bike is available with either a 49cm or 53cm frame, offering a wide range of choices when you’re looking for a bike that fits perfectly.
This bike comes with very similar features to the Loocho we looked at previously, while also coming in a similar price point. Many people will prefer the style of the Eurobike, offering a sporty and professional look that will turn heads on cycle paths and tracks. This bike even comes with a kickstand for extra easy parking.
Top Entry Level Road Bike Features To Consider
Searching for a road bike that suits your needs is about much more than simply getting a low price.
Many people are unsure about what they are looking for, and it can be easy to fall into the trap of buying a bike that isn’t suitable for your needs when you’re not sure what makes a good road bike. To help you out, the following section will be going through some of the key attributes to consider before you buy your next bike.
The size of your bike should be dictated by the size of your body, as it can be very uncomfortable and inefficient to have a bike that is too big or too small for you. You can find a lot of guides around the web that can help you with this, and it’s well worth taking the time to learn before you dive right in.
You will usually find Shimano components on entry-level road bikes, though there are other big brands on the market that offer good options. It’s always worth considering your component brand before you buy your bike, as Shimano shifters and derailleurs aren’t compatible with those from companies like SRAM.
The brakes are also important here. Disk brakes are popular for mountain bikes, but road bikes will usually have caliper-based systems. This is largely down to personal preference, making it worth trying each option before you buy your bike.
A bike’s “range” refers to the number of gears that it has. Some bikes have 21 gears, with the bulk of them being small and designed to generate power, while others will have 21 gears that are mainly large, making them good for hill climbing. The type of components on the bikes you look at can help you to determine the type of range it will offer.
While your budget may not reach into the realms of carbon fiber, you can still look for good materials when you’re shopping for a new road bike. Aluminum, for example, is far lighter than steel, while still being strong enough to support adults while riding.
You can always change the tires on your bike, though most bikes will come with a set installed already. Road bikes will usually have smooth tires, making them good for gaining speed. Hybrid tires can be better in some applications, though, as they offer a little more grip and will usually fit on a road frame.
As you can see, a lot goes into choosing the bike that will be best for you. Of course, nothing will beat having the chance to ride a bike before you spend anything on it, and it will always be worth visiting showrooms and local stores to figure out what you want out of your bike.
Getting the best deals is usually only possible online, but you can take what you learn from your local stores and choose something on the web that offers exactly what you want.