With the rising popularity of gravel biking and adventure cycling, bike companies have released more affordable options that meet the needs for off-road bikepacking or even gravel racing.
If you’re looking to get into adventure biking on a budget, I’ve rounded up the best gravel bikes available for under $1000.
While I have aimed to list only gravel bikes that cost less than $1000, some are still slightly more expensive, but they offer such great value that I thought they should be included.
To analyze each of the gravel bikes that fit around the $1,000 budget range and find out which are the best, we will delve into a few details. In order to have an in-depth comparison of these bicycles, a set of criteria have been selected!
Cost must be taken into account, due to our $1,000 budgetary constraints. You may not put as much emphasis on this, considering our budget restriction; however, certain bikes might nearly cost two hundred dollars more than the target cost.
Generally speaking, you get what you pay for – if the price is far below one thousand dollars, it most likely means that the quality of the components used in construction and assembly is inferior.
Certainly, the weight of a gravel bike is significant to some cyclists. If you intend to utilize it in a race or for traveling swiftly, and favor as little weight as possible, then choosing the lightest option would be beneficial.
Generally, most models used on this list weigh somewhere between 10 and 13 kg. Anything below 10 kg on this price range is improbable given that these bikes are usually constructed with alloy. This leads me to my following point.
The material with which a bike is built will affect its weight, but the bike’s ride quality and dependability are key. Most of the bikes in this listing feature an aluminum frame and fork combination, while others make use of an alloy frame with a carbon fork–the latter being preferable as it delivers added suppleness and comfort on harsher rides.
Steel builds are also available, which provide greater strength if the bike is meant for bikepacking (carrying heavier sacks), though it does sacrifice a bit more in the way of weight than aluminum or carbon equivalents. Unfortunately, you won’t find any granule-specific cycling bikes made entirely from carbon if you intend to stay within this price range.
Groupset and Drivetrain
Examining the drivetrain and groupsets of these bicycles quickly provides information on the quality of their components. Many are installed with moderate parts such as Claris, Sora, or Altus.
Others feature mid-range Tiagra parts. At this $1000 price-point, Shimano 105 components are the highest level you can get, categorized as upper mid-range components.
The bike’s overall shape will influence its operation. To make one comfortable during long journeys, it has a more perpendicular geometry; while for speed enthusiasts, it has a more deliberate or competitive design.
To calculate this, all of the measurements are compared to an average frame size of 54 cm. Calculating the stack/reach ratio, we observe that anything beyond 1.5 and 1.55 is considered suitable for those seated for large periods, whereas anything smaller would be more aggressive.
We also checked trail and chainstay length to roughly gauge how each bicycle would manage forward movement and back support respectively: A trail length between 30 to 50 mm is seen at the bottom level for gravel bikes and is believed to be flighty/unpredictable; from 50 to 65 mm being mid-range suggests responsiveness/capability; against the high end which spans from 65 to 80+ mm makes for very secure yet slightly sluggish travel.
The chainstay lengths of gravel bikers vary from 415 to 430 mm (which jumps around fairly rapidly) then transitions into 430-435 mm (which offers general stability) before concluding in 445-460 mm (which offers maximum steadiness but with a little less energy).
One of the major elements in selecting an appropriate gravel bike is the gear ratio and, even more importantly, its climbing gear. Various gravel bikes are restricted because of their 1x drivetrains.
Fortunately, this tool can compute the gear ratios for bicycles that I’ve already done for you by entering the bike’s tire and wheel size and chainring and cogteeth numbers.
This gives a correct climbing gear inch and ratio which can then be compared with those from other bikes to determine the finest option for climbing.
In general, mountain bikes clock in at slightly over 20 inches while lower than 25 inches is preferred when it comes to gravel bikes; where you ride determines whether or not you should aim lower.
Tires and Wheel Sizes
The majority of bikes on this list are 700c-capable, yet I think the 650b-compatible ones are the best. These can house smaller wheels than 700c, increasing the possibility of having wide tires with them – anywhere between 28 mm to 57 mm.
