If you’re after a bike for commuting, then the type you choose depends on a range of factors, including the terrain you’ll be dealing with. Road bikes are typically light and fast, mountain bikes can handle a range of conditions and topography, and hybrid bikes are a combination that includes the faster rolling wheels of a road bike with the upright positioning of a mountain bike.
But if the thought of lugging a heavy bike to the office car park or public transport parking bay, then the weight is clearly a factor you should also consider. Here is a rundown of some of the lightest commuter bikes you can buy in Australia.
Merida Scultura 9000 LTD
Image from Merida Bikes
Launched in 2015, this is one (if not the) lightest production bike on the planet. Weighing in at just 4.56kg is a pro-level carbon fibre road bike and a great combination of weight, comfort and top aerodynamics. Other features include:
- A frame weight of only 740 grams (in the small and medium sizes)
- A frame set with a fork that weighs only 985 grams (in the small and medium sizes)
- An internal cable routing that is fully “Di2-ready” (this means that it is prepared for the installation of Di2 technology with battery mounting in the seat post or within the fork steerer.
- Suitable for tires up to 25 mm in width
- It is very agile due to 400 mm chainstays
- Direct mount rear brake
- Rough cost: $12,000+
Giant ToughRoad SLR 2
Image from Giant Bicycles
This bike is made from ALUXX SLR aluminium, and as the name suggests, it is designed to keep you going regardless of whether you are riding on rough gravel or smooth tarmac. It’s also relatively light at only 10.89kg. Other features include:
- It has a carbon fork to reduce weight and absorb some of the vibration coming through the front end.
- A D-fuse seatpost for ultimate compliance (D-Fuse components work together as a system to absorb vibrations and shocks).
- 50C Giant Sycamore tires for grip
- An integrated downtube fender
- A carbon fork
- Room for 50mm tyres
- Rough cost: $1,300
BMC Alpenchallenge 01 One
Image from Bike Attack
Another bike weighing in at 10.89kg, BMC’s Alpenchallenge is one of the coolest hybrid bikes money can buy, although it is worth mentioning that it is a little on the expense side of this bike category. Other features include:
- A lightweight aluminium frame and carbon fork.
- Tube shapes borrowed from the brand’s aero and endurance models to provide a zippy ride quality.
- A maintenance-free Gates Belt drive transmission.
- Light enough gearing to get you up and over rolling terrain.
- Fenders that are neatly integrated into the frame.
- Hydraulic Shimano MT50 brakes for controlled braking in all weather conditions.
- Rough cost: $1,800
Studds XT 29
Image from Studds
A slightly heavier model at 11.5kg is the Studds 300 flat-bar road bike is one of the best commuter bikes, especially those who are after a flat-bar commuter bike. Other features include:
- A quality alloy frame with a matte finish.
- 700x32c tyres making them suitable for roads and trails.
- Full Shimano Altus Drivetrain including Chainwheel, Derailleurs and Cassette.
- Lightweight Alloy 6061 Frame
- Shimano Hydraulic Disc Brakes
- Rough cost: $699
Trek FX 3
Image from 99 Spokes
The Trek FX 3 is still on the lighter side at 11.7kg. This is a great hybrid bike that is suitable for racing, road biking or mountain biking. Other features include:
- A lightweight Alpha Gold aluminium frame that enables you to climb hills without drag.
- Sturdy Bontrager H2700×32c tyres that are puncture-resistant, enhance agility while giving riders a feeling of stability.
- Shimano MT201 Hydraulic disk brakes that can stop in any given condition, guaranteeing riders a safe ride.
- A very light FX carbon fork that gives control and comfort by absorbing road vibrations. This also eradicates shocks and is easy to manoeuvre around corners.
- Its racks and mounts allow the rider to carry additional fixtures that might be required.
- Rough cost: $1,300
- 2021, Merida Scultura 9000 Carbon, Bike of the Week
- Colin Levitch, 2021, Best hybrid bikes: Fantastic fitness bikes for getting around town, Cycling News
- 2020, Studds 300 Flat Bar Road Bike, Studds
- 2020, Trek FX 3 Disk (Review) 2020 Hybrid Bike, Pedallers