The popularity of gravel grinding has led to more bike travelers experiencing the excitement of riding away from a well-trodden route.
Initially, it only seemed that there was a single option of drop bar gravel bikes.
However, these bars may not be an ideal solution which is why some bicycle makers have brought out flat-bar gravel bike options.
For better bike control, particularly when navigating off-road trails, many cyclists opt for flat handlebars due to their increased steering leverage.
This is also ideal when carrying a bikepacking handlebar bag or front panniers.
If you’re a new cyclist, a flat bar bike is an excellent option. Gravel bikes with flat bars are especially suitable for beginners.
Even though flat bar gravel bikes don’t give you the most streamlined ride, you can switch up the handlebars for other options.
These bikes are great for commuting on gravel roads!
This quick list provides the top 10 flat bar gravel bikes for 2023.
The all-new Salsa Journeyer shows a distinctive design from its family member, the Journeyman, which is hailed as one of the finest gravel bikes you can purchase for less than $1,000.
As described by Salsa as their robust all-road expedition apparatus – an effective, all-around bike that can journey on both roads and gravel. One can find a wealth of options with prices beginning at $999 for the flat bar version.
We highly recommend the Salsa Journeyer Flat Bar Deore 650b. Simply by looking at its title, “Journeyer” meaning “traveler going on an excursion”, you understand it will be a suitable adventure gravel bicycle.
Weight: 24.91 pounds
The frame of this bike is made from aluminum and the fork is constructed with Fantail Deluxe Carbon.
This bike features a 1×10 Shimano Deore groupset with an FSA cassette.
The gear ratio range is from 23.09” to 96.59”, with a ratio of 0.87 to 3.64.
The Stack/Reach ratio for geometry is 1.37, chainstay is at 440mm, wheelbase is 1101mm, headtube angle measures 69.5 degrees, trail measures 70mm, and the Fork offset/rake stands at 50mm with a Bottom bracket drop of 70mm.
The Teravail Washburn tires available in 650b x 47 mm, 700c x 50 mm, or 650b x 55 mm.
Marin has developed a flat bar gravel bike based on their Gestalt X road bike design. With this model, the ride is more relaxed and upright compared to their other road models.
This bike has a Deore groupset, hydraulic disc brakes, and a Forged Aluminum 42T Steel Narrow Wide Chainring plus Shimano Deore 12-Speed 10-51T cassette.
This bike features a low standover and components designed for mountain biking in a flat bar design. It is suitable for fast commutes, long Saturday rides that include pavement and light singletrack, and gravel marathon events.
The DSX frame is made from an alloy frame and carbon fork and is ready for internal dropper posts. Its 700cx45mm tires are capable of fitting tires as big as 29 x 2.1 inches.
Weight: 24.52 pounds
The Series 3 DSX frame of this bike is made of 6061 Aluminum and its fork is a Marin Full Carbon with a Tapered Steerer, 12mm Thru-Axle, Flat-Mount Disc, and Fender Eyelets.
This Groupset & Drivetrain includes a Shimano Deore 12-Speed, 10-51T cassette, 42T Steel Narrow Wide Chainring, and a 1×12 Deore drivetrain; all crafted from Forged Aluminum.
The gear ratio range is from 22.99 inches to 117.73 inches with a range of 2/3, providing a ratio of 0.82 to 4.20.
For geometry, the stack/reach ratio is 1.41, the chainstay length is 425mm, the wheelbase is 1060mm, the headtube angle is 69.5 degrees, the trail distance is 77mm, and the fork offset/rake measures 50mm. The bottom bracket drop is 80mm.
The tire clearance for this bike is capable of handling tires up to 700 mm x 45 mm, and 29 inches by 2.1 inches in size.
Specialized Diverge Expert E5 EVO
The Flat Bar Gravel bike has claimed a spot as an undeniable favorite. While reshaping the concept of gravel grinding, this bicycle’s geometry proves to be more advanced than that of the modern drop-bar Diverge.
Such features as enlarged reach, loosened head tube, and minimized bottom bracket, all collaborate in generating a planted sensation when riding. Correlated with it is MTB inspired 1×12 premium XT Praxis group set, hydraulic brakes, and a dropper post, fixed on an alloy frame and carbon fork.
Additional specs of 700x42mm tires allow 47mm clearance when using 700c wheels or 2.1” space when fitting 650b ones. In addition to this setup is Shimano XT 10-45t cassette as well as Praxis Zayante Carbon 40T crank.
