Best Road Bikes Under $500- 9 Options To Choose From

Looking for a road bike on a budget? Well, I have got just what you need in store for you! Read on to find out.
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Road bikes can be pretty expensive! They range from $1000 to $10,000 easily. But why would you need a $10,000 road bike? I mean, it’s not like you are going to go mountain climbing or do any kind of extreme riding on it. Think about it. All you are going to do with a road bike is run-of-the-mill cycling. Tell me if I am wrong but from my experience, that’s what road bicycles are best suited for. 

Now, I am not saying you give up on road bikes at all because they cover a limited terrain. Hear me out! Instead of spending $10,000, what if you can get a road bike and all you have to spend is $500? Sounds exciting! 

But the best part is that I have researched and listed 10 road bikes that are all under $500. You don’t have to visit shops, roaming here and there to find what you have been looking for. I have got it listed right here.

9 Best Road Bikes Reviewed 

Best Feature Bike Price ($)
Best Overall Schwinn Volare 1400 Road Bike 277.61
Best Reliability Merax Finiss 700C Road Racing Bike 250.00
Best All Terrain Performance Giordano Libero Acciao Road Bike 300
Best built HASA R4 Road Bike Shimano 2400 300
Best adjustability Giordano Libero Women’s 1.6 350
Best flexibility Vilano R2 Commuter Road Bike 329.00
Best Handling Gravity Ave A Road Bike 299.95
Best Braking Challenge Dynamic CLR 0.2 480
Best All-Rounder Vilano Shadow 3.0 Road Bike 430

Note: All prices mentioned are subject to change.

Let’s get started!

1. Schwinn Volare 1400 Road Bike

Price: MSRP $277.61

Schwinn Volare 1400
Schwinn Volare 1400

 

Features Description
Frame Material Strong aluminum frame
Suspension Steel suspension for safety and absorption of collisions and vibrations
Shifter Shimano 14-speed shifter for versatile speed changes on the go
Seat Adjustable and comfortable seat, promoting an upright riding position
Rims Double-walled rims for added strength
Tires Oversized road tires for excellent speed and handling
Drivetrain Shimano 14-speed drivetrain for smooth and efficient gear changes
Handlebars Ergonomically placed handlebars for an upright riding position
Brakes Shifters provide amazing stopping power
Performance Responsive suspension that absorbs bumps on uneven terrains
Use Case Suitable for cross-country road trips and versatile road riding
Overall Impression Combines performance and safety, offering a strong and responsive road biking experience at an affordable price

I would say that this bike has a satisfactory combination of performance and safety. Last summer, I went out on a cross-country road trip with my Schwinn Volare. I particularly liked the level of strength this bike has and how it absorbs vibrations.

The oversized road tires support amazing speed along with the perfect handling. While riding the Volare you would always have an upright position because of the ergonomically placed handlebars and seat.

 Throughout my trip, the bike maintained its performance. This is why it is my top suggestion for anyone looking for an affordable road bike.

Advantages 

  • The bike offers 14-speed
  • It has quick-release tires which makes it easier to replace or fix punctures
  • The shifter is user-friendly 

Disadvantages 

  • The brakes do require tunning 
Editor's Choice: Schwinn's products are some of the best in the market. How they offer performance and take the bike to another level is just unmatched. Even being a budget bike, the Volare is amazing in both performance and features!

2. Merax Finiss 700C Road Racing Bike

Price: MSRP $250.00

Merax Finiss Road Bike Aluminum 21 Speed 700c Racing Bicycle
Merax Finiss Road Bike Aluminum 21 Speed 700c Racing Bicycle

 

Feature Description
Frame Material Lightweight aluminum frame for excellent handling and performance
Terrain Versatility Capable of handling various terrains, including harsh terrain, while maintaining stability
Adjustable Seat Allows on-the-fly adjustment of the seat for personalized comfort
Shimano Shifters and Derailleurs High-quality Shimano components for a smooth transition of speed and gears
Speed Adjustment Ability to easily adjust speed levels for those focusing on speed and performance
Brakes Alloy-caliper brakes provide absolute stopping power for safety during races or intense exercise sessions
Price-to-Quality Ratio Despite its affordable price tag, the Merax Finiss 700C is noted for its great quality and exceptional performance
Lightweight Design The bike is extremely lightweight, contributing to its overall maneuverability and ease of handling
Professional Racing Specifically designed for participation in professional races, making it an ideal choice for racing enthusiasts
Overall Performance Excels in every platform, offering a combination of speed, handling, and quality performance

 If you are looking to participate in professional races or just have a great exercise session then the Merax Finiss 700C is a good option. It is lightweight and handles like a charm. Did I mention that you can also adjust your seat on the fly?

