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Gravel Bike Buying Guide: Everything You Need To Know

If you are not brand-new to cycling, you probably already know that there is a style of bike that has gained a lot of popularity among cyclists recently in addition to mountain, road, touring, and electric bikes: gravel.

Gravel is the cycling modality that will allow you to combine the best of the mountains with the best of the road, adjusting to the limitations of each and adapting in the best way. You will be able to ride dirt tracks that connect with asphalt climbs with great comfort, in addition to being able to mount bikepacking bags to go on cycling adventures of more than one day on routes with a variety of terrain. A complete pack that will undoubtedly delight many cyclists who want to maintain the sensations of the road on dirt tracks.

If gravel stands out for something, it is for the versatility and versatility that allows you to tackle asphalt routes, dirt tracks, and even some trails with a low level of difficulty. And all this with great pedaling comfort, a matter of great importance for long-term routes.

The main features of gravel bikes

Gravel bicycles usually have particular characteristics in different aspects. It is these details that make them different from road bikes, especially. We present some of the specific details of this type of bike.

  • The geometry of the frame: the frame of a gravel bike is usually very similar to that of a road bike with round shapes in the tubes since aerodynamics is not as important. In addition, comfortable frames are usually sought so that they can spend many hours pedaling without discomfort.
  • Tires: this is a very important factor in gravel bikes. We can vary width and tread depending on the type of routes we want to do. Broken terrain is not the same as a completely smooth gravel track. That will end up affecting our performance when we pedal and that is why a good choice is key.
  • Anchors for packages: this is also a very common feature of gravel bikes. The anchor points are used to carry travel packages and are usually located at different points of the frame. In this way we will carry the luggage safely and without it moving on uneven terrain.
  • The handlebars: in gravel the handlebars have a slightly different shape than the road, seeking comfort above all else. The “horns” of the handlebars are more open outwards, allowing the position on the bike to be more comfortable.
  • The transmission: in recent years brands like Shimano have manufactured specific groups for different modalities, such as the GRX. These are components specially designed for the needs of gravel and with developments that better adapt to the type of conditions, both with two chainrings and with a single chainring.
  • Damping systems: When riding on uneven terrain, some gravel bikes have tiny damping systems. They are not standard forks like mountain bikes, but rather irregularity absorption systems. They will allow us to ride better and more comfortably on tracks that have potholes or stones that make it difficult for us to ride fluidly. These systems are not fitted to all bikes, of course.

What are the advantages of a gravel bike?

Gravel Bike Buying Guide 2023

Surely if you have seen gravel bicycles you have thought: what advantages does it give me compared to other bikes that I may have or buy? Well, the question is not easy to answer, since, despite the fact that they are increasingly accepted in the market, gravel bikes continue to generate doubts for many users. Will it serve as the road for me and will I be able to go on the track? Will I have the same sensations on the asphalt? Will I have to look for routes without complicated trails? These will undoubtedly be factors to take into account when buying a gravel bike:

  • Versatility: it is probably one of the most considered options when buying a gravel bike. We can go by road and by path, combining them so that the experience is more fun and the routes more varied. So when we reach a dead end on the road, we can surely continue on a gravel track. Its comfort on both terrains makes it an ideal bike.
  • Comfort: as we have said, comfort is one of the main advantages that gravel has, being able to combine the best of both disciplines. We will ride on the road a little weighed down, but when it comes to pedaling on tracks we will be especially comfortable.
  • Enjoy: one of the great advantages of gravel is enjoyment, in most cases, without having to check times or warm your nose on Strava. In its essence, it is more of a modality designed to do routes without thinking about mileage or pace. Although everyone does gravel the way they want.
  • Cycling budget: our budget is not unlimited, and we cannot have a bicycle for each modality, generally. Mountain bike, road, gravel, enduro, urban… How many can we accumulate at home? It is clear that not all of them are, so, if we look at the budget, it can be a good option to combine asphalt and track.

Types of gravel bikes

Ridley gravel bikes for sale online

As in other types of cycling, in gravel, there are also different types of bicycles that present differences in the same product category. The thing is that someone who wants to enjoy an adventurous gravel ride with travel bags is not the same as someone who wants to travel the slopes at high speed as if it were an asphalt road. That is why brands have adapted their models and within gravel, we consider these three categories:

  • Fast gravel: it is very common to be practiced by cyclists who come from road cycling and who want bicycles that can transmit those same sensations to gravel tracks. When they pedal on the asphalt, they seek to lighten their bikes as much as possible and oppose the minimum of resistance to the terrain, using rather rolling tires. Currently, there are gravel races and even a world championship has been held and road teams such as Movistar Team or Alpecin have created and promoted this discipline with cyclists who dedicate part of their time to gravel.
  • Adventurous gravel: one of the most popular modalities in the world of gravel, and where we surely bring out all the capabilities that this type of bicycle has: they are versatile for riding on broken roads and tracks, in addition to doing so with sufficient anchors on the frame to be able to carry many racks to carry material. Without a doubt, the ideal option is to get lost with friends for several days with the house in tow.
  • Electric gravel: a not-so-widespread modality that continues to grow today due to the wide possibilities it offers. It will allow us to ride with groups that have a faster pace than us or carry more packages on a route where mountainous difficulties put us to the test. eBikes continue to establish themselves as a great option for many cyclists, even among gravel lovers.

The most outstanding gravel bikes in

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Now that you know everything related to gravel a little better, it is time to introduce you to some of the models that we, as specialists, have selected so that you can consider them if you are thinking of buying a gravel bike.

Currently, the vast majority of brands have developed one or several models of this type of bicycle, which seeks enjoyment above all else, combining dirt tracks with broken asphalt roads and with great comfort. Gravel covers a very broad type of audience due to its versatility when it comes to pedaling.

At, we have a wide catalog of gravel bicycles designed for all audiences. Brands such as Specialized, Orbea, CUBE, Cannondale, Giant, Cervélo, or BMC include models in their range that seek both enjoyment on dirt tracks at higher speeds and bicycles designed for adventure due to their frame mounts.

  • Specialized Crux: the American brand has readapted its cyclocross model to achieve a light, agile, and very fast gravel bike. It inherits some details from the Aethos, and it is undoubtedly designed so that you can go comfortably and fast, absorbing well the irregular terrain you will travel over.
  • Orbea Terra: recently renewed, it has positioned itself as a great bike in this segment. It inherits the lines of its road sister, the Orca, and seeks to be a fast, comfortable gravel bike that can undoubtedly be very fun to ride on any terrain.
  • CUBE NUROAD: an ideal model to start with. With a low price, Carbon frame, and basic components, this bicycle of national origin is a great option to start exploring gravel tracks. Its weight can be a barrier, but its price is very competitive for the features it offers.
  • BMC URS ONE: a revolution for the Swiss brand, becoming the jewel in the BMC crown for gravel. It is similar to the concept of the Crux, seeking lightness, absorption, and rigidity to ride on any terrain. In addition, she became world champion with Pauline Ferrand Prevot in 2022.

As you have seen, there are many models of gravel bicycles that can make us enjoy two wheels even more on dirt tracks, easy trails, and slightly broken asphalt roads. Being able to ride on a greater variety of terrain with the same bike and in complete comfort is the main reason why we believe that investing in a gravel bike is a wise move.

If you have any questions about gravel bikes or a specific model, do not hesitate to contact your JaxBan expert at any of our stores or through our website. Once gravel enters your life, it won’t come out!