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Best Raleigh Bicycles

Updated December 2018
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.
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How we decided

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

  • 5 Models Considered
  • 1 Experts Interviewed
  • 81 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 Raleigh bicycles

    Last Updated December 2018

    Some cyclists want to explore winding trails, some want to speed along roads in comfort, and others simply want to get from point A to point B without falling off or getting too winded. Whatever your cycling goal, you'll need the right bike to pull it off.

    Raleigh Bicycles produces a wide range of bikes to suit all kinds of riders, from the casual or inexperienced to the avid weekend racer. But with so many Raleigh bikes available, it can be tough to decide which one to buy, especially if you're not yet 100% sure what you want from a bicycle.

    If you need some assistance, BestReviews is the place to be. Our mission is simple – to help consumers find and buy their perfect products.

    Read on for in-depth and unbiased information about Raleigh bikes, or see our five favorite Raleigh bicycles if you're ready to buy.

    A good bicycle helmet is an essential for any cyclist.

    Why buy a Raleigh bike?

    If you're looking for a well-known bicycle brand with a trustworthy reputation, look no further than Raleigh Bicycles.

    Founded in the late 1880s, Raleigh has well over 100 years of experience in the bike-making business.

    Another great thing about Raleigh is that it produces a wide assortment of bicycles – from kids' choppers to serious endurance road bikes – for a wide range of price points. This means that almost all cyclists can find a Raleigh bike they want and can afford.

    All-terrain adventure

    The Eva 2 is a true all-terrain bike that easily transitions from sidewalk to trail, so it's perfect for the rider who wants to do both on- and off-road cycling in equal measure. Its smaller frame sizes, upright geometry, and comfort saddle are all designed with the female cyclist in mind.

    Raleigh bike types

    Raleigh produces many different types of bicycles, Here are some of the most popular.

    • Road: With their lightweight frames and drop handlebars, road bikes are designed for speedy on-road riding. Raleigh produces an assortment of road bikes to suit everyone from the leisure rider to the serious racer.

    • Mountain: Featuring impressive suspension and tire traction, mountain bikes can tackle all kinds of terrain and weather conditions, so they're perfect if you want to explore the countryside by bike.

    • Adventure: Partway between road bikes and mountain bikes, adventure bikes are designed to be suitable for both light off-road use and riding on paved surfaces. They may feature either drop or flat handlebars, depending on the model.

    • Recreation: If you're a recreational cyclist who values comfort over speed or off-road performance, these Raleigh bikes are for you. Designed for use on paved surfaces and flat dirt paths, recreational bikes feature high handlebars and various shock absorbers to give you a smooth ride. Raleigh also makes unicycles and an adult tricycle.

    • Urban: Lightweight, comfortable, easy to ride on smooth surfaces, and featuring a luggage rack for your briefcase or other work essentials, commuter bikes are designed with the needs of the busy city dweller in mind.

    • Kids: Raleigh bikes aren't just for adults. The company also produces a wide range of cycles for youth, too. With bikes designed for children from two to teens, you'll be able to find the right model for your little (or not-so-little) one.

    • Electric: With an electric motor in addition to pedals, Raleigh's electric bicycles are designed to give you a break or a power boost when you need it. Electric bikes are ideal for people who have long commutes or live in hilly areas.
    EXPERT TIP

    Bikes with drop handlebars force the rider into a forward-leaning position, while those with flat handlebars encourage an upright riding position.


    Staff  | BestReviews

    Raleigh bike features to consider

    Frame Material

    Most cycles made by Raleigh feature aluminum frames, but you can also find models with steel or carbon fiber frames.

    • Aluminum: Aluminum frames are cheap to manufacture, corrosion resistant, and fairly lightweight. They also have a stiffness that leads to effective power transfer. On the downside, the stiffness can give you a harsh-feeling ride, not to mention that aluminum gradually weakens, so an aluminum-framed bike won't last forever.

    • Steel: Steel is impact resistant, giving you a naturally smoother ride than other frame materials. But it's heavier than aluminum or carbon fiber, and it can rust, so you may need to recoat the frame at some point.

    • Carbon fiber: Since carbon fiber has a high strength-to-weight ratio, carbon frames are extremely lightweight without sacrificing strength. Carbon fiber also resists corrosion and won't weaken over time. It isn’t all good, though, as bikes with carbon fiber frames are expensive and susceptible to dings and scratches.

