In a recent survey, studies found that around 100 million Americans ride a bike every year, but of these, only 29% of adults rode at least once in the past year.
Interestingly, 53% of the people surveyed, said that, given the opportunity, they would like to ride more often.
So, what’s holding us back? One of the reasons is a lack of access to a fully affordable, functioning bike, that’s where this article comes in.
Decent bikes really can be affordable because the truth is, it’s the packaging and the overall look of the bike that can bump up the cost of one – not necessarily because it rides any better than, say, one for less than $200…
And we’ll prove it to you:
Types of Bikes
With so many bikes from which to choose from, it can be difficult to decide which type of bike will be a good investment in the long-run, as well as which one will fit into your lifestyle.
Here we take a look at a variety of bikes to suit your everyday needs.
1. Mountain Bikes
Often mountain bikes are used for touring or commuting, since they have a low gear range for pedalling up steep hills, and suspension.
However, most mountain bikes are designed for off-road and can come with either flat handlebars or upright for personal comfort.
Some mountain bikes come with front suspension, only, known as “hardtails,” and some come with front and rear suspension, known as “full-suspension” or “duallies.”
2. Adventure Road Bikes
One of the newest bike types – and certainly one of the most popular – Adventure Road bikes are part of the ‘road bike’ category and are probably the most versatile.
The drop handlebars and wide tyres make these suitable for long-distance commuting and light touring.
The longer and more upright frame offers better comfort. Adventure Roads can sometimes be referred to as “any-road bikes,” “gravel bikes,” or “all-road bikes.”
3. Cylcocross Bikes
Another type of road bike, these ones are meant to be raced and ridden on a combination of unpaved trails, gravel, grass and pavement, otherwise known as a “mixed-surface” track.
Again, like other road bikes, cyclocross bikes have a drop handlebar as well as wider tyres and brakes that help prevent a build-up of mud in the frame.
Also known as “cross bikes” or “cx bikes.”
4. Hybrid Bikes
In the past, these bikes would often be referred to as “cross bikes” but this would often be confused with “cyclocross” bikes, and so the term is no longer used.
Essentially, hybrid bikes are a ‘cross’ between a road bike and a mountain bike.
They are ideal for short-distance commuting and casual riding along pavements and paved roads.
Unlike road bikes, they are not as lightweight nor as efficient, however, the padded seating and upright handlebars offer better comfort for running quick errands.
They are not meant for off-road mountain bike trails, even though the medium-width tyres provide sufficient grip and cushion on unpaved trails.
Some hybrid bikes are “rigid” (no suspension) but many do come with front suspension.
5. Road Bikes
Ideal for the daily commute, road bikes are durable on smooth pavement when ridden at high speed.
The “drop” handlebars and skinny tyres can be used for on-road racing on smooth pavement or paved trails.
They cannot carry heavy loads, so not a good choice for your weekly shop at the supermarket, but generally, road bikes are a great deal lighter than other types.
Best Mountain Bikes Under 200
So now that you’ve decided upon which bike type is best for you, we’ll now take a look at a number of affordable bikes within your chosen category.
It’s worth noting that, at the time of writing this, the bikes shown were under $200.
However, as you may know, prices change! They may have gone up, or hopefully down, therefore we cannot guarantee they are still under $200.
The best way to find out, is to click the check price button below the bikes, if it’s out of your budget, take a look at another!
1. Uenjoy Murtisol Mountain Bike 26-Inch
The aluminium frame requires simple handling and the overall design creates a smooth, reliable journey for the journey.
Front and rear disc brakes allow for better control, whilst the height-adjustable seat offers added comfort.
Easy-to-assemble instructions are provided; however, it is advised that the bike is taken to a local bike shop for a safety check.
The frame features HI-TEN design and welding technology. The bike comes with non-slip wheels, which should help keep you on track!
Users have commented on the beautiful look of the bike, which is reflected in the excellent design. The bike comes in 3 colours, orange, blue and red.
The bike maybe slightly heavier than usual for an aluminium bike.
Overall, customers have found this bike to be excellent value for money and is highly recommended for easy riding – particularly on roads.
2. Kent KZ2600 Dual-Suspension Mountain Bike, 26-Inch
Previous users have found the bike to be simple to assemble and good value for money. The seat post, handle bars, front wheel and pedals are easy to attach.
The bike has also been deemed reliable and sturdy through snow and ice, muddy puddles, off road, as well as uphill and downhill.
The floating beam suspension design is mated to a suspension fork, whilst offering 21 speed Shimano shifters. Disk brakes on the front and rear makes for confident stopping.
The size of the bike makes it suitable for people over 6ft, so you shouldn’t have to worry if you’re tall like me!
