Whether you're a step above the six-year-old next door who just ditched the training wheels, a full-blown cycling competitor, or just an enthusiast looking for a new vehicle to make the commute on, you'll find a bike in this roundup that caters to your needs.
We filtered through the top brands in the market for the bicycles that stand out in five major categories—Road Performance and Racing, Mountain Biking, Urban Fitness and Commuting, Pedal Assisted and Motorized Bikes, and Fat Bikes—to bring you this list. Take your pick, from minimalist machines to high-tech rides and get pedaling.
For a bike that caters to high-performance riders and all-day-epic cyclists who like to take the road less traveled (and at times unpaved), the Synapse is a dream. It’s geometrically crafted for pure race positioning with its slightly taller head tube, slightly longer wheelbase, and slightly slacker head angle. Equipped with a three-part micro-suspension system, the bike is designed to reduce vibration, improve handling, increase your comfort, and track over any imperfections in the road. Its intuitive flex and carbon construction offers the give and snap you need to power through your ride without ever sacrificing speed. If you’re looking for an all-in-one bike that redefines endurance, give Cannondale a go—and let your Synapse fire.
If you’re a serious cyclist looking for a bike that can take you to the finish line—first—the Orca M20 is a must-have. A minimalist machine with maximum performance, the frame acts like a suspension bridge, creating an optimal balance of lightweight rigidity. With little mass in your way, you can leave everything behind on the pavement.
Weekend warriors, cross country racers, and trail riders will agree this mountain bike from Giant is game changer. The name—Anthem’s “SX”—refers to its ability to aid your descents on rugged terrain; it has a longer travel front suspension that gives your ride less of a race-oriented feel and more like that of a joy ride. It boasts 27.5” wheels for quick, responsive handling that'll slay even the roughest terrain with ease. It also features a lightweight full-suspension alloy frame and Giant’s “Maestro” Suspension in the rear, making it an excellent choice for technical cross country racecourses or remote single track ventures.
As the name implies, Slash 9.9, was created to vanquish the gnarliest of trails—and it doesn’t disappoint. It’s 27.5” carbon frame is enduro (motorcycle course) optimized with active brake pivot to keep your suspension activated while you’re on the brakes, and it's equipped with RockShox DebonAir shock for a coil-like feel that’s feather light. If you want a bike designed to defy gravity going up hills, dominate descents, and label you King of the Mountain, Slash 9.9 is for you.
If you need a bike that’ll traverse narrow, uneven (not to mention unforgiving) city streets, try the Momentum Street on for size. Its lightweight aluminum frame and 700C wheels are super efficient, and its upright position offers heads-up visibility to give you confidence and comfort where and when you need it most. Easy-to-use twist shifters and direct pull brakes are ideal for cyclists of every caliber, and it even features a built-in lock holder, a chain guard and rear rack to hold your belongings, and a cup holder. Think of this as a two-wheeled version of a sedan—it’s reliable, convenient, and suited for pretty much everyone—only sleeker.
Want a bike that’ll take you to work, across town, and off-roading? For endless possibilities and capabilities, the Raleigh Redux 3 is the bike for the job. A marriage of sleek design and aggressive power, the Redux 3 features disc brakes, double wall 27.5” inch tires to grip any surface, and a 10-speed drive train—basically it’s a workhorse that’s ready for more than just a trip to and from work.
Sometimes you want that extra boost to get you where you need to go—damn fast. The Turbo S from Specialized has a powerful electric assist motor capable of just that, and easy cruising speeds, too. With a high-capacity battery, powerful disc brakes, and a sleek alloy frame with Performance Geometry, this is an e-bike that stands out. Its custom Turbo alloy fork is built to reach higher speeds (it even has a fender), its Turbo SC specialized motor is the most powerful version available on the market and capable of rapid accelerations no matter the weather, and it has regenerative breaking options to help your battery charge last longer. Oh—and you don’t have to worry about someone swiping your bike. The Turbo’s integrated down tube battery has a self-locking key release.
If you want a fully stocked and loaded electric bike, the Orion is a great choice. The customizable bike is the perfect blend of style, comfort, and convenience, with plenty of cargo-carrying capacity, a longer-lasting mid-drive motor, and a high-performance lithium battery pack that provides you with 40 miles on a single charge. This bike is designed for the casual, recreational rider to hop and go whenever he pleases. Some other unique features include a SmartAssist OnBoard computer to adjust the level of electrical assistance from the motor and track your speed and distance, front and rear V-brakes that cut off the motor so you’re always in control, front and rear LED lights, a fast-charging battery (4-6 hours), and a USB port so you can keep your phone charged at all times. A dead GPS won't get you very far.
Sometimes bigger is better; and boy is this bike bigger and better than your run-of-the mill fat bike. The Fatboy Pro Trail is the ultimate vehicle for navigating sand, snow, dirt, and anything else you want to trounce over with expert control, traction, and speed. It features a durable carbon one-by drivetrain and powerful brakes so you can hit the trails with confidence. With its superwide 4.6-inch tires—more than twice the size of a standard mountain bike—the Fatboy Pro Trail is essentially a monster truck. And like you'd imagine, it's an incredibly comfortable ride; the air sprung suspension fork absorbs bumps and uneven terrain like a dream.
Borealis is a relative newcomer, but it’s one of the most advanced fat bikes. It may seem counterintuitive, but the Yampa XX1 is a lean fat bike constructed with carbon. They use 190mm centered rear spacing to make space for the largest fat tire and rim setup in the industry—setting a new standard—along with a 2 x 10 drivetrain so you can truck up any hill and avoid spinning out on long flats. Borealis offers the Yampa as a frameset, making it ideal for racers of all shapes and sizes.
In a triathlon, you want a bike that’ll out climb and out-accelerate your competitors, not outweigh them. With the Slice Ultegra Di2 that’s not a problem—it comes in at just 1020g (2.3 pounds, over a pound and a half lighter than some competitor bikes. Aside from having the lightest frame on the market, Cannondale’s tri-bike features Naero Tech seatstays, AeroPlane twisting chainstays, and an Aero SAVE fork to eliminate bumps and keep you comfortable during the ride and ready for the run. The geometry of the Slice Ultegra Di2 is configured from data and thousands of fittings; the seat has a steep angle and shorter cranks to help you get lower in front while keeping your hips open to increase power and additionally improve your transition to running. Not done yet. The Slice offers stable handling thanks to its centered riding position and slack head angle so you can confidently traverse corners, crosswinds, and descents. And the seat tube directs wind over your rear wheel so you’ll experience less drag and pressure from wind packing between the frame and wheel.
Nothing is spared in Orbea’s latest Ordu tri-bike; it’s designed to get you across the finish line lighting-fast. You can shift quickly and efficiently from multiple positions across the bars with the Dura-Ace Di2 groupset. Its Mondragon tube shapes are flattened on the sides to offer better drag numbers at lower speeds, and its squared trailing edge smooths airflow, effectively tricking and manipulating the wind. There are also semi-vertical dropouts that make wheel changes quicker so you’ll never have to fiddle with adjusters again. One of the best features: Ordu is adaptable. Orbea calculated linear progression between sizes and saddle positions so you’re guaranteed to get a bike that feels like it’s made for you.