The days where you could head to your local bike store and simply ask for a road bike have long gone. Nowadays, you can expect to be inundated with questions about what you need the bike for. This is because there are several different types of road bikes on the market. Each of them built for a specific purpose.
Sure, there’s an overlap between the road bike types e.g. you will be able to ride an endurance bike on gravel. However, it’s still worth thinking long and hard about the various road bike categories. That way, you end up with a bike that’s perfect for you.
On this page, we want to walk you through the various types of road bicycles that you can purchase. Hopefully, by the end of this page, you’ll be a little bit more well-versed in which of the types of road bicycles will be perfect for you.
Types of Road Bikes
One of the greatest challenges of listing the various road bike types is the fact that there are just so many of them out there.
Bike manufacturers are always coming up with new ways to design bikes for specific jobs. Therefore, we are only going to go through the main options for road bikes here.
We have no doubt that many manufacturers will have their road bikes classified into even more niche categories than what we discuss.
1. Commuter Bikes
Let’s start by talking about the types of road bikes that you’re going to encounter most frequently; commuter bikes.
These no-thrill bikes are designed to get you from Point A to Point B. Nothing more. These bikes are durable. They have been built to last you years.
While they are some of the heaviest road bikes that you can buy, the low maintenance nature of them means that they are perfect for the person that just wants a basic vehicle, rather than something that they are going to have to think about every single weekend.
The frame of these bikes has been designed in such a way that when you’re cycling, you’ll always be able to have a decent view of the traffic ahead.
You also don’t have to worry about putting a ton of strain on your back. Basically, you’ll arrive at work feeling as refreshed as one can be.
2. Race Bikes
Race bikes are all about speed. These are designed to get you to where you need to be as fast as possible.
This means that this is one of the types of road bicycles that has a lightweight frame. The frame will also have aerodynamic qualities so you won’t be letting that pesky wind slow you down.
Race bikes don’t really do well traveling at slower speeds. This is because the gearing on this type of race bike tends to veer towards the higher side.
So, if you’re looking for a bike that’s going to allow you to travel at a more leisurely pace, this isn’t for you. If you’re looking for a bike that will allow you to travel at breakneck speeds all of the time, it may be worth considering.
3. Gravel Bikes
Gravel bikes are designed for those that may want to go off-road every so often. As the name suggests, these bikes are about traveling on gravel roads.
So, don’t expect them to perform to the same sort of level that a proper mountain bike would be able to perform.
Gravel bikes are a brilliant choice for those that know that they want a road bike but want something that’s a bit more general purpose.
We can imagine many of the gravel bikes on the market would function perfectly well as a commuter bike, for instance. Just don’t expect to be traveling at a fast pace with your gravel bike. The gearing isn’t suitable for that.
4. Endurance Bikes
Endurance bikes are the type of road bike that you buy when you’re looking to cover vast distances without slowing down.
These bikes are lightweight. This makes it easier for you to keep powering through, mile after mile. Although, do bear in mind that they are not the most aerodynamic of road bikes, which means that you won’t be able to travel at high speeds.
Endurance bikes are going to be great for those that love a good, lengthy ride on a regular basis. They are also fantastic as commuter bikes if the vast majority of your ride will see you tackling steep hills.
5. Touring Bikes
We suppose touring bikes and endurance bikes have a slight overlap. They are both built for traveling greater distances. However, touring bikes are more for when you plan on spending days out there on the road.
Touring bikes are designed to allow you to carry a heavy pack on your back. They also tend to prioritize rider comfort over speed. Once you’re used to riding on a touring bike, you’ll be able to travel for miles on them without any issues.
Touring bikes are among the most durable of road bikes. This is because they have been designed to have a lot of different road surfaces thrown at them. They also need to support heavier weights.
Finally, touring bikes have lower gearing. This is because they aren’t designed for speed. They are designed to get somebody to where they need to be with the minimum of fuss.
6. Triathlon Bikes
Finally, we have triathlon bikes. These have a huge amount of overlap with racing bikes. This is because triathlon bikes have been designed for pure speed. You wouldn’t want to be taking one of these on your daily commute.
Aerodynamics and high gearing are the name of the game when it comes to triathlon bikes. These are made for quick bursts of speed, which means that they do not necessarily focus on rider comfort.
However, if you’re planning to enter a triathlon then, oddly enough, you won’t find a better type of bike for you.
As you can see, when it comes to types of road bikes, you have a plethora of options available to you. As we said, each of these road bike types can be split up into even more subcategories.
Therefore, if you’re in the market for a road bike, make sure you do your research. This is the only way that you can ensure that you end up with something that’s perfect for you.