Unlike mountain bikes or other types that may have all sorts of different speeds and gears, a fixed gear bike (also known as a fixie) is much simpler. Fixies are popular because they’re simple, easy to build and work on, and you have a lot of control. On top of all that, they’re very fun to ride, and popular among enthusiasts. When you pedal forward, the bike moves forward a proportional amount. The same goes for when you pedal backwards. You get maximum efficiency for your efforts with a single speed bicycle, they’re often lighter due to having less mechanical parts, and once again - an absolute blast to ride around!
If you’re looking for the best fixed gear bikes, keep reading to find out what we’ve discovered after a lot of careful research and digging around.
In a hurry? The test winner after 17 hours of research:
Pure Fix Original
Why is it better?
Last Updated: January 18, 2019
By Max Shumpert: This article has been updated to reflect the most accurate information regarding fixed gear bikes available for those who are interested in single speed bikes. The best 7 available have changed, and information has been added to assist individuals in finding the best single speed bikes currently available on the market. The FAQ has also been updated.
Pure Fix Original
6K Urban Track
Critical Cycles Pursuit
Best Single Speed bikes
We’ve carefully tested and analyzed a lot of fixed gear bikes currently on the market, and decided on these 12 as our favorites. We’ve made sure to cover various budgets, styles, uses, and component options to provide a better variety.
We definitely have our top two choices that we’ll reveal at the end, but we recommend any of these 12 for those looking to either get started with fixies, or upgrade from one they converted themselves.
1. PURE FIX ORIGINAL
The Original from Pure Fix is a perfect example of a well-rounded fixed gear bike that focuses on all the right aspects, while keeping the price in an affordable range.
It offers a truly authentic fixed gear look, but places an emphasis on its components and ride quality.
Add in an array of color options (30 to be exact) and you have a superior ided gear bike that provides excellent efficiency and control, with the ability to suit anyone’s style.
The Original’s frame is crafted from high-ten steel, taking a different approach from many companies who prefer aluminum these days. Don’t worry about weight though; the Original stays within the 22-24 pound range depending on its size.
The frame showcases a classic urban look, with straight dropouts, a straight fork, and a seatpost angle than encourages forward-leaning riding. An alloy riser handlebar helps the rider to relax just a bit, creating a more comfortable environment or the back and shoulders.
Seating is provided by a racing-style saddle with a slight dip in the front, and some added padding as well. This helps the bike retana fast feel, with some added comfort for longer rides across town.
The Original uses a sealed bearing crank for the rear hub, which also happens to be reversible for the times you need a freewheel ride instead. A KMC Z-240 chain and hard plastic platform pedals help to round out the efficient 44:16 gear ratio for this drivetrain.
A single ProMax caliper brake in the front offers ample stopping power when needed in a moment’s notice. The included lever has a responsive feel to it, without being too sensitive or mushy.
The bike’s wheelset consists of 40mm deep dish rims with added aerodynamics and durability for tough city riding. WTB ThickSlick Kenda tires go all-in with the bald tire feel, combining a thicker and more durable tire design with a slick tread, for smooth, shock absorbent riding that can withstand small potholes and drops.
Pure Cycles has made sure to give the Original the capability to equip a number of accessories, including foot straps, water bottles, racks, and also different styles of handlebars if need be. You can easily turn this bike into a true urban commuter with a ton of added versatility.
It’s easy to see why this is one of our favorite single speed bikes available. Pure Cycles didn’t overlook any details, placing the appropriate attention on the core aspects, and surrounding them with quality parts and components. This bike is great for beginners and fixed gear enthusiasts.
If you'd like to learn more about this bike, read our review.
2. 6KU URBAN TRACK
The Urban Track Bike by 6KU is the ideal city bike for commuting, enjoying the weekend and getting around without unnecessary gears and weight. For a city dweller having a bunch of gears is a drawback because stop and start traffic means that you would need to change constantly.
