Although road bikes are typically associated with hefty price tags and ultra-fast performance, you can still purchase a perfectly good road bike at an affordable price.

There are plenty of good bikes out there, and if you know how to filter the bad ones, you can land yourself quite a deal. Road bikes are popular among city cyclists and fans of good ole concrete roads, and if you happen to be one, but not quite looking to spend a fortune, we invite you to check out our list of best road bikes under $500.

Take a look at our best road bikes under $500

Getting down to the meaty bit, we’ll point out that our primary target is always to hit the sweet spot when it comes to price – quality ratio. So even if we are looking at the cheapest product of the given niche, feel safe that you are looking at one of the top, if not the single best item you can find. Off to the rundown now!

3. Merax 21-Speed 700C

Merax 21 Speed 700C Aluminum Road Bike Racing Bicycle - Review

As always, we like to kick things off with a budget-friendly version, and this product is probably the best cheap road bike on the market. It’s known as Merax 21-Speed 700C and it offers a solid performance at the cheapest price around.

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 Features

The bike utilizes a 21-speed Shimano shifter a quality aluminum frame that is durable and lightweight, a top-notch Shimano derailleur, and a set of quick-release front wheels. This is more of a starter bike, so you’ll be glad to know that it comes 85% factory assembled.

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 Performance

The bike has everything a starter ride really needs. It introduces the driver to all the charms of road bikes such as easy driving propelled by light weight or efficient brake performance, but still doesn’t take things too far.

Basically, if you are still used to standard mountain bikes of BMX rides, the Merax is the perfect transition step that won’t cause too much of a transition shock. It’s smooth and mellow, but still a tad gritty.

2. GMC Denali Road Bike

GMC Denali Road Bike - Review

We’ll continue with a versatile road bike known as the GMC Denali. The Denali offers a wide set of frames ranging from 16” to 25” which also determine the price. The bike is also available in a wide array of colors, and also covers models for both males and females.

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The bike utilizes a lightweight aluminum frame and delivers a total of 21 speeds through a top-notch shifter. Also included in the mix are alloy calipers and alloy brake levers, as well as high-profile alloy Vitesse racing rims. Shimano derailleur and Shimano Revo shifts have been added to improve the gear-changing process and make it smoother and more efficient. Finally, the 700c tires mean business and will cover your back even during rigorous street racing

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 Performance

The overall frame geometry, riding position and wheelbase are oriented towards aggressive cycling, so if you buy this thing, don’t expect to go cruising around with it, as the Denali was made for serious business, fast driving and high performance. With that in mind, the thing flies like a bullet, getting an easy thumbs up from us.

1. Schwinn Men’s Phocus 1600 700C Drop Bar Road Bicycle

Schwinn Men's Phocus 1600 700C Drop Bar Road Bicycle - Our review

Finally, we have a trusty Schwinn at the throne. The company’s Phocus 1600 700C model won the hearts of many cyclist as soon as it was unveiled, thanks to a clever mix of first-class craftsmanship and affordable pricing.

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 Features

The bike features a lightweight frame, a 14-speed Shimano drivetrain with integrated brake lever shifting, as well as high-profile alloy rims. The bike also sports a set of Promax alloy caliper road brakes and an SR Suntour alloy crank for wide gear range.

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 Performance

We have to point out that the brakes on this thing are just stellar. We are talking possibly the finest brakes on the market and a mean machinery that will stop the bike right in its track. Additionally, the bicycle is fast, sturdy and reliable. If you treat it right, you can easily go for very long rides on the Phocus without any damage.

Conclusion

As you can see, low prices and road bikes can still result in killer performance, it’s just a matter of singling out the good ones. What we consider this list’s most crucial point is the fact that you cannot go wrong with any of these bikes.

We were glad to filter out the bad models, and although we’re definitely not saying that these bikes aren’t the only good road models out there, you can rest assured that they are among the absolute top.

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