Cycling is a fun and enjoyable activity that is suited to almost everyone. It’s great if you are looking for a new and fun way to get out and about on the weekend, to sneak in some accidental exercise on your daily commute, or if you would like to reduce your carbon footprint by changing to a more environmentally-friendly mode of transport. I
f you’re just starting out with cycling, or would like to get more value for your money with a product that can ride on city streets during rush hour and also hold its own on the trail for leisure activities, a hybrid bike could be right up your street! If you’re a lady who is considering the purchase of a hybrid bike we’re here to help you on your search with our reviews of the best hybrid bikes for women available on the market right now.
WHY A HYBRID BIKE?
A hybrid bike is a bike suited to those who enjoy cycling, but use their bike mainly for commuting to and from work. or relaxed leisurely rides. They aren’t suitable for racing nor training.
They focus more on comfort and practicality, and aim to be a versatile choice by combining the best of what a road bike and a mountain bike offer in order to create a bike which can be ridden on a variety of terrains and surfaces with ease. They also have an upright riding design which allows for a safe view of the road and a lower seat to make it easier to get on and off the bike without the need for relying too much on your balance.
As such, a hybrid bike is also an ideal first bike for someone new to cycling, as its design is more stable than other types of bikes. Furthermore, functions such as gear switching and braking are constructed in such a way to make them more user friendly and intuitive, which better suits an inexperienced rider.
TYPES OF HYBRID BIKES
Although the point of a hybrid bike is to offer an all-round option, you’ll find that all hybrid bikes are different and some may be more suitable for paved road use and others better suited for riding on dirt or gravel, so the best bike for you is going to depend on what type of riding you plan to do.
If you plan to ride mainly on the road or on cycle paths, then a hybrid bike that is more like a road bike will be the best choice for you. These bikes will feature a similar frame and fork to a road bike, but with a more relaxed handlebar which allows for you to sit upright rather than hunched over as per a racing bike.
They will also have thinner tires which provide more speed and the ability to navigate through traffic efficiently. On the other hand, if you love to be out off-road and on rough, bumpy dirt trails, the better option for you would be a hybrid bike which leans more towards the style of a mountain bike.
This type of product will have a suspension fork to absorb shock and vibrations on rough terrains and wider tires for added grip and stability. Due to the suspension fork, the bike will also be a little heavier. Furthermore, this style of hybrid bike will feature a gear function that is easier to operate than its more road-orientated counterpart, meaning it won’t hit the same speeds but it will provide steady and effective speed changes to cope with whatever terrain you encounter.
FEATURES OF A HYBRID BIKE
There are certain features you should keep in mind when looking for a hybrid bike that suits your needs. Since they’re not all constructed the same, being aware of these features and their differences will make your shopping experience a lot easier.
The geometry of any bike is the construction which determines how it feels and rides. In a hybrid bike, the geometry is typically more relaxed which makes for additional comfort and endurance, allowing for it to be ridden all day at a leisurely pace.
Hybrid bikes generally feature flat handlebars rather than the dropped handlebars typical of road bikes, allowing for an upright position while you’re seated on the bike, resulting in less stress and strain on your neck and back which means that you can ride for longer in comfort.
Most hybrid bikes will have 700c tires, with a variety of widths. A tire on the narrower side will be faster, while a wider tire will offer more shock absorption and comfort.
When reading product descriptions, you will be sure to come across the term ‘drivetrain.’ The drivetrain is what essentially transfers the power from the movement of your feet on the pedals to move the wheels and consists of the chainset, the derailleurs, the gears and the cassette.
Most hybrid bikes will have mountain bike style drivetrain, which allows for easier gear changing and control.
When it comes to materials, you will usually be faced with three choices; aluminum, steel or carbon fiber. Aluminum is the most commonly used material as it’s a relatively cheap material and performs well; it is lightweight yet strong.
Steel can also be used and is fantastic for providing smoothness and stability, but is heavier than aluminum. Carbon fiber is by far the most superior choice as it offers the best of both worlds: feather lightness, compliance and stability. However, it is more expensive, so if a bike is made with this material, expect a hefty price tag.
Rear racks and fenders
As the hybrid bike is generally a bike made with leisure riders and commuters in mind, it will almost always feature a rear rack which is handy for transporting your work bag, or your groceries!
Many will also fit a basket on the front for extra storage. Fenders are also a common feature on hybrid bikes, which are fantastic in wet weather, keeping your bike clean and protected.
CHECK OUT OUR REVIEWS
Take a look at our reviews of the best bikes available and make your choice!
