If you’re shopping for bikes under 200 dollars, then you’ve probably found yourself overwhelmed by choice. You might also find yourself questioning whether a cheap bike is the right bike for you.
Well, we can tell you with certainty that there are some great cheap bikes on the market! Finding one can be a budget can be a minefield, so we’ve done one of the research for you.
Trust us, there are a number of bikes great bikes under $200. Whether you’re looking for the best hybrid bike or the best mountain bike we’ve done some of the research for you. This article compares our shortlist of eight bikes – we’ve detailed the specification, pros & cons of each and our opinion on why they’re fit for a place on our shortlist.
Now, all you’ve got to do is find the best all around bike that suits your cycling needs.
Enjoy the article and happy riding!
Best Hybrid Bikes Under $200 Review
Vilano Men’s Hybrid Bike 700c Retro City Commuter
The Vilano Men’s Hybrid Bike 700c Retro City Commuter is a fixie, ideal for the beginner cyclist or daily commuter.
The clue is in the name, “Retro City Commuter”. This stylish commuter bike is the perfect bike to rely on for your daily work commute, cycling around a university campus or city/street riding. The 700 x 35c wheels and hi tensile frame make for a smooth ride across the paved roads.
The bike has 7-speeds and the twist grip shifters allow for an easy and accessible gear change. The 7 speed should give you plenty of gears, but it is probably better suited for riding in slightly flatter lands.
Once assembled this bike is ready to go! It’s equipped with front and rear mudguards and water bottle mounts. There’s also a rear pannier rack that will hold plenty of weight and it comes kitted out with free platform pedals and a kickstand too.
This bike is your best companion if you want to carry items between home and work/university or pop to the supermarket for your shopping.
It has a classic retro style – it’s an upright, classic bike with hybrid/cruiser handlebars. The stylish grips add to the retro vibe and there’s a retro-styled suspension saddle to give you all the comfort you need on your daily commute.
This bike gives you everything you could ask from a road bike under 200.
- 7-Speed Twist Grip Shifter
- Linear pull brakes/V brake
- Rear Rack & Kickstand
- Suitable for road cycling
Kent 700C Men’s, Thruster Fixie Bike
If the retro style wasn’t for you then what about this sharp, athletic men’s thruster fixie bike?
Fixie bikes are renowned for being cheaper to run and maintain, making this the overall best bicycle under 200 when it comes to price. With one single-speed, there are fewer components to go wrong and repair.
The fixe bike isn’t for everyone – the single-speed means that hill riding is more challenging. This will be particularly noticeable if you’re new to cycling, you might miss the chance to drop a gear and make the cycling easier
Like the Vilano Retro City Commuter, the Kent Thruster Fixie is suited for the male rider looking to ride the streets/city or commute to work or university. It is also suitable for a gentle, afternoon ride. For the businessman or student there is a full protection chain guard to protect your legs and clothing – ideal if you’re on a work commute and you want to avoid chain oil on your trousers
Unlike the Vilano you can’t carry luggage on the bike – if you’re commuting you need to ride with a backpack
One major benefit is the steel frame that should give you all the assurance that this bike will last years!
Fixie bikes are better suited for city riding and flatter landscapes. Due to their minimalistic builds, they don’t have additional gears.
This a single-speed bike is equipped with 700c wheels, a strong steel frame and fork, and a full protection chain guard.
- Strong steel frame
- Cheap to run and maintain
- Single Speed
- No rear rack
Roadmaster 24″ Granite Peak Girls’ Mountain Bike
Here’s one for the young and adventurous female cyclists! This bike is suitable for girls aged 8 and up – or women 4”8 to 5”6 in height.
This is one of our favourites – the best women’s mountain bike under 200. This stylish mountain bike comes in two colours – purple and light blue. The mountain bike tyres will take to the dirt road through woodland areas and across gravel tracks with ease.