Due to the price, the overall quality may not be as good as a bike that falls into a higher budget.
Overall, the bike is great for beginners, or those who haven’t ridden often. It’s a very good looking and durable bike for under $200.
Best Cheap Mountain Bike Under 200
3. Huffy 26″ Men’s Alpine Mountain Bike
Suitable for pavement and off-road, thanks to the knobby tires, the Huffy Men’s bike is a great choice for a reliable, budget mountain bike that comes with 18 speeds and twist shifting for smooth gear changes.
The Alpine mountain bike suits riders of a minimum height of 60 inches, and the front and rear linear pull steel brakes make for confident and assured stopping action.
The hi-tensile steel frame offers safe and reliable mountain-biking along with a midnight blue and crimson red hardtail frame colouring.
Users can fully appreciate premium Krayton grips that comfortably mould to the riders’ hands. In addition, the 18-speed twist shifting is easily adjustable to suit a variety of terrain, such as trails, woods and pavement or city biking.
The 1200 suspension fork is designed to absorb shock, effectively, and the lightweight alloy rims are designed to resist all types of weather
The bike can be easily ridden on pavement or off-road.
Like most of these bikes, it offers good value for the price you pay. It currently comes in way under the budget of $200.
4. Stowabike 26″ MTB V2 Folding Mountain Bike
The convenience of the frame allows for better storage in the trunk of a car, in a corner of the home or on trains or buses.
The steel handlebar and steel frame provide a sturdy and confident ride, and the 18-speed range offers a variety of speeds for the rider to choose from.
Upon delivery, the bike arrives in 2 sections – front and back. The pedals and seat need to be assembled, only.
The Stowabike is suitable for short riders and children measuring approximately 5ft in height.
Weighing in at 38.5lbs, users find this mountain bike to be an ideal weight for carrying around and transporting, as necessary.
Riders marvel at the quality of the bike for the affordable price.
The bike come with good quality tires, that make it great for trail biking and riding around the city.
Included are easy to follow set up instructions, which contribute to the great value offered.
5. GTM 26″ 7 Speed Folding Mountain Bike
Large stable tires and steel frame give the user comfort and control with ease.
One user reported that the bike can take up to 230lbs in weight and that despite being a little heavy, this folding mountain bike is perfect for recreational use.
The only components required to attach is the front wheel, handle, saddle and paddles. Tools and instructions are included, which should make assembly easier.
The bike features a lightweight, high tensile frame with adjustable handlebar and seat height.
The GTM folds down in 3 easy steps and once folded the dimensions of the bike are a tidy 48” x 36” x 18”, meaning it can be stored in the corner of the home or in the car trunk
The size of the bike makes it suitable for anyone over the age of 7.
Overall, the quality is great for such a low price!
Best Men’s Bike Under 200
6. Merax Falcon Full Suspension Mountain Bike 26-Inch
The dual suspension is designed to smooth bumps whilst riding and increase over control for a fluid ride.
Shimano 21-speed derailleurs and shifters provide a reliable and smooth gear shifting experience.
Linear pull brakes feature on the bike, which provide a sense of enhanced stopping and braking power.
Merax have designed the bike to be the most feature rich, yet economical bike around, which can fits the needs of entry level bikers perfectly.
The bike also comes with a 1 year warranty and comes 85% ready assembled. However, the tires will need filling with air – which is the case with a lot of bikes to be fair.
The front tire can also be removed when needed, so that it can be easily stored or transported, for example, when taking it in a small car.
Users have also commented on the ease of use of this bike, with assembly being fairly straightforward.
This is a great option for a bike under $200 for people of all ages and biking experience.
7. Pacific Men’s Stratus Mountain Bike
Some users have reported that this 26” mountain bike can carry riders over 6ft and can take 260lbs in weight, making this a suitable bike for many.
A 1-piece mountain crank gives this bike a wide gear range along with steel calliper brakes for confident stopping.
The bike comes in a red metallic design, which personally I really like the look of!
Like most bikes these day, it’s easy to assemble, making it great for beginners to get going with
The tires have a good tread which should lead to increase traction, giving you more control when riding.
The size of the bike may be slightly smaller than other bikes we’ve looked at, but isn’t too small to ignore.
Again, for under $200, the bike offers great value.
Best Hybrid Bike Under 200
8. Kent Northwoods Springdale Women’s Hybrid Bicycle
The bike is designed for women and personally, I think it looks awesome! It comes in a sleek looking white, with an old fashioned touch added to the seat and external features.
This hybrid bike consists of a lightweight handcrafted aluminium frame with 700c tires.
