6 Best Commuter Bikes Under $500 of 2020

Last update: May 26, 2020

Commuting on a bike is beneficial both for you the environment. Doing it daily will shed you some pounds while getting you into a healthy habit. Also, living an urban life, everybody knows how the traffic makes it hard.

I know you are here because you need advice for the best commuter bike under $500. You're in the right place. I love biking, saving the trees, and the air. Commuting on a bike is my daily thing. So, I'm going to share with you my experience buying the right commuter bikes.

Here are the best commuter bikes under $500 you can buy in 2020:

  • Best Overall: Retrospec Harper Single-Speed Fixed Gear Urban Commuter Bike
  • Best For Longer Rides: Retrospec Harper Coaster Fixie Style Single-Speed Commuter Bike
  • Best For Attacking City Streets: Pure Fix Original Fixed Gear Single Speed Fixie Bike
  • Best For Rough Terrain: Schwinn Siro Comfort Hybrid Bikes
  • Best For High Speed: Schwinn Discover Hybrid Bike for Men and Women
  • Best For Hard-Packed Trails: sixthreezero Explore Your Range Women's Hybrid Commuter Bicycle
Top 6 Best Commuter Bikes Under $500
Best Overall
Retrospec Harper Single-Speed Fixed Gear Urban Commuter Bike
    Read Our Review
    Best For Longer Rides
    Retrospec Harper Coaster Fixie Style Single-Speed Commuter Bike
      Read Our Review
      Best For Attacking City Streets
      Pure Fix Original Fixed Gear Single Speed Fixie Bike
        Read Our Review
        Best For Rough Terrain
        Schwinn Siro Comfort Hybrid Bikes
          Read Our Review
          Best For High Speed
          Schwinn Discover Hybrid Bike for Men and Women
            Read Our Review
            Best For Hard-Packed Trails
            sixthreezero Explore Your Range Women's Hybrid Commuter Bicycle
              Read Our Review

              Single Speed Bicycles

              Best Overall: Retrospec Harper Single-Speed Fixed Gear Urban Commuter Bike

              Retrospec Harper Single-Speed Fixed Gear Urban Commuter Bike
              Retrospec Harper Single-Speed Fixed Gear Urban Commuter Bike
              9Outstanding
              Pros
              • Easy to assembly
              • Simple to maintain
              • Solid bike frame
              • Great-looking
              Cons
              • A bit too tall for some people
              • The crank arms are too long

              Simple as it is, just a bike. But what makes it the best overall?

              Think I bought this bike for about half a year ago. I've used it until today.

              Love the design. It's a well-constructed bike with the simplicity of the single gear that works like a champ. So, if you're on an empty road, you can ride 20, 30 miles with less effort.

              For those who struggle with puzzle things, this bike offers an easy putting-together. You'll have the primary frame with the back wheel came attached. So, the rest of the process just involves tightening a screw or two for the front wheel, putting the handlebar, and the seat.

              Because this bike is so simple, it is beyond easy to fix and maintain. With this bike, you can coast downhill without pedaling or switch over to your freewheel hub on the other side.

              Retrospec Harper Single-Speed Fixed Gear Urban Commuter Bike Specifications

              Weight

              N/A

              Weight Limit

              220 lbs.

              Tire Size

              30 mm

              Highlight features

              Durable hand-built steel frame and flip-flop hub to switch between fixed ride or freewheel

              Verdict

              If you're like me, want something simple, budget, safe, and handsome, this bike with unbeatable choice will rock your rides.

              Best For Longer Rides: Retrospec Harper Coaster Fixie Style Single-Speed Commuter Bike

              Retrospec Harper Coaster Fixie Style Single-Speed Commuter Bike
              Retrospec Harper Coaster Fixie Style Single-Speed Commuter Bike
              8.6Great
              Pros
              • Designed for smooth rides
              • Quality tig-welded frame
              • Intuitive coaster brake
              • Lightweight
              • Simple construction
              Cons
              • Going uphill will be a challenge
              • The chain seems a bit short

              Want sleek, fixie, and longer rides? You can't go wrong with this one.

