Bikes Buying Guide | Go Argos

Find the best bike for you and
your lifestyle

  Commuting Family days out/bike rides Health/fitness
Rigid   X X
Front suspension   X X
Dual suspension   X X
Hybrid X X X
Folding X X  
Road bike     X
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What are the differences between each type of bike?

Learn more about the different bikes and their defining features.

Rigid Mountain Bikes

They have a solid frame with no suspension (shock absorption).

They're light and easy to pedal, but are more suited to hard surfaces.

More reliable as there are fewer compondents that require maintenance.

Front Suspension Mountain Bikes

Also known as hardtail bikes. They have impact absorption above the front wheel.

These reduce upper body fatigue by making steering easier on rougher trails.

Lower maintenance costs as they use fewer parts than dual suspension bikes.

Dual Suspension Mountain Bikes

Also known as full suspension bikes. These have both front and rear suspension offering more shock absorption.

These give you the most control over rough terrain.

Are the most comfortable mountain bike to ride, reducing total body fatigue.

Road Bikes

These have thin tyres and drop handlebars (they curve downwards at each side instead of being straight) getting your body in a streamlined position.

They are good for racing and picking up speed but can only be used on roads.

Hybrid Bikes

A mix between a road bike and mountain bike but with a flat handlebar like a mountain bike, rather than a curved bar.

Can ride safely on a variety of terrain.

Can pick up more speed than a mountain bike on roads, but are not as robust as mountain bikes.

Folding Bikes

A type of bike that can fold up into a portable shape.

They're easy to store and transport around.

Less likely to get stolen as you don't need to leave it locked up outside.


Will your new bike need assembling?

The majority of bikes need a little assembly. You will usually need to attach the front wheel, pedals, seat and handle bars, but it depends on which bike you choose.

Instructions will be included with your bike, but if you need more help, visit our bike support page.

Essential bike accessories

You will definitely need accessories like helmets and lights, but others depend on what you use your bike for. Here are a few recommendations.

Bike pump

You'll definitely need a pump – the tyres won't be fully inflated on a new bike.


They're invaluable if you have a nasty fall. They can even save your life.

Bike lights

White front and red rear lights are required by law if you're cycling in the dark.

Child bike seat

You'll need one to ride with children under 4. They're available for the front and rear and most can be adjusted to fit as your child grows.

Bike computers

These record and analyse data to help with your fitness and health goals.

Bike locks

Keep your bike secure when leaving it in public places.

Other features to consider

The size of the bike

To get the right size for you, use your inside trouser leg measurement (the distance from your crotch to the floor) and check it against the measurement listed on the bike's description.

What type of brakes are on the bike?

Caliper brakes

Usually found on road bikes. The wheel rim is gripped by two brake pads to slow the bike down.

V brakes

2 long arms pull together when you brake, gripping the wheel rim with more force. This makes braking easier in wet and muddy conditions.

Mechanical disc brakes

These grip the centre of the wheel, rather than the rim. The brakes work faster and aren't affected by wet weather.

Hydraulic disc brakes

These also grip the wheel centre, but use fluid in the brake cables. Less effort is need to apply the brakes and you can better control how much you apply.

The difference between men and women's bikes

Generally, there isn't much variation between the two types. The frame of the bike is the biggest defining factor – women's bikes have more of a slanted frame to suit a 'shorter torso, longer legs' female body shape.

Aside from this, there may be a colour difference or addition of a basket to some women's bikes. But if you see a bike you like and it's the right size, it doesn't matter what gender it specifies, it should be comfortable for you to ride.

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