The new generation is always eager to find the most affordable and eco-friendly ways of commutation. When the traffic due to vehicles is rising high on the road, people are now switching back to bikes for their routine needs.
You will be happy to hear that the creative manufacturers around the world have now launched folding bikes. They are now available with plenty of design variations to meet the unique demands of the prospective buyers. Moreover, the price ranges for these bikes are targeting all budgets; you will find many mind-boggling options to choose from.
There are so many amazing things that make folding bikes the best choice for buyers. However, if you are a little confused about the buying decision, we advise you to go through the detailed guide below.
What is A Folding Bike?
Folding bikes or folding bicycles are designed to facilitate easy storage and efficient transportation with their ability to fold into a compact form. Users can carry these bikes anywhere in public transportation like boat, car, or plane; they can be easily stored in the tiny apartments.
The folding mechanism of folding bikes may vary from brand to brand. Different manufacturers follow unique ideas to complete the design and functionality. The prime focus is preferably given to weight, compactness, folding ease, folding speed, durability, and price as well.
You may also find several complexities in design, market appeal, number of parts, and the structural requirements as well. Also, the folding bikes are usually expensive as compared to regular bikes. The section below highlights the amazing advantages of buying folding bikes over regular bikes.
What are the benefits compared to other bikes?
Folding bikes are widely popular for their unique design and amazing functionality. However, if you are interested to know how they could be a better choice of regular bikes; we advise you to check the benefits listed below:
- They are portable and convenient:
When you plan to move out on a weekend trip, you may love to carry your bike with you to have fun outdoors. Well, folding bikes can accompany you everywhere. They can be easily stored inside small cars or one can also carry them with ease via bus or train as well. These bikes are as compact that you can easily fit them under your work desk as well. The convenience in storage and portability makes these bikes the best choice for all commuters.
- They are available in various styles:
People love these folding bikes more because of their retro-inspired and sleep appeal. You can also find some unique vintage style options as well. Manufacturers these days are designing these bikes in a wide range of designs with unique finishes. Buyers can easily find something that fit their personality with ease. Some of the best options in the market are leather satchels, bikes with a basket, and streamlined frames over the silver finish. In simple words, there is no need to compromise for design while buying a folding bike.
- They are simple to handle:
When you start using folding bikes for the very first time, the holding and the unfolding task may take some time, probably 10 minutes. But once you gain experience, it may take just a few seconds to get your bike ready to run on roads as well as for storage. Simply try to practice folding your bike a few times, and soon, you will learn the tactics.
- They need lesser space for storage:
People prefer folding bikes because they do not consume much space in your tiny home for storage. You can fold them to tiny size and place below the stairs. They can be squeezed into tiny spaces or places below the staircase as well.
With all these amazing benefits, folding bikes appear one of the best solutions for easy transportation needs.
Folding Bike Buying Guide: What to look for when purchasing a foldable bike?
After checking the amazing benefits of folding bikes, now you might be eager to buy one. Well, the next big challenge for buyers will be to choose the best folding bike in the competitive market. There are a number of brands that have presented many feature-rich products into the market. But in order to pick the best one, you should first make a list of preferred features.
Below we have listed a few essential points that you should consider for buying the best bicycle for your routine commutation needs:
The price range for folding bikes may range depending upon their quality. Generally, the break-away bikes are the most expensive ones. Before you make a decision to buy one, it is better to set your budget. Pre-planning will help you avoid confusion while shortlisting your folding bikes in the market. Note that the comfort level and ride experience also change with the price of the bike.
- Folding Mechanism:
You may find three most common varieties of the folding mechanism, and each one of them has their unique pros and cons. One of the most popular options in the market is mid horizontal fold variety but this is not meant for carrying heavy loads. The second popular option is a triangle hinge vertical fold bike that comes with a built-in suspension system. Other than this, you can think of buying swivel fold bikes. Some latest designs can be folded and packed into a suitcase to ensure easy portability.