Personally, I prefer bikes with tires that close to 50mm, since it gives you the chance to test out some more challenging trails with wider tires and also make your bike tubeless-ready.
Best Gravel Bikes Under $1,000
If you’re ready to explore the open road but don’t want to spend a fortune on gear, the Marin DSX is a great option. At just $979, it combines the performance of a mountain bike with the agility and versatility of a gravel bike.
At its heart is an aluminum frame with thru-axles, mudguard and rack mounts, internal cable routing and clearance for up to 700 x 45mm or 29 x 2.1″ tires. And thanks to its 1×9 microSHIFT Advent drivetrain, lightweight alloy crank and steel narrow-wide chainring, you’ll have plenty of gearing options when tackling any terrain. Plus, at 14 kg or 30.86 lbs it won’t weigh you down — no matter where your ride takes you!
Throw in geometry that includes stack/reach ratio 1.41 – chainstay 425mm – wheelbase 1060mm – steering headtube angle 69.5 deg – trail 77mm – Fork offset/rake 50mm, plus bottom bracket drop 80mm for maximum control over your ride and you’ve got yourself an amazing value buy that’s ready to conquer any surface adventure brings! So grab your Marin DSX and hit the highways and byways – who knows what surprises await?
With its 6061 double-butted hydroformed aluminum frame and 6061 aluminum fork, this bike can handle whatever terrain you throw its way. From fast-paced single track to rough gravel roads, no challenge will be too tough for the Redwood. And with the 27.5″ wheels and tire clearance up to 2.5″, you’ll have the confidence that it won’t falter over any unexpected bumps in the road.
Equipped with 1×10 microShift Advent X drivetrain, you’ll benefit from top-notch gearing so you can reach speeds suitable for street or trail use. Plus, its 0.79:3.45 ratio gear give you 21.88″ climbs as well as 95.54″ descents! And thanks to a stack/reach ratio of 1.48 and a 73mm trail, handling is precise and comfortable on long journeys – perfect for exploring new routes!
And if that weren’t enough, mounting options are an added bonus on the Poseidon Redwood so you can carry what supplies and gear that may be necessary for longer trips or expeditions into remote areas – plus, poseidon adventure bars let you take extended rides in maximum comfort with the 24 degree flare provided!
Get ready to soar along unique trails while still sticking within your budget – all thanks to the amazing Poseidon Redwood!
The Marin Nicasio+ is the perfect entry-level bike for those who want to explore and conquer gravel trails. Featuring a comfortable, double-butted chromoly frame and fork with eyelets for fenders and racks, this bike is built to take you farther than ever before.
With powerful mechanical disc brakes, durable 650b x 47c wheels, and aluminum finishing kit, it’s ready for any adventure. And at only 12.9 kg, this bike will be just as easy to pull out of your car or garage as it will be to haul up and down hills.
But that’s not all! The Marin Nicasio+ also includes a 9-speed MicroSHIFT Advent groupset with a 42t crank, 11-46t cassette offering 24.15 – 101.37 gear ratios giving you the power you need to tackle any terrain. Plus the handlebars have a 12 degree flare which add enhanced comfort while cruising along rough roads or shooting through singletrack.
All these features come together in an awesome package that costs just $989! So whether you’re looking to take on your first off-road ride or simply upgrade from your clunky old commuter bike, the Marin Nicasio+ is the perfect choice for you!
Click here for the full review!
The Mongoose Elroy is here to arm you for all of your explorations. It’s the perfect combination of a reliable touring bike with the unique versatility and style of an adventure bike, so you’ll look and feel good while heading down any road or trail.
The Elroy comes outfitted with lots of great features like a 2×7 drivetrain, Shimano Tourney derailleurs, integrated Micro shift shifters/brake lever combo and disc brakes, giving it everything it needs to make your ride as smooth as possible.
You can also pack away your riding essentials in the large frame bag with its stylish embroidered patch. And with five cage mounts to carry two panniers on its front rack (which even has an integrated bottle opener!) or one on the rear rack mount, you won’t have to worry about running out of storage space on the Elroy!