This women’s mountain bike under 200 is an excellent choice for a new rider. This bike, built with a steel frame is a smooth ride and suspension forks will cushion any impact from dirt or gravel roads.
It comes with 18 speeds, so minimal effort is needed to propel the bike up those hills! The twist gears are accessible from the handlebars and the Shimano rear derailleur will ensure you have smooth gear changes every time.
For the novice cyclist some maintenance is made simple – you can adjust the seat without the need for tools. You’ll be able to change your sitting position quickly and easily no matter how much you know about bike maintenance.
This is a great bike for mountain biking and if you are planning to spend the majority of your time on the dirt roads, this is the bike for you. Whilst it suits the dirt roads a little better it is still a fine bike for street ruding or the work commute.
- No tools needed to adjust the saddle
- Shimano rear derailleur
- Twist gears on the handlebars
- Better for the off-roads
Huffy Hardtail Mountain Bike 24-26 inch 21-Speed
This bright and vibrant mountain bike is the bike for off-road adventures. Equipped with 21 gears this is the bike that will help you power up those hilly dirt roads.
The bike is suited to those aged 12-19, or 4”8 – 5”8 in height.
The Shimano parts including the drive frame are some of the highest quality components on the market, making this bike under 200 a bargain. Shimano is one of the biggest manufactures of bike parts – they claim their parts make cycling more efficient, requiring less effort from the rider.
What’s unique about this bike compared to others listed is that the bike frame is made of aluminium, making it lightweight compared to its steel competitors. An aluminium frame picks up speed and momentum faster than the heavier metals like steel. A lighter frame benefits the rider because acceleration requires less effort.
Knobby and thick tyres 26” x 2.10 are typical additions to the mountain bike – they will grip the road and roll over the uneven gravel/dirt tracks with ease. In addition to this they will cushion some of the impact that comes with mountain biking, which means that this aluminium comfort bike will be a smooth and comfortable ride.
Whilst the lighter frame can be a selling point for some, others might want something more sturdy, if this is the case, take a look at either of the Roadmaster bikes recommended in this article.
- 21 speeds
- Knobby tyres
- Shimano components
- Alunminium frame
Roadmaster 26″ Men’s Granite Peak
This mountain bike is an excellent choice for getting off-road. That being said, whilst it is suited for gravel or off-road cycling, you’d have no trouble taking this bike on a short commute to work.
It has 26” wheels and it’s perfect for riders 5’4″ to 6’2″ in height. It has a stylish and modern granite design to suit any rider.
This steel frame mountain bike is going to feel strong and stable underneath the rider. You’ll feel confident on the even terrain that mountain biking has to offer. With the steel frame and front suspension fork to absorb any impact, it’s no surprise that this bike is considered one of the best men’s mountain bikes under 200.
The bike has front and back linear pull brakes, typical for mountain bikes. These brakes are easily accessible from the handlebars and will provide you with great stopping power.
It’s equipped with 18 gears, which will give you plenty of comfort while riding uphill, but there are 21-gear bikes like the Huffy Hardtail Mountain Bike if you’d like a little more help pushing up the banks.
Flat pedals provide you with the comfort to make a quick dismount if needed – perfect for a new/beginner cyclist or someone looking to hit the trails after a long break.
Roadmaster is a trusted and reliable manufacturer of bikes – you can trust that this bike will serve you well for years.
- 18-speed twist shifters
- Shimano rear derailleur
- Steel frame
- Front suspension fork
- You can get more gears on other bikes
Retrospec Harper Single-Speed Fixed Gear Urban Commuter Bike
If you were tempted on the fixie, but you’re not ready to leave the freewheel behind, this might be the bike for you.
It’s suitable for a wide range of people, as it comes available in 43cm, 49cm, 53cm, 57cm and 60cm. This bike can be styled to suit the rider, if you like the retro vibe of the Vilano Men’s Hybrid Bike then you can opt for this by selecting the sage green or matt graphite or orange frame. If sleek and modern is more your vibe then go for Atlantic blue, matt black, slate or white and black.
