Top 3 Best Folding Bikes Under $200 (May 2020)
For bikers looking for portability and convenience, finding the best folding bikes under $200 is key. Folding models are lightweight, easy to use, and most importantly, easy to transport from one place to another. Often called “folders,” folding bikes have undergone extensive renovations and transformations. Folders used to be bulky, heavy, and awkward to ride. As biking technology increases and the demand for convenience rises, folders have become much more streamlined, aesthetically pleasing, and easy to operate.
A good part of these changes also stems from tightened airline restrictions on bringing bikes—those that could be compactly folded up could travel free of charge. During the early 90s, folders began to experience a revival in form, innovation, and convenience. Today, there are over 150 different models and types of foldable mountain bikes. Thanks to a few decades of innovation in materials and basic construction, the folding mechanism found in the bikes of today are much more efficient than early models, offering higher performance, increased comfort, and lighter weights.
Advantages Of Folding Bikes
Compared to conventional bikes, these bikes come with a few key advantages. These benefits can create new possibilities for travel and road experience, allowing bikers to bring their rides along with them wherever their path may lead. These advantages are: No booking restrictions With very few exceptions, folders don’t require any necessary booking arrangements to be brought along on public transportation systems. This includes ferries, subways, railways, buses, and airlines. Enhanced protection against theft Of course, conventional bikes and folding bikes alike all have the potential to be stolen, and for the most part, chains and locks help prevent that. Unfortunately, even the sturdiest lock can be broken. These bikes allow for users to easily keep an eye on their bike, bringing it along to offices, stores, or restaurants. Increased storage space
Folding Bikes Wheel Size
Consider wheel size when looking for your ideal folding bike. It makes a difference in the folded size as well as what kind of terrain the bike is best suited to. Most folding bikes use 20-inch wheels to ensure they fold down to a manageable size and stay relatively light when commuting or traveling on public transport. If you plan on riding longer distances, 700c wheels will offer a smooth ride and maximize your pedaling input—but at the expense of a smaller size when folded down, and a lower weight.
Alternatively, a folding e-bike offers some pedal assist to save energy and make sure you don’t show up to work with sweaty clothes. If you plan to ride off-road, then a folding fat bike with 4-inch tires can smooth out a bumpy trail. Most of these bikes come as “one size fits all” with a lot of adjustability as you unfold them. Check for quick-release levers or simple adjustments so that the bike fits and rides well. A model with a lot of versatility may even be suitable for more than one member of your family.
Full Sized Folding Bikes
Not all folding bicycles aim to pack down as small as possible. Some folders arrive with full-size wheels that offer exactly the same riding position as their non-collapsible brethren, but they might not be the best choice if you have to battle busy rail networks twice a day. So consider your specific needs before you buy. The good news is that many folding bikes come with luggage racks or fixings. Other essentials such as mudguards and lights are readily available, and while you might have to forgo that water bottle cage, that’s no great hardship for short urban journeys. Some brands, such as Brompton, even have their own range of luggage, accessories and clothing, and want you to think of the brand as a lifestyle rather than ‘just’ a mode of transport. Folding bikes certainly do cultivate a keen following.
Your body might be a little oversized and you think that you would look like a circus elephant riding a folding bike. That’s not true. There are a lot of heavy-duty folding bikes built for big and tall cyclists, so you can take advantage of all benefits of a folder.
The Price Of Folding Bikes
Folding bikes can be found at nearly every price point, from a couple of hundred pounds up to the multiple thousands. It’s almost certainly a false economy to buy the cheapest one out there: the components and folding mechanism will be lower quality and heavier, they’ll wear out faster and your purchase is more likely to end up unloved in the shed or on a skip. On the other hand, you don’t need to buy a carbon-framed wonder-bike to get something that’s light enough to carry up a flight of stairs, or carry you and your lunch to the office. We’re in the market for the best folding bikes under $200 on this particular article so we’ll be focusing on finding the best value for $200.
Folding Bike Features
Disc brakes are also beginning to appear on folding bicycle, and though usually heavier and more expensive, these will offer greater stopping power – especially in wet weather.
Many folding bicycles will have anything from 7 speed to 18 speed gearing systems. Some will be single speed models. It’s quite common to find the higher number of gears like the 18 speed model on the full size frame folded bikes. The best full size bikes often double up as a mountain bike. The folding frame is one of the best features of these particular bikes as it was unheard of being able to have a full sized mountain bike fold its frame down to a portable, light weight size.
Some of the smaller folding bikes on the market take their inspiration from Brompton bike models. Easily folding frame designs with speed and weight in mind. These small best folding bikes often have an aluminum frame, front and rear fenders and an adjustable stem. Many have limited gearings (7 speed is popular) and some even have a coaster brake to limit the need for cable management.
Although a folding bike with a coaster brake might sound strange it’s something that when you try, you’ll quickly see the appeal.
We’ve found as many of the best folding bikes under $200 that meet our standards for recommendation. We hope you enjoy!
IDS unYOUsual Folding Bike
- ✔ Lightweight Aluminum Frame
- ✔ 6 Speed Shimano Shifters
- ✔ Semi-Alloy Front And Rear V-Type Brakes
- ✔ Rear Kickstand
- 20 – inch folding bicycle designed for commuting and exercising.
- Shimano 6 speed shifter and derailleur. semi-alloy front and rear V-brake.
- WANDA 20″ x 1.75 tires
- Quick removable front handle stem. with alloy silver color cap & PVC black bell.
