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Best Adult Tricycles

Updated November 2018
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BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We buy all products with our own funds, and we never accept free products from manufacturers.
BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers.
BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We buy all products with our own funds, and we never accept free products from manufacturers.
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How we decided

We purchase every product we review with our own funds — we never accept anything from product manufacturers.

  • 18 Models Considered
  • 5 Hours Researched
  • 1 Experts Interviewed
  • 97 Consumers Consulted
  • Zero products received from manufacturers.

    We purchase every product we review with our own funds — we never accept anything from product manufacturers.

    Why trust BestReviews?
    BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We buy all products with our own funds, and we never accept free products from manufacturers.
    BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers.
    BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We buy all products with our own funds, and we never accept free products from manufacturers.

    Shopping guide for best adult tricycles

    Last Updated November 2018

    Tricycles are generally associated with children, but there's no reason why kids should have all the fun! Adult tricycles are fun to ride, stable, and generally offer a lot of storage space. If you’re looking for a vehicle you can use to ride around town or perform errands, an adult tricycle might be perfect for you.

    No doubt you'll look cool and confident riding around on your new trike, but how do you sort the quality choices from those that must try harder?

    Read on for our full guide to adult tricycles, and you'll soon be pedalling off into the sunset. If you’re eager to buy a new trike, scoot on up to our top suggestions in the grid. We’re proud to endorse each one.

    Since tricycles are stable and remain upright when still, it's not so important that you can touch the floor when seated or standing over your trike.

    Types of adult tricycles

    Upright tricycles

    An upright tricycle is similar to a standard bicycle in many ways, although there is an extra wheel at the back. These trikes are ideal for running errands and leisure riding but not so great for intense sporting activity. Most feature large storage baskets, so they're handy for grocery shopping trips and similar errands.

    Recumbent tricycles

    Recumbent tricycles are quite different from upright trikes. They're low to the ground, and the rider assumes a reclined position. You control them with two levers, one on either side of the seat, rather than a single handlebar at the front.

    Recumbent trikes may have the standard configuration of one wheel at the front and two at the back, or they may have two wheels at the front and one at the back. Recumbent tricycles tend to be more comfortable for people with back problems due to the reclined seating position. They're great for long rides and exercise purposes (they work your hamstrings and core muscles especially well), but they're not so practical for casual use or running errands.

    Tandem tricycles

    Tandem trikes are tricycles made for two. Most models are set up like a tandem bike with one rider sitting behind the other, but you can find some models where riders sit side by side. While they're large and not the most practical or maneuverable option, they're great for romantic trike rides or for pairs of users where one person is less confident at cycling than the other.

    Folding tricycles

    Folding tricycles are much like standard upright trikes, but they have a folding mechanism that allows them to be packed down when not in use. Since folding trikes don't fold anywhere near as small as folding bikes, they're not suitable for taking on public transport. However, if you’re short on space, a folding tricycle may be easier to store at home and transport in the back of a car.

    Adaptive tricycles

    Adaptive tricycles are designed for adults with special needs who, for whatever reason, are not able to ride a bicycle or a standard tricycle. Adaptive features include more secure seats and height-adjustable handlebars.

    DID YOU KNOW?

    Trikes with one wheel at the front and two at the back are known as delta tricycles. Trikes with two wheels at the front and one at the back are known as tadpole tricycles.

    Considerations

    Frame material

    Most adult tricycles feature a frame of either aluminum or steel, but there are some high-end models with titanium or carbon fiber frames. Each types of material has its pros and cons.

    • Aluminum tricycle frames are inexpensive and fairly lightweight, but they aren't the most durable option out there, and some cyclists don't like the way the ride feels.

    • Steel tricycle frames are strong and comfortable to ride, as steel has natural shock-absorbing properties. However, they are  heavier than other options.

    • Titanium tricycle frames are lightweight, durable, and comfortable to ride, but they tend to be expensive.

    • Carbon fiber tricycle frames are extremely lightweight and can be molded into non-standard shapes to make them extra aerodynamic. However, they may be more prone to damage after a crash or heavy knock.
       

