Should You Buy A Bike From Target? (You Need To Know This First) - Two Wheels Better (2023)

Last updated: January 2nd, 2023

Bicycles keep on getting more expensive. For a lot folks, it’s becoming a genuine obstacle to riding.

If you’re trying to save on a bike, then you’ve probably noticed Target’s wide range and rock-bottom prices.

But are bikes at Target actually worth your hard-earned money?

Most bikes sold at Target are of extremely low quality, and are often improperly assembled or tuned. That’s bad for safety and enjoyment, and it adds hidden costs of ownership. You’re better off spending more at a bicycle shop, or simply purchasing a secondhand bike from a respected brand.

To be fair, they’re not unreasonable if you’ll only make short, gentle trips once in a while. Even so, you’ll have more fun and fewer headaches on a used bike for about the same price.

Now, before I start sounding like a bicycle brand snob, let’s get into exactly what makes Target bikes a bad idea.

(This also applies to all other big-box stores, department stores, etc.)

This article might contain affiliate links. As a member of programs including Amazon Associates, I earn from qualifying purchases.


(Video) Watch How Long It Takes For A Thief To Snatch A Locked Bicycle

Brands aren’t what they may seem

You might see familiar brand names that had a great reputation in years past. However, those names are often sold to unrelated, low-end manufacturers who want to evoke that old quality.

For instance, a Schwinn at Target and a vintage Schwinn touring bike actually come from entirely different companies.

Other brands may also have separate lines for big-box stores. For instance, Mongoose has (occasionally) sold some decent mountain, road, and gravel bikes in recent years.

Unfortunately, not one of them has graced the shelves of a Target store. But that’s probably for the better, because…

Assembly is questionable—at best

When a new bicycle is delivered, there’s still some assembly left for retailers to do. These last steps include things like fork installation and brake adjustment, which are critical for safety. They also need to fine-tune the drivetrain so you’ll enjoy crisp, precise shifting.

(Video) Just a Normal Bike Math: 0.5 х 2 = 1 Wheel

Target doesn’t have a staff of dedicated bike mechanics (as of writing), so there’s no calling who will actually do the assembly. While some employees are probably more mechanically adept than others, it’s safe to assume they’re not qualified mechanics.

Unfortunately, the typical off-the-rack assembly quality bears witness to this.

For instance, it’s horrifyingly common to see bikes with the fork installed backward! I don’t have any Target photos handy, but here’s an example from a comparable retailer.

Should You Buy A Bike From Target? (You Need To Know This First) - Two Wheels Better (1)

And let’s not even talk about wheel truing and spoke tension…

Caveat: not all Target bikes come assembled

According to the retailer’s own website, Target bike assembly depends on the size of bike and on how you buy it.

Wheel SizePurchase MethodAssembled?
20″ & upIn-store or store pick-upYes
20″ & upHome delivery or ship-to-storeNo
16″ & belowAllNo

Unassembled in-store bikes may still be available upon request, but it depends on inventory. Inquire at the customer service desk if that’s what you want.

Parts work poorly & lose adjustment

Assuming things are (kinda sorta) properly set up, there’s the question of whether they’ll last.

The answer, 99 times out of 100, is a definite “no.”

Target brands use the cheapest available parts to keep prices down. Unfortunately, that means heavy alloys, weak springs, imprecise adjusters, and so forth. The result is imprecise shifting, weak and unpredictable braking, and a lot of unnecessary weight.

(Video) Aussie Gold Hunters Season 8 Episode 9 Feb 16, 2023 Full Episode HD

There are hidden costs of ownership

The most compelling reason to buy a Target bike is price. However, as a newer cyclist, it’s easy to overlook all the long-run costs associated with your bicycle.

All parts wear out eventually, but the combination of improper assembly and minimal quality on Target bikes means you’ll replace them much more frequently than you’d like.

It’s hard to predict exactly what will go wrong, but don’t be surprised if the parts and maintenance are actually more than the upfront price of the entire bike.