              This Harper single-speed bike will get you to cruise from A to B without much effort. Featuring Deep V rims tires, cruising on this bike is an excellent experience. It grips to any urban playground and responds to every street flaw.

              Worry about stopping?

              The built-in coaster brake allows seamless stops and slows. This mechanism is integrated into the pedals. You will find it easy to control just by pedaling backward.

              More than that, the Harper bike is optimized for coasting comfortably. For an adult like me, back strain is a pain, but the riser handles on this unit will get that released.

              Retrospec Harper Coaster Fixie Style Single-Speed Commuter Bike Specifications

              Weight

              33.2 lbs.

              Weight Limit

              220 lbs.

              Tire Size

              30 mm

              Highlight features

              Deep-v rims

              Kendal commuter tires

              KMC chain

              VP freestyle pedals and a coaster brake alls serve smooth cruising

              Verdict

              A long ride on this Harper bike is like flying. And I hope it won't end soon for you.

              Best For Attacking City Streets: Pure Fix Original Fixed Gear Single Speed Fixie Bike

              Pure Fix Original Fixed Gear Single Speed Fixie Bike
              Pure Fix Original Fixed Gear Single Speed Fixie Bike
              8.6Great
              Pros
              • Very easy to put together
              • Solid build
              • Perfect gearing ratio
              • Lightweight
              Cons
              • Wheels tend to buckle
              • Slippy pedals after uses
              • Costly

              If you're meant to hit the streets and take whatever it brings, you need a bike that is built for toughness.

              I used this bike when there was a time I enjoyed flaunting on the streets. Just kidding. But this guy, with 50mm deep-dish wheel, is a real monster for attacking city streets.

              It comes with just a front brake, and you can reverse the wheel to make it direct drive, which I don't recommend unless you're a long-term biker. So, I keep it at freewheel mode to coast as long as I want to without worrying about the pedals.

              With the high tensile tig-welded steel frame and 40mm Deep-Dish 32-Hole Rims, you can feel free tackling actions on gravels, asphalt roads, pavement, and more.

              Pure Fix Original Fixed Gear Single Speed Fixie Bike Specifications

              Weight

              22 to 25 lbs. (depending on size)

              Weight Limit

              N/A

              Tire Size

              50 mm

              Highlight features

              Built-to-last steel frame and components for handling toughness on the road

              Verdict

              If you enjoy riding in style, speed, and confidence to gravel the streets, here I got the one bike to be your companion.

              Multi Speed Bicycles

              Best For Rough Terrain: Schwinn Siro Comfort Hybrid Bikes

              Schwinn Siro Comfort Hybrid Bikes
              Schwinn Siro Comfort Hybrid Bikes
              8.4Good
              Pros
              • Comfortable seat
              • Very light
              • Well-built to last
              • Flexible
              Cons
              • Hassle assembly
              • Have to download instruction online
              • Not suitable for medium off-roading

              You can see this bike's got a mountain bike look in the handles and frame. The size of the tires is of 700c class to handle rough terrains.

              Optimized with advantages of mountain bikes, this hybrid Schwinn Siro allows you to climb hills, mess up on the streets. Meanwhile, it can be taken on fitness rides and cruising with your pals.

              In addition to that is the rear disc brake that can stop the bike pretty easily. It's got a pretty comfortable saddle, not of the Razor light racing bike but a suspension kind, comfortable for even fat dudes.

              I liked the gear shifters than the twist grip kinds that I have to pull on the handlebars and change gear. This is simpler and more controllable.

              Schwinn Siro Comfort Hybrid Bikes Specifications

              Weight

              34 lbs.

              Weight Limit

              220 lbs.

