Cruisers are those gorgeous classic-looking bicycles that remind us of a day at the beach, a ride along the waterfront, or an afternoon on the farm. Cruiser bikes are popular because they are the easiest to ride, and are a fun, casual way to get around. Cruiser bikes have different seats than mountain bikes or road bikes- cruiser seats are way more comfortable for people, and cause less soreness after riding. That’s why when the best cruiser bikes come in from the mail, unlike other bikes, cruisers typically present no issues breaking in the seat.
Pretty much the opposite of a racing bike, cruisers just may be the most fun possible way to casually take in the scenery and get around; that’s why we’ve compiled a list of the 10 best cruiser bikes out there.
Best Cruiser Bikes in 2018
A fantastic all-around cruiser, this makes a great gift, and has forward-mounted pedals to alleviate knee and joint pain. A classy, compliment-worthy way of getting around, unfortunately this bike does lose points for being tougher-to-assemble than others, so if you’re up for a challenge or otherwise savvy in putting bikes together, the Firmstrong could just be the perfect blend of economy and style for you.
This model boasts a wide range of colors (13 to be exact), and has a lifetime warranty and can comfortably carry someone up to 350 lbs. This bike also has those famously strong Kenda tires that are often sought after.
The Firmstrong Urban Lady comes with easily operated coaster brakes, an oversized seat, and is good for speeds between 3-15 MPH. The Urban Lady is 35, 51, and 40 pounds respectively in 1-speed, 3-speed, or 7-speed transmissions, which can be tougher to transport while not riding especially with that 51 lb 3-speed. The Firmstrong Urban Lady Cruiser also comes with the classic 15.5-17 inch steel cruiser frame. This bike comes in 24 and 26-inch aluminum wheels, and it’s vital to note that if you are under 5’8” with this bike, you will want to go with the 24-inch wheels, as this bike can already be a handful for people under 5’3” tall.
Designed for comfort, ease, and style, the sixthreezero model weighs 36-pound and has a 17 inch steel frame, but is notable for its complimentary color stitching on the saddle and matching grips, the sixthreezero has great attention to detail and is a great buy. Coming in 26-inch wheels only, this model is recommended for women between the heights of 5’4” and 6’4” and comes in a great array of color choices to match your personality or that of the person you’re gifting to.
This model is also notorious for being difficult to put together, but not especially so, given that bikes typically need to be tuned up by a bike mechanic, or someone on that skill level, before it would be ready to ride. In rare instances, there are verified reports of this bike arriving broken and in pieces in the mail, but there also a lot of great success stories out there with this cruiser. With this model, don’t be surprised if you need to take it to the shop once to get it perfectly ready to ride.
Important to know early on with this bike is that is has back-pedal braking, which can be a surprise for some riders. Overall this is a great, high-end, quality bike that gets outstandingly good reviews on the whole, and remains one of the best-designed, smoothest, most comfortable bikes available.
This compact cruiser is a classic, stylish choice for guys, and is a great value coming with a sturdy steel frame, aluminum wheels, and an oversized seat for maximum comfort. With sizing ranges ideal for boys and men between 4’5” and 6’2”, the classic curvy design is instantly recognizable and is designed to be more than just a mode of transportation. Because these cruisers have such great suspensions, they ride super-smooth on all kinds of terrain types, such as boardwalk paths, streets, trails, paths, and more. This bike is built with a focus on comfort, ease, and quality.
The Firmstrong experience is a classy way to get around, and is designed for functionality and style. Miles and miles will drift by before you even notice the seat. It’s easy to peddle a good 25 miles with this bike and not feel soreness afterwards due to the seat. This model does not come with fenders, and one great set of fenders commonly purchased with this bike is the Avenir Cruiser Fender Set, which seems to work just fine minimizing dirty clothes during rain-showers while riding. Overall these bikes are very well-built, and should handle all kinds of careful curb-hopping and casual riding around town just fine. These bikes are built to last long-term, with quality, guaranteed components.
Built for beaches, parks, neighborhoods, streets and alleyways, the Men’s sixthreezero is a stylish modern take on the cruiser classic, coming in a great array of different colors, this model is versatile in size, the Barrel is named for the part of an ocean wave just before it crests, which is a favorite spot for surfers to hang ten. The idea behind the design of The Barrel Cruiser by sixthreezero is to give you the excitement and exhilaration of being a surfer in the barrel.
This is a very solid option for guys, and is reportedly worth the price from buyer reviews. An excellent all-around cruiser for boys and men, this option comes in a black, white, neon blue, and orange- the orange is reportedly brighter than the photos online, so be aware of that as you look at The Barrel. The seat is also oversized in the classic style for cruisers, and is a big part of why this bike gets extra points for comfort. But make sure you’re ordering the classic seat, because some vendors will reportedly switch out the seat for something cheaper without telling you so this is a good feature to confirm when looking at this model.