Here is a helpful Reddit comment that gives a pretty typical example: this person put over $400 into a “cheap” $150 bike. Unfortunately, that’s a common experience.

Sizes? What sizes?

For casual riding, it only takes about three sizes to cover 90% of adult riders. However, most Target bikes come in a single size. And while it may be the right size for you, there’s no way to know.

You can normally get a sense of the fit from geometry charts, but those are not available. Nor is realistic to expect an employee to be a competent bike-fitter, either.

Aggressive/off-road riding is out of the question

No matter how they’re marketed, think twice about using Target bikes for mountain biking or any other form of aggressive riding. Appearances can be deceiving, so it’s hard for new cyclists to know whether tough-looking bikes are actually trustworthy, or merely for show.

That’s not unique to mountain biking, either. The same applies to BMX. Dirt-cheap BMX bikes for kids may survive cruising the neighborhood, but I wouldn’t trust them with my own kids’ safety at the skate park.

The good news: affordable alternatives!

When you’re on a tight budget, then it’s even more important to buy a bike that will last a long time (with minimal maintenance surprises).

If that’s you, then here are two options that’ll stretch your money much farther than a regrettable big-box bike.

(Video) I’m not ashamed to admit this… solo female rider problems.

(And no, buying from Amazon isn’t one of them. It’s arguably a better option, but still prone to a lot of the same issues.)

1. Save just a bit more cash

I know, I know, saving takes a while. And sometimes it’s just hard.

Rather than spending around $200-$300 for a Target bike, see if you can scrape together closer to $500 for something from a bike shop. You might also try reputable direct-to-consumer brand like Brooklyn or Priority.

If a hybrid bike is more your style, then these are some of my favorite all-around hybrid bikes near that price—just to give you a few more ideas.

Selling unused possessions, flipping random local items, and simply doing odd jobs are all great ways to get a couple hundred bucks in short order.

2. Buy used

The right used bicycle will give you excellent quality at Target prices. If you’re confident choosing a bike (or better yet, you have a friend who can help), then it’s unquestionably the best deal.

You can reasonably plan on paying 50% of retail prices for a bike that’s a few years old with light cosmetic wear but no mechanical issues. That’s a very rough estimate, of course, and I’ve often paid less.

The Bicycle Blue Book can give you a very general estimate for the specific bike you’re considering. However, unlike the “real” blue book for autos, it’s not something bike buyers or sellers take very seriously. It’ll just help keep you from offering (or accepting) a wildly low or high price.

Target bike prices are appealing, but their quality and assembly are too poor to justify any amount of money.

A used bicycle is a far better alternative at a similar price.

(Video) Whatever Button You Press, I BUY IT!

But if you’re able to spend a little more, then you can buy several excellent name-brand bikes for a couple hundred dollars more. That’s enough for a worthwhile but affordable hybrid like these.

And if you’re curious about city/urban/commuter bike pricing in general, then this guide to learn where to spend versus save.


What should I know before buying a bike? ›

Your priorities should be:
  • Frame: Test ride the bike, the frame is heart of the ride. ...
  • Suspension: On mountain bikes, suspension almost goes hand-in-hand with the frame.
  • Wheels: Reliability and rotating mass are important.
  • Contact points: Tyres, saddle, and handlebars.

How much should I spend on my first bike? ›

Thielmeyer said plan to spend $500 or more on your first bike. If that sounds like a lot of money, you can think of it as an investment. Money put into your bike will save you in the long run at the pump. Bikes at local stores are also made well and are designed to last.

What month is best to buy a bike? ›

Online sellers and local bike shops frequently have sales around major holidays—just like appliances and automobiles. Look for great deals on new bikes around President's Day, Memorial Day, Independence Day, Labor Day and Black Friday.

