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The morning commute to work is the most dreaded part of the workday for many people. Losing valuable time every day by being stuck in traffic for hours is on nobody’s bucket list. That’s why commuting by bicycle is becoming more and more popular in cities around the world.
Folding bicycles are the choice of many people who have said “Enough!” to traffic jams. They’re small, lightweight, versatile, and extremely practical, especially if your commute also includes a train ride.
Depending on which mechanism you use, the best folding bikes out there can be folded in a matter of seconds and taken on trains in peak hours without any questions asked.
Not all folding bikes are made the same. They feature different folding mechanisms, which riders will find more or less practical and suitable for their needs. Here are the three most common types.
Now that we’ve learned the basics, it’s time to choose one model that will fit your needs and make your life easier.
Keep in mind that we update these bikes from time to time. The bicycle market is everchanging (especially now) so some bikes might not be in stock. For example, this list could include a Brompton folding bike (or two), but if they haven’t been in stock for a while, they’re not going to be on this list.
Here are the 10 best foldable bikes of our choice in 2023!
Best Foldable Electric Fat Tire Bike
Rad Power’s RadExpand has it all! It is foldable, it is electric, and it has super-wide tires that can go anywhere. Therefore, it is the one bike on this list that gives you the most possibilities and the most freedom when you go out for a ride.
RadExpand 5 is one of the new models from Rad Power Bikes. They have even called it the new version of the “best folding electric bike” — the RadMini. It can be folded very quickly by using the mid-fold quick release clamp and folding the handlebar.
Who says that folding bikes are toys that are only good for perfectly smooth city streets? This is a rad bike with 20″x4″ puncture-resistant tires that can tackle off-road terrain.
Rad Power RadExpand 5 is proof that folding bicycles can be capable of much more than simple and short everyday commutes.
It has a powerful 750W geared hub motor and a 672 Wh battery. It charges in 5-6h and provides a range of 25-45+ miles. The motor is operated with a Twist Grip Throttle.
Related: All the Best Mountain Bikes
It might come as a bit of a surprise that RadExpand comes without suspension.
The gearing is solved with a MicroShift drivetrain that shifts quite smoothly through all 7 gears. It offers reliable performance for beginner riders.
Other noteworthy specs include mechanical disc brakes, a kickstand, and front and rear fenders.
The RadExpand 5 is a complete package for anyone looking for the best folding bicycle.
Best folding bike with gears
The Huffy Motoric is a good-looking urban folding bike with numerous attractive features. It has multiple speeds, front and rear disc brakes, a very fast and easy-to-use folding mechanism, and a pretty attractive price.
Related: Review of Huffy Bikes
It’s perfect for everyday commuters or those with limited storage space.
No matter if you are a commuter, a leisure rider, or just someone who loves cycling, you’ll definitely find value in Huffy Motoric. It’s reasonably lightweight considering it has an aluminum frame and a steel fork. It’s one of the best 20-inch folding bikes in this price range.
Huffy Motoric offers exceptional value for urban cyclists who intend to commute on a daily basis and cover miles over a variety of terrains.
To fold the Huffy Motoric, all you need to do is unlock the quick-release on the main tube, fold the bike mid-way, fold the handlebar, and push the saddle downwards. You’ll end up with a folded bicycle that’s very compact.
The Huffy Motoric has 6 speeds on a Shimano groupset which makes it suitable for hilly terrain and very reliable. You can feel free to go downhill on it as well since it comes with both front and rear dual disc brakes.
The wide tires and a comfortable saddle will make this bike extremely smooth even on long commutes.
So we can conclude that Huffy Motoric is one of the best budget folding bikes for urban commuters who want the most value.
Most Affordable Electric Folding Bike
Lectric XP Lite is a fun electric folding bike with a mid-fold system. It weighs just 46 lbs and has a maximum weight capacity of 275 lbs, which makes it an excellent choice for heavier riders. Apart from great components, it offers some exciting extras as well that you won’t find on other choices in this price range.
The XP Lite is a good-looking foldable bike with an attractive paint job that folds to a compact size of H-26″ x L-36″ x W-16″.
Lectric XP Lite is one of the cheapest folding bikes on this list, but it still provides a phenomenal all-around performance for commuters.
