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Dawes Kalahari Review

For a company that’s been around for nearly a hundred years, we expected a lot more from Dawes. Granted, not a lot is to be expected from a budget hybrid bicycle, but it’s still rather a disappointment considering the history and fame of this beloved brand from England. The Dawes Kalahari was made with the intention of giving riders comfort and ease for commuting and recreational riding, but it didn’t exactly play out that way when we test rode for review.

On the plus side, we were pleased with the micro-adjust seatpost, which each of our reviewers were able to get better positioning with. The handlebar stem was adjustable too, and the elastomer saddle was not uncomfortable… for the first hour or two of riding at least. The rack mounts and fenders were appreciated.

While, as mentioned, not a lot is to be expected from a budget bike, we’ve seen better Shimano componentry on other hybrids of this class. The worst thing was definitely the weight, though. This was just unmanageable for most of us, and there’s just not a lot you can do about the heavy alloy frame. The Suntour suspension fork made for a little more comfort, but it just didn’t cut it for us overall.


  • Comfortable enough for short commutes
  • Decent suspension
  • Micro-adjust seatpost and handlebar stem
  • Cheap
  • Rack mounts
  • Fenders


  • Way, way too heavy!
  • Not so good for longer commutes or for hours of recreational riding

The Verdict

This is just not the best budget commuter we have reviewed, so we don’t recommend it unless you are really out of options.

The Dawes Kalahari doesn’t hold up against a lot of the other urban riding hybrids we’ve reviewed at this price range. The women’s models offer some good geometry if you are interested, but we would recommend the Mojave instead if you want a better quality at this price.

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