Once upon a time the road bike was just an all out racing machine, but now the trusted road bike comes in a variety of types to suit any cyclist and their road romance. From touring to tearing it up, there are different disciplines with specific bikes such as, Race, Sportive/Endurance, Cyclocross and Time-trial. Whether you want to ride fast, far or dabble on gravel, we have a wide selection of bikes for you to choose from with female friendly components, along with female specific bikes. The important feature differences you will notice across the bikes, besides the colour, size and design, will be things like, narrower handlebars, and a sloped and shorter toptube, which is vital when in a race-like position for a more comfortable reach and safer handling of the bike.
So you’re ready to explore the roads, but what is the bike going to be used for, and will there be any specific requirements needed such as, mudguard eyelets, clearance for pannier racks or wider tyres for winter. Are you looking for a tart on the tarmac or a workhorse? The common frame materials used will be Aluminium, Carbon or Titanium, you will find varying groupset ratios and a choice of braking systems. Everyone has their preferences and it is important you decide what yours are for your needs. For racing or fast paced weekend miles, a race geometry bike that puts you in an aggressive, aerodynamic position will be most suited, with a light and nimble frame, designed for speed. For longer sportive rides, you will benefit from a more upright position for comfort, these bikes will still be light and fast but focusing on efficiency on the road for going the distance. Whether you’re a weekend adventurer enjoying getting muddy from time to time, or commuting heading down the road less travelled, then a cyclocross bike will be ideal. They’re road bikes that are fully equipped to go off road. With wider tyres for grip, disc brakes for powerful stopping and usually tougher frames, they can certainly handle the rough with the smooth. For the wonderer on wheels, those who want to do a little touring or mega exploring, a ‘touring’ bike will be your wheeled warrior. Often ‘touring’ bikes cross over into the cyclocross/adventure bikes category, or ‘road style’ hybrid bikes, resulting in a robust frame and a comfortable riding position. The main distinctions are the features that enable you to load the bike with bike luggage, racks, still allowing for mudguards and more. Last but not least, time trial bikes, these have a one-track mind, and that track is fast paced. Time trials and triathlons are all about speed, and the bikes will be designed with this in mind. Very aerodynamic, light and often fitted with aerobars to ensure the rider can be in a streamlined position on the bike. Mostly for competition or at least a competitive rider, this bike’s motive is the finish line.
Once you have decided your bike type/discipline, it is crucial to know that how the bike sizing is listed will differ from brand to brand, and will vary with the geometry also. In order to find the size that suits you the best, try all bikes possible and be sure to go up or down a size if needed between different bike types and brands.