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A Comprehensive Guide to the Different Types of Bikes

One of the best purchases you can make is buying a new bike, and now is the perfect time to do it. Technology developments and the creation of bikes with various cyclists in mind have improved their use, dependability, and even fun factor. However, this abundance of choices poses a problem for the eager buyer: how can you choose the kind of bike that is best for you?

You have to realize that not all bicycles are created equal. Buying the right type of bike might help you get the most for your money. Here is a summary of the different types of bikes for sale online and in brick-and-mortar stores, along with some advice to help you pick the right one.

Related Read: Different Types of Electric Bikes

Different Types of Bikes

Mountain Bicycles

If you want to enjoy unlimited cycling on mountains or off-road routes, a mountain cycle is what you need. MTBs feature larger, knobblier tires and a frame shape that makes them more suited for rough terrain.  

Features include wide knobby tires for grip and various gears for climbing mountains and traversing fields. MTB  models that only have front suspension are referred to as “hardtails”, while models that include both front and rear suspension for shock absorption are referred to as “full suspension”.

A hardtail MTB weighs at least a kilo less than a full-suspension MTB with comparable specifications. This means that the bicycle will be less forgiving on the downhill stages but will go quicker upward. A hardtail feels more natural when you get off the saddle because of its sturdy back end.

Full-suspension MTBs are heavier than standard models, giving them a more stable and “grounded” feeling. Suspension is helpful when travelling downhill because it keeps the tyre in contact with the road or on bumpy descents. 

When riding uphill, such as while negotiating steps and water bars or when moving at an incline, a full suspension can also be beneficial. A full-suspension MTB will be more forgiving on challenging routes as the rear suspension smooths out bumpy terrain.

Choose an MTB if you want to go off-road, mountain biking or camping. Don’t get one if you want to go quickly on asphalt, cover great distances, or cruise around town.

Related Read: Things to Know Before Doing a MTB Trip

mountain bikes

Road Bicycles

These are made for riding on paved terrain. But can’t all bicycles travel on public roads, you ask? They can, without a doubt. However, road bicycles would perform poorly on a mountain dirt track because they are made to be as efficient as possible on the road. The distinct frame shape, tyre size, and component weight are all designed to help riders make the most of the route.

When searching for bikes for sale online, you may consider modifying the cheap road cycle you purchased with big, knobby tyres to make it into an MTB. But you have to realize that tyres on road bicycles will not fit all MTB tyres.

A thin tyre, drop handlebars—handles that curve back under themselves—a light frame, and a high gear ratio (the gears on a road cycle are set up to favor the ones that help you move very quickly) are the distinguishing features.

If you want to travel on asphalt roads swiftly and effectively, compete, or just for fun, get a road bike. If you want to ride off-road, don’t get one. Because of its narrow tyres, a road bike can only be used on paved areas. Icy roads can present difficulties for road cyclists.

Related Read: Things to Pack for a Bike Tour

road bike

Hybrid/ Commuter Bicycles

A hybrid is a cross between a road bike and an MTB. It’s also sometimes called a commuter cycle. These are, to put it simply, adaptable bicycles that let riders do a little bit of everything. By having the freedom to do whatever you want, whenever you want, you gain what you lose in terms of specialization.

Flat handlebars are a distinguishing feature of hybrid motorcycles as opposed to dropping handlebars. To smooth out bumps in the road or track, some models come with front suspension; others don’t. They have flexible, comfortable geometry similar to MTBs but with slicker, thinner tyres because they are designed to be both flexible and comfortable.

Additionally, they enable tyre changes. For instance, if you want to do a little off-roading, you can use a particular type of off-road tire, and you can use slicker tires for commuting on asphalt.

Get a hybrid/commuter model if you intend to use it primarily for commuting, navigating around town, and occasionally going off-road or mountain biking. However, it might not be the best choice if you’re looking to travel as quickly as you can on highways or embark on adventurous adventures on MTB trails.

Hybrid/ Commuter Bicycles

Electric Bicycles

These are hybrid, mountain, or road cycles with a motor and a battery. Like electric scooters, they are no longer primarily used for sports or leisure activities. They’re now being used by people to carry out their daily activities. Because of their popularity, there is a large selection of models to choose from. Because these cycles come with a battery and a silent motor, they tend to be heavier than ordinary models, but you’ll never again lament a hill in your life.

As soon as you start pedaling, the engine “kicks in” and gives you a push that feels like a powerful tailwind, enabling you to travel anywhere at a constant speed without getting tired. Electric hybrid and commuter bikes are the most common type, although electric MTBs are also well-liked by those who enjoy riding downhill, not uphill. There are also electric models designed for roads. 

Related Read: Benefits of Using E-Bikes

electric bikes

Buy an e-bike if you want to go twice as far with only half the effort. However, avoid riding one if you want to “feel the heat” and have steel thighs.

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