If you're looking for a great road bike on a budget—but don't want to sacrifice quality or performance—check out these 10 standout options. They all feature reliable drivetrains from Shimano, and we'd wager that you can find at least one of these great buys at your local bike shop.
Specialized Allez Sport
Specialized makes some of the most responsive aluminum and carbon bikes. The Bora-Hansgrohe pro cycling team even raced a variant of this bike in the 2020 season opener. The Smooth Weld aluminum frame with FACT carbon fork means stiff and responsive handling and a refined and comfortable ride.
A women's-specific geometry with a FACT carbon fork that features a vibration-damping Zertz to further smooth chatter and bumps is what makes this ride a good bang for its buck.
Trek Domane AL2
Our minds were blown by how responsive Trek aluminum is, without imparting harshness or high frequency vibrations.
Giant Contend AR3$1000
Complete with a tubeless-ready wheel system and disc brakes, you'll roll smoothly and stop fast—which is so appealing to our max-speed feels.
Liv Avail AR3$1000
With 32mm wide tires, this is a roadie that can also hold its own on the trails. This package includes disc brakes, which offer nuanced modulation and greater speed control.
Cannondale CAAD Optimo Tiagra$1100
A 20-pound aluminum bike, borne of Cannondale's race-ready, decades-proven CAAD line is a racer, or a bike with which you can just go fast and have fun solo.
Diamondback Century 2$1000
This Diamondback is a road-racer with geometry that leans toward an endurance bike. This means a slightly less-aggressive upright position—and less strain on your back and neck—for longer days in the saddle.
Raleigh Merit 3
We'll admit it—we love this shade of blue! And the Merit comes in sizes to fit riders just over 5 feet tall to over six-foot-three-inches.
Fuji Sportif 1.5 Disc$1099
Fuji offers so much bike for the money. 30mm tires provide a plush ride on pavement and gravel, while the mechanical disc brakes are great for stopping in any weather conditions. A monocoque carbon fork and reliable Oval brand components round out the Shimano shifting.
Canyon Endurace AL Disc$1349
We know a great value when we see one, and this Canyon—although a bit over the $1,200 budget—is hard to pass up. The precise handling and comfort—two priorities for us—are too good to overlook. Canyon's 6-year warranty also caught our attention.
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