A range of 21 speeds that are easily adjusted makes this hybrid a comfortable ride, whilst feeling confident and safe thanks to the linear pull brakes.
Measuring 16” from the bottom bracket to the top seat of the tube, riders have found this 25lbs bike to be excellent value for money with great features and a back rack.
Users have also found the bike to be easy to handle and light enough to carry up a 6-step patio!
A feature that I also love about this bike, is the rear rack above the back tire. It adds aesthetic and functional abilities, that I think are great!
Fenders are also present to help keep that muddy spray off you whilst you ride.
The bike is very economical and easy to assemble, even for those who have never put together a bike before!
The seat is also said to be very comfortable and perfect for leisurely journeys.
Overall, the bike looks great and is perfect for riders who may be on the shorter side!
9. Diamondback Bicycles Edgewood Hybrid Bike
The height and angle of the handlebars can be adjusted to suit.
The 3 gears at the front and 7 at the back allows enough of a gear range to take the bike up and down hills.
Wide Kenda tires offer good grip on gravel paths and enough traction – perfect for travelling around town on.
The aluminium alloy frame with Sport Hybrid Geometry allows for an upright pedalling position and a stable ride.
In addition, the 21-speed gear range provides a wide range of speeds to travel through a variety of different terrains.
The bike is above to ride “off-road” over terrain such as pebbles, but still ensures a smooth journey on pavement, making it easy to ride.
The bike is easy to put together and comes 85% ready assembled.
The tires are known to be long lasting, so shouldn’t go flat easily.
Mature riders should find this bike easy to use and overall it offers great value.
Best Road Bikes Under 200
10. Critical Cycles Harper Coaster Fixie Style Commuter Bike
This particular bike is a single-speed bike with a built-in coaster brake and few moving parts.
Its simple construction makes the Harper Coaster low-maintenance and lightweight, which is ideal for both frequent and occasional riders.
The built-in coaster brake allows for a softer stop just by pedalling backwards – no handle gripping.
Designed for street riding, this Hybrid comes with 700x23c Kenda tires that can cruise through uneven pavement through cold, wet weather.
A number of riders can enjoy the Harper Coaster thanks to the adjustable riser handlebars to suit different heights.
The bike features VP freestyle pedals, which is a nice added extra.
Ideally, the bike is designed for individuals who are over 6 foot in height. Having said that there is a weight limit of 220lbs.
The minimalist lightweight design is easy to assemble and comes with fenders for the wheels.
Although the bike offers a wide appeal, it may not be suitable for riders over 6ft, as the seat-to-ground distance maybe too long.
11. Vilano Rampage Fixed Gear Fixie Single Speed Road Bike
The Vilano Rampage comes with the hub on the freewheel for coasting, and the urban geometry track style frame makes this bike all the more lightweight and durable.
Good quality and affordable, this particular road bike feature Deep-V anodized wheels with matching anodized hubs. The rear hub itself allows for quick change from single speed to fixed gear just by flipping the rear wheel.
The 28c tires make for better traction and control over pavement. Users have found the bike to weigh in around 22lbs and would be suitable for riders whom are just shy of 6ft.
The bike is fairly easy to maintain, as no gears are present, so there’s less to go wrong!
If you’re not a fan of the orange, which by the way, I love! It comes in a variety of colours, such as red and blue, which look equally as striking.
Although the bike is great for commuting, it’s certainly not for racing or off-road tracks!
The bike is comfortable and sturdy with excellent paintwork, making this bike great value for money.
In conclusion, there is no doubt that a wide range of bikes under $200 is readily available at your fingertips.
Begin by figuring out the type of bike to suit your needs: whether you’re in need of an adventure mountain bike for touring up and down terrain; or a road bike for daily commuting; or perhaps a cyclocross bike to get the best of both worlds; and once decided, you can then choose from a variety of good quality, affordable bikes.
However, the best bike to suit a number of riding types would have to be the Stowabike 26″ MTB V2 Folding Dual Suspension 18 Speed Shimano Gears Mountain Bike.
Incredibly versatile and appropriate for all types of surfaces, this mountain bike is widely accredited by previous users for its steel, sturdy features and for being both simple to fold away and compact enough for better storage.
Riders find this bike to be a smooth ride that adjusts easily with high gearing and a light weight. The suspension makes it efficient over bumps with relative ease and is a superb choice for both young and mature riders.
Its locking mechanism is solid, and the entire bike can fit into the smallest of trunks. A great quality bike for a beginner or for those picking up bike-riding after retirement!
With such affordable, fully-functioning bikes as mentioned above, there really is no excuse for not being able to bike-ride more and to bump up those statistics!