Fixed gear is the way to go in an urban setting, and this bike from 6KU is a perfect choice. Not only is it elegant and stylish, both important characteristics, the quality of the materials and components used is also stellar.
The frame itself is constructed of an aluminum alloy which is incredibly lightweight and uses double butted smooth welding for a clean finish and unmatchable strength. This construction method gives you the best of both worlds, a bike that is light enough to carry upstairs while still being extraordinarily durable.
6KU believes “everyone should be able to own a bike without breaking the bank” which is why they skipped unnecessary features to keep the price affordable and to give you huge value.
Their fixed gear bikes are available in five different colorways so that you can find one to match your personality. Navy blue/black, black/black, burgundy/black, celeste/black and white/black.
Every bike is manufactured and designed by 6KU, ensuring that every model that leaves their factory has been stress tested, color approved and quality assured. Plus, they have a hassle free warranty if the bike breaks because of a manufacturing problem.
That’s great, but what about the specifications? This fixed gear bike uses a lightweight 6061 alloy frame, with a matching 1 and 1/8th-inch alloy fork that gives you strength and comfort. You’ll notice that it’s packed with featured including replaceable stainless steel dropouts, smooth double butted welds, and premium aluminum.
The bike rides on 30mm deep V double wall alloy wheels complete with a flip-flop hub, which lets you swap between freewheel and fixed gear so you can coast or use a direct drivetrain. Swapping between them only takes a minute or less!
If you want to remove the front or rear brakes, as many people prefer to do with fixed gear bikes, it’s incredibly easy and will only take a minute or two.
Overall, the 6KU fixed gear is excellent value for money. Constructed out of premium aluminum it’s about as light as you’ll get at this price point and you can visually see that the build quality is tremendous from the smooth double butted welds.
Click here to read our review.
3. CRITICAL CYCLES PURSUIT
Nobody does budget-minded fixed gear bikes quite like Critical Cycles. The company knows what riders are looking for in a fixie, and they know that most aren’t willing to spend more than a few hundred dollars.
The Pursuit offers a lot in terms of style and versatility, but this does not come at the expense of its quality and durability.
The bike is a true urban rode machine, easily taking on the roughest of urban paths while providing outstanding speed and efficiency.
The track-style frame is hand-built, and crafted from high-ten steel. Horizontal dropouts are used, with an angled fork that retains a racing feel. This is all controlled using a flat-angled handlebar assemble with bullhorns on each end for added riding positions.
A pista saddle gives the bike a more aggressive riding feel that is perfectly matched with the handlebar and stem angling. Kraton rubber track grips add some comfort to your steering, with some added shock absorption thrown in too.
As with every Critical Cycles fixie, this Pursuit comes with a reversible cog with sealed bearings, givne the bike two different riding styles, while keeping the cog and hub clean during any conditions as well. A KMC chain powers it all, connected to a Protek crankset.
The Pursuit comes with one ProMax hand brake, which is actually located on the left side, although it’s a rear brake. This takes some getting used too, but not long.
The bike’s wheelset is what gives it so much durability. You get 43mm deep V double wall rims with varying colors depending on the finish you go with. Wanda City 700 x 23c tires have a thicker look and feel to them, helping give the bike its notable durability and toughness.
The wheelset easily tackles bumps and drops in your path, protecting against bening, boosting shockabrosption, and improving handling. Critical Cycles actually includes a bike multi-tool that can be used on all of the Pursuit’s components, giving you an easy way to perform both maintenance and make emergency repairs.
The combination of value, style, and performance easily pushes the Critical Cycles Pursuit into or best of 2019 list. If you’re wanting to keep things under $220 when shopping for a brand new fixie, this is your best option.
If you'd like to read our in-depth review, click here.
4. MERAX FINISS
The Merax Finiss is more of an entry-level fixed gear bike that includes a few different approaches for an economical fixed gear. This bike manages to cram in as much as it can for the price range, including a noticeable different frame design, and more unique brake choice as well.