New to road biking? Check out our guide on top entry-level bikes 

Advantages 

  • It is available in different sizes 

Disadvantages 

  • The high gear is unaligned
Why I Like It: The Merax Finiss is a reliable road companion. One of the main aspects that I liked about this bike is the ability to remain consistent on any kind of terrain, you do not see any kind of fluctuation.

3. Giordano Libero Acciao Road Bike

Price: MSRP $443.78

Giordano Acciao Road Bike
Giordano Acciao Road Bike

 

Feature Description
Variety of Sizes and Colors Available in a variety of sizes and colors to cater to different riders’ preferences and sizes
Frame Material Steel frame known for resilience, making it suitable for riders of all sizes
Versatile Riding Designed for both small-sized and large-sized riders
Vibrant Design Vibrant colors add an aesthetic appeal to the bike, boosting confidence for riders
Effortless Navigation Navigates effortlessly, providing a smooth and enjoyable riding experience
Shimano Claris Shifters Equipped with Shimano Claris shifters for smooth and efficient gear-changing
Durable Frame and Fork The frame and fork contribute to long-lasting durability, reducing the need for frequent replacements
Performance and Safety Balances performance and safety, offering confidence in handling collisions and vibrations
Adaptability to Terrain Suitable for various terrains, allowing riders to maintain any level of speed
Road Clincher Tires Equipped with Road Clincher Tires for consistent and excellent performance on gravel or smooth roads
Shimano 14-Speed Drivetrain Features a Shimano 14-speed Drivetrain for easy and efficient speed and gear changes
Impression  Offers a bike that riders won’t need to replace soon, thanks to its durable frame and fork

You find a really good bike but it doesn’t fit you, it’s a bummer right? That is why I have the Giordano Libero Acciao for you. It comes in a variety of sizes and colors so that everyone gets to enjoy this bike

Its vibrant colors caught my eye and after intense research on it and asking my fellow riders who have tried this bike, I can say that you will feel that instant surge of confidence on this bike.

Advantages 

  • The high-tensile steel frame is durable

Disadvantages 

  • It is heavy 
  • Some users reported missing components upon shipping
Why I Like It: Sizing is a very important factor when it comes to any type of bike, you just want that perfect fit. If you are looking for flexible performance then do consider this one!

4. HASA R4 Road Bike Shimano 2400

Price: MSRP $300

Hasa R4 Road Bike
HASA R4 Road Bike

 

Feature Description
Affordability Available at an affordable price, making it one of the best entry-level road bikes under $500
Low Maintenance Requires little to no maintenance, suitable for both workouts and casual use
Shimano 24-Speed Shifters Equipped with Shimano 24-speed shifters for easy hill climbing and riding on various terrains
Resistance Mode Can be put in resistance mode for effective workouts on the go
Shimano Brakes Ensures control over the bike and provides absolute stopping power for safety
Beginner-Friendly An amazing beginner road bike suitable for starting the cycling journey
Lightweight Construction Constructed with a lightweight frame for increased speed and easy usability
Durable Despite its lightweight frame, the bike is strong and can withstand abuse and collisions

This road bike under $500 may be entry-level but it is still packed with amazing features and requires little to no maintenance.

When I first came across the HASA R4, I was a little skeptical of its status. However, it’s a good beginner road bike that you can start your cycling journey with. 

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Advantages 

  • The bicycle is lightweight

Disadvantages 

  • It offers a poor riding posture
Why I Like It: The HASA R4 once again proves that you don't need to break the bank in order to get an amazing road bike, instead, you just need to be smart. It is also available in different frame sizes so it can be enjoyed by everyone!

