21 Different Bicycles Types

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BY James Roland

Contents

Updated on 12/27/2022

Contents

Welcome to this guide of 21 different types of bicycles. In this list, you will find a variety of bicycles classified by function (racing, recreation, etc.), number of riders (one, two or more), frame type (upright, folding), gearing (single speed, derailleur gears etc.), sport (mountain biking, BMX, triathlon etc.), means of propulsion (human-powered, motor-assisted etc.) and rider position (upright, recumbent). This list also includes special bicycles such as pedicabs, rickshaws and clown bikes. There are numerous types of bikes available to cater to different needs; this guide is here to help you find the perfect bike for you. So, let’s get started!

The 21 different bicycle types are given below.

1. Road bicycles

Close-up of cyclist taking lead on mountain climb, at sunset

Close-up of cyclist taking lead on mountain climb, at sunset

What is a road bicycle designed for?

A road bicycle is designed for traveling on paved roads.

What are the features of a road bicycle?

Road bicycles feature lightweight frames, narrow tires, and drop handlebars. The frame geometry is designed to provide an efficient and comfortable position for the rider while in a crouched forward pedaling position. Other features include high-pressure tires, short or medium calliper brakes, multiple gears, derailleur gearing system, toe clips, and quick-release wheels.

2. Touring bicycles

Old man and woman bikers on trip in summer

Old man and woman bikers on trip in summer

What is a touring bicycle designed for?

A touring bicycle is designed for long-distance travel and carrying additional equipment.

What are the features of a touring bicycle?

The features of a touring bicycle typically include a relatively relaxed frame geometry, wide-range gearing, sturdy wheels with heavy-duty tires, disc brakes for better stopping power, multiple water bottle bosses, and braze-ons for mounting racks, fenders, and other accessories.

Touring bicycles typically have a longer wheelbase and higher handlebars than road bikes to ensure rider comfort and stability over long distances. They are also designed with extra clearance for tires and fenders, so they can easily accommodate the extra kit that touring cyclists often carry. The sturdiness of a touring bike also makes it suitable for use on gravel roads and other surfaces that may be too rough for a standard road bike.

3. Randonneur bicycle

Randonneur en VTT à Loèche-les-Bains, Suisse

Randonneur en VTT à Loèche-les-Bains, Suisse

What is a Randonneur bicycle designed for?

A Randonneur bicycle is designed for long-distance, self-supported cycling events called audax or randonnée.

What are the features of a Randonneur bicycle?

Randonneur bicycles typically feature a steel frame, wide range gearing, sturdy wheels with heavy-duty tires, and relaxed geometry for comfortable long rides. The frame is designed to provide clearance for wider tires and fenders, allowing riders to ride confidently on all types of roads. Additional features may include bar-end shifters, toe clips or clipless pedals, disc or drum brakes, dynamo lighting, and low-rider or rear racks.

4. Hybrid bicycles

Ed Begley Jr. on IZIP Bicycle during 2007 Park City

Ed Begley Jr. on IZIP Bicycle during 2007 Park City

What is a Hybrid bicycle designed for?

A Hybrid bicycle is designed for recreational and utility cycling. It combines features of road bikes, mountain bikes, and touring bicycles to provide a versatile, all-round bike suitable for a variety of uses.

What are the features of Hybrid bicycle?

Hybrid bicycles typically feature a lightweight frame, flat or upright handlebars, medium width tires with some tread for traction on pavement and trails, and a wide range of gears. The frame geometry is designed to provide an efficient and comfortable position for the rider. Other features may include disc or rim brakes, suspension forks for shock absorption, multiple bottle bosses and mounting points for racks, fenders, and accessories.  Hybrid bicycles may also have additional features like kickstands, lighting systems, and chainguards for safe and comfortable urban riding.

Trekking bike

A Trekking bike is a type of hybrid bicycle designed for long-distance touring. It features all the accessories necessary for bicycle touring, such as mudguards, pannier racks, lights, and other components.

Commuter bike

Commuters ride bikes, during a one day strike by London Underground workers, in London

Commuters ride bikes, during a one day strike by London Underground workers, in London

A Commuter bike is a type of hybrid bicycle designed specifically for commuting over short or long distances. It features derailleur gearing, 700c wheels with light 1.125-inch (28 mm) tires, a carrier rack, full fenders, and a frame with mounting points for attachment of baskets or panniers. It may also include an enclosed chainguard to allow a rider to pedal the bike in long pants without entangling them in the chain. For safety, a well-equipped commuter bike typically includes front and rear lights for use in the early morning or late evening hours.  It is designed to be comfortable over long distances, while still providing the agility and quick handling necessary for busy city streets.

