Best Hybrid Bikes for Women
Hybrid bikes are quickly becoming the perfect machine to take you from A to B. Adept at inner-city riding and complete with a list of no-nonsense components, this is a bike that encourages you to ‘get up and go’.
A simple bike to ride and suitable for riders of varying experience levels – the classic sit-up geometry and wide handlebars gives you a steady, comfortable ride. Whether you’re just getting into cycling or looking for a bike that has a bit of style and class, a hybrid bike is the perfect option.
Use the links below to check out the best hybrid bikes for women on the market.
What Makes a Bike a Hybrid?
The clue is somewhat in the name. A hybrid bike is all the best elements of other bikes – mainly road and mountain bikes, but with some small nuances from urban cruisers too.
The hybrids take the best bits from these other breeds of two-wheeled machines, combining them to handle varying terrains, without compromising on comfort. Here are a few features that define the hybrid bike category:
- Wider tires than a road bike, but slightly slimmer than a mountain bike – 28-32c is the most common, but some hybrids run with up to a 42c.
- A wealth of eyelets for mudguard and rack attachments.
- Cantilever or disc brakes for superior stopping power. Some still run rim brakes, but these are slowly going out of fashion in the hybrid department.
- Flat handlebars and a relaxed, sit-up position to increase overall comfort
Most hybrid bikes will include all the features listed above, and some won’t; it really does depend on where they lie in the hybrid spectrum – are they angled towards the mountain bike market or the road? Checking for everything you need in a bike can often be a nightmare, and it may be quite common for a retailer to tell you a little white lie or two to make a sale. Instead, here’s a quick, handy list of what to look for when choosing your perfect hybrid bike.
How to Choose the Perfect Hybrid Bike for Women
A unisex or women’s specific model
Many of the top hybrid brands tailor bikes specifically with women in mind, a slightly shorter top tube and taller head tube complementing the typical dimensions of the female body. Some brands will also offer a ‘unisex’ model which strikes a balance between men’s and women’s geometries to create a bike that can be ridden by all.
If you’re looking for a long-term investment and a bike to truly fall in love with, opting for a women’s specific model will definitely pay off in the long-run. Look out for those bikes with slightly narrower handlebars and a women’s specific saddle, as well as the top tube and head tube discussed above – this way you won’t have to purchase any extras if you’d have otherwise opted for a unisex model.
Like road and mountain bikes, hybrids come in a mix of steel, aluminum, and carbon-based frames – giving you a wealth of options to choose from depending on where, how often, and how fast you’ll be riding your hybrid bike.
Steel is the heaviest material, but it does offer superior comfort and appealing aesthetics – a traditional look that will no doubt catch the eye of other riders.
Aluminum is a popular medium, combining much of the comfort and durability of steel with the lightweight aspect of carbon. Aluminum is also often the cheapest frame material out there.
Carbon is popular among the top-end, performance orientated bikes – the lightweight material much more efficient at transferring power through the pedals. However, it does come with a fat price tag and is very unusual to see on the hybrid, commuting market.
The hybrid bike, as expected, has the largest range when it comes to types of bikes – many two-wheeled machines falling into the category of ‘hybrid’. One person’s treasure may just be your idea of hell, so make sure you select the right design for the type of riding you’re thinking of doing.
If you have mostly road commutes with the occasional weekend ride in mind – a sit-up position, slick tires and a narrow range of gearing may just be the perfect option. If your commute involves some off-road terrain or you’re choosing a hybrid bike to explore the trails around the local area, one with wider tires, flatter and wider handlebars, disc brakes and a wide range of gears will suit you better.
Frame material, design, and components are the primary things that affect ride quality – but it’s extra features that often steal the show and make your hybrid bike perfectly suited to your needs. If you’re looking to carry a lot of stuff with your bike, one with numerous mounting points for a pannier rack will get the job done. These same ‘eyelets’ can also be used to attach mudguards and fenders, perfect for those rainy rides and commutes.
