Folding bikes have come a long way since they first came onto the scene. Early foldable bikes were known for being tough to ride, difficult to fold and, above all, were heavy to carry.
Luckily for commuters, the technology has improved greatly since and manufacturers started to invest in new technology that could create super compact and lightweight bikes that could be ridden and then folded up into convenient hand luggage.
Since the technology has come such a long way we thought we would write about it and take a look at some of the best light foldable bikes we could find.
The Benefits of Choosing a Light Fold-Up Bike
If you are a commuter, whether that be by train, foot or in the car, your journey could be made much faster and much more enjoyable with a bike. You don’t even need to worry about space, storage or any extra fees on trains by choosing a great lightweight folding bike.
There is more to folding bicycles though so let’s take a look at some of the benefits of owning one:
A folding bike can make your train or bus commute much easier
Not many of us are lucky enough to live right next to a train station which means that if you take the train to work then you are still likely to have a bit of a walk or drive to get to the station.
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A folding bike can make this extra commuting time far quicker and easier. Just hop on your bike and ride to the station and then fold it up and carry it onto the train. It takes up minimal space and you won’t have to worry about making sure you are in the bike carriage on the train.
They fit into your car with ease
Folding bikes aren’t just for trains and buses. You could cut down on some of your commuting time (and even save money on parking) by taking the car part of the way and then parking and grabbing your folding bike out of the boot for the rest of your trip through congested traffic. This is great for more than just a work commute. You can enjoy a great day out with a bike ride but without having to have bike racks attached to your car or for popping to the shops.
Folding bikes are easy to store
Whether it’s at home, the office or even the gym if your bike folds up small enough then it won’t even be noticed. Pop it into a large locker or under your desk while out and then at home you can fold up the bike and keep it handy in the hallway or in a cupboard. These take up much less space than a traditional bike which is perfect for most homes.
Choosing a Folding Bike
When it comes to choosing a folding bike there are a few things you need to consider:
- Your budget: Do you need to find a cheap lightweight folding bike? Or, can you afford to invest a little more into a high-quality bike?
- Bike size: You will need to check the size of the bike both unfolded and folded. Some are more compact than others and the more compact a folding bike is, then the easier it will be to carry.
- Bike specification: All bikes are made with slightly different specifications and will have different handlebar, wheel and saddle options so you will need to check these out to make sure you get the most comfortable and convenient folding bike you can.
- Bike weight: The weight of a folding bike may well be one of your most important considerations. The lighter the bike is, the easier it will be to carry on trains, buses or when walking so make sure you take how you will be using your bike and how light you need it to be before buying one. If you will be carrying your bike a lot then it is worth investing the money into the lightest folding bike you can.
How Much Do Folding Bikes Weigh?
The average folding bike weighs in at around 13kg, but they can vary from just over 10kg to up to 15kg.
As mentioned above the weight of a folding back is extremely important. Especially if you are likely to spend a lot of time carrying and manoeuvring your bike around by hand.
The weight of fold-up bikes can differ quite a lot when it comes to their weight and this is often down to the materials they are made from. For example, a titanium folding bike can combine your need for a lighter bike that is still sturdy and strong. Aluminium folding bikes are also extremely light, and can save you several kilos compared to a steel folding bike.
The lightest folding bike that we talk about in this article is just over 10kg. These lightweight bikes tend to be a little more expensive than heavier models, but if you’re looking for a budget folding bike, it’s more likely that your bike will weigh in over 13kg – although you can find cheap and light foldable bikes on this list, in particular the FabricBike Folding Bike.
It is rare to come across a bike that is lighter than 11 to 12kg but some people are looking for folding bikes under 10kg and there may be one or two out there but most folding bikes are at least 11kg’s in weight.
Knowing that weight can be a major factor when choosing a folding bike, this article will now look at the eight lightest folding bikes currently available to by.
What is the Lightest Folding Bike?
The lightest folding bike currently available to buy is the Tern Verge X11 folding bike, which weighs in at just 10.2kg.
Below is a list of the eight lightest folding bikes currently available:
|1||Hummingbird Single-Speed Folding Bike||6.9 kg||£3495|
|2||Brompton T Line||7.45 kg||£3770|
|3||Dahon K3||8.36 kg||£699|
|4||Tern Verge X11||10.2 kg||£2600|
|5||Brompton Superlight M6L||11.26 kg||£1995|
|6||Dahon Mu Uno||11.4 kg||£658|
|7||FabricBike Folding||11.55 kg||£219|
|8||Brompton B75||11.6 kg||£850|
|9||Brompton M3L||11.6 kg||£1040|
|10||Tern Verge P10||11.7 kg||£1500|
|11||B’Twin Tilt 900||11.9 kg||£450|
Lightest Folding Bike in the World.