    Gears

    A tricycle's gears, or "speeds,” enable you to pedal in non-standard conditions, such as up hills or off road. Since trikes are often used for casual riding on flat pavement or other smooth paths, many trikes have a single speed. Others have just three or four gears. For most riders seeking fun and recreation, this should suffice. However, if you live somewhere that is hilly, we recommend searching for a tricycle with a larger number of gears.

    Storage space

    Many people choose adult tricycles because of their ample storage space; they’re useful for riding to the store or moving items from place to place. If storage space is important to you, be sure to select a trike with a large basket. Many trike baskets can easily hold four full grocery bags, which means you could even do your weekly shopping with your tricycle.

    Seat

    Because adult tricycles are generally used for casual pleasure riding, the seats tend to be wider and more comfortable than those found on many performance-focused bicycles. Look for a large, well-padded seat that keeps you comfortable from point A to point B. Some trikes even feature a backrest for added core support and stability.

    EXPERT TIP

    Because tricycles have fairly long frames, they can be awkward to handle at first, but you'll soon get used to their quirks with some practice.


    Staff  | BestReviews

    Adult tricycle prices

    How much should you expect pay for an adult tricycle? Here we take a closer look at tricycle prices.

    • Budget

    These adult tricycles start around $200 and cost up to $400. These are generally basic upright trikes with few extra features.

    • Mid-range

    These adult tricycles cost roughly $500 to $1,000. These include trikes with a greater number of gears, more advanced brakes, and more durable overall construction.

    • High-end

    These adult tricycles cost between $1,000 and $2,000. Trikes in this price range include recumbent and tandem models.

    FOR YOUR SAFETY

    Since tricycles are heavier than bicycles, having effective brakes is extremely important. Dual front and rear brakes are ideal.

    Tips

    • Check that your chosen adult tricycle is easy to adjust. You should be able to position the seat so you're a comfortable distance from the pedals. Some models also let you adjust the handlebars.

    • Think about whether you'll ever want to transport your trike. If you want to take it anywhere in a vehicle, you'll need to make sure it's not too large to fit. In this case, a folding model may be preferable.

    • Decide what color tricycle you want. While it might not be the most important factor to consider, if you have a choice of colors, you might as well pick a shade that makes you happy.

    • Find out the maximum weight capacity. All adult tricycles have a maximum weight capacity. Make sure you don't exceed this, as it could be dangerous.

    • Keep your tricycle safe. You’ll want a suitable bike lock so you can secure your trike while you go into stores or if you park it outside your home.
    Most adult tricycles require some assembly upon arrival. If you're not confident in your trike-assembly skills, it's best to get a professional bike mechanic to do the job for you.

    FAQ

    Q. Why should I choose a tricycle over a bicycle?

    A. You'll find a range of reasons why people choose tricycles over bicycles. Here are just a handful.

    • If you're not confident riding a bike, you may feel better riding a trike. Tricycles are stable and very hard to tip over.

    • Tricycles are eco-friendly vehicles for running errands that might be harder to complete with a bicycle, such as grocery shopping.

    • Most tricycles are extremely comfortable and easy to ride.

    • Tricycles are great for people with balance issues, seniors, or anyone else who might be worried about falling off a bike.

    • Since you don't have to worry so much about balance or tipping over when you slow or stop, a trike makes for a fun and carefree ride.
       

    Q. What size wheels do I need on my tricycle?

    A. Standard tricycles tend to have wheels with a diameter of anywhere between 20 and 26 inches. Tricycles with larger wheels tend to feel smoother, especially when riding on rough surfaces. Tricycles with smaller wheels are slightly quicker and easier to maneuver, and they accelerate faster.

    Q. How should I store my adult tricycle when I'm not using it?

    A. Ideally, you should store your tricycle in a sheltered area when you’re not using it, such as a storage shed or garage. Wet weather and extremely hot and cold temperatures can damage a trike over time, so it’s preferable to keep it somewhere that is protected from the elements. If you don’t have any inside space where you can keep it, consider investing in some kind of cover or tarp to keep it dry.

    The team that worked on this review
    • Devangana
      Devangana
      Web Producer
    • Eliza
      Eliza
      Production Manager
    • Lauren
      Lauren
      Writer
    • Linsay
      Linsay
      Editor
    • Melinda
      Melinda
      Web Producer
    • Melissa
      Melissa
      Senior Editor
    • Peter
      Peter
      Writer

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