The Finiss is all about aluminum. The frame is forged from aluminum, along with the handlebar, stem, seatpost, and even the pedals.
This gives the bike an added dose of shock absorption, and a quicker feel as well. The weight comes in at around 24 pounds, give or take a few depending on the size you need.
The bike’s saddle is surprisingly comfortable, and is a good match for the rise style handlebars complete with rubber BMX grips. Ths helps create the typical road bike-oriented riding position but with just enough angling for a more relaxed stance when seated.
The Finiss’ handlebar design actually allows for full 360-degree rotation, which adds to its maneuvering ability and versatility. One single brake is operated on the left side with a lever, controlling a front disc brake, offering an improvement from the standard caliper brakes most fixies have.
One if the standout characteristics is the bike’s golden hubs on the front and back ends. The rear flip hub is forged from aluminum, and can easily be switched around to offer freewheel riding.
Kenda 700 x 28C tires are paired with super deep-V double wall rims with stainless steel spokes, giving the bike a some. The tires also feature a slightly tread design that provides better grip while deflecting moisture.
We love the all-black color of the Finiss, which comes with a red wall tire option if you’d like to be a little more bold. Either way, for under $250, the Merax Finiss a great value, and a good way to get into riding fixed gear bikes for cheap.
Want to read our review? Click here.
5. GOLDEN CYCLES
Golden Cycles’ fixed gear bike is yet another example that shows you don’t have to spend a lot of money to get a quality, stylish fixie that is ready to go from the minute you get it assembled.
This bike offers everything from 21 color options, to surprisingly solid parts and components that have been combined to offer an agile and fun ride.
Both the frame and fork are crafted from high-tensile steel that has been tig-welded through and through for a more seamless look.
A racing-style saddle helps to further the aggressive feel this bike has, providing a good contrast with the typical riser-style handlebars and BMX rubber grips. Caliper brakes are on both the front and back wheels, both of which are operated using well-placed levers that ensure an appropriate amount of control.
The bike’s drivetrain is very efficient, and slightly favors quick acceleration over high top speeds, which can be helpful in many riding settings. An alloy 46T crank pairs with a sealed bearing bottom bracket and flip flop hub, giving the bike extra versatility with a freewheel mode when desired.
700c x 25 Kenda tires and 45mm deep alloy rims comprise the wheelset, which is available in a wide range of colors depending on your color choices. The tires have a little bit of tread to them, and some added thickness for better shock absorption as well.
Overall, the Golden Cycles fixed gear bike is a solid value, and makes for an ideal introduction to fixies for beginners thanks to its price and dual-brake setup. Those who want to hang onto it for awhile can easily upgrade components while enjoying the quality frame and fork.
Read our in-depth review by clicking here.
6. SB BLACK LABEL
Those who are looking for speed and performance above all else with a fixed gear should strongly consider the Black Label made by State Bicycles. This bike is truly a lightweight beast on the road, and can also hold its own on the track as well.
The Black Label has an aggressive and powerful build that encourages high speeds and quick handling at all times.
The frame is made from 6061 aluminum aero material, and is highlighted by an Essor carbon fiber fork, reducing weight and giving it added shock absorption properties in the front.
The Black Label comes in a variety of colors, with something to offer for any taste. We prefer the matte black, but you can get everything from hot pink to pearl white.
A PU race saddle with steel rails positions the rider to adequately maneuver the drop down Pista handlebars. Although not required to use, the Black Label does come with caliper brakes for the front and back wheels that can be easily mounted on the handlebar.
32Hx14G high flange sealed bearings are found on the bike's rear hub, which can of course be flipped to offer freewheel riding as well. This is coupled with a limited edition Galaxy 46T crankset, and a KMC Z510 chain.
CST 700x23c tires give the bike some added speed and balance, option for better steering and power instead of rugged shock absorption and thickness. 700c track wheels with 43mm of depth provide the perfect setting for the tires, and help keep the weight down as well.
