Best Women’s Road Bike under 500

Are you looking for the best women's road bike under 500? Cycling has fast become an option that a lot of people are considering. Not just for getting from point A to point B, but also for health reasons. There are immense benefits involved, some of which we will look at in this article. Road bikes will need to have certain qualities. Without which they would not be worth your while.

In this article, we compile some of the best women's road bikes on the market that are just under 500. Keep in mind that the numbers may change depending on when they were put up and also what the store deems fit. However, what shouldn’t change, is what you look for, the features such as durability, aerodynamics, versatility, aesthetics, and overall comfort of the bike, not forgetting how well it handles off-road trails. 

In a hurry?

Let’s take a look at the essential features to consider when you are on the hunt for a woman’s road bike under 500. The first thing to look for would be the cost. If you’re buying it online, make sure to factor in shipping costs as well. Then check on the design, to ensure that the bike is suitable for female riders. A step-through design is usually the best design for women, and this is what you want to look for.

You also want to ensure that it has the right suspension mechanism so that when you are riding, you are comfortable, and no matter what bumps you hit, no injuries occur. A good road bike should also be able to give you the speed and power that you need when you are on paved roads primarily but also still keep you safe, meaning that you should also consider the durability of the tires and their traction. 

Our Top Pick

There are many options for bicycles that you can ride around in the city, but it is not all of them that are made for women, or that fit the under 500 range, whilst others are honestly a poor excuse for a road bike. We have done our research and found some of the best road bikes available on the market. We have found our favourite to be the Vilano Shadow 3.0 Road Bike with STI Integrated Shifters.

One of the reasons why we like this model, in particular, is the integrated shifters that it has, as well as the effective calliper brakes. The bike is also made of aluminium, making it lightweight and also affordable. That means you can easily find it under the 500 mark. 

Best Women's Road Bike Under 500: Which Ones are Worth Your While

OUR TOP PICK

Vilano Shadow 3.0 Road Bike with Integrated Shifters

The Vilano Shadow 3.0 Road Bike with STI Integrated Shifters, is a versatile bike, with 14 gears to choose from. This way, you get the benefits of an off-road bike, even when you are riding on flatter surfaces such as paved roads. The different gears allow you to pick what the terrain needs. It has a 6061 double-butted aluminium aero frame.

Also, it uses calliper brakes. However, you will need to know how to assemble the bike yourself. If you are not mechanically inclined, this bike can be challenging to build. You will need to have some tools to get the job done. On the bright side, it has integrated brake levers and shifters. All that you need is within the same vicinity. It helps increase the safety features of the bike. 

Pros

  • It uses calliper brakes
  • It has an aluminium frame
  • It is lightweight.
  • It has 14 speeds

Cons

  • The frame has a step over frame, which makes it a bit difficult for women to ride.
  • You will need to assemble the bike, and some expertise is required.

EDITORS CHOICE

Raleigh Bikes Women's Super Course Endurance Road Bike, Sky, 48cm/XX-Small

The Raleigh bikes women’s Superbe is an excellent looking bicycle that you can easily ride leisurely on a typical day out in the city. It is stylish yet also functional, and this isn’t always an easy combination to find. It has a step-through design, making it easy to get onto. It also has handlebars that encourage an upright riding position. It is comfortable and good for your back as well.

It has seven speeds for you to choose from, which is a decent number, especially if you will be riding on city roads. Also changing the gears is relatively easy, all you need to do is use your thumb to shift the gears. It has a rigid suspension, and the saddle is made of soft leather. It also has coil springs to add to your comfort. It also has a carrier basket for you to put what you need in it.

Pros

  • It has custom wrap-around chain guards
  • It has seven speeds to choose from
  • It is a strong bike, made of reinforced steel.
  • It has a step-through design which makes it easy to ride.
  • It’s a stylish bike.

Cons

  • The handlebars may be steep for some and therefore uncomfortable.

