Skip to main content

The Manual may earn a commission when you buy through links on our site.

5 Best Commuter Bikes for Living City Life on Two Wheels

A parked commuter bike.

At first glance, commuter bikes are all about getting you from point A to point B. But choosing to commute by bike has so many benefits in addition to getting to your destination on your own two wheels. From getting healthier and saving money on public transit or gas to spending time outside and seeing your home town from a different angle, commuting by bike can brighten your day. Of course, you’ll need to choose the perfect bike and the best cycling gear for commuting before you can hit the road. The Manual has gathered a selection of bikes ranging in style and price that are all great options for commuters. New cyclists and pros alike will feel comfortable on the best commuter bikes of 2021.

Related Reading

Priority 600

Priority 600 Bike on a white background.

The Priority 600 bike is a top-notch commuter bike with a price tag to prove it. This bike is built to be simple and easy without forgoing any of the best components or features of a commuter bike. Designed to take on all four seasons and a number of terrains spanning from the road to packed trails and gravel, this is a bike you can take anywhere any time of the year. With hydraulic brakes, integrated front and rear lights and a 12-speed gearbox, this bike is incredibly smooth and balanced making it a pleasure to ride. The fact that is also low-maintenance is also very appealing in a commuter bike.

Schwinn Discover

Schwinn Discover Adult Hybrid Bike for Commuters.

Schwinn remains a classic and good option for a reason — be it a commuter bike, e-bike, or road bike. The Discover bike is a hybrid with a flat handlebar that places riders in an upright position.  With 21 speeds, an easy twist shifter, and quick-stopping linear brakes, this budget bike is a wonderful pick for an entry-level commuter. The included rear rack is a great bonus too so cyclists can get straight to riding without leaving anything behind rather than spend time outfitting the bike.

Acme Spot Bike

Acme Spot Bike on a gray background.

Acme by Spot Bike is another exceptional commuter bike, though it also has a higher price tag. Apart from its sleek lines and eye-catching design, this bike is made incredibly well. It rides smoothly thanks to its balanced build. It’s light enough to move quickly through traffic yet still feels solid and can stand up to road vibration. The drive train and all the other components consist of great brands, so you know this is a quality bike even if it isn’t a bargain. The Acme is certainly well worth springing for, especially if you commute regularly or are looking to upgrade your current ride.


Cannondale Bad Boy 2

Cannondale Bad Boy 2 Bike on a white background.

Those looking for a great bike with a mid-range price point that does not forgo a good build and the little luxuries will adore the Bad Boy 2 by Cannondale. This bike is light and nimble on the road yet durable. The sleek and clean lines of the bike are complimented by integrated lights in both the front and back of the bike. The 18-speed drive train and hydraulic brakes give you total control to power up hills and come to a gentle stop at the bottom of them.

$1,350 FROM KOZY

Marin Presidio 1

Marin Presidio 1 on a white background.

The Presidio 1 by Marin Bikes is a cost-effective bike with a low profile. The bike has hydraulic brakes, a 38T crankset and flat handlebars so you can ride strong no matter where the road takes you. This bike also has a more relaxed, upright position which is perfect for those who are not confident or comfortable riding in a more aggressive position. The aluminum frame is quite light and another great advantage is the bike’s corrosion-resistant chains to ward off rust and make this a low-maintenance bike. It can certainly get you to and from the office, school or your friend’s place.


Editors' Recommendations

A Beginner’s Guide on How to Shift Bike Gears
how to shift bike gears bicycles parked on road

The days are steadily getting longer, and we're all slowly emerging from our winter period of inactivity. Thoughts of racing a bicycle along a forested single-track trail, or a tight city street, might soon begin to fill our minds. Biking is a nice middle ground -- a bit more exhilarating than hiking, but not as expensive as buying a motorcycle. Perhaps you're a mountain bike beginner, considering buying your first setup. Maybe you're upgrading from a single-speed. You could even be looking to ditch your city-dwelling folding bike and start heading for the hills. Either way, shifting gears on your bike is almost always necessary for you to maintain optimum pedaling efficiency. Let's explore the basics of how to shift gears on a bike.
Bike Gears Explained

A gear is a component of the drive train of your bike. Gears, simply put, are pulleys that help you transfer power from your legs, through the pedals and cranks, then through the chain, and eventually to the rear wheel. A single-speed bike only has two gears -- one attached to the crank and one attached to the rear wheel. Bikes with shifters and derailleurs (more on that later) have one or more gears attached to the crank and multiple gears attached to the rear wheel. On both types of bikes, a chain connects the gears on the crank to the gears on the rear wheel. Gears have a cogged outer rim, which meshes with voids in the chain to help you transfer power efficiently.
Why Do I Need to Shift Gears?
Gears help you keep maximum efficiency while pedaling, no matter where you are riding. Approaching a hill? Downshift so your legs make more revolutions than the rear wheel, resulting in lower speed but higher torque. This makes pedaling feel easier. Descending a hill? Upshift so your legs make fewer revolutions than the rear wheel, leading to higher speeds but lower torque. This makes pedaling feel harder, but you'll also go faster.
How do Gear Shifters Work?

Read more
8 Electric Bikes to Make Your Commute or Adventure Greener
Man riding electric bike.

If you love riding bikes, but aren’t much of a fan of pedaling, e-bikes are a great solution! They can get you where you need to be quicker and with less energy expenditure. Whether you are taking a leisurely ride in the summer countryside, going off-road to explore a new destination, or are antsy to get home from work on a cold, winter day, an electric bike can handle it all! Electric bikes can also serve as greener forms of transportation than cars, as they emit less pollution, allow you to save on gas expenses, and reduce your carbon footprint!

You may think that electric bikes are expensive. However, in recent years, pricing has become more affordable when it comes to the best bicycles. If you’re thinking about shopping for a new bicycle, here are our best electric bikes. We’ve also found some of the best cheap bicycle deals if you’re hoping to save some money on an e-bike this year. Whether you need an e-bike for your commute or for a road trip, we suggest test-riding a couple of options to gauge their overall quality and functionality.

Read more
The Best Bike Gear for Hitting the Streets This Spring
A man riding a bike in traffic.

With spring just around the corner, bicycling season is almost upon us. Whether you're commuting to work, hitting the mountain biking trails, biking for exercise, or simply pedaling around town for the fun of it, you want cycling gear that will make your experience more comfortable, safe, practical, and enjoyable. To that end, we're taking a look at the best bike gear for 2022.

Read more