A hi-tensile steel frame is strong and sturdy, but it can be a little heavy.
Restrospec claim they’ve made assembly easier than ever by partly assembling the bike. For everything else you need three Allen wrenches and a flat wrench – included in the box. If you’re still struggling to put this together, a bike shop would manage it easily.
For those of you wanting to explore different cycling styles then this bike is an excellent choice. It has a flip-flop hub so you can choose to ride fixie or freewheel. Mix it up, or choose one and stick with it.
The downsides of the flip flop hub is that the flip flop hub brings with it a slightly more complex build, and therefore another potential problem.
In addition to this, the bike is single speed – not a problem if you’re riding on flat landscapes, but if you’re in a hilly geographical location – maybe more gears would be better.
- Hi tensile frame
- front and rear brakes
- Quick assembly out the box
- Flip flop hub has more chance of being problematic
- Single gears
Sixthreezero Around the Block Women’s Cruiser Bike with Rear Rack
This is the best women’s bike under 200 if the retro vibe is something you’re after for your gentle commute. This stylish bike is available in six light pastel colours like coral, light-plum, cream, mint-green, navy and teal blue. The 17” steel frame makes it most suitable for a rider up to 300 lbs and 5” – 6” in height. It’s well suited for a daily commute or for exploring your local city.
This upright style adds a cool retro vibe to this bike, but it is also beneficial for those who have back problems. The upright sitting position keeps the back and shoulders comfortable. The low frame has the same benefits – it adds to the retro style, but also allows for an easy mount; it’s a small step over the frame.
The thicker wheels add to the comfort of this bike – they will roll over the tarmac like it’s nothing and the waffle tread will help the bike to keep moving.
This bike is a little limited, as it was built with easy-riding in mind – it’s not intended for high-intensity exercise. Not a problem if you’re looking to explore your local city at a gentle and steady pace.
It has only 7 speeds, which is enough, but it probably won’t give you the support you need for the hills. The Shimano rear derailleur will keep gear changes nice and smooth.
Equipped with a rear rack this bike is ready to carry your luggage from place to place – ideal for the worker or a quick ride to the shops.
- Stylish retro bike
- Perfect for cruising
- The Shimano hub is a reliable part, built to last
- Not intended for high intensity exercise
Schwinn Network Hybrid Bike 15-18-inch Frame
This is a cheap hybrid bike is suitable for the female rider between 5”4 and 6”2 in height.
It’s a hybrid bike meaning you can ride through your local town on paved roads or across the university campus. You can also choose to take it off-road if you want to adventure on the back roads.
Equipped with the rear rack this is an excellent bike for carrying luggage. With a rear rack, you’ll be inclined to ride to the shop instead of taking the car. It’s an excellent commuter bike.
Alternatively, it’s the perfect bike for gentle weekend rides and if you love the retro vibe of the Schwinn Network Hybrid you could strap a retro picnic basket to the back.
The spring saddle and suspension fork have the comfort of the rider in mind. The springs will absorb the bumps in the road, adding to your comfort on the unpaved roads.
Rim brakes and linear brake levers have great stopping power and they’re easily accessible from the bikes handlebars too.
The bike comes unassembled and it has been reported that the manual is not easy to follow, but most bikers assemble without any problems. A local bike shop would put it together quickly and easily.
Despite the manual reports, Schwinn bikes have a good reputation for being stylish, dependable and durable for bikes under 200 you can’t go wrong.
- Schwinn hybrid elastomer spring saddle
- Suspension fork
- Twist shifter gears
- The bike comes unassembled
How to Choose the Best Bike for Under 200
What type of rider are you?
So, you’ve had an introduction to our shortlist of the best bikes for under 200 and now you want to buy.
If you’re serious about buying one of the best bikes under 200 you need to decide which one is the right bike for you.