BEST VALUE

This bike looks like a traditional bike, but it is a hybrid bicycle and far from being simple. It has 8-speeds for you to choose from, making your ride easier on various types of terrain. It is quick on the road and grips the road well. The fact that it is made of lightweight material makes it easy to carry, load it into your car, carry it up the steps, or even into the subway.

It is a bigger bike and also faster than other bikes in its league. It rolls smoothly on flat surfaces such as on roads that you would find in urban areas. The design is contoured so that it can help you ride better. The large frame means that it is more comfortable for larger people between 5feet and 6feet tall. 

Pros

  • Whilst this is a simple-looking bike, it is also a high performing bike.
  • It has a versatile 8-speed drivetrain.
  • It does well on city roads,
  • It is lightweight
  • It comes with handy accessories.

Cons

  • It comes in just under the 500 mark and may surpass it if you get it from a retailer with a high markup.
  • You will need to have it professionally assembled so that you get the full benefits.

RUNNER UP

sixthreezero EVRYjourney Women's 7-Speed Step-Through Hybrid Cruiser Bicycle, 26' Wheels with 17.5' Frame, Cream with Brown Seat and Grips, Model:630034

The Sixthreezero Women’s 7-Speed Bicycle is a classic looking bicycle designed especially for women. The step-through design makes it easy to mount and dismount even when you are wearing a skirt or dress, or just don’t feel like lifting your legs too high up. It is a hybrid bike that has seven speeds in total, helping you choose the right one for the terrain that you want to navigate. However, riding on a city road will not require too much gear shifting.

It is made of lightweight aluminium, making it easy to carry onto your car, or in a subway. That makes this bike a good buy for city commuters, who will often come across the need to carry their bike. It also has a rack at the back that can allow you to mount a basket. The seat and the handlebars are designed so that you can sit in an upright position, which is suitable for your bike.

Pros

  • It’s a hybrid bike
  • It is lightweight
  • It uses Shimano 7-speed external derailleur which lets you cycle across different terrain. 
  • It has a rack at the back which helps you mount a rack if you would like to. 

Cons

  • Aluminium is not always easy to fix or repair.

RUNNER UP

Giordano Libero Aluminum Road Bike, 700c Medium

Looking for a good road bike will also mean that you need to consider a few factors. The Giordano Libero 1.6, comes with 700c tires. The frame is lightweight because it is made of aluminium. The downside with aluminium is that it is not always easy to repair, if and when the need arises. On the other hand, aluminium is an affordable material, and this makes the bike affordable as well.

This bike combines the ease of leisurely rides, along with the workout necessary that you will get with an off-road bike. The quality of the tires means that the bike remains sturdy on flat surfaces such as the tarmac. It also uses a Shimano 16 speed shifter, which makes it more efficient when you ride. The shifter allows you to change gears when you need to quickly.

Pros

  • It has easy to use shifters for your gears.
  • You can attach your water carrier easily.
  • It has effective calliper brakes to help you stop when you need to.
  • It’s a good bike for beginners.
  • It is affordable.

Cons

  • The seat can be uncomfortable
  • The frame requires you to step over it, which may be uncomfortable if you are in a dress or a skirt.

Best Women Road Bike Buying Guide

There are a couple of features that you will need to check on to ensure that you get a good deal. Whilst you may have a restriction on the amount that you want to spend, there is still a need to get the best that you can and not compromise on quality. Road bikes should give you the utmost satisfaction when you cycle on paved surfaces. 

Most road bikes are characterised by thin tires, drop handlebars, and speed. Hybrid bikes help to increase the power that the bike has, whilst a good set of tires with the right treads will keep the cycle firmly on the paved surface. You also want to ensure that wet conditions or slippery surfaces do not pose a threat to the bike tires that you will choose. 

Road bikes can be used daily, just like race bikes, cruiser bikes, or commuter bikes. They have different uses, and these also dictate the type of features necessary, such as the shape and design amongst others. The one thing that they have in common is that they need to hold their own on paved roads.