The bike offers great performance for daily commuters and for people who want to take a trip around the neighborhood.
Lectric XP Lite comes in four different colors – light blue, arctic white, midnight black, and sandstorm.
This bike has a single-speed drivetrain which can seem like a strange choice, but it offers a smooth riding experience. Plus, the 300W motor (750W peak) and 48V battery offer a range of up to 40 miles. So, there’s enough juice to carry you around for a while.
Another advantage of the Lectric XP Lite is that it comes with mechanical disc brakes with 160mm rotors. For added safety, Lectric has included integrated front and rear lights.
This bike is the right choice for urban commuters with a focus on practicality!
Best 20″ Folding Bike
If you want to purchase a folding bicycle that you can quickly fold and easily carry around or store in your car trunk or home, Schwinn Loop is what you’re looking for.
Compact folding bikes are very popular, so you can find many good models out there. This Schwinn folding bike has a compact frame with tiny 20″ wheels. Therefore, you will get a frame that can be folded into tiny dimensions.
Schwinn Loop is available with a folding frame that accommodates riders between 56 to 74 inches tall. Therefore, it is a bike intended for shorter riders who struggle to fit on regular folding bicycles.
Cyclists who have a limited budget but need a quality folding bike for commutes or to run errands will be happy with Schwinn Loop.
This model comes with a 7-speed drivetrain that’s easy to use and maintain. That’s more gears than you’ll ever need if you only ride on flat roads and moderate hills. It’s fitted with Shimano derailleurs which are an excellent entry-level choice.
Schwinn Loop is also perfect for quick urban rides thanks to its lightweight V-brakes. They bring the price down while still giving you great stopping power.
But this bike is practical as well. It sports front and rear fenders and a rear rack that can carry your personal bags or some bike panniers.
If you want a big-boys’ folding bicycle for commuting or touring, with maximal functionality and decent extras, Schwinn Loop is a foolproof choice.
Best All-Terrain Folding Electric Bike
Buzz Centris is a compact electric folding cargo bicycle that doesn’t pack pretty small and has a few handy accessories. It has an all-aluminum frame that guarantees comfort and a geometry that provides an upright position. Thus, you get the benefits of a full-sized bicycle on a bike with 20″ wheels.
Buzz Centris is one of the most affordable models on this list, but that doesn’t mean that the company has cut any major corners.
Related: Review of Buzz Bikes
The Centris is equipped with a powerful 500W rear hub motor that’s paired up with a 500Wh battery. That results in assistance up to 20 mph and a range of up to 40 miles per charge.
Buzz Centris is one of the best electric cargo folding bikes you can get if you want to save as much storage space but not sacrifice comfort and performance.
This bike has a simple but effective 6-speed rear derailleur that will help you climb hills more easily and preserve the battery.
It also has front and rear racks, so you can carry two kids, an adult passenger, or a lot of groceries.
The Centris runs on 20″ x 4″ tires, which means you can ride this bike on any type of terrain, including gravel and dirt roads, as well as light trails.
With all of this in mind, Buzz Centris is the perfect choice for riders who want the smallest cargo bike possible but don’t want to sacrifice the experience of riding a full-sized bike.
Best Folding Bike Design
Brompton makes one of the best folding biking money can buy. The first name people always think of when it comes to high end folding bike will always be Brompton.
Brompton C Line is a great bike that is going to make it very easy when it comes to commutes and also it will take up no space when you get to the office either.
The Brompton C Line is made around a steel frame. It’s extremely comfortable and with its small wheels the handling is very nimble and
The C Line is the ultimate urban commuter. You can quickly fold it and carry it on the train, and it will even fit in a large cupboard at home.
The other components are quite good as well. The class 6-speed Brompton groupset is ideal and very easy to maintain and reliable. It will give you plenty of options for getting up and down hills.
Those who are willing to pay a bit more to get all the benefits of folding bikes will find the Brompton C Line to be an excellent choice.
Excellent Bosch Electric Components
Lectric XP 3.0 is the best lightweight folding electric bike that we could find. Lectric bikes are affordable products as they are made with entry-level components, which guarantees good value for the money and excellent performance for beginner riders.