    Frame Size

    Bikes aren’t one size fits all, so it's important that you get the correct frame size for your height. While the seat is adjustable on all Raleigh models, this only accounts for a few inches, so you'll need to make sure your chosen bike frame is in the right height range. The Raleigh website has in-depth size guides for each bike that can help you finding the correct size for you. Check the standover height (the distance from the ground to the bike frame’s top tube)  and make sure your inseam measurement is longer than this or you won't be able to touch the ground when stopped on your bike.

    Gears

    While Raleigh does offer some single-speed bikes, most have several gears, or speeds, that make it easier to pedal on different terrain and are particularly useful for cycling uphill. When pedaling uphill, the lower the gear, the less effort you'll have to expend. If you know you’ll only be cruising around town on flat, paved surfaces, you might like the simplicity of a single-speed bike. However, if you live somewhere with a lot of hills, the more gears you have the better.

    Brakes

    Budget Raleigh bicycles come with rim brakes, while mid-range and high-end models come with either mechanical disc or hydraulic disc brakes.

    • Rim brakes: While rim brakes are less effective than disc brakes, these brakes are more than good enough for the average casual cyclist riding on paved surfaces or smooth, dry trails.

    • Disc brakes: Disc brakes have more overall stopping power and give more consistent results than rim brakes. Since disc brakes are located toward the center of the wheel, their effectiveness isn’t decreased by mud.

      Hydraulic disc brakes: Within the world of disc brakes, hydraulic versions are considered superior to mechanical ones because the reduced friction gives better braking consistency.

    DID YOU KNOW?

    Disc brakes were used exclusively on mountain bikes, but now many Raleigh bicycles have them, including adventure bikes, road bikes, and fitness bikes.

    DID YOU KNOW?

    Some Raleigh bikes have twist shifters for changing gears, while others feature trigger shifters. Unless you have a particular preference, either should be fine.

    Raleigh bike prices

    Raleigh bikes span a wide price range, from $200 to $5,000.

    • Inexpensive

    Raleigh bikes start at around $200 to $500. You won't find any road bikes in this price range, but you will find basic comfort bikes, fitness bikes, mountain bikes, and commuter bikes.

    • Mid-range

    Between $500 and $1,000 will buy you basic to mid-level adventure and road bikes, mid-range mountain bikes, and high-end comfort and commuter bikes.

    • Expensive

    You can find high-end adventure, mountain, and road bikes for between $1,000 and $2,500. If you want an electric bike, you'll pay between $1,500 and $5,000.

    Speed and stability

    This fitness bike is designed for path rides, commutes, and general riding around town. This is the ideal bike for cyclists who want a quick, stable bike for riding on paved surfaces but aren't worried about having the very fastest model out there. While not quite as fast as an ultralight road bike, the Cadent 1 has all the sturdiness and stability of a mountain bike.

    Tips

    • Check the wheel size. While it's not a hard and fast rule, bikes with smaller wheels tend to do better off-road, while larger wheels are good on paved surfaces.

    • Find out how much assembly is required. You will find Raleigh bikes that you can put together in just four steps, but other models may require much more assembly.

    • Think about how often you'll use your Raleigh bike. If you only want a bike for occasional weekend leisure rides, you probably don’t want to spend thousands of dollars. On the other hand, if you cycle daily or want to compete in bike races, a more expensive model might serve you better.

    • Look at the seat type. Mountain and road bikes tend to have thinner, firmer saddles, which make it easier to shift positions and pedal more efficiently. However, if you're looking for comfort, opt for a wide, well-padded saddle.
    If you're unsure how to correctly assemble your new Raleigh bike, we'd recommend visiting a bike shop to have a professional do it for you.

    FAQ

    Q. Do I need a bike with suspension?

    A. Bike suspension is designed to absorb shock, which means you get a smooth ride even over rough terrain. If you only plan to ride on smooth, paved surfaces, you don't really need suspension (though it won't hurt), but it's a necessity for serious off-roading. Poor suspension can be worse than no suspension at all, so if you're looking for a budget bike, we'd recommend avoiding suspension systems altogether.

    Q. What are the benefits of wider tires?

    A. Some Raleigh bicycles have wider tires than others. Thin tires make for faster bikes, but wide tires provide more traction and stability. We'd generally recommend wider tires for commuting, recreational riding, and off-roading.

    Q. Where are Raleigh bicycles made?

    A. Although Raleigh was founded in the UK, frames for the American market are produced in Taiwan.

    The team that worked on this review
    • Bronwyn
      Bronwyn
      Editor
    • Devangana
      Devangana
      Web Producer
    • Eliza
      Eliza
      Production Manager
    • Lauren
      Lauren
      Writer
    • Samantha
      Samantha
      Writer

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