Yes, the State Black Label is a bit more expensive than your average fixed gear, but the frame build and high-end components make it all worth it. If improved performance is your goal, and you don’t mind some sleek styling as well, the Black Label should be your first choice.
If you'd like to read our review, click here.
7. TAKARA RENZO
The Takara Renzo offers a more durable fixed gear bike for those who need a fixie that can withstand some added abuse from demanding city riding.
Swapping out low weight for stability and ruggedness, the Renzo is built to take on the daily impacts of sprawling urban cores.
The Renzo is based around an aluminum frame that offers a bit of flex, coupled with a steel fork for improved toughness.
The frame has more of a mountain bike look to it, with extra thick tubes coupled with horizontal dropouts.
A Vitesse saddle offers a fair amount of padding, which is a nice surprise considering the overall build of the bike. Taped bullhorn-style handlebars give the Renzo some added versatility, and also happen to look pretty great as well.
Dual side-pull brakes are found on the front and back of the bike, giving you lots of stopping power that’s perfect for the unpredictability of urban streets. A flip flop rear hub gives you the option of a freewheel ride.
The Renzo’s wheelset offers a bit of a contrast from its tough frame design. 32-hole deep dish alloy rims are paired with 700x32c Kenda tires, which also feature a small amount of tread for added grip on the pavement. The skinnier profile adds some speed to the bike, while keeping weight manageable.
The Takara Renzo doesn’t offer any unique or standout aspects, but overall, it’s a very quality fixed gear bike that gives riders who need more toughness an affordable option. Its combination of strength and stability will be appealing to riders who aren’t concerned as much about weight and speed with their fixed gears.
Big Shot’s Havana is a true street smart fixie that combines a lot of different fixed gear designs together to create a versatile bike that is still built for speed and efficiency, while turning a few heads along the way too.
Crafted from 4130 chromoly, the Havana has a surprisingly light feel to it, and still manages to get the added stability that steel alloys offer.
The orange color and frame shape give it the sort of aesthetic that resembles custom-modified fixed gears made by those who convert old road bikes to fixies, which is a very cool look.
A thin, sporty saddle gives the Havana more of a road bike look, and helps provide a quick, aggressive feel that is a good compliment to the fully taped handlebar with straight mids, and bullhorns on the ends.
Dual brakes make the bike safe and legal for city riding, and add a bit more stopping power when needed for maximum control. A lower gear ratio gives the Havana a quick start off the blocks, and also sustains adequate top speeds on flatter portions.
43mm deep-V rims offer the right amount of stability and swiftness, and are paired with attractive whitewall tires that have a slick tread for smooth handling on city roads.
The Havana definitely looks the part, and has all the right components to back it up. This is one of the best combinations of style and functionality you’ll get for an entry level price, while still retaining the ability to go freewheel with a flip hub.
Vilano has a reputation for putting out quality bikes that easily are accessible for entry level riders in terms of both budget and feel.
It comes as no surprise that they now offer several different fixed gear bikes, with the Edge being one of them.
This classically-styled fixie uses a high-tensile steel frame as its foundation, which does result in a little higher weight, but does offer great stability and momentum as a trade-off.
It’s also available in several different color schemes, which range from low key, to bright and attention-grabbing.
An urban saddle with wide coverage and ample cushioning provides a comfortable seat during your rides, and encourages a slightly aggressive stance thanks to taped bullhorn handlebars. An extended stem gives the Edge improved handling.
A rear flip flop hub allows for fixed gear and freewheel riding, and is part of a drivetrain that uses a 16T cassette, and a 46T forged alloy chainring with durable plastic platform pedals. A KMC Z410 chain ties it all together.
Alloy caliper brakes come on both the front and rear wheels for better stopping power. 45mm double-walled deep-V rims with matching anodized hubs are a great match for the bike’s 700cx28c city tires with minimal tread.
Overall, the Vilano Edge is yet another fine entry-level fixed gear bike that merges style with solid components and quality frame materials. Riders who want a comfortable fixie with some awesome color options should give this one an extra look.