The compactness and weight of the bike contribute to its portability range. Note that some bikes cannot be wheeled after folding them, and then it becomes difficult to carry them to other places. You may look for a bike that is easier to pack or have wheels to slide when folded. It will help you to manage transportation easily on the rough platforms.
- Wheel Size:
The folding bikes may come with a variety of wheel sizes; you can choose the most suitable one with ease. The small wheels usually make the bike stronger and stiffer as they have shorter spoke lengths. Such bikes are the best option for city rides; however, if you need to move on bumpy roads, it is better to look for bigger wheels. They will require lesser efforts from the rider and can take you on long distances with constant speeds.
Most of the folding bikes are made up of alloy or aluminum material. They cannot handle the shocks very well. However, the latest designs of folding bikes can serve your needs with high potential. The Chromoly steel frame ensures the natural absorption of shocks. Other than this, you can look for titanium and carbon fiber material that ensures a lightweight feel. The full suspension models are the best choice for bumpy roads and higher comfort.
You can check local stores and online platforms to rate different products based on these features. However, if you are still confused about several models in the market, go through the details below. Here we have compared 12 best folding bikes that you can think of buying in the year 2020.
List of 12 Best Folding Bikes 2020
So, you are now ready to buy a folding bike. Well, it is good to check the latest models online and compare their features, performance, and pricing as well. Below we have listed the top 10 products with a few essential details about each one of them. It will help you to make easy purchase decision online:
This 20-inch bike is a more appealing choice for the city commuters. When folded up, its maximum dimension ranges somewhere around 30x32x11 inches. It means this folding bike will take very little space in your office or apartment. Users are happy with its low stand-over the frame; it ensures quick access on and off the bike. The 7-speed drivetrain makes it easier to take the bike to the hilly terrains.
The bike ensures quick stopping with its linear-pull brakes, rear cargo rack, and full fenders. Other than this, this bike comes with a nylon storage case that can ensure easy handling of things while maintaining safe storage.
- It comes with a 7 speed option that ensures easy riding on all types of terrains.
- The 20-inch wheels ensure easy transportation with compact size.
- This folding bike comes with a nylon carrying bag.
- It weighs somewhere around 33 pounds.
Here is a BMX style bike that comes with 7-speed ranges to ensure a more comfortable and flexible riding experience. Same as Schwinn Loop, it also has 20-inch wheels that are designed on the sturdy frame made up of aluminum alloy and it weighs around 28 pounds. We must say that it is one of the most light-weight and portable bikes in the market.
EuroMini bike works perfectly for the street rides and off-road trails as well. Its advanced Shimano Revo gear system and 7 different speed levels ensure easy handing on a variety of roads. Also, you can enjoy efficient and easy switching between the right handlebar and grip shifter.
- The aluminum alloy frame makes it a lightweight solution.
- It comes with a 7-speed grip-shifter.
- You will find it easier to fold and store as well.
- Weights only around 28 pounds.
This Columbia folding bike is designed to serve users with 18 different speed levels. It is probably the heaviest and largest bike in the market, but the sad fact is that you cannot carry it around with ease. This folding bike may demand little extra effort for transportation and storage as well.
In the folder form, it measures around 38x14x28 inches and suits to the riders between the hight range of 5’3” to 6’0”. The overall weight of this bike is 34 pounds, so you may find it a little difficult to carry. However, the folding process is quite easier; it may take not more than 10 seconds.
- This full-size bike comes with 26-inch wheels.
- It offers 18-speed ranges that suit all types of terrains.
- The maximum weight is 34 pounds.
- You will find it easier to fold.
Dahon Speed Uno Folding bike is another excellent choice for enjoying rides on busy, flat streets in the cities. The simple design and impressive finish prove them one of the most amazing solutions for riders. Furthermore, the double lock latching system ensures safe and easy transportation of these bikes.
