The best women's road bikes for beginners will be reasonably priced but include a number of features such as high-quality gearing, shifters, and mechanical disc brakes for added security. Many of these models also include differently sized frames for women and the option of different frame color choices.
Finding the best bike when you want to start cycling on the road can be a challenge. There are many different brands offering bikes at various price ranges and with comparable features. If you are careful when shopping you can ultimately find a great deal with all of the features you need.
Finding the right bike is about more than features, and getting the sizing right can also be crucial. An improperly sized bike can be uncomfortable to ride and may make you less likely to ride often or for as long as you'd like.
You can avoid getting the wrong sized bike by taking careful measurements or heading to your local bike shop for their opinion on what bike size is right for you. It's also possible to test drive different bikes to find the best feeling ride.
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How We Chose Our Ratings
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Accurate and honest ratings are important to us, so we've scoured a number of websites to gather feedback from actual riders of different bikes and experts who have offered their well-seasoned opinions.
Our reviews also take into account the brand reputation and customer service experience as reported by riders, and we cross-reference user feedback to ensure it's honest. When compiling our ratings, we also take into account the conditions that the product was tested in, and for how long the rider tested it.
Top 10 Best Women’s Road Bikes for Beginners
The best women’s road bikes for beginners will have high-quality parts where it counts and a light frame specifically designed for women. Modern drivetrains, forks, frames, and gears all contribute to a smooth ride on a bike that feels both agile and stable
The Dolce bike by VIVA is a unique combination of high-end parts and excellent styling but retails for only $840 which makes it an ideal option for a beginner. The aluminum frame is designed with geometry fit specifically for women, and this helps to improve the stability and general handling of the bike as you ride.
The Functional Advance Carbon Technology (FACT) fork also does an excellent job of absorbing vibrations when you ride which ensures miles of comfortable riding without numb hands. This bike allows the rider to be in a more natural upright position and the Shimano crankset makes changing gears and covering elevation in terrain very easy.
A unique feature of the Dolce is the Zertz inserts in the fork which help to absorb even more of the vibrations when riding than a carbon fork alone. These inserts are made from a polymer that is viscoelastic, and the company that manufactures them has been around for about a decade.
The Susan G. Komen WOMEN'S 700c ROAD BIKE is a feature-filled road bike for riders who are looking to get serious about cycling. The blend of technology, comfort, and agility that you get from this bike is the reason it's one of the best women’s road bikes for beginners.
This bike features an aluminum frame coupled with a specific geometry that allows for an extra stable ride that can handle a variety of road terrain with ease. The IsoSpeed Carbon fork works to soak up vibrations while you ride, and the handlebar and saddle are sized specifically for women.
This bike is primarily for sale right now in the UK but can be shipped to the US for an additional fee.
The Roadmaster 26" Women's Granite Peak Women's Bike features an aluminum frame with pink detail, Shimano drivetrain, and a one-piece fork made from carbon. At $1300 this bike is a little on the pricey side, but the disc brakes provide added security to this lightweight bike.
The frame also features handlebars that are narrower, and other geometric changes so that the touchpoints are more appropriate for the female body. There is also a female-specific saddle for lasting comfort on longer rides.
The pedals for this bike are sold separately, and you can upgrade various components as you desire which makes this bike perfect for beginners, but also something that can grow with you as a rider over time.
The Arden 2 by Diamondback is a budget-friendly choice that also doesn't skimp on quality and features 18 speeds, a light aluminum frame, and is offered in different sizes. The geometry of this frame is part of what makes it an excellent choice for any female rider, and the stiffness makes it ideal for longer rides.
This bike also has a mechanical disc braking system by Tektro, and the rider is in a slightly more upright position which is typically more comfortable for beginners just getting into road biking. The drivetrain is also by Shimano, and this bike includes an alloy fork, stainless steel spokes, and Diamondback Century Folding Bead tires.
This bike retails for $950 typically, but there are often sales to be found where it can be marked down as low as $758.
The Merit bike by Raleigh is an excellent option for taller women looking to get into road biking. This bike features both an aluminum fork and frame which helps keep it light and responsive when riding. This bike also has an aluminum drivetrain by Shimano, along with Shimano shifters, and Tektro brakes.
The Merit bike has just enough high-quality components to give you a comfortable ride, but not so many that the price becomes unreasonable. This bike retails for $600 online and comes partially assembled in a sealed box directly from the manufacturer.
This bike comes in 6 different sizes based on height with half of them likely suitable for women specifically. If you don't wish to assemble the bike yourself, you can always take it to a local bike shop for expert assembly.
The Roadmaster 26" Granite Peak Women's Bike is specifically designed for women and features a high-quality drivetrain by Shimano, a carbon fork composed of lightweight carbon, and disc brakes that are mechanical. The frame has a specific geometric design best suited for women and is made of lightweight aluminum.
The carbon fork is best for absorbing all of the bumps and vibrations during a ride, and this high-quality part isn't often seen on entry-level road bikes in this price range. The mechanical brakes are also the best option for high amounts of stopping power for when you need to brake on an incline, and are even less noisy than other options.
The Granite includes just enough high-end parts for a low-maintenance bike that can go miles without any fixes but is an excellent option for beginners who are price conscious. This 16 gear bike retails online for $850 and comes in four different sizes.
The Tommaso Imola Endurance road bike retails for $600 and is a budget-friendly option with high end features common on much more expensive bikes. The Tommaso brand prides itself on being "affordable performance" and not entry level which is backed up by the high-end Shimano parts, and comfortable ride.
