The 5 Best Hybrid Bikes for Women

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Having a multitude of different cycles for commuting, weekend adventures and keeping fit just isn’t convenient.

They take up valuable garage space and hammer your bank balance.

Luckily, owning the best hybrid bike for women will meet all your requirements.

Here’s the inside story on these versatile velos.

The Top 5 Best Hybrid Bikes for Women

What’s a Hybrid Bike?

If you’re anything like me, you’ll grab any opportunity to be outside on your bike.

I’m right, yeah?

Whether it’s leisurely vacation rides with my husband and kids, taking the morning commute to work or heading out for some fat-busting power-pedaling—give me the chance, and I’m on two wheels.

But, unless you have pockets deeper than the Grand Canyon, you can't have a yard full of tourers, mountain bikes and road cycles.

The best hybrid bike for women is the solution.

These multifaceted machines take the most useful characteristics of specialized cycles—and combine them into one awesome bike.

Typically, we’re talking about the stability and upright riding position of mountain bikes, the rack and pannier-carrying capabilities of tourers, and the lighter weight (and in some cases thinner tires) of road bikes.

I’ll let you in on a little secret—it’s going to become the bike to own in the next few years.

Current research indicates that within the decade, hybrid cycles will become the dominant machine in the market—taking over from the current leader, mountain bikes.

woman cycling

Why a ‘Women’s’ Hybrid Bike?

In years gone by, just by looking at a cycle, you could deduce whether the manufacturer had designed it for the male or female market.

Typically, a ‘ladies’ bike would be smaller, include ‘girlie’ colors, often have a front basket, and include a downward sloping top-tube to allow the rider to step-through to mount the cycle.

Times have thankfully changed,

Major bike manufacturers now appreciate that gender-stereotyping isn’t exactly the way to build a reputable and respected brand.

Hence today, visually, the best hybrid bikes for women and men appear almost identical.

The only usual difference is that a female bike will often incorporate a shorter stack—the distance between the bottom of the frame and the midpoint of the head (seat) tube. This is due to the fact that women are, on average, shorter than men.

However, increasingly, companies are making unisex cycles their standard—bikes that come in a broad range of sizes to accommodate all heights—whether male or female.

That said, some of the ‘traditional’ female cycles still hold their appeal—their retro looks providing a nostalgic return to simpler times. As long as you appreciate that there’s nothing wrong with a guy riding one too.

sunrise adventure cycle


What to Look for in the Best Hybrid Bike for Women

best women's hybrid bike infographic

To ensure that you have the best hybrid bike for women particular for your needs, you need to consider some specific characteristics of your cycle.

This means that your shiny new two-wheeler will satisfy your exacting demands and provide years of biking pleasure.

Here are a few factors to consider:

Step-Through or Step-Over

In the past, women’s bikes were almost exclusively step-through—mainly since it allowed skirt or dress-wearing ladies to mount their cycles easily.

However, if your style is anything like mine, these days, I’m more than likely to be sporting a pair of jeans than flowing chiffon number.

In my opinion, step-overs have a more practical looking design and increase the sturdiness of the frame.

Yet, if you are a skirt proponent, like the retro look, or have mobility issues—step-throughs may appeal.

Inclusion of a Rack

Whether conveying groceries, transporting work materials on your commute, or carrying waterproofs and food on your weekend tours—these are all reasons to have a rack on the rear of your cycle.

The best hybrid bike for women will often incorporate one of these carriers. Alternatively, where not included, the frame may feature pre-drilled holes or mounts to allow you to retrofit a rack.

The only downsides are that they increase the weight of the cycle and can often add a distinctive ‘rattle.’

bicycle yoga mat

Handlebar Types

The handlebars on the best hybrid bikes for women generally take two forms—risers and flat bars.

Unsurprisingly, flat bars are straight with a limited ‘bend.’ Hence when riding, your hands are at the same level as the cycle’s stem. This leads to a forward arching back—giving a more road bike position.

Riser handlebars angle backward and upward toward the cyclist. This enables an upright cycling position.

Flat bars are more appropriate for speedy rides and allow more extensive front wheel grip (as your body weight is pushing down on the tires).

The straight-back position of risers allows you to have a better view of the road.


Some cycles will include fenders as standard—preventing splashes and road grime from dirtying your clothes. This may particularly appeal if you’re commuting—although they do add weight.

Additionally, if you’re cycling with your kids, it can stop road detritus from springing up from your rear tire and hitting the poor tots in the face.


The Top Five Best Hybrid Bikes for Women

After extensive research, I believe I have found the ultimate five best hybrid bikes for women currently on the market.

I’ve selected these cycles based on their build quality, reliability and features that place them at the top of the pile.

Our Overview

For me, this could be the best hybrid bike for women who want both the look and the capabilities for adventure in their cycle.

This unisex bike, suitable for heights from five feet through to five-feet seven inches, has the appearance of a mountain machine—but with the smaller tires that denote its city street application.

It’s an upgrade on the 2.0 version—with the manufacturer electing for the more hard-wearing and weather-capable disc brakes instead of the original pull calipers. Hence, if you’re consistently out in wet or muddy conditions—this could be an appealing feature.