You should also look for a bike with some added clearance between frame and wheel – the added gap ideal in wet, muddy weather. A wider clearance will also give you a better choice when it comes to bag/pannier racks.
The Best Hybrid Bikes for Women
Trek – FX Sport 4 Women’s
Comfort: Compact, women’s specific geometry make this a comfortable bike to ride over longer commutes – but a slim saddle could cause a few pains after a long ride. 6/10
Style: Fashionable it is not, the FX Sport 4 focuses more on performance and function than style. 2/10
Versatility: Disc brakes, wide clearance, 20-speed gearing and flat handlebars make the FX Sport 4 an extremely versatile machine, at home on both the urban road and backwoods trail. 9/10
Price: A mid-level bike that brushes the lower boundary of top-end, a price fitting of the wealth of its strong, reliable components. 5/10
Ease of maintenance: Disc brakes and internal cable routing make this bike a nightmare to fix on the fly, rendering many mechanicals unfixable without specific tools – which in turn cost more and more money. 2/10
Warranty: It’s hard to argue with a lifetime warranty. 10/10
OVERALL SCORE: 42/70
Specialized – Ariel Elite
Performance: Premium aluminum makes this bike light and – most of all – durable. Complete with a 20-speed drivetrain and front suspension, this is a bike designed for efficient performance on the off-road tracks and trails. 8/10
Comfort: A low step over top tube, women’s specific geometry, and narrower handlebars make this a pleasant, comfortable ride – the front suspension doing a lot to absorb much of the bumps and potholes on the open road. 8/10
Style: Angled at performance rather than style – the ‘go faster’ Specialized stripe is nice, but it’s not going to gain many style points. 3/10
Versatility: Disc brakes, 20-speed gearing, front suspension and wide, dirt-eating tires make this a perfect bike for off-road trails and tow paths. It may be a little slower on the commute, however, largely due to the wider tires. 7/10
Price: A mid-level bike that brushes the lower boundary of top-end, the price buys some reliable components that are built to last – it’s a long-term investment but one that’s bound to pay off in the long run. 6/10
Ease of maintenance: Inner cable routing and disc brakes are a novice mechanic’s worst nightmare. The Ariel Elite forgoes simplicity and ease of maintenance for a more performance orientated kit. 2/10
Warranty: ‘Limited’ lifetime warranty, and only on the frame. 5/10
OVERALL SCORE: 39/70
Raleigh – Pioneer 2 Low Step
Performance: Fully kitted out for the urban commute, coming complete with a kickstand, pannier rack, and strong, alloy mudguards – the Pioneer 2 is ready for any commute. However, the weight of all these extra components does make the Pioneer 2 a little sluggish which is something to watch out for. 7/10
Comfort: A low step top tube, women’s specific geometry and a wide, Selle Royal saddle make this a very comfortable bike. However, all the extra components can weight the bike down, and over uneven terrain you may get a few nasty bumps and jars. 6/10
Style: A classic-looking, traditional commuting bike with a sleek, sea blue paint job – there certainly is a lot to love about this bike. 8/10
Versatility: Very niche, suited to the urban commute but not much else. The weighty components will make this bike a nuisance when riding off-road so don’t even try it. 3/10
Price: An entry-level hybrid bike with no-fuss components that the price reflects well. 7/10
Ease of maintenance: With all the extra racks, mudguards and kickstands already fitted to the bike, it can get quite tiresome removing the wheel to fix new brake pads or even repair punctures. Make sure you take your toolkit with you. 4/10
Warranty: No warranty is immediately supplied but you can go through a registration process – handy but slightly annoying. 4/10
OVERALL SCORE: 39/70
Diamondback – Clarity 2
Performance: A durable, butted aluminum frame with a long list of no-nonsense components – the Clarity 2 doesn’t scream ‘speed’, but it will no doubt get you from A to B day after day through whatever weather. 6/10