What’s better than a fixed gear bike? One that glows in the dark. The Pure Fix Glow in the Dark bike is one of the more unique fixies out there, combining Pure’s potent blend of high-end gear components and strategic design with multiple glowing paint options.
The bike’s frame is crafted from high-ten steel, which Pure manages to keep at a low weight of 22-24 pounds when fully equipped.
The frame comes in several different color options, all of which can glow in the dark for over an hour after night begins, after just an hour of sunlight to get “charged.”
A classic Vector saddle contributes to the bike’s low weights, offering just enough coverage and padding to keep things adequately comfortable. A Zoom riser handlebar places the rider in an ideal position that encourages speed and agility, but not at the expense of your back and shoulders.
A 44:16 gear ratio is provided by a Lasco three-piece sealed bearing crank, and a flip flop KT Quando rear hub. Flat Wellgo pedals include cages for a more secure ride, or better assistance when stopping without hand brakes.
For those that want a hand brake, the Pur Fix includes a front caliper brake that you can equip or keep off, depending on your preferences. Versatile Kenda tires are paired with 500mm deep dish wheels that encourage higher speeds and better handling -- along with glow in the dark rims.
If the Pure Fix Original is a bit tame for your tastes, the glow in the dark version offers a bit more fun, and functionality as well. This is a fixie for those who want to make a statement in a unique way, and all without going over $400.
Yeah, we are definitely not surprised that another bike from Critical Cycles made this list.
The Harper is a true commuter bike packaged as a fixed gear, resulting in a natural combination that makes this an affordable and versatile back and forth bike for daily use.
The Harper uses a hand-built steel track frame that gives the rider a better sense of stability and body positioning more conducive for logging some extra miles each day.
A hybrid-style saddle offers some much welcomed comfort, without losing the race-like design many fixed gear riders prefer. The Harper’s handlebars are very generous with their rise on each end, allowing for a more upright riding position that is easier on your back. Soft rubber grips offer easy steering and handling.
Commuting can be a little more treacherous on a fixie, so Critical Cycles included hand brakes on both the front and back for better stopping ability in a moment’s notice. Yes, you can remove them if you’d like, or just go down to one.
A flip flop rear hub provides freewheel riding in just a matter of minutes. VP Freestyle pedals are very wide and light, helping you to maximize your pedal efficiency with each revolution. A KMC chain connects the rear hub and crankset.
30mm deep-V rims with a machined braking surface interact well with the caliper brake pads, avoiding squeaking while improving stopping power. Wanda city tires are a bit on the thin side, but they are very durable, and contribute to the bike’s quick overall feel.
Fixies always make for great commuter bikes, but the Harper really takes the idea to heart. It offers plenty of functionality, without sacrificing style, feel, and comfort. This is easily one of our favorites.
Important aspects to consider when buying a fixed gear bike
The more you know beforehand, the better your shopping experience and final purchase result will be. Here are the most important things to go over prior to buying a fixed gear bike.
In case you weren’t aware, fixed gear bikes do require some skills that go beyond your basic bike riding ability learned at a young age. Most of us are used to having a freewheel for years prior to riding a fixed gear bike, so the drivetrain’s operation changers things fairly drastically.
With fixed gears, the constantly engaged pedals alter how you accelerate and slow, which in turn affects how you navigate the bike and achieve your pedal efficiency. If you’re still a novice in regards to your bike skills, a fixie is going to take some getting used to.
This is especially true if you are going to opt for a brakeless model. If you have never ridden a brakeless fixie, you will need some adjustment and reconfiguring of your riding habits. In this case, it’s best to get a bike with brakes for emergencies while you learn to stop using other methods.
The size of your fixed gear bike is just as important as any other. These bikes generally use a road bike frame design with a flat top tube, so you have to be mindful of the inseam clearance first and foremost.
If you end up with a bike that is too big or too small, the quality of the ride will be affected, which includes your steering and pedal efficiency. The extra control needed for fixed gears places an added emphasis on buying the right size as well.