Hawaiian flowers adorn this artistically-designed cruiser made for girls and women between the heights of 5’ to 6’ in height, this suspension has amazing cushion for riding comfort on uneven paths, and it comes with the durable 17-inch steel frame, waffle-tread tires, and has a back-pedal brake which comes standard.
This bike reportedly arrives 80% assembled, and buyers aren’t reporting that it’s difficult to put together, but it’s never a bad idea to take a bike like this to a bike shop for a tune-up before putting it on the road. These bikes can be tougher to ride for beginners since like all cruisers the pedals are not directly under the seat- the pedals are in front of the seat, making it more of a recumbent-style, comfortable experience where riders can sit farther back on their glutes rather than forward in a less-comfortable posture. So if you are confident your rider can be balanced on a bike like this then there may be no more perfect option than the Bella, which is fun to accessorize with bells, baskets, and a number of different extras that can go with a bike. People get passionate about their bikes when it’s a good fit, and this bike would make a perfect fit.
6. Firmstrong Bruiser Man Beach Cruiser Bicycle (26-Inch)
A terrific modern take on the classic beach cruiser, this model is popular in the matte black frame but comes in a variety of color options. A great blend of style, comfort and durability, the Firmstrong Bruiser is unique in that it is a stronger model ready for more aggressive riding and exercise. The dual-spring seat and large 19-inch steel frame can comfortably carry men up to 350 pounds, this bike can be an excellent choice, but has one tough design flaw.
The chain for this bike can come in short, meaning that it pops out when you are riding on non-flat surfaces over 10 MPH, and in certain instances, this bike comes with back-pedal braking, meaning that with a disconnected chain, this bike has no brakes. That’s why it’s recommended that you get the secondary braking system with this bike for added safety and peace of mind. With that said, this is a very solid, sturdy, heavy and all-around great bike that is true to its Bruiser name.
You’ll also want to make sure to store this bike in a dry place, as it’s also reported that the spokes can rust, which causes them to weaken and break, which can cause wheels to wobble while riding. This may require a trip to a bike shop to get things back in perfect order.
7. Firmstrong Chief Man Beach Cruiser Bicycle (26-Inch)
This is another great choice for bigger guys up to 6’4”, with the large 21.5 inch steel frame, this model comes with 26-inch aluminum wheels, balloon tires and easily operated coaster brakes. The 3-speed option weighs 50 lbs and this is typical for 3 speeds. Customer support is also great with this bike, and has been described as near-overzealous. All you need is a few Allen wrenches and assembly for this bike is relatively straightforward. Some other bikes use nut-and-bolt assemblies but this bike is all about the Allen wrench.
This bike can be damaged in shipping which can disappoint buyers, but whether or not this happens to you, you will want to make sure this bike runs true when it’s all set up and put together. If not you may need to take it into a bike shop to get it running perfectly. This is a near-perfect beach cruiser, and especially so for guys over the height of 5’8” which is what is meant by the “Chief” classification from Firmstrong.
This popular model comes in the classic glossy rose pink color with matching fenders, basket, with creamy beige tires and a 52 lb weight on a large 26 inch frame. This is a relatively larger bike but is so easy to ride that there are even reports out there of 9 year olds having an easy time with these bikes.
Some of the screws from this bike can come in missing, which can make it impossible to assemble on your own. Short of going to your favorite local hardware store and finding the properly sized nut and bolt, you can always take this bike to the shop for a tune-up before riding, and they will definitely have the right sized missing parts.
Overall, this bike could just be love at first sight. If you or the gal you’re gifting this to likes the color pink, this model is going to steal her fancy. Assembly is pretty easy with this bike and it’s beautiful once all put together properly. This is a fun bike to ride and really you can’t go wrong with the Huffy Deluxe Cruiser. Blending durability, style, and comfort, there’s no way to knock the Huffy Deluxe for women.
Coming in either minty teal or pearly pink, The Good Vibrations model here features CruzFit design, which utilizes better geometry for an outstandingly well-designed cruiser. This is a super-fun model that is sure to impress and leave a wake of turned heads wherever it’s ridden.
The extra-dense saddle has double springs for maximum smoothness on your ride, and it comes with super-sturdy fenders to keep you clean while driving through wet patches or rain.
This bike is a 6-speed and comes with a 26-inch steel frame, a quick-release seat that is designed for comfort and durability, and even has custom embroidery. This bike frequently comes with a basket, but not from every vendor, so be sure to check and make sure whether you are getting a basket. Additionally, this bike comes roughly 80-90% assembled, and also has plenty of reports of arriving with missing parts, which is not unique in this market.
This is definitely a ladies or women’s bike, and can overpower some girls and petite women with its size and weight. With that said, there are also reports of small women having success with this bike. Definitely a girly, cute bike with nice designs, this is an overall durable, stylish option with a great value.
