Are you a cycling enthusiast or just passionate about bikes and now you want a low-budget bike? Or you have decided to buy one as a tool to help you exercise and tame those accumulating fats? There’s no better feeling that comes with getting a fulfilling product within your budget. In this guide, we aim at presenting to you the top best road bike options for people with under 500 dollar budget.
We will also guide you on the features you should look for in a bike. Since you are going to use your bike on the road alongside other road users, safety is crucial. People have died on the road due to their bikes being ill-equipped. So, if you are planning to buy your bike, this is a must-read article. You are going to receive great recommendations and crucial insights in your search and use. Let’s first understand the benefits of road bikes.
Benefits of Best Road Bike
- Higher Speed: You can make long trips at a higher speed with a road bike as long as the road is not rough. Compared to other bikes, a road bike is the fastest. This is due to its design and materials used.
- For Work Out: Riding a road bike is a form of cardio workout, which is good for your health. Additionally, since you do it outside and under the sun, it is a good source of Vitamin D. With proper gear, this can greatly help you in eliminating the stress hormone hence peaceful sleep at night. Also, you’ll burn a lot of fats if you make cycling your everyday practice.
- Cheap: Compared to cars, road bikes are cheaper to purchase and operate. Instead of car gas, all you need with road bikes is inflated tires and you are good to go. You can opt to save your money or spent it on other matters and still have wheels to roll you to your destination. To a great extent, road bikes can aid you to avert traffic snarl-up in congested towns and cities. It’s a double blessing.
- Tough Built: Road bikes are made of lightweight, heavy-duty materials. They are made to operate on smooth tough surfaces without limitations. You can cycle for kilometers as you want. They are perfect for racing and other gaming events such as triathlon and touring. If you have wanted to actualize your dream, this is the time. Get yourself a road bike at a low cost.
- Ergonomic Design: The road bikes especially those customized for racing, have rigid frames and fork. The lack of suspension parts enables the rider to pedal uphill with ease. It is the same with handlebars, you lean forward to avoid any weight suspension, and your weight is converted to force. All these contribute to increased acceleration with reduced energy.
Types of Road Bikes
Before we get down to our select list of the best road bikes, let’s look at their types. It is important to have knowledge of these types so that you can make your decision based on your needs. Basically, there are about six types of road bikes all with different capabilities and probably features. These are;
- Race Road Bike: As their name suggests, these bikes are best for racing maniacs. They are extremely lightweight with powerful braking system. They are good for experienced cyclists. So, if you are a beginner, this is not the best for you.
- Sportive Road Bikes: These are designed for endurance riding. Sportive bikes are slightly bigger than the race bikes. If you are a long-distance commuter, this is a good choice since you can ride for long without feeling exhausted.
- Time Trial Road Bikes: For seasoned riders who want to beat time records, this is their deal. These bikes are less resistant to wind but can move at very high speeds.
- Commuter Road Bikes: These are the most common road bikes. They are designed for easy maneuverability through the road pavements. Instead of focusing more on speed and aerodynamics, their strength lies on stability and comfort. Most brands include mudflap, a rack and sturdy wheels for increased convenience and luxury.
- Aero Road Bikes: These are kind of time trial modifications only with less features. Their speeds range from moderate to high and are a good starting point for beginners.
- Touring Road Bikes: This is the advanced category of road bikes for advanced and experienced riders. Their features and endurance make them top pick for long distance riders. You can ride these bikes for a whole day without getting tired. They are not the best in terms of speed which is also not very necessary for long cyclists. However, comfort is their mantra and that is what is crucial for long expeditions.
Top 10 Best Road Bike Under 500 Dollar
Now that you have seen the benefits that come with road bikes and their various types, its decision time. In the list below, we present to you the ten best road bike with under 500 dollar price tag. We will mention their different features and factors that make them our top pick. Go through them and any item from this list won’t disappoint you;
1. 6KU Aluminum Fixed Gear
This is our pick for the best road bike under 500 from a list of many. It is a lightweight bike whose frame and fork are made from aluminum. These make it such a quality bike that you can use as a daily companion in your commuter routes. Except for the rear wheel, all the other parts are quality and durable. Therefore, you have to start replacing parts within a short while after purchasing.
