Gravel bikes are a new genre of bike that provide wonderful qualities for paved, dirt, and gravel road riding.
High performance gravel bikes are one of a kind in quality, weight, speed, stiffness, feel, and compliance. But, those bikes can be pricey.
Thankfully right now there are high performance gravel bikes that don’t break the bank.
Below we will look at some of the top gravel bikes available online right now under 3K.
The Niner RLT 9 RDO from Jenson USA is a carbon gravel bike for $2,969.
The Niner RLT 9 RDO 2-Star Bike is designed for adventure and versatility. It has an RDO carbon frame and an RDO carbon fork. The frame is compatible with both 700 x 50c tires and 650b x 2.0" tires. The frame also features integrated frame mounts, internal cable routing, and rack and fender mounts so you can easily transform this bike into a daily commuter or touring bike.
The 2-Star version of the Niner RLT 9 RDO comes with a SRAM Apex 11-speed drivetrain. The gearing is perfect for moderate hills and all-day adventures with an 11-w42T cassette and a 40T chainring on the front. SRAM Apex 1 HRD brakes provide reliable stopping power so you can descend under control. With the Niner Alloy wheels and Schwalbe G-One Allround tires, you'll be able to set them up tubeless for a smoother ride, better traction, and fewer flats.
Racks and backpacking options
Carbon frame and fork
Alloy bar, stem, and post.
Not the lightest
The Orbea Terra H30 1x Bike is a highly versatile bike that can take on a wide range of conditions. Whether you're riding the bike paths or the gravel fire roads, you'll be able to ride with confidence. The Terra comes with a hydroformed aluminum frame and an OMP carbon fork. The frame features internal cable routing, thru-axles on the front and rear, a rear rack mount, and has clearance for up to 700 x 45mm or 650b x 50mm tires.
The H30 1x version of the Orbea Terra comes with a Shimano GRX 11-speed drivetrain. The gearing is perfect for hill climbing, riding in the dirt, and all-day adventures with all your gear on your bike. Shimano RX400 hydraulic disc brakes provide reliable stopping power in wet and dry conditions. Orbea wheels are paired with Vittoria Terreno Dry Gravel G2.0 tires that can be set up tubeless for a smoother ride, better traction, and fewer flats. With the OC2 carbon seat post, you'll have a smoother ride over bumpy terrain compared to an aluminum seat post.
Carbon fork and seat-post
Alloy bars and stem
The VAAST A/1 700c Rival Bike is the first bike frame to use ALLITE Super Magnesium. This high-strength alloy features excellent shock absorption properties, weighs 33% less than Aluminum and 50% less than Titanium by volume, and is significantly stronger than both. The frame is compatible with both 700c and 650b wheels. It has internal cable routing, is dropper post ready, and is rack and fender ready so you can easily transform it into your daily commuter or a touring bike.
The Rival version of the VAAST A/1 comes with a SRAM Apex 1x11 drivetrain. The cassette on the rear has an 11-42-tooth gear range that makes climbing and riding in rough terrain much easier. SRAM Rival hydraulic disc brakes provide excellent stopping power so riders can descend with confidence. Stan's NoTubes Grail S1 wheels are paired with Maxxis Rambler tires and these can be set up tubeless for a smoother ride, better traction, and fewer flats.
Rack and fender ready
Alloy stem, post, and bars.
The Marin Headlands 1 Bike is built for adventure on and off-road riding. The full carbon frame features modern geometry, ample tire clearance, and excellent ride quality on rougher terrain. The frame has clearance for up to 700 x 45mm or 650b x 50mm tires. The frame is also compatible with internally routed dropper posts, has rear rack mounts so you can easily transform this bike into a daily commuter or light-duty touring bike, and can use mudguards.
This version of the Marin Headlands comes with a Shimano GRX RX600 11-speed drivetrain. This includes a cassette that has a wide-range 11-42T gear range that makes climbing and pedaling through rough terrain a breeze. Shimano GRX hydraulic disc brakes provide excellent stopping power so you can descend with confidence. With the Marin aluminum double-wall rims and Schwalbe G-One Performance tires, you'll have exceptional performance on pavement and dirt.
Alloy bar, stem, and seatpost.
The Grade Carbon Expert Gravel Bike is a fun-filled, high-performing bike that excels in all conditions, be it loose gravel backroads or hardpack dirt trails. With Shimano 105 components and a full-carbon layup, the Grade Carbon Expert can do no wrong as far as we're concerned. We're promised all-day comfort on big mile rides thanks to a comfortable geometry, and powerful stopping capabilities from Shimano GRX disc brakes.
With Shimano 105, Ultegra, and GRX components, the Grade Carbon Expert delivers smooth and precise shifting, and capable stopping power in all conditions. Floating seat stays and Triple Triangle increase compliance for a more comfortable ride over tricky terrain and more confidence in our abilities. To round it all out, WTB Nano TCS Light 700 x 40c tires offer the smooth-rolling, grip, and traction we need to feel confident pedaling over shifty surfaces.
Alloy post, bar, and stem
The complete full carbon Gravel/Road/CX complete bike from DIY Carbon Bikes provides a quality and affordable bike with all the benefits of carbon, but without the price tag. These Complete Carbon Bikes from DIY Carbon Bikes are shipped directly to you from the factory ready to ride!
The DCB GRX700 is perfect for the lightest and most compliant option of our gravel/road bikes. The GRX stands for Gravel, Road, and CX, as this bike comes with the geometry and capability to enjoy all of those cycling disciplines!
The bike is CARBON through and through equipped with a carbon frame, fork, wheels, bars, seatpost, saddle, and stem
The bike comes with a few options for both a 1x drivetrain for simplicity and weight, or a 2x drivetrain for a little more range. Equipped with disc brakes and capability for up to 700x40 tires, this bike is a great do-it-all machine for Gravel, Road, and CX!
Comparable to other Road, Gravel, CX bikes like the Trek Boone, Scott Addict, Vitus Energie, Focus Mares, Specialized Crux Pro, and many more but at a much more affordable price!
Carbon stem and bars
Lightest weight in class - 16-17 lbs!!
No rack mounts (ideal for gravel, roads and CX)