Set off into nature’s beauty on the Mongoose Elroy and leave behind all worries—you’ve got everything you need for your ultimate adventure!
Boardman ADV 8.6
Are you ready to tackle any terrain? The Boardman ADV 8.6 brings together two worlds – gravel and adventure – so that you never have to back down from a challenge. Perfect for those who want an all-rounder for their outdoor activities, the Boardman ADV 8.6 is the perfect addition to your quiver of bikes.
This bike packs in plenty of performance, thanks to its triple butted 6061 X7 Aluminium frame and C7 Carbon fork with Tapered Steerer design. It has a comfortable geometry, with a 1.49 stack/reach ratio and 430 chainstay length that’s designed for quick cornering on even the toughest surfaces. And speaking of tough surfaces, Schwalbe G-One Allround TLE Addix 700x38mm tires provide enough grip for your adventures, no matter where they take you!
For componentry, this bike features a 2×9 Shimano Sora groupset with FSA Velo Pro 48/32t crank and Shimano HG400 11-34 cassette hubs at an affordable price of £775. Unloaded its weight comes in at 23 lbs or 10.5 kg, making it great for those long journeys when durability matters most! Not to mention tire clearance of up to 40mm with mudguards or 45 mm without them for more rugged routes.
So if you’re looking for an extreme adventure companion then look no further than the Boardman ADV 8.6. This bike is designed with performance and reliability in mind – all while keeping costs surprisingly low – so get out there and let this bike take you to new places every weekend!
Are you ready for a rock solid all-road bike that will take you on a wild adventure? Look no further than the State 4130 All-Road Bike! This budget-friendly gravel bike features a chromoly steel frame and fork, giving you superb durability that can handle any terrain. Plus, this bike comes with discrete mountain capabilities offered by its 42t front crank and 11-40 tooth cassette, so you can get up those hills with ease.
The State 4130 All-Road is designed to keep your rides comfortable—it has 650b x 2.1″ tires that offer great cushioned rides across all surfaces, while its 450 mm chainstay helps it track straight and not feel twitchy. You can take this bike on lengthy gravel trips or just around town; either way, you won’t be disappointed by its agile maneuverability and powerful performance. And for added convenience, this biking workhorse comes with several cargo cage braze-ons for all your hauling needs.
Take your cycling experiences to the next level with the State 4130 All-Road Bike for only $799.99! It’s well worth every penny—you won’t find a better deal on the market! So what are you waiting for? Get ready to blaze new trails in ultimate style!
Click here to read the full review.
Ready to hit the open road? The Salsa Journeyer Flat Bar is the perfect bike for your next adventure – and you won’t have to break the bank to get it. This all-road, workhorse of a bike comes with a cost-friendly price tag starting at only $999.
The alloy frame and Fantail carbon fork combine to provide you with an incredibly lightweight ride without compromising on stability or control. The Journeyer Flat Bar includes either an 8- or 9-speed drivetrain, microSHIFT Acolyte or Shimano components for easy shifting, and two wheel sizes: 650b x 47 or 700c x 38.
It also boasts an impressive stack/reach ratio of 1.37, a 440mm chainstay length, 1101mm wheelbase, and a 69.5 degree head tube angle along with 50mm fork offset/rake for greater handling control. Plus, tire clearance lets you fit up to 700c x 56 mm or 650b x 58mm tires, so no terrain is off limits!
Wherever your journey takes you—from forest trails to beachside biking—the Salsa Journeyer Flat Bar has got you covered. With its combination of affordability and features, it has never been easier to take on that next big adventure!
Do you want a bike that can give you extraordinary gravel gearing? Then, you need the Salsa Journeyman Claris 650B! This bike is packed with features and was designed to take your outdoor adventures to the next level.