6KU aluminum fixed gear has an outstanding design that gives it an executive look. Additionally, the handlebars allow a firm grip. Even though they are not very quality, you can easily replace them. The other important thing with this bike is the ease of assembling. With prior experience, you don’t have to take it to a mechanic for assembling.
- It is lightweight
- Beautiful design that give it a high-quality look
- The chain and the bolts are re-lubricable
- Handlebars have grip enhancing touch
- Very easy to assemble as it also comes with a manual
- Pedals are of slightly low quality
- You may have to replace several parts
- Doesn’t have a place to mount the front reflector
2. Vilano Shadow 2.0 Road Bike – STI Integrated Shifters
The quality and features of this road bike are on their own level. When it might have a low-price tag, is capability is awesome. It potent most of the features anyone would envy in a road bike. Starting with the weight, it is reliably lightweight. This makes a good choice for daily commuters and frequent bikers.
The aluminum frame plays an important role in ensuring smooth riding by eliminating vibration. It is also lightweight but very strong and sturdy to withstand rough terrains and cycling. In terms of speed, Vilano Shadow comes with 14 speeds with upgrading options as you continue gaining more experience. On top of that, it uses STI Shimano shifters with a high precision gear shift.
The wheels are precisely machined to produce high performance and strength. When you purchase your package, it comes with a free pair of pedals. Currently, this bike is stocking in three different sizes: small, medium and large. This ensures people have options to pick the best fit.
- It comes partially assembled
- Its frame is made of aluminum which makes it lightweight and durable
- It is versatile as different riders can use it and for different purposes
- Uses strong and quality braking system and shifters
- Some users complain of the frame being low quality
- Its seat is a bit uncomfortable as it is hard
3. Eurobike Road Bike EURXC550
Looking for a unique design with under 500 budget for your road bike? EUROBIKE Road Bike EURXC550 offers exactly that without extrapolated cost. The unique features do no compromise the durability either. Its steel frame and fork are made from steel. Although this has a negative effect on the overall weight of this bike, it is heavier compared to other types and models.
Its aluminum rims measure 26” giving it the ability to roll on diverse road surfaces. You’ll also get an advanced mechanical disk braking system common with mountain bikes. Therefore, this is a high performing bike with a 21-speed gearing system.
- Has quality braking system
- Uses 21 Shimano gearing components
- It is affordable
- Enjoys great stopping power
- It can roll on different road surfaces
- It is heavyweight at about 290lbs
4. Giordano Libero 1.6 Men’s Road Bike
This bike targets men racers and those who like riding to work. Its handcrafted aluminum frame makes it lightweight, perfect quality for outdoor activities. Additionally, the forks are made from high tensile steel to absorb road shocks.
Actually, most of its parts are made with lightweight but quality alloys. This contributes greatly to increased speed for those after that. The Shimano drive train coupled with the 16-gear selection helps the bike to maneuver on different surfaces.
For long-distance cyclists, this bike comes with to bottle mounts that can keep you quenched. The 700c tires are very crucial when it comes to dealing with potholes and stability.
- Lightweight with only 26 pounds
- 700c rim and wide tires which facilitate smooth ride
- 16 speed gearing system and Shimano components
- It is available in three different options
- Uses handcrafted 6061 aluminum frame
- The saddles design isn’t comfortable
- It has little gearing options
5. Giordano Libero 1.6 White/Pink Women’s Road Bike
This is an affordable lightweight women’s road bike under 500. It has a handcrafted crafted 6061 aluminum frame. This bike has many similarities with the men’s model except a few customizations to fit women. It has a double water bottle mount for hydration purposes.
To ensure strong braking and gear shifting, this model uses Shimano STI shifters plus the rear derailleur. Also, the 16 gear options are good enough for basic riding.
- It is lightweight
- Uses Shimano components
- Hand crafted aluminum frame
- Comes with water bottle mounts
- It is heavy weight
- You may have to pay for assembling
- The frame is too small
6. Trinx TEMPO1.0 700C Road Bike
It is a good choice for beginners and normal commuters. This is one of the most versatile road bike under 500 where you can choose different color combinations; black-green and black–blue. The other good thing with Trinx TEMPO1.0 700 is the adjustability. You can either adjust your bike to 53 or 56 cm depending on your height.