This bike has Shimano brakes, shifters, crank, and derailleurs from the Claris line which offers the greatest precision shifting and performance for the price. This bike also features a lightweight aluminum frame and lightweight wheels for added value.
This bike also comes with a lifetime warranty, and there is a U.S. service team to assist customers domestically. The Tommaso brand prides itself on only using Shimano parts due to their quality and the two-year warranty.
This bike has 24 speeds which makes it an optimal choice for handling a variety of terrain, and it comes in three colors: white, burnt orange, and black.
The Schwinn Phocus features a frame made from aluminum with attractive pink highlights and a flat handlebar with padded grips. It comes in both 17 inch and 19-inch frame sizes and comes with 24-speed shifters which offer an impressively wide range of gears.
The Phocus has Shimano cranks that are made from an alloy, and the 8-speed cassette enhances the gear shifting experience even further. This bike also has Shimano brake levers and mechanical disc brakes for added security.
This bike retails for $395 which makes it one of the less expensive ones on our list, but it's still one of the best women’s road bikes for beginners on a budget with its high-quality components, suspension fork, and gearing.
The Tommaso Forcella road bike has an all-black frame that is sleek and allows the rider to be more upright. The frame is made from aluminum and features a carbon fork which serves to expertly dampen road vibrations as you ride.
The Forcella is a powerful road bike and has key performance parts such as a Shimano groupset, with a crankset by Claris. This bike can handle some varied terrain easily with its precision shifters by Shimano which offer smooth shifts from one gear to the next.
The geometry of the frame has also been optimized for comfort, and the handlebars are a bit more compact as well which is well suited for the female body. The styling of this bike makes it an ideal road bike for any beginner that is looking to log many miles and increase their abilities.
The Eurobike OBK XC550 Road Bike 700C Wheels 21 Speed Disc Brake features an advanced molded carbon frame, Shimano brakes, and a Shimano drivetrain for the best quality with a racier feel. The ride is responsive and impressive for a beginner bike, and the flat handlebars add some comfort.
This bike doesn’t offer the same speedy pace that a traditional racing bike would, but for a road bike it's light, agile, and has a frame specifically made to accommodate women with targeted touchpoints and multiple sizes.
If you are looking for a bike that is part road bike, part racing bike, this model offers some key features from both worlds in a lightweight package perfect for beginners looking to log some miles. This bike retails for around $3200 online and is an excellent option if you are looking for a bike with high-quality parts, but it may be a tad out of budget for some.
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When looking for a women's bike, there are a few things that you should consider prior to making your purchase. Road bikes come in many different shapes, but you'll want to make sure that you get the sizing correct, and pick one with the features you need for long and comfortable rides.
Women’s bikes aren’t always as custom fit to the female form as brands may want you to think, and some bikes can be great for women if they have the right size frame for the rider. Before purchasing consider the following:
Many handlebars have changed on road bikes in recent years, and frames have also changed to allow riders to be in a more upright position which is generally more comfortable for road biking. Competitive road bikers may like to be closer to the road for aerodynamics, but beginning riders can find that position uncomfortable at best.
Handlebar size can largely depend on the width of the shoulders, and this will vary based on the overall size of the bike. Bikes designed explicitly for women tend to have narrower handlebars, and the brake levers maybe closer and differently positioned, so they are more comfortable for smaller hands.
To find the right frame size you can try and measure at home, or you can visit a local bike shop for an expert measurement. It's generally recommended that you test out a bike before you purchase it and a local shop may have one you are interested in at their store in your size.
The shifting mechanism used on different bikes is generally about the same, but some will have a slightly different placement that may not be the best for all riders. Another reason to test out a bike in person is so that you can figure out if the shifting mechanism and brakes are in the optimal location for your hands specifically.
Many shops will allow you to test the bike in real-world conditions and it's highly recommended that you take at least a few bikes on some short test runs before making a decision. Many of the more expensive bikes will have additional comfort measures that will make it easier for you to ride more often.
It's also worth inquiring at a local shop about the possibility of upgrading individual components on your bike of choice in the future so that you can get a longer lifespan out of it without having to upgrade to a whole new bike.
Components like shifters, brakes, forks, and other parts can sometimes be exchanged with different options and can make a radical difference in the overall feel of the bike when you ride it. Higher end parts may also cost more upfront but may lower the overall maintenance that your bike needs in the long term.
A Note on Pricing
For under $700 you'll be able to get a bike with an alloy frame, but it's unlikely that you'll find a carbon frame. Some alloy frames will have full carbon forks, and many will have 8-speeds which will give you 14 total gears.
The handlebars in this price range will likely be an alloy as well, and you can expect mechanical disc brakes on most models. For bikes that are priced up to $900, you can expect alloy frames with some having a carbon fork and a full range of gears.
Many bikes in this price range will have 10-speed gears that are paired with either a double or even a triple crankset. In the $900-$1200 range, you'll likely see frames and forks that have a higher amount of carbon and also come with groupsets by Shimano.
At the higher price range, you may also see features such as hydraulic disc brakes and components that are designed to be more lightweight. Above the $2500 price range, you'll start to see more professional level road bikes that feature lots of carbon parts, lightweight and high-end gearing, and even some electronic components.
While most beginners won’t be spending several thousand dollars on a bike, it's good to know what is available so you can plan any upgrades you might desire in the future. Many bikes have parts that you can replace with higher end pieces as needed and they can improve your ride quality in different ways.
Featured Image: Image by Jess Foami from Pixabay