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5 Best 24″ Road Bikes for Kids (2019)

The Best 24" Road Bikes

Do you have an aspiring Andrew Talansky or Tejay van Garderen?  If so, it might be time to get your child a road-specific bike.  

Compared to an all-terrain bicycle that most 24″ kids bikes are designed to be, a road bike will be faster, lighter, and better suited to long-distance riding.   The bikes on this list will help your kiddo climb bigger mountains, finish a 50-miler, or even compete in your local kids’ crit.

Unfortunately, unlike the kids mountain bike business that is booming, fewer and fewer manufacturers are making pint-sized road bikes. We’ve rounded up what few options are available, but you want more options, you might want to consider a kids cyclocross bike instead. (Just add slick tires).

The Best 24 Inch Youth Road Bikes

Pinarello Speedy Complete

Pinarello Speedy Complete

The Speedy Complete is one sweet little bike, as you would expect with the Pinarello name.  The 6061 T6 aluminum frame and fork keep the weight down–the complete build tips the scales at just under 20 pounds.  All the components are brand-name: Formula wheels, Kenda Tires, Shimano drivetrain.  It comes in black or white.

Price and Where to Buy:


Frog Road 67

Frog Road 67

Frog is one of our favorite companies for kids bikes–from balance bikes to track bikes, they make top-notch bicycles for children.  The Frog 67 boasts drop bars, but also supplementary brakes levers on the top of the bars, which is nice for kids who haven’t quite mastered the drops yet.   This bike also works for road riding or cyclocross, and comes with two sets of Kenda tires–one for each discipline.

Price (MSPR): $700


Argon 18 Xenon 24

Argon 18 Xenon 24 youth road bike

Argon 18 makes nice road bikes, and their youth-sized Xenon 24 is no exception. The bike offers a carbon fork, Tektro brakes, and Alex wheels. We only wish that it offered a full Shimano drivetrain; the spec is a Shimano / Sunrace mix.

Price and Where to Buy: 

Giordana Libero 1.6

The Giordana Libero provides an introduction to road cycling without breaking the bank. It offers a full Shimano drivetrain and Kenda tires. We’ve heard from other parents that the stock brake levers are a bit challenging for small hands to operate, so if your child is younger you might want to upgrade to Tektro brakes (or similar).

Price & Where to Buy:

Islabikes Luath 24

Islabikes Luath 24

Islabikes is the original kids’ bike company and their years of experience show in the Luath 24.  This kids road bike comes with fenders, supplementary top bar brake levers, and a lightweight build (19 pounds with pedals).

Unfortunately, Islabikes has shut down North American distribution, but if you’re willing to put in a little work, you can still import one or look for one used.

Scott Speedster JR 24

Scott Speedster JR 24

The Scott Speedster JR 24 looks fast.  That might be because it weighs a mere 19 pounds, and sports an impressive little package of components–Kenda tires, Shimano Claris 16-speed drivetrain, and Scott alloy handlebars, steam, and seatpost.

Unfortunately, Scott has NOT released a 2019 version of this bike. We’re still including it for now though, because you might still be able to find 2018 stock of the bike.

Price and Where to Buy:

Choosing the Right Road Bike for Your Child

Age and Size

In general, most 24″ road bikes are going to fit kids ages 8-10.  As with all kids bikes, however, each bike has slightly different geometry and each child has a different height and build.  Therefore, make sure you measure your child’s inseam prior to shopping for a bike.

If your child is older, 10 or 11 years old, you’ll find that you have more options and can look for a youth road bike with 650c wheels.

Brakes

Moving from an upright bike to a more aggressive road bike with drops can be a challenge. My favorite 24″ road bikes, like the Frog 67, offer both regular cantilever brake levers in the drops and supplementary brake levers on the flat bars.  Unless you know that your child already has the skill to ride in the drops, I would recommend starting with this set-up.

Drivetrain

As with everything in life, there is always a trade-off between price and quality.  In general, you should buy your child a bike with the nicest comportment you can afford.  If you’re not sure which the different drivetrain packages are, this article offers a good overview.  

Wheelset

Rotational weight matters more than weight on any other part of the bike (the frame, for example).  When shopping for a bike, compare the weight of the different wheelsets on the bikes.  This often matters more than the overall build weight.  If your child really takes to cycling, you can always upgrade their wheelset later as well.

24″ Road Bike Comparison Chart

Here is how all the bikes on this list stack up with one another.  In particular, make sure to look at the price (probably didn’t need to tell you that, right?), the brake configuration, and the drivetrain.  As I mentioned earlier, buy the nicest components you can afford.

BikeMSRPWeightFrame Material WheelsetDrivetrainSupplementary brake?
Scott Speedster JR 24$850 19.2 lbs6061 AlloyAlex Race rims,Formula hubsShimano ClarisNo
Frog Road 67$67019.4 lbs6061 AlloyFrogMicroshift Yes
Pinarello Speedy Complete$95019.6 lbs

6061 T6 aluminum

Formula

Shimano 2400
Islabikes Luath 24$79919.1 lbs7005 t6 AlloyIslabikes Shimano Tiagra / SRAM 11-36tYes
Giordana Libero 1.6
$549.99 USD

6061 Aluminum

Vitesse Alloy 
ShimanoNo
Argon 18 Xenon 24$850
Thermotech Tubing Aluminum 2000

Alexrims 
Shimano Tourney / SunraceNo

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1 thought on “5 Best 24″ Road Bikes for Kids (2019)”

  1. My son raced the red 2014 Podium 24 but I found the Podium 650C is barely larger than the Podium 24 and has a much better crank and seat. It has a much better finish too.

    The 650 has has less than a 1″ higher frame and slightly longer reach. If your child is larger (than 4′ 7″), I would buy the 650C just to get a couple more years out of the bike. The reach is a bit long for a short standover frame bike. I ordered a 0mm BMX stem to bring the bars back. You can also get some inline brake levers just to improve the control. My son is always on the drops so it does not matter to me.

    This bike is the best deal on the market for kids road bikes. The claris shifters are great and the frame is light and solid. True alloy threadless forks (not threaded forks with an adapter) The bars are fat and solid too. The seat on the 650C is much better than the Podium 24 but it is short. I put the 650C seat and post on the Podium 24 and ordered a new longer post for the 650.

    The bike is solid, light, fast, and really fun. It is the same frame as the kids mountain bike so there is some space between the 650×1 wheels and the frame. It has V brakes but I set them with very little clearance and they are very solid. I don’t mind at all.

    Our kids race and ride 300-400 miles a year. There are 40 kids in his club so I can compare. The Fuji Ace has crap twist shifters (like the GMC Denali bike), bolted axles, and weighs more than this. The Scott Speedster has similar weight and tight feel as the Podium but is much much more expensive. The Argon has so so shifters, lower crank and is $1000+.

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