The Journeyman features an alloy frame with a Fantail Carbon Fork that’s loaded up with three mounting eyelets, allowing you to customize it however you see fit. It also includes a 2×8 Claris drivetrain and FSA Tempo Adventure 46/30t crank, which means even on hilly terrain, you’ll get plenty of power. And don’t forget about the SunRace 11-34t cassette which will give you ample road clearance for wherever your travels take you.
Plus, this bike has modern geometry so it’s comfortable to ride for long periods of time. The stack/reach ratio is 1.54 and chainstay length is 440 mm, making it feel like an all-rounder in the rear whilst also offering excellent road traction thanks to its wider 650b wheels. Finally, its bottom bracket drop of 72mm ensures perfect stability on any type of terrain.
If you’re a cycling enthusiast looking for your first gravel race or just want more from the open road, then turn to the Salsa Journeyman Claris 650B! With its exceptional features and unbeatable gearing ability, this is one bike that won’t let you down when it comes to adventure.
Click here to read the full review.
The Cannondale Topstone 4 is a gravel bike that’s within reach for almost any budget. Built with an aluminum frame, carbon fork, and mechanical disc brakes, you won’t find a better bike at this price range. The Prowheel 40T crank and microSHIFT 11-48T cassette provide the perfect combination of performance and durability to tackle all kinds of terrain. Plus, with the WTB Riddler Comp 700 x 37c tires and Promax Render R mechanical disc, 160/160mm rotors brakes, you know you can count on stopping power when it counts.
When it comes to the geometry design, there’s no comparison. With a 1.5 stack/reach ratio in the medium sized frames, plus a 22.74″ climbing gear and 99.74″ highest gear inches—the ratio from 0.83 : 3.64 gives you an upright yet racy position that’s sure to impress both experts and beginners alike!
Experience all types of terrains without worry on your Cannondale Topstone 4 gravel bike today! Experience performance like never before as you cruise over diverse surfaces with ease—all while having fun!
Click here to read the full review.
Are you ready to take your rides off-road and onto gravel with confidence? Then the Motobecane X2 is your perfect partner! This bike features a rock solid Shimano Hydraulic Disc Brake Hubs, both front and rear, for unparalleled power transfer. Plus, the FSA compact crank offers maximum performance while flattening out hills.
When it comes time to stop, you can rely on Shimano’s GRX400 Hydraulic Disc Brakes for controlled braking in virtually all weather conditions. And with its Aero Wheelset reducing wind resistance, you’ll be cruising along at maximum speed – no matter what surface you’re riding on.
But that’s not all: the X2 boasts a lightweight aluminum frame specifically designed for endurance rides; this means you can look forward to more upright riding positions that are still comfortable even after long hours of pedaling. And wide 700C x 40c WTB tires make it easy to dominate any kind of gravel roads or narrow paths. Plus, if you want even more speed, just switch it up and use 700x23c tires!
This is an incredible offer specially made for riders looking for performance at an affordable price – so don’t miss out! Unleash your inner champion by getting your hands on a Motobecane X2 and conquer the gravel like never before.
Click here to read the full review.
The Kona Rove AL is an entry-level gravel bike that offers unbeatable value. With a lightweight aluminum frame and fork, powerful mechanical disc brakes, and rugged tires, this bike has everything you need for your next off-road adventures. The 2×8 Claris drivetrain provides plenty of range for long climbs and fast descents. Plus, the FSA Tempo Adventure crank and Shimano Claris cassette give you plenty of gear options.
The Rove AL also features Kona’s geometry specifically designed for gravel rides. The head tube angle is 71 degrees with 61mm trail, making it stable yet nimble enough to handle any terrain. And the 435mm chainstay length offers the perfect balance between agility and power transfer when climbing or descending faster trails.
Plus, the WTB Venture Comp 650x47c tires provide excellent grip on dirt roads, gravel singletracks, and even light mud conditions. And the generous tire clearance allows you to increase wheel sizes up to 700x40mm for even more traction and responsiveness.
Click here to read the full review.
