When customers come into our store looking for a folding bike , one of the first questions that they ask us is "What's the best folding bike?" By and large, folding bikes are diverse in design, folding mechanisms, and purpose. As such, you can't compare them in such a way that you can point out the best folding bicycle of the group. More appropriate questions would be "What's the lightest folding bike?", "What's the quickest folding bike?", "What's the most inexpensive folding bike?", and "What's the most portable bike?" Every folding bike has its own virtues.
The best folding bike depends on your needs as a rider, and the best folding bike for you might not be the best folding bike for someone else.Our picks for the best folding bikes:
To get the best commuter folding bike for your money, we recommend the Dahon Mariner. This bike has all the features you want in a commuter: 7 gears for a comfortable and versatile ride, a rack and fenders. This bike folds up nice and small for transport on trains and buses or in the trunk of your car. We've sold more Mariner bikes to commuters than any other.
The Mariner is made by Dahon Bikes, the oldest folding bike manufacturer and most popular world wide.
The Brompton Folding Bike is our most popular folding bicycle for city riding and also for travel. That's because if folds up smaller than any other folding bike in our shop! The small and portable size is thanks to the ingenious English design. Not only that, the Brompton is hand built in England making it the best quality construction of any bike in the shop. They are customization with various color, gearing, and accessory options to make your bike as unique as you are!
We carry many stock Brompton bikes but you can also order one custom. In our experience, for portability and quality, nothing beats Brompton folding bikes.
The best fast and lightweight folding bikes are the Tern Verge X10, Tern Verge X18, and Tern Verge X20. These bikes have 10, 18, and 20 gears respectively, and are road bike style folding bikes that will have you flying. The Verge X20 weighs a feathery 20.5 lbs and can be lifted with just one hand with ease. The X10 is 21.3 lbs, and the X18 is 22.9 lbs. These bikes are prefect if you have to carry your bike up a lot of stairs, carry it often, or just want a super fast ride!
If you're into the fancy and high end models and really want something extra special you should take a look at the Tern Verge bikes. This line from Tern has all the best parts, super light frames, and is performance tuned to be super light and fast.
The best folding bike with full size wheels would be the Montague Navigator. The Navigator is the full package when it comes to full size pavement bikes. It features disc brakes, 27 gears for all terrain riding, and integrated rack and fenders. Oh, and it also folds in half! You still get that smooth 700c wheel ride, but have the convenience of folding it for storage and transportation.
Montague actually makes a whole range of full size folding bikes. There are some which are road bicycles and some which are mountain bikes but all of them fold up to a more portable size than a regular bicycle.
There's lots of good advice in our lightest folding bike article on picking a good light weight folding bicycle. Brompton's titanium models are nice, weighing as little as 19 lbs, and Tern also offers some of the lightest folding bikes on the market.
If you're looking for compactness, a bike that folds with great ease and forms a small package that can be taken anywhere. Remember that the smallest folding bike would be a Brompton. If you need a bike that you can take absolutely anywhere and brings folding bike travel into your daily routine effortlessly, Brompton can be rolled on little wheels attached to the frame even when in its folded position, making it easy to cart around.
If you're looking for the least expensive folding bike on the market, then for you the best folding bike would be one of Dahon's models. Dahon produces a wide variety of models, some better than others but all of good quality. They may not fold as compactly as some of the other folding bikes out there, but they offer a good folding bike for your dollar.