Although not a step-through cycle, the manufacturer has curved the top tube—delivering what I feel is a rather novel aesthetic.

This hybrid bike has flat handlebars—providing a more forward riding position. This might be of interest if you like to whizz through the traffic on speedy commutes or enjoy pushing yourself hard on the open road.

As a more adventure-styled cycle, it lacks fenders and a rear rack. Although, the manufacturer has included pre-drilled holes should you wish to retrofit.

Additionally, if you want a machine for some serious uphill climbs—I’d say that the 24-speed Shimano drivetrain with handle-mounted shifters will be particularly desirable.

  • Choice of 49 cm and 53 cm frames.
  • Includes disc brakes—superior to calipers for swift-stopping and downhill control.
  • Black color with silver flashing provides a ‘mean’ appearance.
  • Flat handlebars deliver a more sporty riding position.
  • 24-speed drivetrain.
  • Color-coded black matt rims.
  • Suitable for city commutes and weekend adventure.
  • Arched top tube for a distinctive appearance.
  • For a heavy-duty bike, it’s surprisingly lightweight.
  • Choice of 49 cm and 53 cm frames.
  • Includes disc brakes—superior to calipers for swift-stopping and downhill control.
  • Black color with silver flashing provides a ‘mean’ appearance.
  • Flat handlebars deliver a more sporty riding position.
  • 24-speed drivetrain.
  • Color-coded black matt rims.
  • Suitable for city commutes and weekend adventure.
  • Arched top tube for a distinctive appearance.
  • For a heavy-duty bike, it’s surprisingly lightweight.
  • Wheel size: 28-inch.
  • Weight: 41 pounds.
  • Brakes:  Mechanical dual disc.
  • Frame material: Aluminum.
Our Overview

In my opinion, this is the best hybrid bike for women who are looking for a classic and nostalgic appearance in their cycle.

Its step-through design shouts retro—an aesthetic enhanced by the choice of four pastel-colored frames. Furthermore, for additional customization, you can select whether you’d prefer black, white, or brown seat and grips.

If you’re a cyclist who loves a choice of gears—or prefers just one single setting—there are options available. This model comes with one, three, seven or 21 drivetrain choices—allowing you to select for your particular riding style or local terrain.

The wide, riser style handlebars offer an upright riding position—a characteristic that I would suggest may suit commuters and city riders who need excellent traffic visual awareness.

This cycle includes a rear rack, useful for carrying groceries or attaching additional panniers. What’s more, front and rear color-coded fenders will protect your valuable clothing even in the wettest of weather.

And, for those who find extended cycling a little hard on the buttocks, I feel that the heavily-cushioned seat will both promote riding comfort and reduce the chance of next-day aches.

  • Aluminum frame to keep weight down.
  • White-walled tires for added nostalgia value.
  • Exposed stitching on the seat to provide a handmade aesthetic.
  • Semi-slick tires to suit both wet and dry road conditions.
  • Saddle and pedal position allows you to remain seated while stationary.
  • High gloss chrome styling.
  • Choice of 24-inch and 26-inch covers riders from four feet three inches through to six feet four inches.
  • Includes wheel and rear light reflectors.
  • Full-length painted chain guard.
  • Caliper brakes may not suit people looking for the additional all-weather reliability of disc brakes.
  • Some users may find self-assembly challenging.
  • Wheel size: 24 and 26 inches.
  • Weight: 42.1 pounds.
  • Brakes: Calipers.
  • Frame material: Aluminum.
Our Overview

If you’re a cyclist who wants the most comfortable ride possible—I’d put forward that this could be the ideal bike.

The extensively-padded black saddle with its distinctive white-stitching should ease butt aches—allowing you to enjoy long-leisurely rides with your family. Additionally, the ergonomically designed grips with a dual-density construction mean that hand fatigue shouldn’t be an issue.

The flat handlebars sweep back slightly—allowing for a more upright cycling position—which I feel will appeal to those with lower back issues.

The 16-inch version has a slightly lowered top-tube. This retains some of the familiar step-through design of traditional female cycles, although not to the extent that this unit loses its somewhat sporty appearance. Should you prefer a full step-over, you can purchase an 18-inch with this construction.

What I find particularly worthy of note is the rear gear rack. Indeed, it’s a welcome addition for those requiring extra carrying capabilities—but unusually, its color-coded to match the bike frame. This provides a greater unified look—and not that the carrier is an afterthought.

Should your weekend adventures involve some more challenging terrain, you might welcome the inclusion of front-fork suspension—allowing for a smoother ride. Furthermore, its 21-speed drivetrain will make light work of undulating terrain.

Color-matched front and rear fenders will protect your riding group from sprays or stones on your countryside travels. Although, it’s a little surprising to see on a bike that pays so much attention to comfort that it lacks a full-cover chain guard.