The alloy used in the design of this form is very lightweight. So, you don’t expect to struggle with heavyweight road bike; this bike weighs 25lbs with fully inflated tires. The distinguishing features of this bike are the Trinx Hi-Ten steel fork and a variety of Shimao parts.
- Its affordable with good beginner options
- Uses quality Shimano parts
- It is lightweight with durable frame and fork
- You can adjust the braking system
- Has a basic entry level design
7. Pure Fix Original Fixed Gear Single Speed Bicycle
This is a good choice if you are a short or medium commuter. Being a single-speed bike, it is excellent for people who want to develop their leg strength. In terms of durability, this bike lasts longer than most road bikes in this bracket. It is also very comfortable to ride.
At delivery, this bike comes 90% assembled. All you do is mount the seat, pedals, and handlebars. Despite the fact that it is a single-speed bike, it can achieve very high speed. This makes it a good deal for both beginners and pro bikers. More to that, not many road bikes with a cost of under 500 dollars can compete with the design of this bike.
- This bike comes 90% assembled
- It is durable since its frame comes from tensile and steel
- It is also lightweight weighing between 22 to 25 pounds
- Easily customizable to fit the desired size
- You can choose the combination of colors you want
- Doesn’t come with a rack
- No gearing options
8. Vilano R2 Commuter Aluminum Road Bike
It is a basic commuter road bike with some additional features. If you want a bike for commuting to work, campus, or town, this commuter is a good choice. Its frame is so endowed with glossy looks and shape although a bit old. There are also different sizes for different tubes. The good thing is that this bike feels so lightweight offering agility while riding.
Everything about this bike is so awesome that you don’t have to strain even to maintain it. You can even customize it the way you want. There are also color options that you can choose as per your liking.
- Easy to customize
- It is unisex
- You can adjust the height as per your liking
- It’s very lightweight
- Very comfortable to ride
- His design is a bit outdated
- Some customers complain of uncomfortable saddle especially women
9. Giordano Aversa Aluminum Road Bike, 700c Small
For beginners and intermediate riders looking for entry bikes can consider this bike. It is a lightweight model that the users can reliably use to race and even exercise frequently without getting tired. The aluminum frame makes it a quality and tenacious bike.
The Shimano parts used also make it reliable. In matters of stoppage and gear change, this bike comes top. Relying on double-wall alloy rims, everything is sorted in terms of endurance and terrain change. The other outstanding feature of this bike is the ability to change with the rider. You adjust to small, medium, and large categories.
- You can customize for different users
- Very quality and durable
- Has high endurance hence you can use on different terrain
- Its user manual is poorly written
- The pedals are of low quality
10. Merax Finiss Road Bike
Merax is a superb road bike that was built to address functionality issues that faced its predecessors. This model is strong and lightweight capable of cruising through rough pavements and grounds. Also, it’s so strong that even heavyweight riders up to 330 pounds can comfortably ride on it. However, to ensure durability, you should maintain an average of 220 pounds.
The aerodynamically designed frame tries to lighten things up for the riders. With the increase in weight, comes more efficiency. You are also allowed to customize your bike as you go through different terrains.
Merax has 21-gear shifts which is one of the best deals for road bike within the under 500 dollar budget bracket. Therefore, if you are looking for a feature-rich bike that people won’t even guess the price of, you have it here.
- It’s a feature rich bike
- You can ride through different terrains
- Lightweight and durable
- Can support heavyweight riders
- The seat is not very comfortable
- There have been complains about the height
Features to Consider When Choosing A Road Bike Under 500 Dollar
The fact that you are looking for a road bike under 500 dollars doesn’t mean you purchase a funny-looking one. Even though you may not get those high-end features, there are beautiful unique bikes within this bracket. To ensure you get a desirable bike that nobody will be able to suspect its low cost, below are some of the factors you should prioritize;
The general appearance of your bike is very important. It is the gate to the superiority functionalities of your bike. Therefore, it is very crucial to be keen on the overall design and appearance of the bike you choose. Ever seen someone with a very expensive bike but due to its clumsy and flimsy parts, it ends up looking ugly and cheap. You know most people associate bad things with cheap costs.