5. Giordano Libero Women’s 1.6

Price: MSRP $350

Giordano Libero Women
Giordano Libero Women

 

Feature Description
Affordability Unmatched value for an affordable price, making it a top choice for women’s road bikes under $500
Dedicated Women’s Design Fitted with features and vibrant colors specifically designed for women
Lightweight Frame The frame size is light and fully adjusted for women, allowing for comfortable and fatigue-free long rides
Impressive Geometry Slacker tube and top short tube contribute to an upright riding position, enhancing comfort during rides
Beginner-Friendly Suitable for both beginners and veterans, exceeding expectations for the best road bike under $500
Exceptional Braking System Mechanical disc brakes provide top stopping power, ensuring performance on slippery roads or descending terrains

The Giordano Libero Women’s 1.6 might be cheap but the value that it gives is unmatched. There are not many dedicated women’s bikes, may it be mountain bikes or road bikes, but with the Libero, things get better.

The bike isn’t just fitted with amazing features but also vibrant colors. The Braking system of the bike performs. May it be slippery roads or descending terrain.

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Advantages 

  • It is specially designed for women 
  • The frame is lightweight 

Disadvantages 

  • The saddle is a little uncomfortable 
Why I Like It: From the Aluminum frame to the Shimano Claris shifters, everything on this bicycle offers quality!

6. Vilano R2 Commuter Road Bike

Price: MSRP $329.00

Vilano R2 Aluminum Road Bike
Vilano R2 Aluminum Road Bike

 

Feature Description
Best Value Provides the best possible value for the cost, ensuring a worthwhile investment
Versatile Use Perfect choice for commuting to work, school/college, or leisure rides
Simple yet Amazing Design Black with a traditional design, loaded with amazing features
Adjustable Frame Sizes Available in different frame sizes to accommodate people of various sizes, suitable for both men and women
Lightweight Extremely lightweight for flexibility and easy handling
Customization Options Offers many customization options for a personalized riding experience
Efficient Gear Selection Amazing gear selection for easy climbing on various terrains, including hills

The Vilano R2 is the go-to option if you want a bike for work, school/college, or just leisure. It looks simple and has a traditional design. The frame size is available in different sizes so that it accommodates people of different sizes both men and women.

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Advantages 

  • It is a unisex bike
  • The Shimano 21-speed groupset offers value
  • The aluminum frame is strong

Disadvantages 

  • The seat is uncomfortable 
  • The gear shifters are also of cheap quality 
Why I Like It: The Vilano R2 Commuter is a unisex bike. So both men and women can enjoy it equally.

7. Gravity Ave A Road Bike

Price: MSRP $299.95

Gravity Ave A Road Bike Shimano
Gravity Ave A Road Bike Shimano

 

Feature Description
Budget-Friendly Performance Delivers amazing performance even on a tight budget
Lightweight Aluminum Frame Built around a lightweight aluminum frame for maximized handling
Aerodynamic Design Features a very aerodynamic design for enhanced performance
Semi-Compact Frame Geometry Rider maintains an upright position due to the semi-compact frame geometry
Inclusive Design Overall design ensures riders of all shapes and sizes can enjoy the bike
Wide-Gearing Enables wide-gearing with the Shimano 14-Speed drivetrain for conquering various terrains
Unique Gear Placement Gears are uniquely placed and stem-mounted for added comfort
All-Weather Brakes Powerful all-weather brakes provide reliable stopping power in various conditions

 The AVE A features a very aerodynamic design and because of the semi-compact frame geometry, the rider is always going to have an upright position. The overall design of the bike is made to ensure that riders of all shapes and sizes are able to enjoy the best out of their bikes. 

The gears of the bike are uniquely placed and stem-mounted so you will also be able to enjoy amazing comfort.

Advantages 

  • The bike has a strong lightweight aluminum frame 
  • The all-weather disc brakes deliver a satisfying performance

Disadvantages 

  • It requires assembly 
Why I Like It: The Gravity AVE A bike has been on my mind for a very long time, I have wanted to try it since the moment it was announced. From the Shimano drivetrain to the powerful disc brakes, the bike delivers an enjoyable ride!

8. Challenge Dynamic CLR 0.2

Price: MSRP $480

Challenge Dynamic Road Bike
Challenge Dynamic Road Bike

 

Feature Description
Budget-Friendly Performance Delivers amazing performance even on a tight budget
Lightweight Aluminum Frame Built around a lightweight aluminum frame for maximized handling
Aerodynamic Design Features a very aerodynamic design for enhanced performance
Semi-Compact Frame Geometry Rider maintains an upright position due to the semi-compact frame geometry
Inclusive Design Overall design ensures riders of all shapes and sizes can enjoy the bike
Wide-Gearing Enables wide-gearing with the Shimano 14-Speed drivetrain for conquering various terrains
Unique Gear Placement Gears are uniquely placed and stem-mounted for added comfort
All-Weather Brakes Powerful all-weather brakes provide reliable stopping power in various conditions

You might have heard of Argos if you came looking for the best road bike under $500, they have upped their game more than ever and have introduced the Challenge Dynamic CLR 0.2. Argos consulted some of the best journalists and technicians and have launched their new line, based on the feedback let me tell you this- It is definitely an upgrade. 

