April 27th, 2012
What is a Hybrid Bike? Expert advice on Hybrid Bikes?
Breeze through the daily commute or tour the countryside on the great all-rounder of the cycling world – the mighty hybrid bike. A hybrid (also known as a ‘commuter’, ‘trekking’ or ‘town and trail’ bike) combines the very best of road and mountain bike style and technology to give you the perfect mix of reliability and ride-ability – fast when you need it to be, but tough enough to cope with bumps and potholes. Whether you want a commuting bike or something for the weekend, it’s the ideal way to cut your carbon footprint by getting out of the car and on your bike, whether you’re on your own, with a friend, or with the family.
Your riding position on a hybrid bike is more upright than on a road or mountain bike, so it’s easier to look around you. The flat handlebars on a hybrid are slightly larger than those of a mountain bike, for added grip and stability.
The practical design of hybrid bikes combines the best of mountain bikes and road bikes for a comfortable ride on and off-road:
- A triple chainset gives you lots of gears (including some nice low ones for steep inclines)
- Front suspension will absorb the bumps on uneven terrain
- A larger 700c wheel (the same size as a road bike), with a wider rim and tyre for better traction and stability
- A stout frame to handle extra weight, so you can carry luggage
- Some models come factory fitted with mudguards and pannier racks, and can offer suspension seat posts and adjustable rise stems
Anyone from complete beginner to seasoned cyclist.
- Mixed use – hybrid bikes are great starter bikes, especially if you’re not sure what you’ll be using your bike for. If you want to ride to the park or forest or through the city without stressing your back, a hybrid bike offers a good combination of speed, comfort, durability and safety
- Commuting, especially if your route combines roads, paths and tracks
- City riding, towpaths, parks and forestry trails
- Light errands and shopping
- Exploration and light touring
- Family cycling
You want to ride fast on roads only (see road bikes)
You want to ride on very uneven or technical trails (see mountain bikes)
You want to do long-distance cycle touring (see touring bikes)
Still want more advice?
We’ve produced lots more guides to help you find out more about bikes, cycling and cycle gear. These include sizing guides for bikes and clothing, and handy guides to cycle clothing, bike accessories, commuting with a bike, and more. Browse our full range of guides here.
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