What frame material should I look for in a road bike under 500?

You want to get a bike that is not only durable but is also worth your time. Aluminium is one of the most affordable materials. Finding a bike made of this material will usually mean that it is lightweight and inexpensive. Abike frame that is made of aluminium is generally cheaper than one made of steel or carbon fibre. Whilst carbon fibre is more sought after material for frames. It drives the price range up. 

The other feature that you will need to look for in a road bike is the gears. It will give you an idea as to the amount of power that the cycle will have. Most city bikes have gears to help you cruise along better. Some are single speeds whilst others have more than just one. It's important to remember that more gears don’t mean more speed. It does, however, mean more power on the road. 

You also want to make sure that the bike has brakes that are powerful and can help you stop when you need to. We will take a look at the different brakes available. 

What type of fork should a road bike have?

You may think that the fork isn’t something that you should be paying attention to, but it is. The type of fork on the bike can influence your entire biking experience. Road bikes have a fork that is not the same as what you find on a mountain bike. The fork on a road bike is straight and does not have any coil or suspensions. 

The lack of any form of a suspension in the fork on a road bike is what makes it incompatible with bumpy roads or rugged terrain. That is why it is better suited for city riding. The fork on a road bike, however, does the job of smoothing out the vibrations that you will come across on a paved road. 

The fork is usually made of carbon fibre, steel, or aluminium. The material that it is made of is also what influences the cost and the weight as well. Carbon fibre is known for doing a better job of absorbing the shock and vibration from the flat surfaces. However, the downside is that it is the most expensive. Its performance is closely followed by aluminium and then steel. 

Should I get a bike with gears or not?

Gears on any bike, including a road bike, are there to make sure that the rider enjoys good speeds and powerful performance. Single gear bikes may take you from point A to Point B, but that does not mean that it is the best experience. Gears help you maximise pedalling power. However, it is vital to make sure that it has reliable shifters; otherwise, it all becomes futile. 

If you decide to get a bike with gears(which we recommend) think about the Shimano gears which have a reputation for being reliable.

What seat shape should I look for on a women's road bike?

Women are generally built differently from men, and as such, a wider seat will be more comfortable for women. You will want to look for a seat that is not only wide but also comfortable and cushy. This also comes down to the material used and the type of suspension that the seat has. 

Also, some materials get hot faster. You want to have a seat that is breathable and won't add to you sweating or even slipping off the seat. 

What type of brakes can I expect on a road bike under 500?

Most road bikes within this range will either be calliper brakes or v-brakes. Calliper brakes are usually situated on top of the wheel. When you pull the brakes, the calliper is pulled towards the rim. You will need to make sure that they are set up correctly from the get-go. Once you get this done, the brakes should touch the rim in almost perfect, if not perfect symmetry. 

Calliper brakes come in different designs and models. The one that you have most probably heard more about than any other is the dual pivot brake, which has two arms. 

V-brakes, which are also commonly found on road bikes, were more commonly found on mountain bikes. However, today they are also mounted on different hybrid bikes, including road bikes used daily. They are mounted on bosses on the frame or fork. They perform well both on and off-road, and this is why they are suitable for hybrid bikes. They also offer adequate clearance for mudguards. 

What are the other types of brakes that come on bikes?

Whilst calliper brakes and v-brakes are the most common on road bikes under 500. They are not the only brakes. You can also get a bike that has disc brakes. These brakes are made up of two parts, which are a brake disc, fixed onto a hub and a brake calliper that will be placed onto the frame or fork of the bike. 

This type of braking system could use a cable system, hydraulic system, or both. One of the most significant advantages of disc brakes is that they perform very well in wet weather. So if it is raining, you can rest assured that riding even on slippery roads in the city doesn’t have to be a dangerous adventure. 

Do the brake levers matter?