The frame of Lectric XP 3.0 is made from lightweight aluminum material, whereas the fork features suspension that improves control and stability. Therefore, you get a great balance of weight reduction, comfort, and durability.
As a folding e-bike, XP 3.0 is powered by a 500W rear hub motor that will assist you up to 28 mph. It’s paired with a 460Wh battery that provides up to 45 miles of range. You’ll finally enjoy riding a bike uphill and against the headwind.
This bike rolls on 20” wheels which are wrapped in 3″ wide fat tires. The wheel is as small as you can find on folding bikes and this tire width is pretty comfortable and grippy.
This model also features 7 gears with a Shimano drivetrain and derailleur. The derailleur shifts pretty smoothly and precisely, so you can easily adjust your speed and pedaling cadence.
Riders looking to spend limited money on a dependable, lightweight, and practical folding electric bicycle cannot go wrong with the Lectric XP 3.0.
When it comes to stopping, you’ll be using a pair of mechanical disc brakes that offer more than enough stopping power for casual riders and commuters. They’re also easy to adjust and maintain.
All in all, if you want a classy electric folding bicycle to last you a long time, Lectric XP 3.0 is a very good choice.
Best Cheap Folding E-Bike
Engwe EP-2 Pro is one of the most affordable folding electric models we could find out there. It’s by far one of the best folding bikes in 2023 if you’re looking for good components that don’t break the bank.
The Engwe EP-2 Pro folding bicycle is made around an aluminum frame that is extremely easy to fold and unfold. It features a 3-step folding design, so the folded dimensions are just 30″ x 32″.
Moreover, this folding e-bike has a 750W rear hub motor that will assist you up to 28 mph with a throttle or pedal assist. The 615Wh battery ensures a 50+ mile range, which is plenty for commuters and recreational rides.
Also, it features tiny 20″ wheels with grippy 4″ fat tires. The bike has a maximum weight capacity of 330 lbs., so it’s suitable for heavy riders as well.
Engwe EP-2 Pro has powerful electronics, fat tires, and a foldable aluminum frame, making it suitable for urban and off-road rides.
EP-2 Pro also boasts a 7-speed drivetrain, mechanical disc brakes, front suspension fork, lights, fenders, a rear rack, and a kickstand. Therefore, you get great value for your money with all of these accessories.
If style matters to you and you want a bike with the craziest design out there, we don’t see a better choice than Engwe EP-2 Pro.
See More: Full Review of Engwe Bikes
Bonus! Best Electric Scooter
We’ve shown you 9 of the best folding bikes money can buy out there. It’s time for a bonus! An electric scooter, ideal for daily urban commutes to work, school, or to the shops. Even though it’s small, it has a maximum load capacity of 220 lbs!
The Razor EcoSmart electric scooter was invented to tackle the problem of rush hour traffic and carrying stuff around the town in a cheap and fun way.
This scooter has no pedals and cannot be operated by the power of your legs. All you need to do is engage the throttle and develop a speed of up to 18 mph.
Razor EcoSmart has a durable steel frame with a wooden platform that will support your feet and a large rear rack with a basket to carry all of your necessities.
This scooter has a 500W motor and a 36V battery that provides you with a range of 12 miles. It is fully charged in just a few hours and you can charge it in a standard power outlet at home or even at Starbucks if need be.
It’s hard to believe, but this tiny package also contains a rear disc brake that stops the 16″ wheels on a dime.
If you don’t feel like pedaling at all and just want to get from point A to point B while escaping heavy traffic, Razor EcoSmart will surely meet those needs.
Classic Appearance and Performance
Brompton H6R is one of the best folding bicycles this iconic company has to offer. It’s not the cheapest, but it’s not too expensive either. It folds super-quickly and super-small.
Brompton is a popular bike brand that has been around for a long time. They’ve made a name for themselves by making quality affordable folding bikes for casual riders. The H6R is that type of bicycle as well.
It packs a very powerful punch considering how affordable it is. It comes with a durable steel frame and fork available in elegant red color. The weight of the bike is 28 lbs, so it’s not the lightest, but you can still easily carry it in one hand and your suitcase in the other.