  • Shimano 21-speed SRAM drivetrain.
  • Fully color-matched cycle.
  • Designed for comfort.
  • Choice of a 16-inch step-through and an 18-inch step-over.
  • Gently knobbled tires for slightly rougher terrain capabilities.
  • Includes front suspension.
  • Novel spoke design.
  • Lack of an extensive chain guard may not appeal to riders with flowing trousers or skirts.
  • Step-through version is only available in white.
  • Wheel size: 28 inches.
  • Weight: 45 pounds.
  • Brakes: Calipers.
  • Frame material: Aluminum.
Our Overview

Should you be seeking the best hybrid bike for women with a top-end pedigree—I’d say that this could be an excellent choice. With a history dating back over 45 years, this respected manufacturer is one of the leaders in quality cycles.

This hybrid model features a semi-lowered top tube—which I’d suggest allows for easier step-through mounting and dismounting—while avoiding the nostalgic appearance of a fully-lowered crossbar.

As its Sport name suggests, this cycle with its all-terrain tires and powerfully effective hydraulic disc brakes should be ideal for those riders who aren’t afraid to take their bikes offroad and hit some intense gravel path adventure.

In keeping with this extreme-experience feel, the cycle lacks fenders and a rack—although it incorporates mounts should you wish to personalize this bike with your own accessories.

Flat handlebars with a 24-speed shifter promote a forward riding position. This increases pressure on the front wheel, allowing you to maintain exacting control on treacherous ground.

Personally, I like that the brake cables are concealed inside the frame—preventing any unwanted snagging. Furthermore, if you’re planning on taking this cycle on lengthy weekend or vacation tours—you might appreciate the bottle mounts for that essential rehydration.

  • Weighs an extremely light 29 pounds.
  • Available in black or Miami green.
  • Features Bontrager all-terrain tires.
  • Ergonomic hand grips.
  • Front suspension—can be ‘locked out’ for smoother roads.
  • Saddle designed specifically for women’s posteriors.
  • Suitable for steady city commutes and intense gravel-path adventures.
  • Large tire clearance—meaning muddy conditions will not impair riding efficiency.
  • Available in small, extra-small and medium frame sizes.
  • A premium price for a premium product.
  • May be considered too high-spec for casual everyday use.
  • Wheel size: 28-inch.
  • Weight: 29 pounds.
  • Brakes: Hydraulic disc.
  • Frame material: Aluminum.
Our Overview

Sometimes you want an all-rounder that will just get the job done—but isn’t going to break the bank. If that’s the case, I’d suggest this may be the best hybrid bike for women.

Although at the lower end of the price bracket—this cycle still has some nice features. It includes both color-coded fenders and a chrome rear rack. Thus should you be commuting, you’ll arrive with your documents in hand and wearing a clean outfit.

While having flat handlebars, they’re angled quite far back from the front hub—hence providing a compromise between a deep-sport and a fully-upright position.

The lowered top-tube allows for an easy-access step-through mount, while a quick-release seat clamp should enable you to adjust riding position easily.

Although an aluminum frame, it’s worth noting that the thick tubing, front suspension, and included rear rack and fenders all add to the weight. Hence, if you’re continually mounting and dismounting this cycle from a vehicle carrier—this could be a disadvantage.

On the plus side, the white-colored frame is complemented by a brown seat and hand grips—adding a little classic styling to the bike. Furthermore, the choice of 21 different speed settings could be ideal for those who struggle on more undulating road surfaces.

  • A quality cycle for a fraction of the price of the top brands.
  • Integrated gear shifters mean you’re always in full control.
  • Shimano Tourney rear derailleur.
  • Includes a 60 mm travel front fork suspension.
  • Supplied with rack and front and rear fenders.
  • Chrome suspension shafts, caliper brakes and rack.
  • Suitable for recreational rides and work commutes.
  • 36-spoke double-wall alloy rims to withstand harsh surfaces.
  • Traditional herring-bone tire tread for wet and dry conditions.
  • Only available in white.
  • Decals may peel off easily with extended use.
  • Heavy for an aluminum cycle.
  • Some users may struggle with self-assembly.
  • Wheel size: 27-inch.
  • Weight: 43.2 pounds.
  • Brakes: Calipers.
  • Frame material: Aluminum.

The Best Hybrid Bike for Women Conclusion

In my opinion, hybrid cycles are unsurpassable for their ability to cover city-street, commuting and recreational riding in just one machine.

My five top picks above are the cream of the hybrid category—although one, in particular, stands out.

For me, the best hybrid bike for women is the Vilano Diverse 3.0 Performance Hybrid.

While a step-over cycle—its curved top tube both adds a unique look while making mounting and dismounting a little easier. It may lack fenders and a rack—but these aren’t for everyone—and it still incorporates mounts should you wish to add.

The flat bars enable a sporty riding position, but not to the extreme of dropped handlebars. Furthermore, a 24-speed drivetrain and mechanical disc brakes allow for confidence on traffic-heavy roads, countryside lanes, and downhill descents.

Admittedly, some users may prefer the nostalgic look of the impressive sixthreezero EVRYjourney—while others could be impressed by the overall comfort of the Schwinn Discover.

However, for the ultimate in versatility, my choice of the best hybrid bike for women has to be the Vilano Diverse 3.0 Performance Hybrid.

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