Ultimately, you need to decipher what type of cycling you want to do and which is the best all round bike to help you achieve your cycling goals.
There are a few things to consider such as your chosen cycling style, meaning what type of cycling you want to do (mountain biking, road cycling or maybe a mix of the two) and how much of each.
Another good question to ask is whether you want to ride slow and steady or speedily, or with minimal or maximum effort.
To help you decide what you want and which bike is best for you, we’ve explored some of these questions below.
Road Bike, Mountain Bike or Hybrid?
For the purpose of this article we’re exploring two types of cycling – road cycling and mountain biking. If you know that you want to spend 100% of your cycling time on smooth paved roads then you’re a road cyclist and you would be best opting for a road bike.
If the gravel/unpaved roads are calling you and you have no interest in sharing a road with the cars, then you’re a mountain biker and needn’t consider a road or hybrid bike.
Serious cyclists will eventually buy a bike suitable for each style, but if you’re new to cycling or want the best all around bike or a combination of the two then the hybrid bike is the way forward.
Road cyclists ride paved roads, smooth tarmac and generally want to ride a lighter bike so they can build speed, accelerate easily and gain momentum. A lighter bike is easier to propel up hills.
Bikes suitable for the road: Vilano Men’s Hybrid Bike 700c Retro City Commuter, Retrospec Harper Single-Speed Fixed Gear Urban Commuter Bike, Kent 700C Men’s, Thruster Fixie Bike or Sixthreezero Around the Block Women’s Cruiser Bike with Rear Rack, Schwinn Network Hybrid Bike 15-18-inch Frame
Mountain bikes generally have heavier frames made of steel so they can better weather the shock from unpaved roads.
Bikes suitable for mountain biking: Roadmaster 26″ Men’s Granite Peak, Huffy Hardtail Mountain Bike 24-26 inch 21-Speed, Roadmaster 24″ Granite Peak Girls’ Mountain Bike
If you’re looking to ride a combination of mountain biking and road cycling – maybe you don’t know what you’ll like yet then a hybrid is for you.
The hybrid bike is suitable for both road and mountain biking – it will give you what you need to do both types of riding, but it may be somewhat limited on how adventurous you can be when mountain biking. It will, without doubt, provide you with enough adventure to see if mountain biking is something you want to take more seriously.
How Much of Each?
If you’re still not completely sure what to do, there’s one more thing to consider – how much of each type of riding do you want to do?
Although types of cycling call for different types of bikes if you’re just exploring it’s safe to say you can be a little relaxed about your choice. For example, a mountain bike will be perfectly suitable to ride the roads but a road bike won’t be suitable for the mountains.
If you’re someone who will spend most of the time on the unpaved roads, but occasionally you want to ride on the roads, then a mountain bike will be adequate. The main downside to using a mountain bike on the road is speed.
Slow and Steady or Speedy?
There are two elements to riding speed outside of rider experience and that’s gears and bike weight.
Think about it – the lighter the bike, the easier it is to move.
Road bikes have lighter frames and generally have fewer gears to save weight. Road cyclists want to be fast and light so they can ride as quickly as possible up loads. To compliment this road bikes have very thin tyres to increase speed.
Mountain biking, on the other hand is generally a sport that includes lots of hills, and it’s more focused on the adventure. Mountain bikes generally have more gears to help power the heavier bike up the gravel hills. The mountain bike can have really thick tyres to help grip the road. The thicker the tyres, the harder it is to gain speed.
The hybrid sits somewhere in the middle. The frame can be lighter than the mountain bike, heavier than a road bike, but sturdy enough to ride off-road. The hybrid might have thicker tyres than a road bike so it can handle the unpaved roads, but slim enough that you can still pick up some decent acceleration and speed.
Bike Fit and Personal Preference
It’s not just about the type of riding that you want to do, but personal preference – simply put what you like.