City bike

A City bike is a type of hybrid bicycle optimized for the rough-and-tumble of urban commuting. It features a sturdy, lightweight frame derived from mountain bikes, 26-inch wheels with fairly wide 1.5–1.95-inch (38–50 mm) tires designed to absorb road hazards, and a more upright seating position. Additionally, the bike is often equipped with full fenders for use in all weather and a front and rear lighting system for night or bad weather riding. City bikes are designed to handle urban hazards such as potholes, curbs, and grates while providing a comfortable, predictable ride over long distances.

Comfort bike

106th Tour de France 2019

106th Tour de France 2019

A Comfort bike is a type of hybrid bicycle designed for comfort and recreational riding. It features an upright riding posture, 26-inch wheels, 1.75 or 1.95-inch (45–50 mm) smooth or semi-slick tires, front suspension forks, seat post suspension with wide plush saddles, and drop-center, angled North Road style handlebars. Comfort bikes are essentially modern versions of the old roadster and sports roadster bicycles, though with derailleur rather than hub gearing for multiple speeds. They are designed to provide a comfortable ride over short or long distances on paved roads or trails.

5. Flat bar road bikes

What is Flat bar road bike designed for?

A Flat bar road bike designed to combine the speed and efficiency of a road bike with the more upright riding position and maneuverability of a mountain bike.

What are the features of Flat bar road bike?

Flat bar road bike features a lightweight frame, flat or riser handlebars, 700c wheels with slick or semi-slick tires, a wide range of gears for hill climbing or speed on the flats, and powerful rim or disc brakes. Additionally, flat bar road bikes may feature other features like a suspension fork, fenders, and mounting points for racks or baskets for commuting or touring.

6. Gravel bicycle

Granfondo VENEtoGO 2021 - The Ride With The Champions

Granfondo VENEtoGO 2021 – The Ride With The Champions

What is Gravel bicycle designed for?

A Gravel bicycle is specifically designed for gravel roads and other unpaved surfaces.

What are the features of Gravel bicycle?

Gravel bike is the combination of road bikes, mountain bikes, and touring bicycles. Hence, it is comfortable for riding.

The features of a Gravel bicycle include large volume 700c or 650b wheels with wide (2.1–2.4 inch/54–62 mm) tires, disc brakes for improved stopping power in all weather conditions, a relaxed geometry frame to provide added stability and comfort on rough terrain, and mounting points for racks and fenders. Additionally, gravel bikes often feature a wide range of gearing to handle rough terrain or steep climbs.

7. Cyclo-cross bicycle

What is Cyclo-cross bicycle designed for?

A Cyclo-cross bicycle is a type of bicycle designed for racing on mixed surfaces, typically grass, mud and gravel.

What are the features of Cyclo-cross bicycle?

The features of a Cyclo-cross bicycle include lightweight frames, narrow 700c wheels with knobby tires for extra grip in muddy conditions, cantilever or disc brakes, and drop bars for greater control while cornering. Additionally, they often feature a wide range of gearing to handle steep inclines, and mounting points for fenders, racks, or other accessories.

8. Cargo bicycle

Mother riding bicycle

Mother riding bicycle

What is a Cargo bicycle designed for?

A Cargo bicycle is a type of bicycle designed for carrying large loads.

What are the features of a Cargo bicycle?

The features of a Cargo bicycle include extended cargo carrying capacity, wide frames and forks to accommodate larger loads, adjustable handlebars or seats for passenger transport, electric motors or pedal assistance systems for added power and range, and disc brakes for extra stopping power. Additionally, they often feature mounting points for racks and bags to carry smaller items.

What are types of Cargo bicycle?

10 different Cargo bicycle types are listed below.

  • Cycle truck
  • Butcher’s bike
  • Boda-boda
  • Stroller Bike
  • Long John bicycle
  • Off-road Long John bicycle
  • Longtail bicycle
  • Wooden cargo bike
  • Porteur bicycle
  • Tricycle

9. Ice cycle

What is the Ice cycle designed for?

An Ice cycle is a type of bicycle designed for riding on frozen surfaces like ice and snow.

What are the features of the Ice cycle?

The features of an Ice cycle include extra wide tires with studs or carbide tips for increased traction, low-pressure tires to increase flotation on soft surfaces, adjustable handlebars or seats for passenger transport, and disc brakes for improved stopping power in icy conditions. Additionally, they often feature fenders to keep riders dry while cycling on wet ice.

