College more than any other period in your life seems like the time when you always have to be somewhere and never have the time to get there. It’s not just about having to get to classes, but to various meetings afterwards, parties, and more emergencies than you ever thought could come up. This is the time when a car would be a God’s sent, but, let’s face it, very few of us can afford both a car and a college degree. However, a city bike, or a crossover, can be even better than a car in heavy traffic, it can be a relatively cheap initial investment, and you can certainly drink and drive when it comes to riding the bike. So we wanted to see if you could find a bike that would fit a student’s limited budget, but also one that would actually meet all the needs of a student’s life. And we were surprised to find that there were quite a lot of them, of which we selected the top 10 best bikes for college. Each one of them actually has something slightly different and addresses a slightly different need, so make sure to scroll past the following table to the in depth reviews we have created for each bike. There you will see why we though each bike deserved to be on our list but also in what way each bike differs from the other.
1.GMC Denali Road Bike
We are going to start with what we think is the quintessential bike for college in the form of the GMC Denali Road Bike. It has several features that recommend it as the best choice for a student, from the 700c tires 21 speeds. It is important to get a bike with big wheels because those wheels will allow you to reach speeds in excess of 40 miles per hour with ease. Of course, the problem with big wheels is that they make going uphill a bigger challenge than mountain bike wheels, and that is why we love so much the fact that you have 21 speeds to choose from. The smaller chainring is small enough that you will be able to peddle up any heel with ease, and the big chainring is also more than adequate to take you downhill at maximum speed. Most of the components on this bike, including the rims and calipers are made from alloys so they are incredibly light and they all come together to make a bike that you can lift with just one finger.
2.Takara Kabuto Single Speed Road Bike
There are several advantages to using a single speed road bike, but the first thing that must be said is that this is the bike you should have if you are trying to stay or to get in shape. On the one hand it is true that, by doing away with both derailleur, shifts, cables, not to mention the extra chainrings and back cogs, the bike becomes a whole lot lighter. On the other hand, to give you anything resembling speed on a downhill, the manufacturers have had to choose a chainring and a cog that are not exactly uphill friendly. On the other hand, this bike has so very few things that can go wrong with it and, it addresses such a small segment of students that there is probably no one who would be willing to steel it.
3.Critical Cycles Fixed Gear Single Speed Fixie Urban Road Bike
We have a second choice for you, if you like fixies, or single speed bikes, and it is the Critical Cycles Fixed Gear Urban Road Bike. The idea of an urban bike means that you can very easily and quickly deal with any problem that may appear with the bike, which, in this case, will usually mean a flat tire. That is why this bike comes with a horizontal drop outs, so you can remove the wheel without any tools and you do not have to touch the chain when taking the back wheel off, or when you are putting it back on. Also the fact that they did not spend too much money on Shimano gear system components, means that the guys from Critical Cycles were able to invest in high quality Wanda tires, Pro-Max Brakes and comfortable Well-Go pedals. The bike also comes with all the tools you would need to take it completely apart and putting it back together, which will definitely come in handy, given the miles this bike is sure to see.
4.Takara Sugiyama Flat Bar Fixie Bike
We like the quality of the Takara bikes so much that we had to introduce a second bike they made, the Sugiyama Fixie Bike. As the name suggests, it too is a single speed bike, but it has a major advantage over the other fixies we have talked about so far, in that it has 700c tires. These are the thin tires that they use in road bike races like the Tour de France, and they have the advantage of being extremely light and, at the same time, they can give you very precise turns on sharp bends. However, be warned that this is not a bike that you can use in areas where the winter comes with a lot of snow. Besides that though, there is little else we need to say except to tell you just how much cooler this bike looks in person than in the pictures you can see here.
5.26″ wheel Roadmaster Granite Peak Men’s Mountain Bike, Black
So far we have been focusing on pure speed when it comes to the best bike for college, but the fact remains that over half the universities in this country have to deal with deep layers of snow. Of course, it would take a pretty hard core biker to run even on snow, but there are a few months when there is enough snow to stop a 700c bike, but that cannot touch a mountain bike. So our first choice in this category is the Roadmaster Granite Peak Men’s Mountain Bike. It has a 3 chainrings crank that will allow you to reach very impressive speeds and still go uphill without any problems. Of course, the one thing that you have to take into consideration is that, despite the fact that this bike has alloy rims, and a very light V-brake system, it will never be able to accelerate as fast as any of the other bikes we have been talking about so far.
6.Stowabike 26″ Folding Dual Suspension
As we start the second part of our top 10 best bikes for college list, we need to talk about what is, without a doubt, the most comfortable bike on our list, the Stowabike 26″ Folding Dual Suspension Mountain Bike. This is a very heavy bike, due to the fact that it has a double suspension system, so it is also quite a slow bike. However, it will get you from A to B and you will not feel any of the bumps that could almost through you off a 700c bike. The guys from Stowabike did everything they could to make this bike as light as possible, including using an alloy frame, but still, this is a truck among the Ferraris we have been featuring so far.
7.Aluminum Road Bike / Commuter Shimano 21 Speed Bicycle 700c
For those of you who do not watch bike races the name Vilano may not seem much, but they have been a constant presence in almost every race for decades. That is why we were very happy to find a Vilano bike that would fit our financial requirements. This one, the Aluminum Road Bike, is had a double butted aluminum frame, making it incredibly light. It has a 3 chainrings crank and 700c double walled rims. This makes it perfect not only as a city bike, but you can even take it for some light off road tracks, since the double walled rims will stay true even when riding over rocks, and 21 speeds gear system, will allow you to go easily from cruising to racing and back again.
8.Schwinn Men’s Network 3.0 700C Hybrid Bicycle, White
The hybrid bike is a very interesting choice for cities that have to deal with snow because, although it uses big 700c wheels, it has wider tires that can actually handle all types of snow without any problems. It has a Schwinn suspension fork, that makes this a very comfortable bike, especially since it also has a padded seat design more for comfort than speed. Still those large wheels, the large chainring and the ultra fast Shimano EZ Fire shifter, will let you overtake a lot of cars in traffic, let alone other bikers on mountain bikes.
9.Schwinn Men’s Sanctuary 7-Speed Cruiser Bicycle
Of course collage is not just about being ultra fast, it is also about developing your own style. And nothing has more style than the Schwinn Men’s Sanctuary 7-Speed Cruiser Bicycle, which is why we decided we could take the chance to feature it towards the end of our list. It has 26 inch wheels, so it falls more into the comfortable category, rather than being fast, and it only has 7 speeds, so it may prove quite a challenge to go up particularly steep hills.
10.Thruster 700C Urban Fixie Bike Black / Red
The last bike we are going to feature here is another fixie, the Thruster 700C Urban Fixie Bike. It has those large wheels, and it is certainly one of the fastest fixies we have tried. However, the real reason why we decided to feature it here is that we just loved the black frame with red tires and we think this is an excellent bike to comment on your own style, but that will also give you the level of performance most college students need.