What road bike?

The situation is that after many years on mtb's we went off on an extended tour having sold everything we own and rode off into the sunset. After a pack of dogs decided to redesign my left leg 1 year in, we are now back in the UK after aborting the tour (see link in signature or here, but I'm warning you some of the pictures you won't want to be eating when you look at them) and the last thing I really want my OH doing is commuting on a £2,500 expedition bike (Thorn Nomad Mk II with Rohloff hub). It's OK, if a little slow, for one site which is secure, but the site he is going to be spending 3 days a week on is not secure and I would rather we purchase him another bike than risk an uninsured bike at an unsecure site (insurance is just daft for 2 * £2,500 bikes) and where we live security is not going to be an issue.

So I'm looking at getting him a road bike for commuting - it's a 22mile round trip. Having run into issues with tax and the likes last time around with his cycle to work, we are probably not going to do that, and this weekend, we have to go out and come home with a bike for him and a car I can actually drive...
He will be covering almost entirely tarmac (possible alternative route is a river side sustrans cycle route which appears to be either compacted hardcore or tarmac - we have not cycled there yet - it is out of my current range).

So my question on the bike front is this:

  • What is out there for around £500 (quite happy to spend less, less happy to spend more) on a road bike for my OH?
  • What are you happy with?
  • Would you recommend it?
  • Are there bikes/makes we should just avoid full stop?
  • anything else you can think of because I don't actually know anything about road bikes?

Remember that he loves his Rohloff hub and is dreading going back to a derailleur system again and it's a long time since he was last on a road bike... Ideally the bike needs to be able to take a lightweight pannier rack - we both prefer panniers to rucksacks having commuted to work by bike for many years previously (mtbs because of major off-road sections).


Legendary Member
The Giant Defys will take a pannier rack, not all Roadbikes do (unless on seatpost etc)

The lower models are around £500 - but stocks are limited. Giant stores have a sale right now on their last few - not sure if around you in Cheshire

Otherwise, the Decathlon Triban 3 is beloved, £300, carbon fork, rack lugs :smile:


£300 Decathlon Triban 3. That's why I bought another bike after getting an expensive one. Didn't/couldn't/wouldn't like to leave it anywhere for any period of time and certainly not overnight. A Triban 3 after a couple of months of road dirt & scratches won't attract so much attention
Defy-one posted about his Triban3 with rack over in the 'Commuting' forum... have a look here :smile:
thanks. looks like it will make life easier with rack bosses and appropriate clamps rather than having to use a skewer type rack one which my old MTB needed. Hated every rear puncture as a result! Shall have to drag him off shopping... :whistle: Think I have an excuse to visit Ikea as well this weekend, Decathlon Warrington is not that far from it!

Now just to work on a car I can drive (left leg not that good anymore!) that has a towbar for a bike rack and falls in a sensible price band, reasonable handling, 4 wheel drive (not 4x4) and betters the old vehicle we sold before we left on fuel (think 22mpg around town, but 45mpg on a run)... and needs to be more than 12 years old to avoid hefty VED charges on a decent engine size ...there's one challenge that always seems impossible...


Legendary Member
Phone Decathlon before travelling - these are selling like hot cakes apparently!

Car - DSG/auto Audi quattro A3 or A4 estate - diesel with intergalactic miles if such a thing exists :smile:
Phone Decathlon before travelling - these are selling like hot cakes apparently!

Car - DSG/auto Audi quattro A3 or A4 estate - diesel with intergalactic miles if such a thing exists :smile:
The old car was an S reg Audi A4 2.8L quattro, tiptronic gear box (still going, we see it regularly, a friend of my mum's has it, minus the old tow bar). I know that they do do a diesel quattro. Think I may have found an A6 diesel estate quattro with towbar, but its just over 100 miles away so will be ringing with that one as well (but for some strange reason it appears to have no front head rests (usually says ex-police vehicle, but this is too old for that).

Will ring Decathlon before we leave - thanks for that tip.
got a Triban 3 today. In stock at Warrington. had all sizes stock today, except the 60cm which is now behind our kitchen...
thanks all...
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