Calliper brakes need to be compatible with the brake levers. Whilst the road brake levers that you get may not be made explicitly for the calliper brakes that you have. They must be compatible. The brake cable pull ratio will need to be specific to your model so that the brakes perform at their best. 

The type of lever is also specific to the handlebars. Wiggle stock levers are best suited for drop handlebars, TT handlebars, and flat handlebars. Also, you will probably find that brake levers have the shifters fixed on them as well. Having them situated on the handlebars is also a safety feature. It means that you can quickly shift gears without moving your hands from the handlebars.

What is the difference between men’s, women’s, and unisex bicycles?

It can be easy to get to a point where you are confused by the sex that a bike is made for, but we can help you decipher. The design of the bike will tell you a lot. Women’s bicycles often have designs that are more feminine and suited to more petite people, such as women. It is an ideology that Is built on the assumption that all women are smaller than men. 

Bikes built for men are generally bigger and sometimes heavier, with the assumption that they will need to carry more weight, such as may be expected of a man to weigh. Women are more likely to have narrower shoulders than men, and as such, maybe more comfortable using bicycles with thin top bars. A bike with such a top bar is more comfortable to use if you have a short torso, short arms, or just a generally smaller frame.

Also, women’s bicycles are more likely to have smaller hands than men. And as such women's bicycles will have shorter handlebars with a thinner grip. Looking at the frame of the bike, a woman's cycle is built smaller, to accommodate a smaller rider. The saddle is then made to avoid hurting the rider. Women’s bikes are made to avoid damaging delicate parts. 

The way that a bike is built is suited to the way the rider is made, women’s geometry is different from men's geometry, and as such, the two have different comfort zones. You may also notice that women's bikes will usually have a step-through frame whilst men's bikes have a step over the frame. Unisex bikes will be comfortable for both men and women. 
The other tell-tale signs of who the bike is designed for are the colour and the print designs if any. For example, pink bikes are typically for women, whilst the darker shades are for men. The more neutral colours are usually used for unisex bikes.

How do I maintain a woman's road bike?

There aren’t precise instructions for women's road bike maintenance in comparison to men's road bikes. They are generally the same. However, different manufacturers have ways in which they suggest you maintain your bike if you want to have it perform at its utmost best. 

One of the most important things is to ensure that your bike is kept well lubricated in the right places, and also dry in the right places. You also want to ensure that the nuts, bolts, and screws, are appropriately tightened. That is why you mustn’t attempt to give it a tune-up or assemble the bike if you do not quite know what you are doing. 

Also, keep your chain well lubricated. The manufacturer's instructions will serve as a useful guide for this. However, you can be guided by using chain lube once a week. Make sure that the chain is wiped clean of old oil before you apply new lubrication. When you get back home, try your best to keep your bike clean. You can wash it using soap and water, as long as it is not abrasive. 

To know when to replace the chain, you can use a calculating chain tool. Replace your chain after every 1500-mi, or when it wears out. Also, maintain your bike by keeping your tires pumped just enough. It will also affect how comfortable the ride will be. It is also important to remember that usually, high-end bikes will be more costly to maintain.

Final thoughts

Buying a road bike means that you need something that you can ride on urban roads, or paved roads, safely but with the speed that you require and the braking power that is also necessary. Extra care has to be taken when you are riding in the rain or any type of wet weather. City roads don’t feel the same as riding out on a trail in the mountains. 

That means that you will need a bike that keeps your wheels firmly rooted on the ground, with good traction, and also comfortable. How comfortable it also depends on the design of the bike's frame, the seat, the pedals, the handlebars, and also how well it handles the road. While it may seem odd, the material the bike is made of also has a say in how it rides.

Of all the bikes that we have reviewed, there are factors that we think are great from each bike, but we recommend buying the Vilano Shadow 3.0 Road Bike with STI Integrated Shifters. It is an affordable bike, with the necessary comforts and it also looks good too. We hope this list helps you find your best fit for a woman's road bike under 500. Happy shopping.



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