Note that this bike is designed without any shifter cables or brakes; hence, even beginners also find it easier to ride. They require the least effort for the maintenance and promise long-life performance. The magnetic latching system makes it safe to use as it doesn’t unfold when a person is sitting on it.
- Lightweight design with only 24 pounds.
- Simple, elegant and trouble-free design.
- Magnetic latching system that ensures safe folding experience.
- Single-speed bike that suits for urban areas.
Stowabike is a widely known name in the world of folding bikes. It is rated high for its solid front and rear shocks that can ensure a comfortable and relaxing ride even on the rough trails. This bike is designed with a Shimano gear system that can handle 18 speeds while reliable shifting.
You can fold and unfold this bike in just a few seconds with a socket wrench and tox screw. The overall weight of the bike is only 38 pounds, so you may find it a little heavier to carry. When folded, it needs 29x37x13 inch space for storage and when opened, it can handle the maximum weight of 250 pounds of a person ranging between 5’2” to 6’2”.
- This bike weighs around 38 pounds.
- It comes with a dual suspension system on rear and front shocks.
- Designed to deliver 18 different speed levels with instant grip shifter.
- Full-size folding bike with 26-inch wheels.
Montague Boston Folding Bike was designed to serve users with advanced functionalities. It comes with the 700c wheels that ensure outstanding performance to the rider. This bike can be folded in just 20 seconds and needs the maximum space of 36x28x12 inches for storage.
Manufacturers have added more focus to improve the user experience for gear, brake, ride quality, comfort level and handling as well. Although it comes with a single-speed option, one can ensure a relaxing ride on the city streets.
- Easy and fast folding design.
- Offers fixed gear as well as freewheel riding experience.
- High-quality material finish.
- Weight range is 25 lbs.
Goplus has now become a standard for all foldable bike lovers around the world. This brand offers folding bikes with a variety of color schemes, drivetrain setups, and unique handlebar shapes. You can also find advanced luggage system to make your rides more comfortable.
This compact foldable bike is designed to serve with a 7-speed drive train, whereas the upright adjustable handlebar ensures full riding comfort. Furthermore, the steel frame can support your ride in the wet weather with its hand-brazed design.
- It can be folded just within 20 seconds.
- Adjustable seat and handle height.
- Efficient V-style brakes.
- 7-speed folding bike with ergonomic design.
This 16-speed folding bike is one of the top-rated collections in the market. It is simple to fold and can be stored in a tiny apartment with ease. You will find this bike great choice for traveling, boating, camping and commuting. The overall weight of this bike is somewhere around 30 pounds with its amazing folding pedals, white protector, magnet catcher, read and front fenders, and a rear carry rack.
It can withstand the maximum weight of 230 pounds. Moreover, the comfortable seat is easier to adjust as per the rider’s requirement. This bike suits to everyone between the height range of 5 to 6 feet tall.
- It comes with 16-speed settings.
- Sturdy and durable aluminum folding frame.
- Adjustable seat to ensure greater comfort.
- Lightweight and compact when folded.
If you are looking for a perfect commuter bike that can take you comfortably to the hills, this amazing model from Schwinn will win your heart. It comes with easy to handle Shimano grip shifter and superior V-brake system.
There is a large rear rack that can carry enough luggage. The folding mechanism is quite simple and easy; it will take just a few seconds for users to make it ready for storage. The adapt comes with the standard 20-inch aluminum-alloy wheels, and the maximum weight of the bike is only 29 pounds. It means you will find it easier to carry.
- It comes with a secure locking mechanism.
- Loaded with a heavy gauge nylon storage bag.
- Designed to serve users with an 8-speed grip shifter.
- Takes very few seconds for folding.
Here is the cheapest folding bike that is designed by a big brand in the industry. This bike is available in multiple colors and designs. It is basically an electric bike that comes with a foldable finish. The adjustable speed and power range make it suitable for the senior riders.