10. Men’s Deluxe Cruiser Bike (26-Inch)
This stylish 52-pounder comes with a sturdy 28-inch steel frame and 26-inch wheels, and ships sans-hand brake with coaster brakes only. This is a tremendous choice, and with all respect, this outstanding model from Huffy is our top pick. Balancing a great value with functionality, comfort, and stylish appeal, this is going to be the best bike for most guys.
Coming in with the gray paint, retro-stylish crossbar design that almost harkens back to Art Deco design, this bike is a work of art that’s also easy to ride. With tan seats and brown embroidered seat, and nifty basket, this bike is a great compliment to any outfit you might want to wear and would fit in perfectly with any climate or backdrop. This bike has a dual-density grip making it very easy to hang onto, and that is the kind of attention to detail one would expect from a top pick like this. No gears to worry about with this model, so hills would be a challenge but who wants to tackle hills in a casual-style cruiser bike?
Overall this is a very cool bike, very stylish, reliable, easy to put together, and comfortable to ride, and great for longer distances too. Huffy really knows what they’re doing, and they get the top pick, so congrats to them.
Cruising Bicycle Buyers’ Guide
Cruisers are a great choice for a lot of people, and if you or someone you know is in the market, there are a few things to know before making the jump and putting down your cash. There are a lot of great potential choices you can make in this market, and there are also a few pitfalls that have caused harsh feelings from other buyers.
It’s extremely important to know that cruiser bikes are unique in that the pedals are forward compared to the seat, meaning that riders are leaning back a bit while they ride. This can make it more challenging to keep one’s balance on the bike, but if you can manage to balance easily, you’re going to love how these bikes are extra-comfortable on the seat, and are nice and smooth with great suspensions on pathways. So it’s good to be sure not to get caught off-guard by this before buying this as a gift or for yourself, because this can be a problem for some people and a blessing for others.
In this brief Buyers’ Guide, we’ll jog through the different things to look for and ask about when you’re shopping around and making your choice about which to purchase.
Size and Weight: Only you know the person you’re buying this for, and this may be yourself. Different bikes are better-sized for different people. Riders under the height of 5’5” will be better off with 24 inch wheels. 26 inch wheels are more common for taller riders. The wheels are typically aluminum, while frames are almost always steel which is great for durability, but makes the bikes heavier- this is fine since these bikes are built for slower more casual riding with maximized comfort. Whether you’re shopping for a boy four and a half feet in height or a man who weighs over 500 pounds, there’s no doubt there’s a cruiser out there ready to make his day.
Common Issues With All Cruisers: It’s good to know early on what issues are common with all cruiser bikes, no matter which model you end up choosing. Mainly, the mail or post can be harsh on these bikes’ parts before they arrive at your doorstep. It’s not uncommon to hear reports of bent (or even missing) baskets, fenders, frames or other parts. To best guard against this scenario, make sure your provider addresses this scenario before you buy. No one wants to drop good money for a bike that arrives bent, so that’s why reputable sellers will have a fair return or exchange policy that protects you against this problem from happening. It’s also not a bad option to order these bicycles with an assembly package, which are usually pretty affordable. Bikes can be tough to tune up to perfectly unless you have experience and all the right parts, so it can be wise to budget early-on for a trip to the bike shop before expecting this bike to ride perfectly on the road.
Important Safety Note About Coaster Brakes: It’s very important to note that many of these cruisers have coaster brakes. These are the classic type of braking that allows the bike to move forward without the pedals moving at all. This also sets up the back brake to have its connection with the pedals, meaning you pedal backwards to brake the bike. This is also good because it forces more of the rider’s weight on the back as it’s kind of a standing motion. The back wheel bears most of the weight on a bike, and is well suited for the braking wheel at the speeds common for cruiser bikes (usually up to 15 MPH). However, if your chain becomes disconnected, even while going downhill, you have no brakes in this type of setup. Chains do get disconnected from time to time on bikes, for a lot of different reasons. There are a myriad number of different ways a chain can dislodge, and you really want to seriously consider having a backup braking system other than the coaster brakes.
In conclusion, there are truly a wide variety of amazing cruiser bikes out there. It’s easy to tailor your cruiser bike to the perfect size and color, and begin looking for different accessories to go along with it, like a bell, lights for safety (which are an absolute must for night-riding in urban environments), a basket, fenders, and more. These are all features many people want that don’t come standard.
There’s no denying that cruiser bikes are the best option for casual riders not looking to put on any gloves or get serious about their riding, they just want a fun time and it’s a great balance between laziness and getting there quickly. Cruiser bikes lean back, which is just more comfortable. When you look more comfortable, you make the people around you more comfortable- maybe that’s why cruiser bikes have great vibes and leave people in a good mood.