              Tire Size

              29-inch

              Highlight features

              Hybridized from street and mountain bikes with alloy rims

              Shimano EZ Fire shifters, and swept-back handlebar

              Verdict

              When you need a commuter bike, you have it. A mountain bike, you also have it. All in one; this is a real good bang for the buck.

              Best For High Speed: Schwinn Discover Hybrid Bike for Men and Women

              Schwinn Discover Hybrid Bike for Men and Women
              Schwinn Discover Hybrid Bike for Men and Women
              8.4Good
              Pros
              • Lightweight frame
              • Gear support up and down riding
              • Easy-to-use handgrip shifters
              • Nice-looking for an urban bike
              Cons
              • Spokes in the wheels produce irritating sound

              So, this Schwinn Discovery is the most handsome bike in my collection. It's got a sleek look in a very attractive way. And if you want a need-for-speed bike, this bike has just the right thing to offer.

              While offering Suntour suspension fork, the bike includes an alloy crank and aluminum frame to make your ride a top priority.

              The swept-back handlebar lets you sit upright as you curve to ride. The 21 SRAM grip shift and Shimano rear derailleur make changing gear much faster and easier uphill or downhill. When you need to stop, the Promax alloy linear-pull brakes give you enough power to halt seamlessly.

              That's enough to brag. This Schwinn commuter bike is the happiest selection I've ever made. With the back seat readily attached, you can pack stuff behind and get going like a pro.

              Schwinn Discover Hybrid Bike for Men and Women Specifications

              Weight

              35 lbs.

              Weight Limit

              220 lbs.

              Tire Size

              28-inch

              Highlight features

              21 speed SRAM grip shifters

              Shimano rear derailleur

              Promax alloy linear pull brakes

              Verdict

              For cruising and cycling, this Schwinn Discovery, with its excellent finish and features, will never let you down.

              Best For Hard-Packed Trails: sixthreezero Explore Your Range Women's Hybrid Commuter Bicycle

              sixthreezero Explore Your Range Women's Hybrid Commuter Bicycle
              sixthreezero Explore Your Range Women's Hybrid Commuter Bicycle
              8.6Great
              Pros
              • Assembly is a kid game
              • Adjustable height
              • External derailleur allows wide ranges of rides
              • Wheels with double-walled rims for smooth rides
              Cons
              • Arrived with some dent parts
              • Saddle is a bit hard at first

              My demanding wife wanted a bike for herself too. So, I took some time to do deep research and found this "girl."

              The bike has a feminine look that fits any lady with a passion for fitness and the environment. It features a 7-speed external derailleur on a lightweight aluminum frame, very suitable for hard-packed trails.

              Riding this bike is a relief. The seat and handlebar are lined up in a perfect geometry for riders to ride in an upright and head-up position. Wheels with double-walled rims roll smoothly while offering a stand-out look.

              With adjustable saddle and handlebar, you can easily get the height to where it meets your comfort. Thus, longer rides are no longer a pain in the butt.

              sixthreezero Explore Your Range Women's Hybrid Commuter Bicycle Specifications

              Weight

              30 lbs.

              Weight Limit

              220 lbs.

              Tire Size

              700 x 38C

              Highlight features

              Shimano 7-speed external derailleur and 700 x 38C wheels with double-walled rims for smooth rides on hard-packed trails

              Verdict

              You can ride through the city on this bike with high confidence and elegance.

              How To Choose The Best Commuter Bikes Under $500?

              If you look into the market, there are many things involve in choosing a commuter bike. In this journey, I've conducted lots of trials, and I'm here to share them with you.

              Frame

              • This is probably the first and maybe most important factor for choosing a commuter bike. To be able to beat rough streets in all weather, commuter bikes should have a strong aluminum or steel frame.
              • Also, the right size frame is important. You should ensure you'll have two to four inches of top tube clearance when you're standing over the bike.
              • Remember, the longer your commute is, the more bike sizing and comfort are going to matter.