The Shimano Claris Groupset also works wonders with the bike, you can easily mount any kind of hill without problems.

Durability is the main priority here and that is a good thing. With budget bikes, all you want from them is to perform well and for a very long time. 

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Advantages 

  • The bike has a strong carbon fork

Disadvantages 

  • Many users did not like the rigid suspension 
Why I Like It: Argos products have a good performance. With that being said, the Challenge Dynamic CLR 0.2 focuses its attention on durability rather than performance.

9. Vilano Shadow 3.0 Road Bike

Price: MSRP $429.00

Vilano Shadow 3.0 Road Bike
Vilano Shadow 3.0 Road Bike

 

Feature Description
Premium Quality Quality on par with premium bikes despite the budget-friendly price tag
All-Rounder Bike The Vilano Shadow 3.0 excels as an all-rounder bike, delivering impressive performance and features
Aluminum Frame Durable aluminum frame protects against collisions and vibrations, ensuring a smooth ride on bumpy roads
Shimano 14-Speed Gear Set Offers good performance and can be upgraded for even more versatility
Easy Assembly Comes 90% assembled, reducing the stress of bike setup; includes free pedals in the package

Another great bike in the list of best road bikes under $500 is The Vilano Shadow 3.0.

The Shadow 3.0 might be one of the best all-rounder bikes out there.  The Aluminum frame of the bike protects the bike against collisions and vibrations. 

The Shimano 14-speed gear set offers good performance as it is but it can be upgraded even more if you want that. The bike comes 90% assembled the plus point is that you get free pedals in the package.

Advantages 

  • The aluminum frame has a strong built 
  • Option to choose from different colors 

Disadvantages 

  • The wheels are not of good quality 
Why I Like It: Vilano Shadow 3.0 is a simple bike. Plus, the shifters and gear set enhance the power of the bike to new levels!!

How To Choose A Budget Road Bike- Buying Guide!

Here are the things that you need to consider when buying a budget road bike:

1. Consider The Frame Geometry 

One road bike is very different from the other one. They have a different frame geometry.

Sports Geometry 

Most of the road bikes have sports geometry. They are best suited for those bikes that will be used 3-4 times a week, stretching up to almost 150 miles/week. I recommend going for this if you are a casual rider. 

Race Geometry 

These are for professional/competitive riders. They enhance their skills while asking the riders to be more flexible with themselves. These professional bikes are lighter. They have a strong frame, premium components, and an expensive price tag.

2. Keep An Eye On The Materials

Bike frames usually come in two different materials:

  • Carbon-Fiber
  • Aluminum

Carbon Fiber Frames

These frames are adept at providing comfortable and vibration-free rides. Comparatively, they are expensive because a lot of labor-intensive work is needed to construct them. They are the preferred choice of professional riders.

Aluminum frames

Aluminum frames also provide a good and comfortable experience but are less expensive. They can be customized even more so to enhance the experience.

If you want the bike for casual and fun purposes then an aluminum frame would be more than good enough!

3. Groupsets and Drivetrains

Groupsets is a set of matching components provided by different component manufacturers for bikes. If a bike comes packed with a groupset, then they are going to have a stylish, and consistent look/design as compared to the bikes that don’t come with these types of groupsets.

This shows the utmost quality of a bike and the top-renowned suppliers of Drivetrains/Groupsets are SRAM and Shimano.

4. Consider The Wheel Size  

Wheels are one of the most important components to consider because they directly affect the performance of the bike, they are the ones between the road and their quality will certainly go a long way. Wheels affect the following:

  • The overall weight of the bike
  • Acceleration and how well it handles 
  • Resistance against the wind

The thing with wheels is that they are pre-built with the bike and you don’t get to choose them except that your bike is custom-built. Although you can always customize your bike when you have already gotten it, upgrading goes a very long way. 

5. The Quality Of Cranksets

The component that makes the pedal rotate the rear wheel is called a crankset. Many road bikes come with different types of cranksets.