Are you looking for a gravel bike that can handle any road, in any weather conditions? Look no further than the Tommaso Siena! This bicycle packs a punch—featuring an aluminum compact frame, powerful Shimano Tourney Groupset, and rugged 700x40c tires that are designed to tackle any terrain.
It has been built to last with a lifetime frame warranty and Avid BB5 disc brakes for superior stopping power regardless of the weather. Plus, its ergonomic design ensures maximum comfort while riding, so you can keep going on those long rides.
On your next adventure, take the ultimate ride with the Tommaso Siena! With its superior strength and reliability, it will always be ready to tackle whatever journey comes your way. You’ll experience unparalleled performance, speed, stability and safety – all with one bike!
Click here to read the full review.
Cube Nuroad Pro
Are you looking for a gravel bike that’s capable of taking you from the trails to the back roads? Look no further than the Cube Nuroad Pro! This 2021 model is just over a thousand dollars and offers a lightweight aluminum frame with a carbon fork, mid-range components, mechanical disc brakes, and Schwalbe G-One Allround 40 tires. The 50x34T crank, 11-34T cassette, and 27.64″ climbing gear combine for a maximum speed of 125.75″.
With an upright geometry, 76mm trail, and 440mm chainstay length in the medium size, the Cube Nuroad Pro offers both comfort and stability while you ride on loose terrain or take on climbs. It’s also incredibly responsive thanks to its high trail number which helps with its sluggishness in the front while keeping it chill in the rear.
In short, you can do it all with the Cube Nuroad Pro! From uphill battles to downhill sprints – nothing will stand in your way!
Breezer Radar Cafe Flat Bar
This gravel bike offers a unique mix of features, so you can take on any terrain or occasion with confidence.
With its razor-sharp handling and responsive steering geometry, the Radar Cafe is sure to please even the most discerning rider. And at 12.61kg (27.8 lbs.), this bike provides excellent power transfer whether you’re going uphill or downhill.
Plus, its Kenda Small Block 8 tires provide excellent traction in all kinds of weather conditions, while providing plenty of clearance for up to 2.1″ tire size if you want extra grip or cushioning.
And when it comes time to hit the trails, you’ll be able to explore new paths with ease thanks to its 1X setup and 11-42 cassette for tackling those steep hills faster than ever before. So get out and experience freedom on two wheels – with the Breezer Radar Cafe!
Look no further than the Poseidon X Gravel Bike. Featuring a 6061 double butted hydroformed aluminum frame and full carbon fork, this bike is ready for any terrain. Plus, it has a whopping 21.52” climbing gear and a 93.99″ highest gear ratio; perfect for tackling hills and getting out of sticky situations fast.
The lightweight yet durable construction of this bike is perfect for any trail situation – that’s 11.34 kg or a mere 25 lbs in weight! It also comes with the microSHIFT Advent X 1×10 groupset and Prowheel 38t narrow wide chainring so you can shift without thinking twice.
Plus, the Kenda Small Block 700×35 tires have ample clearance for up to either 700c x 40 or 650b x 1.9” tires so they’ll grip no matter what terrain you’re riding on.
Not only that, but it also features unique geometry with stack/reach ratio 1.44 – chainstay 425mm – wheelbase 1011mm – (steering) headtube angle 71.5 deg with fork offset/rake 45 mm and bottom bracket drop 67mm giving you more control and power on those killer trails.
KHS Grit 55
This full steel gravel bike is built for those who demand performance, no matter what terrain they face. With mounting options on both the fork and top tube, this bike adapts to you as you take to rougher roads.
The KHS Grit 55 features a 2x 8 Claris drivetrain with a Shimano HG200-8, 12-32 cassette provides an impressive 29.30″ granny gear and a 115.25″ highest gear – helping you tackle any trail in stride. Coupled with 700x40C tires and mechanical disc brakes, this bike will help you reach new heights in comfort and speed while offering superior control along the way.
And with its stack/reach ratio of 1.51 paired with 432 mm chainstays this puts it in the mid range, making it perfect for those long days out in nature. So get ready to explore more then ever before as you take on any terrain thanks to the KHS Grit 55!