              Tires

              • Whatever the weather, you want to keep the rubber side down. In other words, you need a good set of tires.
              • If you commute in a mostly dry and silky smooth bike path, you can get away with a set of skinny, low rolling resistance tires. It allows easy commute without taking much of your effort.
              • And if you're going to come across rain, train tracks, or rough roads, fat tires will make your commute a lot more comfortable and safer.

              Suspension

              • Buying an entry-level bike easily gets you into the trap of suspension. The cheap suspension is heavy, easy to break, and going to slow you down in the long run. If you want to soak up a few more cracks in the pavement, try opting for a slightly fatter tire.

              Brakes

              • The world has been moving slowly from rim brakes to disc brakes.
              • The friction pads of rim brakes are fine, but when you hit a pond, the rubbing interaction will cause squeaking noise.
              • I prefer disc brakes because they don't wear out the rims but work more effectively in all weather. It also offers more power for stopping while not heating the rims.
              • The trend now goes to disc brakes, but it's going to cost more money. And you may think twice because a system of disc brakes will require an entire different frame, wheels, and components. That's the reason why I don't recommend disc brakes for beginners though they offer more versatility.

              Saddle

              • Your bike shouldn't be a pain in the butt, especially if you have a super long commute. Don't limit yourself to a skinny road style saddle.

              Which Brands Make The Best Commuter Bikes Under $500?

              Schwinn

              • Schwinn knows what explorers need. They have bikes designed for bikers of all ages, with notable features distinguished from other brands. Riding commuter bikes from Schwinn, you'll be able to enjoy every trip to the max on comfortable saddles, advanced brake system, and top-of-the-line wheels.

              Pure Cycles

              • Been around for 10 years, Pure Cycles is still on their mission to get more people to bike to work, school, and home. Commuter bikes from Pure Cycles are rigged with high-quality gear to make daily biking delightful. At the time being, Pure Cycles never stops creating bikes of your dream. That means everything you need for a commuter bike is right here.

              FAQs

              How much should I spend on a commuter bike?

              In this list of the Best commuter bike under $500, I want you to spend as few dollars as possible. But if you have some extra cash for a bike, it's reasonable to spend up to $1,500 for the best bike ever.

              However, don't swing over your head because an expensive doesn't offer any magic, get you hovered, or make you bike without pedaling.

              Something between $500 and $700 will get you the right bike for many trips ahead.

              Does bike commuting save money?

              Should I buy a single speed bike?

              That depends. Riding a single-speed bike is much easier than the one you need to focus on other riding techniques. Single-speed bikes are also low in maintenance. A multispeed bicycle requires you to know how to shift gears while balancing on your own. For beginners, I recommend a simple bike to start with.

              Is 10 miles too far to bike to work?

              Biking 10 miles to work daily is a viable task for an average fitness level. You may experience fatigue in the first week, but the pain will disappear soon before you know. And you'll be able to bike more miles without getting you too sore.

              Should I buy a new bike or used?

              Either way, you'll have the benefits. New bikes should come with a warranty and a fresh look. If you have money to spend, it makes more sense of getting a brand-new bicycle.

              On the other hand, a used bike may require you some extra attention to the quality of the components. In many cases, people buy used bikes because they don't want to pay the original price for the expensive bike they want. But buying a second-hand bike, you should test by riding it before paying. Test the frame, gear, brakes, wheels, and anything that causes you irritation during the ride.

              Conclusion

              For me, 500 bucks are enough for investing in an above-average commuter bike. Some of the models can function as well as any top-level bike.

              Items in this list of the best commuter bike under $500 will surely get you to where you want with the fewest effort. But keep in mind that commuter bikes have a design that allows them only on flat, urban roads. If you use these bikes for hiking, that won't be appropriate. You may consider a more general-purpose hybrid bike then.

              But anyway, I hope you enjoy my review and will let me know which bike hits your heart. Looking forward to hearing from you. Leave me comments and share the post to support me. Thanks for reading.

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