Whats a decent price for a bike? ›

How much do bikes cost?
Type of BikeAverage Price Range
New entry-level road bikes$800 - $3,000
New entry-level MTBs$800 - $3,500
Quality mid-range used road bikes$1,000 - $2,500
Quality mid-range used MTBs$1,500 - $3,500
1 more row
Apr 11, 2022

What is the average price for a good bike? ›

The average cost of a bicycle in 2023 is expected to be $500. This is a slight increase from the average cost of a bicycle in 2021, which was $475.

Is riding a bike 30 minutes a day good? ›

Exercising on the bike for at least 30 minutes a day will build up your cardiovascular and muscular endurance. By putting in consistent effort, you'll notice an improvement in your aerobic capacity, enabling you to bike longer or on more intense rides.

How many miles a day should a beginner bike? ›

For beginners, 10 miles per day is OK. Forty-five miles is a reasonable limit if you're an experienced cyclist who can bike 25-30 miles per day.

What size bike should I start with? ›

Simply measure your inseam using a standard tape measure or tailor's tape. Subtract 1 inch from your inseam measurement to find your bike's ideal standover height. For example, someone with a 32-inch inseam would be most comfortable on a bike with a 31-inch standover height.

Is riding a bike 20 miles a day good? ›

Well, despite the seemingly open-ended nature of this question, I've conducted extensive research, and I'm pleased to report that it does, in fact, have a quantifiable answer. The ideal length for a bike ride is 20 miles.

What age is too late to learn to ride a bike? ›

It's NEVER, EVER too late to learn to ride a bike. Whether your child is 8 years, 10 years, 12 years or older NOW is the perfect time to teach them this wonderful life skill. In fact, you could teach granny to cycle at the same time!

How many years does a bike last? ›

A bicycle can last for 30+ years, or even a lifetime, if the frame and forks are strong and good quality. The life-expectancy of components is far shorter, and variable. You'll need to change different components between 1000 and 10,000 miles. It's difficult to pinpoint “average” bike use.

What time of year do bicycles go on sale? ›

If you want to buy new, the fall is usually your best bet, according to Jason Boles of The Velo bike shop in Phoenix. This time of year, he said, shops are generally looking to get rid of remaining inventory to make room for newer models.

Which bike brand is best for long life? ›

The best rough and tough bike range in India includes Hero Splendor Plus, Honda Dream Neo, Hero HF Deluxe, Bajaj Platina, Mahindra Centuro, TVS Star City, Suzuki Hayate EP, Honda CD 110 Dream, and more.

What is Walmart's bike brand? ›

Viathon Bikes -

Is Schwinn a good bike brand? ›

The straightforward answer is yes. While this brand is no longer what it used to be, the bikes they manufacture are still worth what you pay for. Additionally, the Schwinn bikes are made of high-quality materials. So, with good care and maintenance, they will last for a long time.

What is a good mileage to buy a used bike? ›

What's “good” mileage for a used motorcycle, and what is considered “high” used motorcycle mileage? Used motorcycle mileage above 20,000 to 30,000 is considered high for smaller sports bikes, while larger touring motorcycles are usually labeled “high-mileage” after the 50,000-mile marker.

What is a good mileage for a bike? ›

Bikes with the highest mileage are TVS Star City Plus (83 kmpl), TVS Radeon (73 kmpl), Hero Passion Pro (68 kmpl) and TVS Raider (67 kmpl). Which commuter bike gives the best mileage? The commuter bike with the highest mileage is TVS Star City Plus (83.09 kmpl).

How many mileage is good for a bike? ›

Generally, high mileage on a motorcycle is anywhere from 20,000 to 50,000 miles. For sport bikes, the high mileage number will be on the low end (usually around 25,000), while cruisers and touring bikes typically become high mileage in the 40,000- to the 50,000-mile range.

What happens to your body when you ride a bike everyday? ›

Cycling is mainly an aerobic activity, which means that your heart, blood vessels and lungs all get a workout. You will breathe deeper, perspire and experience increased body temperature, which will improve your overall fitness level. The health benefits of regular cycling include: increased cardiovascular fitness.

