Like any good boxing match an announcer will introduce each fighter followed by a list their individual stats, strengths, and accomplishments. In the match up of road bike vs. commuter bike each opponent can boast a strong introduction.
In the first corner, standing at 45.5 – 63 cm is the indomitable Road Bike. With a design built for speed and lightness, whether made from steel, aluminum, or carbon the overall intention of any road bike is to give the rider a fast, light, and nimble ride. The road bike can start at around $800new and go all the way up to $20,000 depending on build, materials, and customization. Like any good sports car a road bike can turn the daily drive to work into a fun, fast adventure that reminds the rider there’s more to life than earning a paycheck. Then on the weekends the Road Bike will transform into the rig of choice for fast short rides or longer touring rides. Road bikes will always sport drop down handle bars, narrower wheels and tires, and road group sets. Since the road bike is lighter and more nimble is has been accused of not being tough enough for the daily grind though thousands can say theirs has done the job with excellence when choosing this bike speed vs. durability needs to be a consideration.
In the other corner, standing at S, M, L, XL or 45.5 – 63 cm is the fasting rising newcomer, The Commuter Bike. With a design built for durability and stability whether built from steel, aluminum, or carbon, the overall intention of a commuter bike is to handle any and all conditions every single work day, year after year. Some commuter bikes will have straight handle bars, some will have drop downs but all will sport beefy wheels and tires for the potholes, roots, rocks, junk, curbs, and general road mayhem commuters face every day on their way to the office. Like any good four-wheel-drive vehicle the commuter bike will safely and consistently get a rider where they need to go with the minimal amount of fuss. On weekends, the commuter bike can be your ticket to cruise through old city streets, gravel paths, through the neighborhood, or out on the bike path. They are versatile and strong. Some commuter bikes, like the Norco Search, are designed to be a weekly commuter but with enough road bike DNA to give the rider a great road ride too on weekends. Commuter bikes with straight handle bars will have mountain bike group sets while drop down handle bar ones will have typical road components. Commuter bikes will, by definition, be heavier and not as nimble as a road bike but with stout reliability and versatility it is a bike that can proudly go into the ring against the road bike and put up a good fight.