It comes with safety e-brakes, throttle on demand, 5 level pedal assist, light, and front geared motor. This bike is designed to serve riders in almost all-weather conditions. You can find these bikes in a 2-speed design and 6-speed model as well. The folded dimension of the bike is only 23×22.2×10.6 inches that makes it easier to store.
- Easy to fold and store.
- Powerful folding bike with different speed ranges.
- Recommended for comfortable and relaxing rides.
- Huge weight carrying capacity.
This is one of the widely known bikes with full suspension system and easy folding mechanism. However, it is suitable for short journeys only. You can easily transport it on buses, planes, cars and other vehicles as well. Manufacturers have added Shimano 21 speed shifters to this bike that is much easier to handle.
The dual disc brake system makes it a highly sensitive and durable choice. It suits the riders within the height range of 5’3” to 5’9,” and the maximum weight carrying capacity is 300 lbs
- The maximum weight of this mountain bike is 40 lbs.
- Design using solid materials to ensure durable performance.
- It takes very little time for folding and limited space for storage.
- Suitable for both men and women.
Xspec took the initiative to create an easy to ride, simple to fold and elegant looking bike for riders. It takes only 15 seconds to fold and needs very less storage space. The traditional V-brake system with disc brakes makes it more suitable for consistent performance.
Manufacturers have included 22.5” handlebars and 26” diamond wheels to this model. It is recommended for the riders between the height range of 5’3” to 6’0”. The maximum weight carrying capacity is 220lbs. Furthermore, the 21-speed function endures smooth riding experience on a variety of terrains.
- Easy to fold and store.
- 21-speed function wit v-brake technology.
- Weighs approximately 42 lbs.
- Includes components that are more useful for tourists.
Various Types of Folding Bikes
There is a variety of folding bikes which are designed particularly for different types of bikers. It’s better to choose the right kind that suits your needs. We categorize folding bikes into three main sections as following:
Folding bikes in this class will suit riders who may want to use their bikes for short distant trips, such as getting to the local grocery store, or taking it around the subway system, but aren’t likely to use it for their daily commute. Many students use leisure bicycles like this, whether to get to school or to cut the time between the bus stop and their place of work. There are a lot of options available for this type of cyclist.
It’s not necessary for leisure bikes to be made to the very highest standards, but they do have to be comfortable and well-fitted. Buyers who live in hilly areas will want to buy a three-speed bike at minimum. In flatter areas, something like the no-gear bike shown to the left, with its simple, clean lines, could be a good choice. Bicycle gears work like pulleys and mean less force is needed to rotate the pedals. Being able to change gears to overcome tired legs is a nice option to have, even if the area isn’t hilly.
Cyclists who share the road with automobiles are sometimes nicknamed “roadies.” Since many of these people use their bikes to get to work and may travel up to 20 miles each day, folding bikes ridden by roadies have to be well made, very comfortable, and easily customized. Commuter roadies will find folding bikes perfect, since there’s no need to leave their bikes in public areas. After all, even locked bikes may eventually end up being stolen.
When choosing any bicycle, it’s important to consider medical and body-size factors such as any ongoing back conditions, the ratio between leg and torso measurements, and inseam measurement. However, it’s even more vital for roadies, given the mileage they do. A little discomfort can be ignored on one short journey, but not when a bike is used again and again for many years.
This covers off-road bicycles, usually known as mountain bikes. These are designed to be tough and – especially – durable, to enable them to cope with rough trails, and this gives them particular characteristics. The tires are usually large and fat, around 26 inches across and 1.75 inches thick; other types of bikes usually have one-inch tires. A mountain bike’s extra width gives additional support when riding over rough ground. These tires also have deep tread, giving them better shock-absorbing ability.