Brompton H6R is rolling on 16” wheels, which is the smallest you’ll find on compact folding bikes and has semi-slick tires that are perfect for city streets.
The bike folds quickly thanks to quick release hinges on the main tube and the handlebar. Once folded, its dimensions are small, so you can easily fit it anywhere you want.
In addition to that, the H6R also requires almost no complicated maintenance. It uses a 6-speed drivetrain and front and rear caliper brakes to stop.
If you want a folding bike that’s as simple, lightweight, and as cheap as they get, Brompton H6R is the right choice for you. You’ll halve your commute time without halving your budget.
Foldable bikes are excellent for various types of riders and commuters. If you are using the train on your way to work or want to save on storage space at home, a folding bike will be perfect for you. They also make portability stress-free.
When choosing the best folding bike, you need to consider the different folding types mentioned above, like vertical folding mechanisms.
It’s also important to consider the weight, which is greatly determined by the wheels and frame, whether for ease when transporting. You should also consider the bike’s components in case you plan on upgrading in the future.
You can tackle going up small hills if you have a folding bike with multiple speeds and large/hybrid tires. Other factors that determine the ease of riding your folding bike uphill include the folding bike’s weight, the size of tires, and what shape you are in when cycling.
These bikes are fun to ride because they are lightweight, take up less space, and attract the right kind of attention when riding. Folding bikes are easy to transport and acceptable in most places because they don’t take too much space.
Folding bikes are not harder to ride than regular bikes. They are just easier to store. Some folding bikes feature gears with better speed for various terrains, but you might have to spend more on these models.
Folding bikes are great for beginners as long as you understand the folding mechanism on the bike you choose. Beginners will find these bikes more practical, easy to transport, and store for their first bike than other standard models.
Most folding bikes are light because of their small wheels and frame. Their weight ranges between 18lbs to 35lbs, but this can also depend on the size of the wheels and the type of frame on your bike.
Folding electric bikes are not allowed on planes when they are equipped with a battery. Electric bike batteries can be shipped to future locations separately, but in general, they are not allowed on passenger airplanes.
When the battery is removed, there should be no problems with taking your bike with you as part of the luggage.
Folding an electric bike is simple, and usually takes only a few seconds. It is important to keep in mind that different manufacturers have different guidelines, so it's better to see the manufacturer's guides first.
In general, folding bikes fold down from the frame, handlebars, and sometimes even the rear wheel. Pedals usually fold down too, and saddles can go down to make the bundle more compact.
Folding bikes do not break over time. Frames are the sturdiest parts of bicycles, and even with a folding frame, the chances of it breaking are minimal. Most bikes have somesort of safety feature in place to avoid dangerous situations.
Foldable bikes work well for people who commute often or are looking for a small bike. One of the biggest perks of folding bikes is that they are lightweight and small, making them easy to transport.
But ultimately, it comes down to user preference and what they are looking for in a bike.
It is possible to ride longer distances on a folding bike, but folding bikes are still mainly made for commuting, so traveling long distances would be more comfortable with other types of bikes.
In doing some extensive online searching, the only companies I have found that have a full line of full size folding bikes are Montague and Flatbike. I think I’m going to pull the trigger on the Montague Navigator. Just waiting to see if the company offers any Black Friday discounts.
I was concerned that the full size folding bikes look smaller to my eye than a regular full size bike. My old bike has a 23 in frame and the top of my seat is still 8 in above the top of the tube. Fits me perfectly and I’m only 5′ 10″. So I was concerned that the largest frame out there in a folder is only 21 in. Thought the seat tube would have to be extended quite far. I think that’s why people to me in pics look like a circus bear riding a bike. I guess it’s a concession to keeping things small as possible. The other concern was wheel base. Montague upon request sent me the full specs on all their folders and was pleasantly surprised to find that the wheel base on the Navigator was exactly the same as my regular bike at 42 in.(axle to axle).
Folding bikes have their pros and cons. You could say that when you deal with folding bikes, it’s a one size fits all venture. But yes, most of them are designed to make sure you get the same comfort you have with a regular bike.
Rick, look at helix.ca, bikefriday.com, airnimal.co I don’t know why, but all of the ‘best of’ lists that I have read leave all of these out and they are ALL excellent!