A frame is what will determine the weight of your bike. Most road bike under 500 dollars weighs between 10 to 13 kg. The more expensive bikes weigh less than 10 kgs and are made of more quality lightweight materials. The following are the available types of frames you can choose for your bike:
- Aluminum: Aluminum frames are among the best you can choose for your bike. Their resistance to corrosion and cracking as well as light weight make them a popular choice. However, they are a bit expensive and you will pay more depending on the type of alloy used.
- Carbon fiber: These frames are not used on bikes under this category. They are very durable and lightweight which attracts higher cost.
- Steel: These are among the most durable frames although they are very heavy. Their durability aspect qualifies them for use in different terrain bikes.
- Titanium: A titanium frame combines the features of all the above frames. These frames are expensive and you may not find any under $500 mark.
Road bike forks are at a steeper angle of almost 900 and have no suspensions. You may want to consider models that reinforce their forks with tinsel, steel, and tuff alloys. There are other models that use carbon forks for efficiency, although this is at an extra cost. Bikes within this range in most cases rely on steel and aluminum alloy forks. The thing you should consider is how smooth will your ride be with the type of fork mounted on your bike.
Tires and Rims
These features play a key role in determining the mobility of your road bike. Unlike others such as gravel, cross country, and mountain, their rims and tires should be thin. This is to promote aerodynamics and reduce friction hence high speed.
Even though you need thin rims and tires, you should ensure they are of great quality to guarantee durability. For this reason, you may consider the models that include double-wall steel rims. Anything between 26” to 29” diameter is a good range for your bike rim.
Braking systems are very crucial for your mountain bike. These will help you to meander through traffics and pavements without fear of running over other users. The two types of the braking system are hydraulic and mechanical. however, hydraulic brakes are not common with road bikes. So, expect to meet alloy caliper and rim brakes which are mechanical. The thing is, you should ensure whichever brake type you choose is strong enough.
Handles are one of the five contact parts that determine the efficiency and the comfort of a bike. They also play a critical role in ensuring stability. Therefore, you should be very keen when choosing your handlebars. The size and shape of your handlebars are some of the important features you should look at. Wider handles help to prevent ulnar neuropathy: a state of numbness on your smallest fingers due to ulnar nerve suppression.
Either way, in case you find a good road bike with small handlebars, you can always have them replaced. First try adjusting and if it doesn’t seem to work, just look for a replacement.
Your bike wheel set is an important part that you’ll need to be keen on. Whatever the wheel your bike comes with, it is important to stick to the design as it is tested. Trying to change the manufacturer for whatever reason may comprise the efficiency of your bike. Therefore, you need to select the bike with the best wheels.
Away from all technicalities of saddles, the bottom line is comfort. Ensure that the shape and the materials used are comfortable enough. The level of comfort you need is crucial depending on the time you spent on your bike.
Most saddles designs are fit for men. If you are a woman, you may have to replace yours with a comfortable one. Instead of ordering a saddle online, it is advisable to visit your local shop for a replacement. This will allow you to test them one by one and choose the most comfortable one.
Shifters are important as they allow you to change gears as you cycle. If your bike is equipped for different terrains, a strong shifter is key. If your shifter falls short in functionality, it may lead to gear slippage or worse misalignment.
There are two options of shifters for your bike: mechanical and electronic. The mechanical shifters rely on pull cable to force the chain to change the sprocket. The electronic shifters, on the other hand, electronic shifters work by sending electrical signals to the motor. The motor consequently, moves the derailleur to cause instantaneous precise movement.
Some of the top shifters’ brands are SRAM, Campagnolo, and Shimano among others. You should always consider the known brands for the purposes of convenience even in case you need to change.
These are important in enjoying a smooth ride. Road bike gearing systems can be a bit complex. In most cases, road bikes use 21 or 24 gearing systems. What you should pay close attention to in these bikes is the shifters and the rear derailleur. These are the parts that facilitate the gear shifting process and speed regulation. It is so important to ensure that these parts work in harmony and preferably from the same manufacturer.
There are two categories of chain sets: double and triple. Depending on your experience, you may want to use any. Double chain sets use a ratio of 53/39t which happens to be the standard combination. Such powerful chain sets are best for experienced riders who may want to hit higher speeds. What you need to understand is that the bigger the teeth, the bigger the gear, and higher speed.
The weight of your bike is dependent on the building materials. Therefore, you should check the materials used to make the frame. Depending on why you want to buy a road bike, you may want a lightweight bike. So, it all lies in your discretion on how much weight you can bear.
