The Best Aluminum Road Bikes (Review & Buying Guide) in 2021
Enjoy better physical fitness with an aluminum road bike.
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BY Andra DelMonico / LAST UPDATED ON February 9, 2021
Riding a bicycle is a great way to get outside, enjoy the fresh air, and get a little bit of exercise. However, to get the most of your cycling experience, you need the right type of bike. Not all bicycles are built the same, and just like cars or motorcycles, you need one designed for the type of riding you want to do.
Mountain bikes are like off-roading vehicles with big knobby tires and rugged durability. In contrast, road bikes are like sports cars. They are aerodynamic and have eye-catching style and responsive handling. Buying a road bike takes your cycling to the next level by reducing your bike’s weight and giving you more gears to efficiently tackle any road terrain you come across. Whether you’re a beginner rider or an experienced racer, this guide will help you find the best aluminum road bike available.
This dual-sport aluminum frame bike will go anywhere with you. It has a 20-inch frame, rigid suspension, and a linear-pull brake system. Included is a 21-speed shifter and rear derailleur.
- Alloy V-brakes
- Multi-use tires
- Alloy double-wall rims
- Not a true road bike
Enjoy a ride on this 21-speed bike with its aluminum frame and magnesium alloy wheels. It has front and rear dual disk brakes. There is a 49- and 54-centimeter size option.
- Shimano derailleur and shifters
- Heavy at 35 pounds
- Not fast
Hop on this aluminum frame bike with 24 speeds and three color options: choose from black, white, and burnt orange. It also comes in sizes extra small through extra-large, so it suits a wide range of riders.
- Shimano gears
- Super lightweight frame
- R2000 Claris STI shifters
- Lacks quality
- Requires assembly
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Benefits of Aluminum Road Bikes
- Lower weight. An aluminum frame is lighter than steel options, making them easier to pedal and requiring less effort to move. This lets you travel further and exert less effort for greater endurance.
- Durability. Aluminum is more durable for everyday use than carbon fiber. It’s also corrosion-resistant, which makes it perfect for use outside. It can withstand impacts, stress, and weight.
- Affordability. Aluminum is an affordable option that lets you buy a decent quality bike. If you’re on a limited budget, you may not be able to afford the prices of a carbon fiber framed bike.
Types of Aluminum Road Bikes
This type of road bike is for experienced bike riders. They have an aerodynamic frame to minimize wind resistance. The brakes are behind other elements to reduce drag. The wheels and handlebars are designed to knife through the air. This style of racing bike weighs a bit more than a standard racing bike. However, this is compensated for by the styling. You can find a few aluminum bikes in this style, but they’re more often made from carbon fiber.
This adventure bike is designed for carrying plenty of gear, similar to backpacking. This bike is ideal for going camping in locations that you can reach by bicycle. The frame and wheels are designed to be durable and sturdy for carrying weight. There are hooks for adding panniers and additional spokes on the wheels to support the weight. You can find a few models constructed with an aluminum frame. However, they’re more often made from steel.
These bikes are designed for commuting to school and work. Commuter bikes are quick and lightweight yet also durable enough for the abuse of daily use—aluminum is ideal for this purpose because it’s more durable than carbon fiber. It’s also lighter than steel, meaning you don’t have to work hard to move it. They also tend to have broader and sturdier tires.
These bikes feature a mixture of bicycle styles to make them suitable for a variety of riding conditions. Dual-sport bikes have a smaller racing style seat, flat upright handlebars, and front suspensions for absorbing bumps. You’ll find that these bikes are faster than mountain bikes but not as aggressive when it comes to performing on gravel or off-road riding.
If you’re interested in riding long distances, this is the type of road bike you need. The saddles tend to be more comfortable for more support over many miles. Unlike a true racing bike with a more leaned forward riding position, endurance bikes position you more upright, giving your back a more relaxed position for comfort on long rides.
Founded in 1895, Schwinn is a world leader in bicycle production. It’s a go-to company that’s known for manufacturing high-quality equipment that’s dependable and durable. Everyone from casual riders to serious enthusiasts can find a quality bicycle in their product lineup.