Double/Compact Cranksets have two chainrings and 20 gears in total. They also come with a 10-speed cassette, and having few gears gives them various benefits.

Triple Cranksets have 3 chainrings and 27 gears in total. They also come with a 9-speed cassette, providing this many gears to the rider comes with its own set of benefits.

You can always upgrade or customize whichever crankset you get with your bike. If you are a beginner a triple or compact crankset would be the best one for you. 

6. Also Consider The Pedal Quality!

The basic bikes come with normal pedals that have toe cages. There are also the higher-end/premium models that come without pedals. This is because the company thinks that for a better and more personalized experience, you should choose the pedals yourself!

It’s better to choose pedals that go with your cycling shoes. This will help in improving your cycling performance. 

7. The Type Of Brakes and Shifters

With the newer models, these two components have become integrated. Different bikes and different brands offer unique experiences. It’s better to try them out before finalizing a choice. Both SRAM and Shimano offer quality shifters and brake set! The important thing that you need to consider is that you have a good grip on the bike.

8. Choose The Right Size!

You should choose a bike size or frame that suits you. There are typically 6 sizes to choose from. These go from extra small to extra large but some brands also offer customization. I would advise you to choose a bike in accordance with your body’s geometry. Don’t go for sizes that are too small or too large for you as that will only come between handling.

Discover your perfect fit! Check out our comprehensive bike size chart.

How I Choose These Road Bikes– My Methodology

As an enthusiast of road cycling, I understand the challenge of finding a high-quality bike that fits within a budget. That’s why I’ve dedicated countless hours to researching and analyzing the best entry-level road bikes for adults on the market. I’ve scoured the web for honest reviews and feedback from verified customers and even tested some of the top contenders myself, including the editor’s choice.

Using my knowledge of bike components and their strengths and weaknesses, I’ve narrowed down the top options that offer the best value for your money.  So if you’re ready to enjoy the ride of your life, these are some of the road bikes that you can consider.

FAQs

What is the best road bike for under 500?

The best road bike for under $500 is the Schwinn Volare 1400 Road Bike according to our experts. It is an amazing bike that provides the best kind of adventure and is perfect for the ultimate road warrior. With its exceptional construction and features, there is nothing like it in this price range. It is a great budget bike that is available for everyone and offers the perfect combination of affordability and quality.

How long will a road bike under $500 last?

A road bike under $500 can last for several years with proper maintenance, but the lifespan can vary depending on the quality of components and the amount of use it receives.

Are expensive road bikes better?

No, not necessarily. Expensive road bikes may have higher quality components and better performance, but a more affordable road bike can still be a great choice for casual riders or those on a budget.

What are the best road bike brands?

Some of the top road bike brands, according to icebike.org, include:

  1. Trek
  2. Specialized
  3. Giant
  4. Cannondale
  5. Pinarello
  6. Colnago
  7. Bianchi
  8. Scott
  9. Felt
  10. De Rosa

These brands are known for their high-quality road bikes and innovative designs. They offer a wide range of options for riders of all skill levels, from entry-level bikes to professional-grade models. Whether you’re a casual rider or a serious competitor, these brands have a road bike to meet your needs. Here are best 50 road bike brands.

How much is a cheap road bike?

A cheap road bike can cost anywhere from $200 to $500, depending on the brand, quality of components, and features included.

Read also:

Recap

Road bikes are amazing and getting one at an affordable price is even more awesome! Since bicycle prices have skyrocketed in the past couple of years, many companies are now focusing on making budget bikes that are accessible to everyone.

They may be cheap road bikes but they fall short of nothing when it comes to performance. Are you ready to invest in your next road biking adventure? Which bicycle did you like the most? Let me know in the comment section below. Happy Biking!

 


This article was crafted by Rhodes Perry, Editor-in-Chief, a seasoned expert, bringing 16 years of experience and knowledge about all types of bikes. Our goal is to provide you with accurate, reliable, and valuable insights to help you make informed decisions and enhance your biking experience.

Should you have any questions or require further clarification on the topic, please feel free to connect with our expert author Rhodes Perry by leaving a comment below. We value your engagement and are here to assist you.

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Rhodes Perry

Rhodes Perry

Rhodes is a writer, social justice advocate, and passionate cyclist. He primarily spends his time in the saddle commuting or riding multi-day, self-supported tours, and volunteers time wrenching at his local bike coop.

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