Who is going to be using the bike is also an important aspect when considering the weight. It’s not right to purchase a very heavy road bike for weak people. Or rather people without much strength to handle it. So, ensure that your bike’s weight is relative to the users’ strength.
Road Bike Brand
A brand is very important when looking for a road bike. The already established brands tend to have a good customer base and wouldn’t want to lose it with poor quality products. In most cases, these brands you’ll find with warranties and 24/7 customer care support.
Brands are also crucial when it comes to spare parts. A new bike brand may be good, but may not have local spare part shops. This becomes a challenge since once in a while you may need to replace the worn-out parts. Therefore, when shopping for your road bike, consider the most popular brands within your city.
Road Bike Size
To determine the right size for your bike, it’s important to be physically present in the bike store. This will help you to establish your standover height. To do this, pick one bike at a time and pass one leg over to put the top tube between your legs. According to the expert’s advice, the clearance room between your crotch and the top tube should be at least two inches. This clearance is important to provide room for easy and quick hopping from the bike.
Reviews are the first-hand experiences of users. Therefore, before settling on which model to purchase, it’s prudent to read several reviews. These will give you a glimpse of the reliability of your target bike. Products with many positive reviews tend to have better results compared to negatively reviewed products. Thus, don’t ignore the online reviews lest yours will be the next on that site.
Where to Buy Road Bike Under 500
Stuck on where to purchase your road bike because there are no local bike shops? Online market provides a suitable option that you can always rely on. There are some online shops we can vouch for such as;
- eBay: eBay is one of the global leading online markets. Having localized their sites in over 24 countries across the wide, this is one of the leading shops you can rely on. If you are looking for an under 500 road bike, you can be sure to find many here.
- Bonanza: Bonanza offers the best market option to eBay. Since its introduction in 2007, Bonza has recorded tremendous growth winning many awards in the eCommerce market. So, this is a confirmation that many people have trust in it and its services.
- Amazon: This is an American online giant marketplace. Besides delivering the ordered goods to customers, Amazon prides itself on a wide variety of items and third-party selling. You can virtually order your bike virtually from anywhere and receive it. To check if they have shipping services to your destination, kindly visit their website.
Precautions For Using Road Bikes
A road bike can move at different set speeds along the road hence serving as a motorcycle or a car. There are different set precautions recommended for a safe ride. They include a list of safety equipment like listed below;
A helmet is argued to be the most important safety gear when riding a road bike. It is designed to offer full coverage of the head scalp, neck, and chin protecting the rider from potential impact in case of an accident. The helmet should be made in a way that it should not get lifted during high-speed ride, hence it should be well crouched.
This is a garment that covers the whole hand. Gloves can be designed differently some with separate sheaths for the fingers and others fingerless. The driving gloves are made to improve a grip on the steering wheel.
A mirror helps a bike cyclist to keep track of the people behind him since it’s hard to turn the head fast or far enough to see who is behind him.
These are plastic discs attached to the rear and front pedals of the bike whereby it help in visibility when riding in dark places. When they get stroke by light, they reflect it back to the direction it came from.
These are needed if one is to ride the bike in dark places either in continuous or flashing modes. They should be bright enough to see through the dark and be seen by other cyclists like those who have reflectors on their bikes. Bike lights should also not be so bright to blind other people’s eyes.
- Properly inflated tires: A bike that has tires with enough pressure, moves smoothly, rolls quickly, and avoids flattening of the tires. Narrow tires need more pressure than wide tires. Tire pressure should be checked out regularly for inflation.
- Follow traffic rules: You must be conversant with all the traffic rules and adhere to them as per the country you are cycling in. Understand where and when to ride your bike so as to make a safe ride.
Cycling is a very enjoyable means of locomotion and is also a way of keeping fit and healthy. It’s a cheap means and one can take the chance to move to many places using a bike and get to enjoy the glamorous features. From this elaborate guide, we want to believe that you have acquired vital information as a biker.
You don’t have to be excessively rich to own a road bike this time around. The list above contains low-cost road bike below 500 dollar. That means now more than ever you can fulfill your cycling dream. Depending on your needs, you can prioritize certain features and thus you’ll be able to make your choice with ease.