Does cycling reduce belly fat? ›

Besides being a recreational activity, cycling is an excellent cardio workout that helps one shed weight and lose belly fat.

Is it OK to ride my bike everyday? ›

According to the Physical Activity Guidelines for Americans, adults need at least 150 minutes of moderate-intensity physical activity each week. So riding your bike for 20 minutes or more every day can definitely help you hit this mark.

What is the 75 rule in cycling? ›

The 75-percent rule states that during a given training week, at least 75 percent of your miles (or time) should be at or below 75 percent of your maximum heart rate (MHR).

How many miles on a bike is equal to 1 mile running? ›

The general rule of thumb is a 1:3 or 1:2 run to bike ratio in miles. In other words, 1 mile of running at a moderate level is equivalent to biking 2-3 miles at the same effort level. Running is a high impact activity and requires the entire body to be moving.

How long is 20 miles in minutes on a bike? ›

A good 20 mile time is 01:12:17. This is the average 20 mile time across all ages and genders.

Is it better to ride a bike too small or too big? ›

When you're between frame sizes, it's better to buy the smaller size. You can always make it bigger by replacing the stem and raising the handlebar and a seat. Making a bigger bike smaller is more difficult, as there is only so much you can do. A smaller frame also gives you more control when riding.

Is it better to ride a bigger or smaller bike? ›

Neither a smaller or bigger frame is better for everyone and generalizations in frame sizing are almost always risky. If your riding position is established first the best decision for you will likely become much more clear. Consider bike fit the holy trinity of comfort, power, and efficiency.

How do I know what size bike to buy for myself? ›

If you're buying a bike online and wondering how do you measure yourself for a bike from afar, simply measure the length of your inside leg (with your shoes on) and subtract two centimeters from that measurement. This will give you the stand-over height of the bicycle that is right for you.

What is better walking or bike riding? ›

Cycling can be better for burning more calories, and it helps increase your lower-body strength. On the other hand, walking may help with bone density and tends to cost less than cycling.

Can biking give you abs? ›

Will Cycling Give You Abs? Cycling won't give you rock-hard abs but that doesn't mean that your core won't benefit. And building a stronger core will make you a better cyclist, too. In cycling, you use your abs for stabilisation; your core keeps you steady and stable in the saddle.

How long should you ride your bike everyday? ›

Cycling is a great cardiovascular choice for anyone who doesn't want to go running. It's both high-intensity and low-impact, so it's suitable both as a HIT workout and for more moderate sessions. Several studies suggest that cycling for 15 to 20 minutes each day can be beneficial for heart health.

What should you ask when buying a used bike? ›

Things to check:
  • Frame for cracks (rust or scuffs are usually surface deep and only affect aesthetic)
  • Tyres are pumped.
  • Chain and cassette aren't rusted or stretched (these won't cost much to replace if they are)
  • Brakes work and the pads aren't worn down.
  • Shifting and gearing is effective.
Mar 8, 2022

What questions should you ask when buying a bike? ›

Questions to ask when shopping
  • Can I take a test ride? ...
  • What level of fit do you offer? ...
  • What's the difference between the groupsets on these bikes? ...
  • Does the bike come with a warranty or included maintenance? ...
  • Do you offer any bike mechanic courses for the public?
Sep 22, 2020

What should you upgrade first on a bike? ›

  1. Tires. Not only are they one of the cheapest and easiest parts to upgrade, but your tires are – or at least should be! ...
  2. Bars & saddle. Often overlooked, these parts can make a significant contribution to performance and are again very easy to upgrade. ...
  3. Brakes. ...
  4. Chainrings. ...
  5. Wheels.
Apr 12, 2016

What are red flags when buying a used motorcycle? ›

Red flags. Things to look for when buying a used motorcycle include rust or significant scratches, oxidized paint, a rusty chain, smoke from the exhaust when the bike is started and leakage from the engine or transmission. Any of these can signal signs of bigger problems.