Weight: 22.73 pounds
This bike features a Specialized Diverge E5 Premium Aluminum frame with Future Shock suspension and 1x specific EVO geometry. It also has a threaded BB, internal routing, 12x142mm thru-axle, flat-mount disc and a Future Shock 1.5 w/Smooth Boot FACT carbon fork with a 12×100 mm thru-axle, flat-mount.
This groupset and drivetrain includes a SRAM Eagle 1×12, SRAM Rival 1 Wide 38T crank, SRAM NX Eagle PG-1230 12 speed cassette 11-50T and is rated 4 out of 5 stars.
The gear ratio range is 21.12” to 95.89”, with an average of 0.76 to 3.45.
Geometry: 1.45 Stack/Reach, 432mm chainstay, 1092mm wheelbase, 70-degree headtube angle, 69mm trail, 55mm Fork offset/rake, 85mm bottom bracket drop.
The maximum tire and wheel size that the clearance allows is either 700c x 47mm or 650b x 54mm (2/3).
Categorized as a commuter bike, the Kona Dew still manages to hold its place in the list of flat bar gravel bikes. The Kona Dew Plus is designed for everyday activities like going to work or grocery shopping, or even just leisurely riding on a Sunday afternoon.
Wherever it is that your urban town has to offer, this bike will get you there. Considering it is a quality brand such as Kona, the price of this bike gives you good value for money.
Weight: 27.55 pounds
This bike has a Kona 6061 Aluminum Butted frame and a Kona Project Two Aluminum Disc fork.
The groupset and drivetrain consist of a 1×10 Deore, Samox 36 tooth crankset, and a Shimano Deore 11-46 tooth cassette.
The gear ratios range from 20.70 to 86.77 inches with a ratio of 0.78 to 3.27.
The geometry of this bike includes a stack/reach ratio of 1.43, a chainstay length of 450mm, and a wheelbase of 1116mm.
Additionally, the headtube angle is 70° and the trail is 67mm. The fork offset or rake is 50mm with a bottom bracket drop of 70mm.
This bike has a max tire clearance of 650b x 55mm.
Classified as a “gravel, work, commuter, do it all bike,” this bicycle stands out for its unique frame styling.
Even though inspired by retro mountain bike style, it includes necessary features for a pleasing gravel grinder experience in 2023.
Its thru-axle on frame with 100/142 spacing enables users to purchase the bike either with 700 or 650b wheels.
Thus one could switch between 700c and 650b depending on if they were commuting to work or going off-roading – but I would personally just stick to 650b cause its looks are so awesome!
The frame of this bike is constructed from 4130 chromoly steel and has 142 mm rear spacing and thru axle dropouts, while the fork is made from the same material with 100 mm fork spacing and thru axle dropouts.
Fast City Bike, or FCB, is a modern commuter flat bar gravel bike prepared for whatever biking activity you have in mind! Cruise the avenues quickly and fashionably with these bikes.
On pavement or gravel, Commencal FCB is one of my favored choices! There are two bike builds and a frameset available: Origin and Essential.
Both bikes possess the same geometrics and aluminum frame, yet the more economical Origin has a 1×11 Apex 1 Sram groupset while the stronger Essential has a 1×12 GX Eagle Rival 1 setup.
Weight: 24.03 pounds
The frame is constructed of alloy 6061 with triple butt tubes, while the fork features alloy 6061-T6 with internal brake hose routing and a tapered design.
The groupset and drivetrain feature 1×12 SRAM Eagle components, with a SRAM RIVAL 1 crank of 42 teeth, a SRAM PG-1230 chain, and an 11-50T cassette.
The gear ratios range from 23.88” to 108.58” with a ratio of 0.84 to 3.82.
For geometry, the stack/reach ratio is 1.45, chainstay is 425mm, wheelbase is 1036mm, head tube angle is 71.5 degrees, trail is 81mm, fork offset/rake is 34mm and bottom bracket drop is 65mm.
Norco Search XR
The Norco Search Flat Bar has a X6 butted aluminum frame and carbon fork that provide lightweight agility, efficient pedaling, and comfortable bounce absorption.
This setup allows you to take on single track trails, attempt gravel circuits, or explore longer bike-packing treks.
Weight: 24 pounds
The frame of this bicycle is made from butted X6 aluminum, while the fork is made from Search XR carbon.
This bike has a 1×11 Deore drivetrain, with an Alloy 2 Piece Narrow Wide 40T crank and Shimano Deore CS-M5100, 11-51T cassette.