- Easy assembly and ride
There are a few things that stood out to us with this bike. We all liked the wheels that come with this bike =. They seemed to be heavier duty wheels that could handle different flat terrain conditions. The wheels that come with this bike are made by the reputable bike wheel manufacturer Wanda. They are 20-inch rubber wheels that are a sturdy 1.75 inches wide and tend to be puncture resistant. We liked the way it shifts gears to adjust to the slope you are riding on. It features a Shimano 6 speed shifting system that is very seamless when going between gears. This is nice because it does not wear the chain or gears down over time. It only takes a slight effort with your hand to change speeds too.
The way the IDS unYOUsual is designed it can quickly be folded down to a small and manageable carrying size. This is done simply by activating a few quick connect levers built right into the main frame of the bike itself.
This unYOUsual U arc 20-Inch Folding Bike is one of the best folding bikes we have come across. It is one that is certainly worth considering when you are shopping for a new folding bicycle on a tight budget.
“For a base model this bike is great!”
“This bike is an excellent commuter bike and offers a comfortable ride.”
“It is sturdy, fun, and has a very user-friendly folding mechanism.”
“Its fully assembled right out of the box.”
“I give this product an A++.”
OYMA Power Strong Man Folding Mountain Bike
- ✔ Front And Rear Mechanical Disc Brakes
- ✔ Quick Release Wheels
- ✔ 21 Speed Shimano 51-7 Shifter Gearing System
- ✔ High Carbon Lightweight Steel Frame
This is a little known brand that is delivering bikes with impressive specifications. The reviews are mixed however many of the problems that are raised regarding this bikes longevity can be fixed with some simple low cost upgrades. Complaints about poor quality pedals can be rectified with a quick look for some replacement budget pedals.
One of the main complaints is the lack of transparency in regards to the bikes condition upon arrival. The bike does need some assembly, which is enough to put some people off. The only thing worth noting here is you going to find it difficult to locate another a dual suspension bike in this price range.
Some previous customers have mentioned that videos are available online to help with the construction of this bike. Going to a bike shop to get the bike constructed is always an option.
The Strong Man (bike name is referenced on the rear fork) comes with Tolan disc brakes which are really nice. Disc brakes are considered a step up against conventional v-type brakes. They are far more effective in wet conditions and most who choose a disc brake model say they won’t go back to v-type brakes.
A great feature is how this mountain bikes folds up into a small travel sized package. Perfect for storing at home or transporting in your trunk. Forget about needing your bike rack whenever you want to drive to somewhere with the intention of riding your bike.
Overall, we like this bike. It might not be as straight forward ‘out of the box’ as many others on the market but that’s the price you pay for the extra features you can enjoy.
Ecosmo 20 Folding Bike
- ✔ Great For Commuting
- ✔ 7 Speed Shimano Gearing
- ✔ Patented Folding Lock
- ✔ Rear Cargo Rack
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The Ecosmo 20 Folding Bike was very first folding bike we reviewed. It’s a very sturdy folding bike which offers a storage rail at the rear allowing for small luggage transportation. Not quite podium potential due to the more expensive bikes offering more comfort and technology however well worth considering.
- Lightweight Alluminium Frame, bike only 12Kg
- 7 Speed SHIMANO Gears
- Adjustable handlebar & stem
- Patented Folding Lock,Super safe and convenient!!
- Folding Pedals, Alloy rear rack, Alloy Crank
The Ecosmo folding bike is hugely popular and rightly so. It offers commuters a usable mode of transportation while allowing for simple storage once at work. This lovely lightweight alloy folding bike is an ideal companion for your life. The Ecosmo is easy to carry weighing in at just 12 Kg. It is also really easy to fold up taking no more than a reported 1 minute to do it after you get the hang of it. This compact folding bike has sturdy, long seat post, so it is suitable for short and tall riders.
This quality folding bike is an ideal companion for your life. It offers families with enjoyments and mobility in a high level. Everything in one box weighs just 18 Kg. Really easy to fold up, and it takes you no more than 2 minute to do it after you get used to the process, you’ll easily fit this bike inside your car boot.
Small & Compact
When compact this bike takes up 87cm(L) 39cm(W) 60cm(H), this allows you to store it in places you couldn’t even consider for a standard bike.
Ecosmo Folding Bike Summary
A great modern bike that takes full advantage of the technology available. It will transform the way you commute to work, or simply transport your bike. Whether you choose to get on a bus, train or in a car with it, life with a folding bike will prove to be much simpler than a standard bike. Although these benefits do come at a price. The smaller wheels, less road comfort all are factors to consider when you decide for or against a folding bike. The Ecosmo is the obvious choice if you do choose a folding bike over a conventional one.
Why Choose A Folding Bike?
Bicycle is an integral part of life for many people nowadays. Being specifically designed for city cycling, a folding bicycle is even more so. On contrary to ordinary bicycles, folding bikes are much more space-saving and lightweight. Once folded, it’s easy to carry it along to the shops instead of leaving it locked outside or bring home.
Are All Folding Bikes Made Equal?
Just because a bike is a folding bike, it doesn’t automatically make it similar to other models. The folding aspect of the bike is unrelated to the other components and build, so don’t think that you can just purchase some random folding bike with good reviews and come out okay. Folding bikes are just like other types of bikes; they have their own characteristics and components that are suited for certain usages and styles of riding. So, if you end up purchasing a folding mountain bike, and you need it for commuting, you’re selling yourself short on your overall riding experience. For the most part, folding bikes are not inexpensive, so you need to be completely sure that you are getting the right one that is best for your needs, so you don’t end up getting half the value out of your $300.
Why Do You Need A Foldable Bike?
Commuting is by far the most popular reason that someone gets a folding bike. In most cases, riders seek out folding bikes if they regularly use multiple forms of transportation to get around their city.