What is the cheapest time of year to buy a motorcycle? ›

If you're more open-minded and just want a great deal on a new bike, the dead of winter probably is the time to strike. Most dealers close out their fiscal year on December 31, and any unsold last year's motorcycles sitting on the floor then – right after the Christmas buying binge – are likely to be nicely discounted.

How much CC is good for a beginner motorcycle? ›

For beginner motorcycle riders, the recommended engine is 500cc to 600cc. The lower the cc figure, the easier the bike will handle, and the more forgiving it will be to the inevitable mistakes that new riders make. Just because a bike has a smaller engine doesn't mean you can't still ride fast.

How much should I spend on a used bike? ›

As a general rule of thumb, you can get a really nice, long-lasting used bike in the $200 to $400 range. A brand new bike with similar build quality and features should run you around $500 to $900.

Which bike is worth for money? ›

Our approach to VFM using the metric of price per PS
ModelPricePower Output
KTM 200 DukeRs 1,76,84525.8PS
TVS Apache RTR 200 4VRs 1,27,50020.5PS
Bajaj Pulsar NS200Rs 1,28,53124.5PS
Hero Xtreme 200R91,90018.4PS
May 29, 2020

Which bike brand has best resale value? ›

Best resale value commuter bikes in India under Rs 2 lakh
BrandModelAverage Mileage
HondaShine65 kmpl
HeroGlamour69.5 kmpl
TVSStar City Plus86 kmpl
BajajPulsar 15065 kmpl
1 more row

How tall should a bike be for my height? ›

Look for listed standover heights, and compare that number to your inseam. The difference between your inseam and the standover height should fall within the target ranges. (For example, if you have a 30” inseam, you'll want a road bike with a 29” standover height.)

Is it worth upgrading a cheap bike? ›

Upgrades rarely improve value; You will still be stuck with the original, entry-level frame and some of the components that you may have to keep- perhaps the headset, seat pin, and other things; It costs a LOT more to upgrade a bike than it does to purchase a new one with the same components.

Does a brand new bike need a tune up? ›

Also, keep in mind that most bikes with traditional cable systems will need a tune-up after the first few weeks of riding. New cables stretch, which they do mostly within the first few weeks. (Owners of bikes with hydraulic braking and electronic shifting have it easier here.)

Is it worth upgrading bike or buying new? ›

It depends. If your bike frame does not fit you or it is compromised in any way, or if the parts you are looking for are too expensive, then you should purchase a new bike. Otherwise, upgrading old parts is a totally viable option.


1. Cycling For Half An Hour Every Day Will Do This To Your Body
2. Flobots - Handlebars (Official Video)
3. Tactical A**holes - Volume 4 - Mambas, Rats with video helmets, and silent drills with Bryan Callen
(Cleared Hot Podcast)
4. Press This Button To Win $100,000!
5. $99 Walmart BMX Bike Vs NYC Streets 3
(Billy Perry)
6. We Broke Into Fans Houses and left Ninja Merch!
(Ninja Kidz TV)
Top Articles
Latest Posts
Article information

Author: Catherine Tremblay

Last Updated: 01/28/2023

Views: 6216

Rating: 4.7 / 5 (67 voted)

Reviews: 82% of readers found this page helpful

Author information

Name: Catherine Tremblay

Birthday: 1999-09-23

Address: Suite 461 73643 Sherril Loaf, Dickinsonland, AZ 47941-2379

Phone: +2678139151039

Job: International Administration Supervisor

Hobby: Dowsing, Snowboarding, Rowing, Beekeeping, Calligraphy, Shooting, Air sports

Introduction: My name is Catherine Tremblay, I am a precious, perfect, tasty, enthusiastic, inexpensive, vast, kind person who loves writing and wants to share my knowledge and understanding with you.