The gear ratio ranges from 21.43” to 100.03” in steps of 0.78 to 3.64.
Geometrically speaking, this bike has a stack/reach ratio of 1.32; a chainstay length of 425mm; a wheelbase of 1089mm; a steering headtube angle of 70 degrees; trail at 77 mm; and a fork offset/rake of 49mm. Additionally, the bottom bracket drop is 73mm.
A maximum tire clearance of 700c x 42mm.
The Poseidon Redwood has earned its spot among the best value gravel bikes, and it also comes in a flat bar urban adventurer model. With geometry inspired by the Poseidon X bike, it is well-suited to tackle rugged paths full of gravel, offering superior tire clearance compared to the other top picks on this list.
Aside from its amazing capacity for rugged trails, it is also a great bang for your buck in terms of price, groupset quality, and climbing gear–though it does come with some extra weight.
Weight: 29.1 pounds
Crafted with 6061 Double-Butted Hydroformed Aluminum, the frame and its respective fork (which features a tapered steerer from 1 1/8″ to 1 1/2″ are constructed from durable 6061 Aluminum.
This groupset and drivetrain includes a microSHIFT Advent X 1×10, Prowheel 38t Narrow Wide Chainring with 170mm crank arms, and a Microshift 11-48T Advent X 10 Speed cassette.
The gear ratios range from 21.88 to 95.54 inches with a ratio of 0.79 to 3.45.
Geometry of this bike consists of a stack-to-reach ratio of 1.48, chainstay at 440mm, wheelbase 1042mm, headtube angle of 71 degrees, trail 73.5mm and fork offset/rake 45mm. It also has a bottom bracket drop of 63.4mm.
The Kenda Kadre 27.5″ x 2.35″ tire provides ample clearance on Redwood wheel’s 27.5″ thru-axle/tubeless compatible rims, so you can take on trails with a 2.8″ tire or even take the long way to work without any concern.
The Muirwoods from Marin is made for urban getaways and territory questing. It has a flat-bar adventure bike with a cost under a thousand dollars, enabling you to use tire sizes up to 27.5 x 2.2″. This also renders it a marvelous budget touring or commuting tool on gravel terrains.
Weight: 28.9 pounds
The Frame is crafted from Series 1 Butted CroMo, while the fork is made from Steel with Moto Blade, Disc Specific, and Fender and Rack Eyelets.
The Groupset & Drivetrain of this system includes a 1×10 microSHIFT Advent X drivetrain, Forged Alloy Crank, Steel Narrow Wide 38T Chainring and SunRace 10-Speed 11-51T cassette.
The gear ratio range is from 20.85” to 95.89” with a range of 0.75 to 3.45.
Geometry for this bike is as follows: Stack/Reach ratio 1.41, 430mm chainstay length, 1121mm wheelbase, 67.5 degree headtube angle, 89m of trail, 45mm fork offset/rake, and 75mm bottom bracket drop.
Jamis Sequel S2
If you are looking for a flat bar urban adventure/gravel bike, the Jamis could be perfect for you. Featuring SSD custom geometry and a Reynolds double-butted chromoly frame, this bike provides comfort and stability in every frame size, making it perfect for midtown urban rides.
Jamis designed their bike with a wide, consistent stack and reach range for the ultimate riding comfort. It also has many fork and frame mounts, making this bike incredibly versatile for everyday urban life.
The bike includes 650b wheels, 12mm thru-axle mounting and 47c tires, hydraulic disc brakes, a 1 x 10 drivetrain with a FSA Vero Pro 40T crank and Shimano CS-M4100, 10-speed 11-42T cassette.
Weight: 28 pounds
This bike has a Reynolds 520 double-butted chromoly frame, and a Jamis Chromoly fork with 12mm thru-axle dropouts, 45mm crown, plus flat mount disc brakes, fender eyelets, and lowrider/water bottle eyelets.
This bike contains a 1×10 Deore Groupset and Drivetrain, with an FSA Vero Pro crank, 40T MegaTooth, Shimano CS-M4100 10-speed, and an 11-42T cassette.
The gear ratios range from 25.21” to 96.59”, with a range of 0.95 to 3.64.
Geometry measurements for the bike include a stack/reach ratio of 1.39, a chainstay of 445mm, a wheelbase of 1088mm, headtube angle of 71.5 degrees, trail of 58mm, fork offset or rake of 50mm, and a bottom bracket drop of 65mm.
650b x 47mm tires will generally fit with no problem, but some people have even managed to fit 650b x 2.25” tires.