Northwoods Springdale Women’s 21-Speed Hybrid Bicycle
BEST FOR: A comfortable bike to ride whilst commuting and for recreation.
SPECIFIC FEATURES: 700c wheels, lightweight aluminum frame, 21 speeds with a Shimano Tourney rear derailleur, alloy rims, alloy quick release seat clamp, linear pull brakes, rear rack and fender
DESCRIPTION: The Northwoods Springdale is the ideal choice if you’re after a reliable bike that can be used to get yourself to and from the office during the week, and also for leisurely rides on the weekend. It boasts a hand-crafted lightweight aluminum frame, a Shimano groupset plus a rear rack and fender.
You can ride easily and in comfort due to the ergonomic design of its frame in combination with upright handlebars which provide a comfortable position while riding. Furthermore, this product features 700c alloy rims and a quick release seat clamp. Changing gears is a breeze with 21 speeds on offer, ensuring you master those hills, whether you’re going up or down.
Critical Cycles Dutch Style 7-Speed Road Bicycle
BEST FOR: A stylish, functional and dependable bike ideal for relaxed riding.
SPECIFIC FEATURES: Lightweight steel frame, Kenda Kwest Tires, available with Shimano 7-speed drivetrain or single speed, available in a small or large size, rear rack, front and rear fenders, headlamp
DESCRIPTION: This lightweight hybrid bike benefits from a lightweight steel frame which is designed for exercise, commuting and leisure riding for long periods due to its comfortable upright position. It features Kenda Kwest tires which have a smooth tread and large water dispersion grooves delivering steady control and grip.
Choose from a small or large size and either single speed or 7 speeds. This bike is available in five stylish colors, has a retro feel due to a funky vintage style chrome headlamp and is protected by both front and rear fenders. You can carry your bag with ease by utilizing the rear rack making this the perfect product for the busy commuter or if you’re out on a day trip exploring.
Diamondback Bicycles 2017 Women’s Vital 2 Hybrid Bike
BEST FOR: A sport hybrid bike suited for more energetic riding.
SPECIFIC FEATURES: Aluminum frame, comfort suspension, steel handlebar, DB Kraton grips, 21-speed drivetrain, SSW700 double tunnel aluminum alloy rims, Kenda Cross tires
DESCRIPTION: The 2016 Women’s Vital 2 is a sport hybrid comfort bike designed with versatility in mind. Featuring an aluminum frame which is lightweight and easy to maneuver, it also benefits from Sport Hybrid Geometry which is hard-wearing and rigid to keep you alert yet comfortable in the saddle.
The comfort suspension has 63mm of travel which makes riding down steep hills a dream. This product also has a steel handlebar which serves up additional strength and stability. Furthermore, the Women’s Vital 2 boasts Diamondback’s dual density comfort grips which absorb vibration from bumps in the road to take stress off your joints.
You will also enjoy the ultimate in control and speed with the 21-speed drivetrain and a Shimano groupset which delivers responsive and effortless gear changes. Braking is reliable and safe due to the high-performing linear brakes, and you can tackle dirt roads or pavement on the Kenda Cross tires complemented by alloy rims.
Schwinn Discover Women’s Hybrid Bike
BEST FOR: A versatile product which can be used for leisurely riding, commuting or energetic cycling.
SPECIFIC FEATURES: Aluminum frame, Schwinn suspension fork, Schwinn alloy crank, 21-speed SRAM grip shifters, Shimano rear derailleur, Promax alloy linear pull brakes, rear gear carrier, upright handlebar, padded saddle, 700c wheels
DESCRIPTION: Constructed with a lightweight aluminum frame with an ergonomically designed upright seated position, the Schwinn Discovery Women’s Hybrid bike is cross-hybrid bike making it a versatile choice whether you need a dependable mode of transport to get you to and from the office, or a bike for exploring the city.
It also boasts a suspension fork designed to absorb shock and provide stability. With 21 speeds and SRAM grip shifters delivering fast gear changes, this bike is incredibly easy to maneuver, no matter what road conditions you’re faced with.
Transport your bag easily and comfortably on the rear gear carrier and enjoy the ultimate in control and comfort with the padded saddle and swept-back upright handlebar. The bike is protected by front and rear fenders and features ProMax linear pull brakes which serve up a reliable braking function.
Retrospec Bicycles Dutch Style Hybrid Road Bicycle
BEST FOR: A dependable hybrid bike best suited for city riding.
