Kids 16" bikes - lightest and best on the market...


Kids bikes are big business, and recently, due to some clever and inventive small manufacturers, there has been massive growth in kids bike tech over the past 10 years.

This competition from upstarts such as Islabikes and Earlyrider is why the big players in the bike world are pushing more and more investment into making their kids bike range competitive. Making appealing designs, increasing marketing spend and decreasing their overall weight. 

5 years ago, it was a no brainer if you wanted a light kids bike, but now the choice is becoming tougher.

In this article we run through some of the lightest and best kids bikes on the market available today for around £200 - £300...

Our Favourite - Early Rider, Belter 16"
The 16" Early Rider Belter is one of our favourites and is the current ride of choice for my 4 y/o son. This bike is lighter than most others on this list at 5.6kg, and that is due to some real innovation and attention to detail. The drivetrain dispenses with a chain and replaces it with a toothed belt - completely maintenance free, light weight and pretty cool looking too.  The 'beltring?!' rear sprocket, cranks, head set, and many other parts are custom designed which helps with the weight, and overall it looks fantastic.

There are 2 options - the Urban and the Trail - the difference being mainly the tyres.

All this fantastic weight saving does come at a cost though as it one of the more expensive options costing £299.99. The build is aesthetically pleasing with fantastic details, including a brown pinned leather seat. 

No wonder this bike won the Red Dot Product Design Award in 2013. 

Early Rider Belter 16 (Urban) weight: 5.6kg / 12lb 5oz

Isla Bikes, Cnoc 16
Arguably the pioneer of this sector, Islabike's have gained a solid and very well deserved reputation for being the bike of choice for kids of "parents who bike". A little heavier than the Belter (but by no means a fatty) the Isla Bike Cnoc 16 weighs in at just 6.1kg. These bikes also come with an exclusive 'free floating' chain guard which is ideal for keeping the kiddies fingers safe. 

By far the best reason to buy a Cnoc though is the resale value - our editor recently sold his son's year old Cnoc 14 on ebay for just £50 less than he bought it for - that, in anyone's book is a no-brainer!

You can buy the Islabike Cnoc 16 direct from the Islabikes website 

Isla Bikes Cnoc 16 weight: 6.1kg / 13lb 7oz

Frog Bikes, Frog 43
A slightly less expensive option for those in the kids bike market, the Frog Bikes 43 costs just £240. This saving in cost does reflect in the weight, coming in at a total of 6.3kg. The bike comes with some great child friendly features including a safety steering lock, which prevents oversteer and limits potential accidents. They also come with a set of urban and off road tyres which can be handy if your child hasn't quite decided if they are a roadie or a downhiller...

You can buy a Frog 43 from Rutland Cycling - click here

Frog 43 weight: 6.3kg / 13lb 14oz

Ridgeback, Dimension 16
In our opinion, the Ridgeback Dimension 16 is one of the best looking bikes in this line up. It also comes in at a reasonable £249.99. Similar to Frog's offering, this cost saving does mean weight gain and the 16" bike comes in at a hefty 6.8kg. However, in the grand scheme this is hardly noticeable.

You can buy a Ridgeback dimension from Evans Cycles - click here

Ridgeback Dimension weight: 6.8kg / 14lb 15oz

HOY, Bonaly
For the young wannabe Hoy, the Bonaly is the perfect early bike. At 6.3kg it isn't the lightest, although this is reflected in the relatively low £260 price tag. The set up comes with a hand grab rail on the seat so mum and dad can maintain some control when their little one is still getting use to the new bike.

You can buy a Hoy Bonaly from Evans Cycles - click here

Hoy Bonaly weight: 6.3kg / 13lb 14oz

Raleigh, Performance
Raleigh is a long established brand in the children's bike space and their latest offerings certainly do not disappoint. Along with the Frog's offering, the Raleigh Performance is one of the cheapest bikes on the list at £240. However, Raleigh's offering should have weight advantages at "approximately" just 6kg however this is an unconfirmed weight!.

The BMX style handlebars and rear mudguard is also likely to appeal to little adventurers.

You can buy direct from Raleigh or from many local stockists

Raleigh Performance weight (approximately): 6.0kg / 13lb 5oz

Clearly there are some great, lightweight kids bikes on the market. Ranging from around £240 for those in the 6kg+ range to those closer to £300 which weigh much less. For younger riders this sort of weight difference is likely to have little impact. Although the more expensive bikes are likely to appeal more in terms of their looks and design.

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