Fortunately, the overwhelming majority of fixed gear bikes are available in multiple sizes, and not just small, medium or large. Most of the time, you can find a bike in a particular size measured by inches, giving you the ability to purchase the exact size for your body.
Fixed gear bikes are very popular for commuting and urban transportation in dense areas, but their uses can go well beyond that. Identifying your future bike’s main purpose and usage can help you select the one that is best for that.
If you’re a heavy commuter, and you need a bike that is light, fast, and controlled, it’s best to look for models that are around the 20-22 pound range, have a mid range gear ratio, and include a hand brake as well.
Those who are looking to ride a fixie more casually around the neighborhood or close by, and prefer a little more style will have more choices, since brakeless models will generally be okay, and the bike’s design and aesthetic get a little more attention too.
Riders who are using the fixed gear bike for fitness use and training will want to get a model that places an emphasis on comfort and performance, which will include optimized drivetrain components, a light weight, and maybe even clipless pedals or holsters.
Now, you don’t have to classify yourself in any of these areas, but it does help to consider your main reasons for getting a fixie.
A proper understanding of a fixed gear bike comes from having a proper understanding of its core components. Here are the main ones you need to be familiar with.
The frame is where it all starts. As we said earlier, fixed gear bikes generally have a road bike-type frame. This gives the bike some added response and control, which helps with speed and maneuvering too.
The usual build of a fixie means you’ll be feeling a lot bumps and shocks in the road, so the frame can help with that in some sense. Aluminum frames are not only lighter, they offer a bit more flex than steel frames, which helps absorb shock.
Steel frames do offer the most in terms of pedal efficiency and stability, so it’s really a trade off, and depends on preference. Most will want a lighter frame, however.
This is arguably the most important part. A fixed gear bike really is all about the fixed gear, so the components are of the utmost importance for those wanting the best riding experience, speed, and power.
Sealed hubs are usually preferred since they keep out dirt and moisture, and help cut down on the maintenance. Reversible hubs are always a good idea as well, since they give you the option of flipping the wheel around for freewheel riding, which may come in handy from time to time.
The front crank and rear cog comprise the rest of the drivetrain, with their size determining the gear ratio of the bike. Larger cranks will have higher top speeds, but slower acceleration.
Pedals can vary on fixed gears, but a basic BMX-style platform pedal set is very common. Those who want more control, or need assistance with brakeless stopping will want clipless pedals, or toe cages.
The handlebars of a fixie play a large role in determining how it steers, and your actual riding position as well. Handlebars that curve upwards on the sides are more comfortable to ride, but may not offer the right aesthetic to some.
Shorter handlebars are popular among fixie purists, along with a purely flat design. Bullhorns and dropped handlebars are options as well, and depend on your preference and riding needs.
The saddle of a fixed gear can vary greatly. Road and racing saddles are very common, but there are some who will want something a little more comfortable, even if it doesn’t look as cool.
For the most part, fixed gear bike saddles are basically road bike saddles with a little extra padding. Some may have a more aggressive shape as well. The saddle’s angle adjustability plays a big role in how it well feel for you and your body size.
Grips for a Single-Speed
Fixed gear bike grips give you plenty of options for expressing your own personal style preferences. BMX-style rubber grips are popular with urban riders who are going for that street fixie look. Taped grips are popular with others.
Rubber grips are going to be the most comfortable, but grips are one of the easiest things you can change out on a bike, so don’t prioritize them too much when shopping -- you can always change them later.
We hope you have some clarity now when it comes to shopping for your own fixed gear bike. As we’ve said, all of these bikes are solid, with most of them catering to certain budgets or riding styles.
Just remember to use the criteria we highlighted earlier in the article, and you’ll end up with the perfect single-speed bike for your riding needs. Let us know how you like your new bike in the comments below, and please feel free to check out our review section for some in-depth examinations of a handful of our favorites from this list.
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