SPECIFIC FEATURES: Steel frame, Kenda Kwest Tires, Shimano 7-speed drivetrain, rear rack, front and rear fenders, headlamp
DESCRIPTION: The Retrospec Step-Thru Sid-7 is the ideal bike for everyday riding. It features a 7-speed drivetrain which will hold up on flat streets and hills and the RetroShift grip shifter is built into the bike’s handlebars allowing for seamless gear changes.
It has a trendy vintage style and is available in three colors. This product also features Kenda Kwest tires which provide stability and control in all weather conditions. The bike is constructed with a steel step-thru frame; a style which was used in the Victorian-era to allow ladies to ride a bicycle in a large bulky dress.
These days, the style is ideal because it has a lower height making getting on and off the bike easier. The frame also benefits from progressive geometry which reduces strain on your neck and back whilst you ride, and the dual braking function provides peace of mind.
Sonoma Women’s Chainless Urban Commuter Bicycle
BEST FOR: A sleek and stylish bike with exciting new chainless technology, easy to ride and easy to maintain.
SPECIFIC FEATURES: Chainless, lightweight aluminum frame, T-shock suspension fork, D-Drive system, high-density dual rubber handgrips, cushioned satin saddle, front and rear alloy V-brakes, lifetime warranty for the frame, fork & D-Drive system, two-year warranty on all other parts
DESCRIPTION: This Sonoma Urban Commuter Bicycle’s defining feature is its chainless design, which offers the benefit of avoiding damage to your clothes by catching them on a bike chain. It works using the integration of the D-Drive system, a self-contained drive shaft with a gear system enclosed that transmits power from the pedals to the wheels, eliminating the need for the standard chain and derailleur components found on most bikes.
What is great about the chainless system is that is still delivers optimum performance but with less maintenance required. The D-Drive system is protected from the elements, meaning you don’t need to mess around with regular cleaning and lubrication, and it’s less likely to sustain damage from falls and debris, increasing longevity.
It has a lightweight aluminum frame and a T-shock suspension fork which provides a smooth ride by absorbing bumps in the road and delivers extra energy. You can ride this bike all day long due to its cushioned saddle and flexibly designed handlebars and enjoy comfortable control due to the dual rubber handgrips.
sixthreezero EVRYjourney Women’s 7-Speed Step-Through Touring Hybrid Bicycle
BEST FOR: Suited for city riding or quiet well-maintained trails, this bike is the perfect blend of style and performance.
SPECIFIC FEATURES: Aluminum frame, 7-speed hybrid touring, full fenders, 26” wheels, Shimano 7-speed internal hub, front and rear handbrakes, synthetic leather saddle, 2” semi-slick tires, foot-forward seat and pedal position
DESCRIPTION: Seriously good style meets functionality in the EVRYjourney hybrid bike. It is constructed with an aluminum frame with high-gloss chrome; making it a very sleek looking bike indeed. It benefits from 7 speeds makes changing gears to suit the road a walk or shall we say, ride in the park and the Shimano 7 speed internal hub makes it the ideal travel companion for commuting on busy streets or powering up hills.
It’s super easy to mount and dismount because of the low step-thru design of the frame, and you can ride for long distances in comfort due to the upright positioning of the saddle and handlebars. Furthermore, it’s foot-forward seat and pedal position allows you to put your feet flat on the ground while remaining in the saddle, no matter your height.
Schwinn Women’s Community Hybrid Bicycle
BEST FOR: An all-round multi-purpose bike suitable for city riding.
SPECIFIC FEATURES: Schwinn aluminum frame, Schwinn suspension fork, Shimano 21-speed rear derailleur, SRAM 21-speed grip shifters, alloy rims, padded comfort style seat, suspension seat post, full fenders, rear rack, Schwinn lifetime warranty
DESCRIPTION: The Schwinn Community is an ideal bike for your day-to-day commute or for heading out on the weekends. It’s aluminum frame is super lightweight making it a dream to maneuver through busy streets. The suspension fork provides protection from shock, ensuring a smooth and comfortable ride.
This bike also features a 21-speed derailleur allowing you to adapt to any road with ease. The alloy rims are strong and lightweight with a quick front release.
Stay handsfree with the rear rack on which you can stash your stuff, and ride all day long with perfect posture because of the upright design. A stylish and fresh light blue color, it also benefits from additional full fender protection.
That concludes the reviews of our top picks. In summary, a hybrid bike is the definition of versatility when it comes to cycling and a worthwhile investment.
Maybe you now have your heart set on one of these fantastic products? We hope we’ve given you some food for thought so you’re well on your way to purchasing your ideal hybrid bike and that you’ll enjoy taking it out on the road as soon as possible!
Own one of these great bikes already? What’s your verdict? Let us know in the comments.