Another component determining the anti-shock feature of mountain folding bike is the fork – known as where the bike frame and the front wheel are connected. This is also where protective suspension is fitted, which avoids damage to the frame. It’s best to choose a bike with an only mildly curved fork, known as a low fork rake. In order to deal with shocks effectively, the prongs of the fork should be straight. With this type of bike, riders generally put a lot of weight on the handlebars, which leads to a lot of pressure being placed on the fork. For that reason, this section of the bike needs to be strong.
Finally, mountain folding bike has a rear suspension system at the back. This works in a very similar way to the fork suspension. Bad suspension can cause a very uncomfortable ride, just like in a car: every little bump and rut gets transferred to the rider. It’s easy to imagine how unpleasant it would be to ride a mountain bike if it lacked these suspension systems.
Extra criteria for choosing the ultimate folding bike
Now when you have decide the suitable type of folding bike for your own needs, it is time to look closer at technical features in choosing a folding bike.
When you’re buying a bike, you can select from several folding mechanisms. These vary in a number of respects, notably the sturdiness of the mechanism and how easy the bike itself is to fold away.
- Break-away: Folding bikes can be made to rely on either partial disassembly or hinges for folding, but the break-away type combines elements of both. This makes bicycles that use this method extremely compact, but does have the drawback that you may need to use specialized tools to take the bike apart, which can be time-consuming. Only buy this sort of bike if it comes with the tools you need, and think about picking up a second set to keep in reserve.
- Half-fold: Bicycles that use this design generally have frames which are close to full size, with a clamp or hinge situated in the middle, allowing the bike to fold into halves. The major advantage of this option is that the bike will ride as well as a non-folding cycle; on the other hand, it will take up more space when folded. The disadvantage of the half-fold cycle’s extra bulk makes this type of folding bike less suitable for using on your commute if that includes traveling on packed trains or buses. It is, however, a good option if you want a bike with a full frame but have limited storage space.
- Triangle-hinge: The majority of today’s folding bikes are based on this design, which utilizes a set of clasps and hinges to allow the bike’s parts to fold quite compactly. You won’t get it to shrink quite as much as a bicycle with a break-away mechanism, but it’s nevertheless a pretty convenient compromise that folds quickly and can be carried without too much effort
Whether you’re riding your bike or carrying it, weight is going to matter. The more a bike weighs, the tougher it’s going to be when you’re pedaling. Climbing hills will be especially hard, so always consider weight. Generally, the weight of a bicycle, as well as its cost and overall quality, will be affected by what it’s made from. Steel is heavier yet cheaper than aluminum.
Easy Adjustments for your height
Folding bikes don’t come in the same range of shapes and sizes that conventional cycles do, so it’s very important to check that you can adjust the height of the handlebars and seat to suit you. You should also be able to set the space between saddle and handlebars to a comfortable distance, otherwise you risk inefficient pedaling and personal discomfort. The taller you are, the more space you’ll need. Look for bikes that allow you to move the seat forward or back, as these fit a wider variety of body shapes.
Many folding bikes have gears, also known as speeds, but not all of them. With the simplest design of all, the single-gear bike, the chain runs from a small gear attached to the back wheel to a larger one that connects to the pedal shaft. These bikes can travel very fast on flat roads, but it takes a good deal of effort to get up speed in the first place.
Alternatively, you could consider a multiple-speed bike, which will allow you to pedal with less force. The downside of that is that you need to pedal faster to go at the same speed. The major advantage of a multi-gear cycle is that you have plenty of options; by changing gear, you can adjust your pedaling force to suit the terrain or road conditions. For that reason, most riders should look for a bike which has more than one speed, ideally three or more.
Now you have gone through the detailed guide about best folding bikes for 2020. It is time to pick the most suitable and user-friendly bike for your routines. Prefer to compare the available models based on your prime requirements. Make sure the bike you select is suitable for the type of terrain you are about to ride. In order to pick the best bike, prefer to set your budget in advance and then initiate the search online. It will help you to make the best purchase among several competitive models in the market.