A carbon fiber road bike is a bike with a frame made entirely out of carbon fiber. It is basically spun carbon that is coated with a type of epoxy and heat hardened. The result is a frame that is 10 times stronger than a steel equivalent, while being extremely light.
But it’s not all carbon fiber. It will also include some metal components, usually the crankset, the wheels, the shifters and various nuts and bolts will be metal. While carbon is strong and light, metal is better suited to certain applications.
Advantages of Carbon Fiber Bikes
Here are three reasons why carbon cycles are so sought after:
- Weight: A carbon fiber road bike commands a high price because there is a significant savings in weight. There are some frames that are only a few pounds. In a race setting, saving a few pounds can make the difference in winning or losing.
- Strength: You don’t sacrifice any strength with carbon fiber. In fact, it’s technically much stronger than steel.
- Durability: Unlike many metals, there is no concern with oxidization or rust. A carbon fiber road bicycle will not have any rust or structural degradation over time like a steel frame would experience.
Five Carbon Steel Frames Under $2,000
Kestrel Talon Carbon Road Bicycle
Kestrel is a brand that’s known for producing mid to high bicycles, and they are extremely reputable. The Kestrel Talon is a great road bike with a carbon frame for well under $2000, and it’s another bargain at this price.
2012 Stradalli Sorrento Full Carbon Road Bike
The Stradalli Sorrento model is a bike intended to offer a carbon road bike experience for under $2000, and it’s a great deal with nice accessories. It’s an extremely lightweight frame that comes with Shimano Apex derailleurs, an FSA RD-60 wheelset, and an SRAM Apex crankset. It’s an extremely strong and nimble ride, perfect for anyone looking for an affordable yet high performance carbon bicycle.
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Eddy Merckx LXM Full Carbon Road Bike
Well under $2000, this carbon fiber road bike has a great brand (inspired by the famous cyclist Eddy Merckx and built inspired for race riding) and comes with a bunch of very nice components. This bike has a frame that dissipates road vibrations, and it is very strong. It’s been purposefully built with a strong front end for stable road riding and climbing. Definitely worth a look!
201 Orbea Onix TLT Carbon Fiber Road Bike
Sometimes to get a great deal on these bicycles, it doesn’t hurt to look at models that are new but a few years old. Bike shops often have a few left from previous seasons, and they can be had for a quarter of the original price.The bike itself reviews pretty well, and the most phenomenal thing is the price. It’s a few years old but it is probably on the ‘higher end’ of carbon race bikes, and it’s a high performance ride and a bargain.
2013 Stradalli Venice 3K Carbon Road Bike
Stradalli is really one of the best deals you can find when it comes to inexpensive carbon fiber road bicycles. They offer a wide range well below our price point of $2k, and this is another example. The beautiful sculpting of the frame and seatpost are a fringe benefit.