Whilst there are some general rules for what does and doesn’t work, ultimately, the bike you love to ride is entirely up to you. If you’re just beginning it’s important to consider this, because above all you want to be motivated and inspired to ride!
We’re exploring three aspects that are worth digging into if you’re not sure where to go from here. We’re looking into bike maintenance, meaning ongoing maintenance and ease of assembly, gears and therefore ease of riding and bike components and whether or not they’re important.
Ultra Low Maintenance
If you’re new to cycling the idea of performing bike maintenance might be quite daunting – even basic bike maintenance. In addition to this, bikes that are low maintenance tend to be cheaper overall, because you don’t need to pay for service and repairs.
Most bikes are delivered unassembled, they all come with manuals and some have the tools in the box. Whilst the manuals are generally clear, assembling a bike isn’t always an easy task.
The Schwinn Network Hybrid Bike 15-18-inch Frame has bee criticised for being particularly difficult to assemble, so if you’re looking for an easy assemble maybe this bike isn’t for you. Instead you could consider the Retrospec Harper Single-Speed Fixed Gear Urban Commuter Bike which prides itself on easy assembly as it comes part assembled.
If you’re looking for the ultimate low maintenance bike, then we recommend a fixie like Kent 700C Men’s, Thruster Fixie Bike or Vilano Men’s Hybrid Bike 700c Retro City Commuter. Since these bikes are single-speed then there’s no drive train to go wrong. However, it’s important to read up on fixie-cycling because it is quite different and won’t suit all riders.
Bike Fit & Bike Positioning
One of the most important elements for every single cyclist is bike fit and comfort. It is critical that your bike fits your body, so you can ride comfortably. Afterall, bad posture or poor bike position could hinder you – and you won’t feel motivated to ride.
If you’re someone who has poor mobility in their legs, back or shoulder problems then it’s likely that the Sixthreezero Around the Block Women’s Cruiser Bike with Rear Rack is the bike for you. With its low frame, mounting the bike is made easy – you don’t have to throw your left over a high frame. Equally it’s an upright bike position to help keep your back straight. Another bike in the upright position is the Vilano Men’s Hybrid Bike 700c Retro City Commuter.
Similarly to maintenance you might also want a bike that you can quickly and easily alter the bike position to suit you. A bike with a tool-free, easily adjustable saddles is the Roadmaster 24″ Granite Peak Girls’ Mountain Bike.
Buying a bike under 200 is easy enough, but it’s also important to consider the specific parts on the bike.
Bike components pay a big part in bikes and bike maintenance. Larger brands like Shimano have an excellent reputation internationally for their bike parts – and bike parts that cost a little more, generally have a longer lifespan. This saves you money in the long run.
In addition to this more expensive parts generally make riding more efficient and therefore easier on the rider.
Bikes listed in this article that include Shimano parts include Sixthreezero Around the Block Women’s Cruiser Bike with Rear Rack, Roadmaster 26″ Men’s Granite Peak, Huffy Hardtail Mountain Bike 24-26 inch 21-Speed, Roadmaster 24″ Granite Peak Girls’ Mountain Bike.
Consider the components on your bike, as larger and known brands are likely to produce more durable parts that have fewer problems and last longer. Sometimes the initial cost of these parts outweigh the potential service charges to repair or replace parts in the long run.
When choosing the best bike for 200 dollars think about you, what you want from the bike and which bike is best suited to the type of cycling you want to do.
In this article we’ve reviewed eight of the best bikes under 200 and they all are perfectly suitable for a new rider – the rest is up to you!
You simply need to pick which bike is the best all around bike for your needs.
Although it can be tempting to pick a bike that’s easy to assemble so you can get out quick, it’s best not to focus on this too much. Most people manage the assembly with the manual – and you can always get help from a bike shop.
The most important things is that the bike is well suited to you for years to come. You want a bike that keeps you motivated and inspired to ride, a bike that is well suited to the type of cycling you want to do and not a bike that you ride a handful of times.
Good luck with your new bike!