10. Racing bicycle

Cycling outdoors

Cycling outdoors

What is Racing bicycle designed for?

A Racing bicycle is a type of bicycle designed for road racing.

What are the features of Racing bicycle?

Racing bicycles have a lightweight frame, narrow tires and drop handlebars that allow the rider to be in an aerodynamic position. The components of a racing bicycle are designed to withstand higher stress and rigors associated with competitive cycling. They are typically made from materials such as aluminum, carbon fiber or titanium. Racing bicycles also feature quick-release wheels and brakes, allowing for faster wheel changes during a race. In addition, they have derailleurs which allow the rider to change gears quickly and efficiently.

11. Mountain bicycle

MTB mountain biking outdoor on the Dolomitesenduro discipline over a single trail track

MTB mountain biking outdoor on the Dolomites: enduro discipline over a single trail track

What is Mountain bicycle designed for?

A Mountain bicycle or mountain bike is a bicycle designed for off-road cycling.

What are the features of Mountain bicycle?

Mountain bicycles feature wider tires for increased traction and a stronger frame designed to withstand the rigors of off-road riding. The wheels are usually larger than those on a racing bicycle, with widths ranging from 1.9 to 3 inches (48 to 76mm). Tires may have a variety of tread patterns that provide better grip when riding on rough terrain. Mountain bikes also have front and rear suspension to absorb shock, disc brakes for better stopping power, and lower gearing for climbing steep trails. In addition, mountain bicycles can be equipped with accessories such as fenders, racks, and lights.

What are types of mountain bicycle?

The features of mountain bikes will cover some key aspects of Cross-Country (XC), Trail, Downhill (DH), Freeride (FR) and Fat bikes. MTB brings smooth trail riding and great balance control for riders.

12. Military bicycle

What is Military bicycle designed for?

A military bicycle is a type of bicycle designed for use in military applications.

What are the features of Military bicycle?

Military bicycles feature a heavy duty frame and components designed to withstand the rigors of military use. They are usually equipped with features such as flat handlebars, wide tires, racks and mudguards. Some models also feature dynamo hubs which allow for the use of a lighting system while in transit. Additionally, military bicycles often come equipped with a folding frame which allows them to be more easily transported.

13. Time trial bicycle

Riding with attitude

Riding with attitude

A Time trial bicycle is a type of racing bicycle designed for events such as individual time trials or track cycling competitions. More specifically, riders are riding against the time.

Time trial bicycles feature aero-dynamic frames, deep section wheels, and clip-on handlebars. They often have an aggressive geometry with a steep head tube angle and shorter wheel base. Time trial bikes also have narrow tires, designed to reduce rolling resistance and provide smoother cornering on the track.

Time trial bikes covers features as same as triathlon bikes. Therefore, a time trial bike has steep seat tube angle, 5cm saddle nose.

14. Triathlon bicycle

What is Triathlon bicycle designed for?

A Triathlon bicycle is a special type of road bicycle designed for use in the sport of triathlon.

What are the features of Triathlon bicycle?

Tri bikes are built with aerodynamics in mind, with a focus on reducing wind resistance to help riders go faster. They typically have a more aggressive riding position than traditional road bikes, with the handlebars positioned lower and closer to the rider to improve the aerodynamic profile of the bike. Tri bikes also often have special features such as aero bars (extensions on the handlebars that allow the rider to rest their arms and hands in a more aerodynamic position), deep-section wheels, and aero helmets and clothing to help reduce drag. Some tri bikes also have features such as aero frame tubes and integrated components (such as brakes and shifting systems that are built into the frame) to further improve aerodynamics.

15. Track bicycle

After a long ride

After a long ride

What is Track bicycle designed for?

Track bicycle is designed specifically for use on velodromes (indoor or outdoor cycling tracks)

What are the features of Track bicycle?

Track bicycles do indeed feature a single-speed drivetrain and one fixed gear, without the option to coast, and they do not have brakes. Instead, riders use their legs to slow down or stop the bike. Track bikes also have a steep head tube angle and a short wheel base for agile handling and are generally sturdier than other types of racing bikes to withstand the forces exerted through cornering at high speeds.

Track bike also has narrow tire with high-pressure inflation for rolling resistance reduction.

16. BMX bike

What is BMX bicycle designed for?

A BMX bike is a type of bicycle designed for off-road racing and stunts.

What are the features of BMX bicycle?