Founded in 1985, Tommaso Bikes has built a reputation as a high-quality bike builder. It sets itself apart with designs crafted in Italy and engineering that’s done in Colorado. It’s known for lightweight and fast road bikes as well as biking gear like shoes and helmets.
Founded in 2000, Hiland builds reliable yet lightweight bikes. It’s known for producing bikes that are well-balanced for easier riding. The company also has electric bikes and cycling accessories in its product lineup.
Aluminum Road Bike Pricing
- Under $500: You can buy a quality road bike in this price range. It may not have innovative features or be the fastest on the market, but it’ll reliably perform. These are ideal for the beginner or casual rider.
- $500 to $1,000: These road bikes come in a variety of sizes and configurations. They’ll have some innovative features and range in weight and speed. These are best for someone who’s experienced or regularly rides.
- $1,000 and up: These are top-of-the-line bikes designed for serious, experienced, or competition riders. Their large investment is well worth their ability to improve your cycling performance stats.
Most road bikes have a lighter frame than standard bicycles. If you’re looking to ride for extended distances or to improve your speed, then you’ll want the lightest weight possible and a more aerodynamic shape. Aluminum frames that are alloy will be lighter. However, you sacrifice durability if you go too thin. If you intend to commute or ride aggressively, a heavier bike that’s more durable is a smarter choice.
Like vehicle tires, the wider the bicycle tire is, the more contact it has with the road and the more rolling resistance it has. Road bike tires are thin and smooth to give you the least road resistance. Look for tires between 23 and 25 millimeters. The diameter of the tires is also larger than other bikes to go further in a single rotation. Look for a tire with a tube inside for easy changes when you get a flat tire.
The majority of road bikes have a gear system. There will be two sets of gears, one larger than the other, and the number of gears on each set can vary. The more gear options you have, the greater your ability to customize your ride. Switching through gears makes it easier to get moving from a stop and ride up inclines. The gears should be easy to switch through with readily usable hand controls.
- Style. The bike you buy needs to fit your style. First, there are men’s, women’s, and gender-neutral bikes. Then you can choose a bike with a design and color that appeals to you. You can also look for a bike that has interchangeable parts to customize the bike with aftermarket components.
- Size. The bike you buy needs to fit your size. If you’re taller, then you can look for a bike that has a larger frame and a higher placed seat. If the bike is too tall, you won’t comfortably touch the ground with your feet. Bikes that are too small don’t allow you to extend your leg enough during your pedal stroke, which puts unnecessary stress on your body.
- Suspension. Most road bikes do not have a suspension system on the front. This reduces the overall weight of the bike but does make them a rougher ride. If you’re more concerned about comfort, look for a dual-sport road bike that will have the suspension. You can also look for a bike with wider tires for a bit more cushion.
Best Aluminum Road Bikes Reviews & Recommendations 2021
- Adjust the seat to the right height before you try riding the bike. You don’t want your legs to extend too far or be too cramped up underneath you. The correct position will put the least amount of stress on your legs and back while riding.
- Always wear the appropriate safety gear when riding a bicycle. You should have a helmet that fits your head and will protect you in the event of an accident.
- Consider adding a rack to your bicycle. If you’re planning on using it to commute, then the rack will come in handy for attaching panniers for stowing items or a bag that you can carry with you.
Q: What is the best aluminum bike frame?
Look for a bike that has an alloy frame. These are going to have more strength and durability. It should also look refined with a streamlined frame that doesn’t have extra bulk, making it unnecessarily heavier.
Q: Are aluminum road bikes good?
Aluminum road bikes are a lightweight and affordable option. They are lighter than steel and more affordable than carbon fiber. Aluminum is also more resilient than carbon fiber, making it better for those who plan to ride their bike daily.
Q: What is the best road bike for the money?
The best road bike for your money will vary from person to person. Look for one that’s within your budget, the right size, and has the wheels, size, and gears that you’re looking for. You’ll also want to look for a bike that’s designed for your specific riding skill level.
For the best aluminum road bike, you can’t go wrong with the versatility of the Schwinn GTX Comfort Adult Hybrid Bike and its multi-use tires, alloy V brakes, and double-wall rims. A high-quality yet more affordable option is the Eurobike OBK XC550 Road Bike with its smooth shifting and Shimano components.