The winner of the Tour De France takes home around $800,000 AU (around $573,532 US) for their victory, but there are plenty of reasons to ride a road bike beyond winning races.
Riding is lots of fun, and it’s a great way to get some time to yourself. Is a road bike worth it?
A road bike is worth it because they are faster, lighter and have better handling than the average bike. The gears are easy to use and it’s a fun way to stay healthy. A beginner should spend between $200 and $1,000 on a new road bike, while a more experienced rider will spend around $5,000 for a road bike.
To see all of my up-to-date recommendations for bikes and cycling gear, check out this resource that I made for you!
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Is It Worth Buying A New Road Bike
It is worth buying a new road bike if yours requires replacement or if it’s been a while since you’ve ridden.
Like many machines, the humble bicycle has had many technological advances in recent years.
Semi-compact gearing takes up less space and weighs less and hydraulic discs are top of the line, plus frames have come a long way in a short time.
Most modern road bikes, not including specialty bikes, come with wider tires that offer better traction.
However, it’s the speed where you truly notice the difference in newer bikes. By comparison, older bikes feel outdated.
Is It Worth Buying A Cheap Road Bike
The only good reason to buy a cheap road bike is to use it for learning to ride or to practice building and maintenance.
Even then it is always worth upgrading to a better quality. However, sometimes you get lucky and find that perfect garage sale bike that is inexpensive but still incredibly well made.
If you get that lucky then it’s worth buying for the resale value alone.
Although I would say that any functional road bike is better than not having one, a bike is a simple, mechanical vehicle you are physically powering, so having a decent one is worthwhile.
You can find some awesome road bikes that aren’t high-end. It’s worth an extra hundred bucks if the brakes work better, you don’t have to replace parts as often, and you get ten more years out of your new ride.
Is An Expensive Road Bike Worth It
An expensive road bike is worth it to anyone who rides regularly. However, what qualifies as expensive varies from budget to budget.
You can get an okay quality road bike for three or four hundred dollars, but the ‘expensive’ ones in the same range have better parts and cost closer to a thousand dollars.
Meanwhile, an expensive bike costs more than ten thousand dollars for collectors and pros.
The price goes up for custom designs, artist-painted forks and frames, and losing more weight off the whole bike so you can ride faster for longer.
Always go for a bike near the top end of your budget, with the specific features, paint, and style you prefer, from a well-respected source to get the most bang for your buck.
Is A Carbon Road Bike Worth It
There was a time when you needed a carbon bike frame for comfort and lighter weight. Aluminum frames were chunky and heavy with little give compared to their sleek counterparts.
However, the technology has come a long way since the early days of carbon frames, and the two materials are much more similar in quality and ride experience than they used to be.
You can upgrade to a carbon frame for a slight advantage, but overall, it’s not worth it to the average rider.
Pros who need to remove every possible ounce of weight from their bikes may find carbon frames useful, but you probably won’t.
Is It Worth Building A Road Bike
Overall, it’s not worth it for the average rider to build a road bike. Unless your personal goal is to create a DIY bicycle, or you wish to get into bike building professionally, there’s no real reason to build a road bike.
For some, the satisfaction of creating with their hands is reason enough, but you won’t save much money, and it will take a lot of your spare time.
The most compelling reason to build a bike if it’s not your hobby is to understand how they work from the ground up, but you can learn that by doing your own maintenance.
Is Road Bike Tubeless Worth It
Tubeless road bike tires are useful. Not only do they offer puncture resistance, but they don’t deflate.
However, they are also a beast to put on, and, for road bikes at least, they aren’t as advanced as they are for some bicycle styles.
I recommend checking out the video below for a more in-depth look at tubeless tires courtesy of the Global Cycling Network. They show you what to look for and explain why some orders prefer tubeless.
Is An Aero Road Bike Worth It
Getting an aero road bike is worth it at any skill level. For anyone who is confused ‘aero’ simply means more aerodynamic.
In the world of road bikes that often looks very high tech, and aero bikes tend to be lightweight and sleek compared to their counterparts.
Professional cyclists need aero bikes, but anyone can benefit from riding a truly high-end engineering marvel like an aero bike.
Aero bikes are made to cut through the air faster. Just as tight bike clothing cuts your wind resistance, this type of road bike’s technologically advanced, incredibly planned-out design helps it slide through the air like a sharp knife through butter.
Even if your goals never include racing or going faster, an aero bike will still give you the easiest possible ride wherever you go.
Is It Worth Buying A Vintage Road Bike
Before I can answer whether it is worth buying a vintage road bike I need to ask you why you want one.
If you think vintage bikes are amazing and you always wanted to restore and ride one then do it. You will have zero regrets.
Alternately, if you think that getting a vintage bike is the way to flip an item and make a ton of cash then I have bad news.
Very few people are making money on vintage bikes and to the best of my knowledge, none of them are wealthy because of their hobby.
You might make a decent income if you become a specialist at restoring and repairing vintage bicycles, but it’s not going to buy you a mansion.
Helpful Tips To Know If A Road Bike Is Worth It
Road bikes aren’t typically as expensive as a car or house, but they aren’t pocket-change level purchases either. It’s important to know you’re getting a good fit, high-quality bike that you’ll actually be able to use.
Here are some helpful tips to know if a road bike is worth it.
- A road bike is a stellar way to get in shape, stay fit, race or commute. So long as you plan to ride or give it as a gift then it’s always a good choice to get a road bike.
- Before you run out and buy the road bike of your dreams, make sure you’re getting the right kind for your needs. Consider your riding environment and how you plan to use the bike and choose the best option in your budget to fit your specific needs.
- The only people who should not get road bikes are those who require a different bike build for a purpose like a BMX for dirt track racing, or those who can’t comfortably sit in the forward-leaning road bike posture. If you are in the latter category, then consider a recumbent bicycle or a more upright posture option like a cruiser. Otherwise, enjoy your road bike.
Having a road bike is worth it and picking the right one near the top end of your budget is the best choice.
However, some road bike options like carbon frames and tubeless tires only matter to a select group of riders.
Vintage and DIY bikes, for example, are not good money makers, nor will you save much. Still, if you’re doing it out of love for that type of bicycle then it’s a good choice.
Get a high-quality, newer road bike and ride it for fun and your health, and you’ll never regret it.