BMX bicycles typically have small frames, 20-inch or 24-inch wheels, and are designed to be lightweight and durable. They also have horizontal or sloping top tube and a lower standover height to allow the rider to perform stunts more easily. Other specialized features include powerful brakes, knobby tires for traction, and pegs on the wheel axles for performing tricks. BMX bikes also have smaller chainrings and cogs to give extra clearance for the pedals when doing tricks.

17. Cruiser bicycle

Mechanics smiling outside bicycle shop

Mechanics smiling outside bicycle shop

What is Cruiser bicycle designed for?

A Cruiser bicycle is a type of bicycle that has been designed for casual riding on roads and paved paths.

What are the features of Cruiser bicycle?

As cruiser bike is also called “beach cruiser”, it has to have features for beach riding.  Cruiser bikes usually feature a large and comfortable saddle with springs, wide tires with a low rolling resistance, and swept-back handlebars for an upright riding position.

Comfortable handlebars and grips are perfect for riding control. The riding also supports with balloon tires. The frame of a cruiser bike is usually made from heavy-duty steel for extra strength and durability. The brakes on a cruiser bike may be either coaster or rim brakes, and they usually have a single speed drivetrain.

Cruisers are designed for leisurely rides, so they usually don’t have features such as multiple gears or specialized components.

18. Cycle rickshaw

What is Cycle rickshaw designed for?

A Cycle rickshaw is a type of tricycle designed to carry passengers.  It is powered by the driver, who pedals the vehicle.

What are the features of Cycle rickshaw?

Cycle rickshaws typically have a frame made of steel or bamboo, with two wheels at the back and one wheel in front. The driver sits on a seat in the back and pedals to power the vehicle, while passengers sit either in the front or back of the vehicle. Some cycle rickshaws also have a small storage area for carrying luggage or other items. Additionally, some cycle rickshaws are designed to be operated by two drivers, with both drivers sharing the pedaling and steering duties.  Cycle rickshaws often have a colorful body that is decorated with unique designs, making them a popular form of transportation in many parts of the world.  They also have integrated components (such as brakes and shifting mechanisms) and may feature additional features such as electric motors to help the driver with the pedaling.

19. Motorized bicycle

Side View Of Woman Riding Bicycle On Street

Side View Of Woman Riding Bicycle On Street

What is Motorized Bicycle designed for?

A Motorized Bicycle is designed for the improvement of speed and range. It is supported with attached motor or engine to deliver power.

What are the features of Motorized Bicycle?

Motorized bicycles typically include an electric motor that is powered by a battery, and may be either pedal-assisted or throttle-controlled. They have a gear system that allows the rider to select different speeds, and may have a higher top speed than traditional bicycles. Additionally, they tend to weigh more due to the motor and battery, but may have features such as a rear rack for carrying cargo.  Other features of motorized bicycles can include powerful brakes, knobby tires for traction, and pegs on the wheel axles for performing tricks.  Additionally, some motorized bicycles have a special mechanism that reduces the pedaling effort required for riding, allowing for longer distances to be travelled without fatigue.

20. Gyroscopic bicycle

What is Gyroscopic Bicycle designed for?

A Gyroscopic Bicycle features an excellent stabalization thanks to an integrated gyroscope within the frame.

What are the features of Gyroscopic Bicycle?

Gyroscopic Bicycles feature an integrated gyroscope within the frame that helps to reduce instability when riding. This can make it easier to navigate rough terrain and sharp turns by providing added stability. Additionally, some gyroscopic bicycles feature a variable speed shift lever that allows the rider to adjust the bike’s speed depending on terrain and riding conditions. The frames of gyroscopic bicycles are usually made from lightweight materials such as aluminum or carbon fiber, and the wheels feature high-traction tires for better handling.

21. Electric bicycle

Happy woman riding electric bicycle at station

Happy woman riding electric bicycle at station

What is Electric Bicycle designed for?

An Electric Bicycle is designed for riding without being sweaty.

What are the features of Electric Bicycle?

Electric bicycles typically include an electric motor that is powered by a battery, and may be either pedal-assisted or throttle-controlled. They have a gear system that allows the rider to select different speeds, and may have a higher top speed than traditional bicycles. Additionally, they tend to weigh more due to the motor and battery, but may have features such as a rear rack for carrying cargo.

Other features of electric bicycles can include powerful brakes, knobby tires for traction, and regenerative braking systems which help to recharge the battery while riding.  Additionally, some electric bicycles have a special mechanism that reduces the pedaling effort required for riding, allowing for longer distances to be travelled without fatigue.

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