Hybrid bikes are among the most versatile bicycles you can find today. A hybrid bike combines many features surrounding touring, road, and mountain bikes and brings them in one body. But you might be curious as to how fast hybrid bikes can go.
What Is the Average Speed of a Hybrid Bicycle?
An average hybrid bike can travel at speeds from 12 to 18 miles per hour on average. A bicycle will go its fastest when the road is clean and open. Some hybrid bikes will come with multiple gears that can help you move at a comfortable speed, depending on the situation.
For Comparison’s Sake
A hybrid bike’s speed is different when compared with other bicycle styles. Whereas a hybrid bike can travel from 12 to 18 miles per hour, a road bike can go from 15 to 22 mph. A mountain bike will go about 8 to 12 mph, and a touring bike will travel around 12 to 15 mph. In short, a hybrid bike is not going to travel as fast as a road bike, but it will go faster than a touring or mountain model.
Understanding the Combination of Features
Part of why a hybrid bike can travel as fast comes from its design. An average hybrid bicycle will incorporate many features from other models:
- The handlebars on a hybrid bike are typically flat and straight, like what a mountain bike has.
- A hybrid model will also feature the same upright seat layout a mountain bike features.
- The tires will be slightly thinner than what a mountain bike uses. The tires will also be smooth like what a road bike offers, although some grooves may still appear on the treads. The design reduces the effort necessary to pedal the bike.
- The hooks and other compartments on a hybrid bike are similar to what a touring bike features.
These points contribute to how fast a hybrid bicycle can travel. While the tires allow the bike to move fast and through many surfaces, the upright seating design and the added compartments around the body will add drag, keeping the speed down.
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Gears Are Necessary
You will have more control over how fast your hybrid bike will travel if you have a model with many gears. Gears use pulleys on cogs that the pedals will push.
In this setup, the pedals will turn a cog on the front wheel that pulls a chain linked to another cog on the rear wheel to move the bike forward. You can switch gears to adjust how many times the rear wheel will revolve with each pedal stroke. You can produce an easier ride as necessary. Sometimes it can add extra speed in wide-open situations, but it could also limit your speed on some sensitive spots.
Each hybrid bike will use its gears differently with varying pulleys and other mechanisms depending on how many speeds it can support. Here are the three most common examples you’ll find:
- One-Speed: Most hybrid bikes are one-speed models. A single-speed model does well on flat surfaces. It will not produce the fastest speeds, but it is easier to maintain. You can add oil to the chain each month.
- Three-Speed: A three-speed bike features multiple pulleys to support three speed settings for different road situations. Most hybrid models feature a cover over the gear hub to prevent the gears from damage. These require the same amount of maintenance as an average one-speed bike.
- Seven-Speed: Seven-speed hybrid bikes are for people who travel long distances or those who tend to ride on slopes. You can use a single shifter, but you must ensure the chain shifts to the right gears. This bike model will feature a derailleur on the outside that will move the chain to different gears. This component will require extra checks to ensure it is properly aligned.
Hybrid bicycles can travel up to 18 miles per hour, but the gear layout and the road conditions will factor into how fast you can travel at a time. The distinct design of the bicycle provides a good explanation for why the bike can travel that fast. The convenient design is still convenient for all riders to use.