Comfort: The frame geometry promotes an upright riding position, but a higher top tube than most and simple, basic features – such as the handlebar grips, saddle, and pedals – can make it a little uncomfortable over longer rides. 5/10
Style: Resembles a sleek fixie bike from the front end, but a very busy back end soon wipes away the admiring looks. 5/10
Versatility: Wide tires, 21 gears, and powerful disc brakes make this bike adept on both the off-road and inner city bike paths. 7/10
Price: A perfect entry-level bike with reliable components that make you feel like you’re scoring a sweet deal – and you are! 9/10
Ease of maintenance: Disc brakes can be a nightmare to fix and maintain, but down tube wiring does make the cabling on this machine a lot easier to manage. 6/10
Warranty: Warranty covers manufacturing defects, but not much else. 3/10
OVERALL SCORE: 41/70
Electra – Loft 7D
Performance: A surprising lightweight, aluminum frame forms the basis of this bike, with reliable Shimano Acera shifting taking care of all the gearing. It doesn’t look like a bike that could go very fast, but its features would sure suggest it will. 7/10
Comfort: A very low step over makes this an easy bike to climb aboard, and the sit-up position is very comfortable, even on longer journeys. Slightly splayed bars also add to the comfort, as does the padded saddle. 8/10
Style: Available in a series of urban-ready, matte paint finishes, the Loft 7D is one extremely stylish commuter – the brown colored extras giving the bike a lovely, classic finish. 8/10
Versatility: Commuting on the roads or showing off in the local park, the Loft 7D is confined to these two areas. Its gearing may handle some uphill terrain, but off-road, this will be one sluggish machine. 4/10
Price: For a super-stylish, surprisingly speedy urban commuter, the entry-level price is just the cherry on top. 8/10
Ease of maintenance: Cables run along the down and top tubes, allowing for easy adjustments. Rim brakes are also a lot easier to maintain and repair than discs, and a spare pair of brake blocks and the most rudimentary of toolkits are able to repair these brakes. 7/10
Warranty: Warranty is offered, but there’s a whole load of T&Cs to read through. 3/10
OVERALL SCORE: 45/70
Sixthreezero – The EVRYjourney
Performance: 7-speed gears and fast-rolling 26-inch wheels sure get this machine going. It won’t be winning any drag races anytime soon – but a max riding speed of 20mph is more than enough for a commute to work or cruise through the park. 7/10
Comfort: Where do we begin? The ergonomic riding position is second to none and creates a sublime ride feel whether cruising, leisure riding, or commuting. The EVRYjourney redefines comfort with its own unique fitting experience – Body Fit – which will select the perfect bike for your exact height and weight. And the extra wide, foam-padded saddle and durable, synthetic leather grips will have you comfortably cruising all day long, day in and day out. 10/10
Style: Looking good is as important as feeling good. The EVRYjourney rocks a classic cruiser look with hip, classic paint schemes to make sure you stand out from the crowd when riding in the city. 10/10
Versatility: Whether speeding around the neighborhood, college campus, backstreets, or alleyways – or even exploring the local beach, the EVRYjourney really lives up to its name. 7/10
Price: With a unique Body Fit service, as well as the most comfortable components the hybrid market can boast of, it comes as a massive, welcome surprise to learn about this bike’s entry-level price point. 9/10
Ease of maintenance: Cables run along the frame and the cantilever style brakes are easily accessible for repair or minor adjustment. 8/10
Warranty: You can’t argue against a lifetime warranty – especially on a hybrid bike. 10/10
OVERALL SCORE: 61/70
Conclusion and Final Pick
In our opinion, the EVRYjourney is the ultimate hybrid bike – a machine that blends supreme comfort with the latest style craze is sure to get the thumbs up from us.
It may not be the fastest or most versatile machine out there, but for commuting in the city, or cruising in the local park or popular beachfront – you would struggle to find a better choice of hybrid bike than the sixthreezero EVRYjourney.
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