Weighing in at just 6.9kg, the Hummingway Single-Speed is the lightest folding bike in the world.
Hummingway launched in 2015 and a couple of years later had a successful Kickstart campaign to create the lightest folding bike around.
They’ve achieved this incredibly low weight thanks to a mixture of high-tech and minimalism. A carbon fibre frame is key to this bike’s lightness – while nearly all of the bike’s components are also made from carbon.
But just because it’s light, Hummingway have still produced a high-performing folding bike with solid acceleration and good brakes thanks to its carbon tri-spoke mag wheel.
Importantly, as well as being extremely easy to carry, the Hummingway is also easy to fold, and takes less than five seconds to do so. However, it should be noted that the Hummingway isn’t as compact as a Brompton Bike – for example – when folded down and remains a bit long (although narrow, too). Nevertheless, bike is very easy to carry around and you shouldn’t have a problem carrying it on a train, either.
Hummingway is handmade in the UK, but they do ship internationally (including to the USA), although be prepared to pay customs fees upon arrival if so.
Lightest Brompton Folding Bike
Released in 2022, the featherweight Brompton T Line is the comfortable the lightest Brompton bike ever, weighing it at 7.45kg.
This is a completely redesigned Brompton, with only the breaking system being carried over from previous models. However, if you’re a Brompton fan – don’t worry – the folding mechanism is the same.
Rather than using steel as commonly found on Brompton Bikes, the Brompton T Line uses an aluminium frame and other lightweight carbon parts.
The Brompton T-Line has two models available: “One” – a single speed model weighing just 7.45kg, and “Urban” – a 4-speed version weigh in a little bit more at 7.95kg.
Best Budget Folding Bike Under 10kg
Dahon has a range of lightweight folding bikes – which we’ll also cover in this guide – but by far the lightest Dahon folding bike currently available in the Dahon K3, which weighs just 8.1kg.
Impressively, the K3 is actually a three-speed bike – so although it’s light, it’s not sacrificing all of its functionality.
Made from an aluminium frame, the Dahon K3 is one of the best budget lightweight folding bikes around and is well-worth a consideration for any multi-modal commuter.
Admittedly, it won’t have the zip of a Brompton as it has just 14” wheels, but it is a solid option for short rides nonetheless.
Best Folding Bikes under 11kg
One of the sleekest lightweight folding bikes around right now is the Tern Verge X11, weighing in at just 10.2kg.
While folding bikes aren’t known for being particularly elegant, Tern have done a great job in designing sleek and futuristic bike that performs as good as it looks.
Importantly, this super light folding bike is also extremely easy to fold up and down – with Tern saying practised users can complete the process in just 10 seconds.
Despite being the lightest foldable bike on the market as of 2021, the Verge X11 is also impressively robust, has 11 gears to make hills manageable and has powerful Shimano Deore hydraulic disc brakes.
If you can afford the £2400 price, the Tern Verge X11 is a lightweight folding bike to behold.
Lightweight Brompton Folding Bike
The lightest Brompton folding bike available, the self-proclaimed M6L Super Light features everything you’d expect from a Brompton: premium built quality, good ride performance and easy folding.
A standard Brompton M6L model is available for around £1275, but if you want less to carry, the Super Light has shaved off 700 grams from the standard model. It might not sound a lot, but if you do have to carry your folding bike a lot, you’ll feel the difference.
The M6L Superlight has replaced the heavier steel parts found in other Bromptons and replaced them with extremely lightweight titanium and aluminium parts.
But Brompton haven’t sacrificed on functionality. Indeed the “6” in its name means this is a 6-Speed bike, giving you all the gears you need to get tackle uphill moments, while the “L” represents the fact that this bike is fitted with splashguards as standard – again a very useful feature for British riders!
Best Folding Bikes under 12kg:
If you don’t have to deal with hills on your commute, the Dahon Mu Uno is a very good lightweight folding bike for a reasonable price.
Although being single speed limits the variety of terrain this bike can handle, it’s still an urban warrior. Despite weighing in at just 11.4 kg (the lightest Dahon folding bike available), it’s still managed to pack in a rear pannier rack (with elasticated straps) and even front and rear mudguards.
The design of the Dahon Mu Uno also makes it one of the sleeker folding bikes around.
Practicised users can also fold up this bike in just 15 seconds – which is very useful if you’re regular on and off the bike.
Best Lightweight Folding Bike under £300
The cheapest folding bike on this list by quite some distance, the FabricBike offers a remarkably lightweight folding bike for under £300.
There are two versions of this bike: a 7-Speed option which weighs in at 11.55kg or if you’re happy with a single speed version, you can skim off more than half a kilo with it weighing in at 10.9 kg.
Indeed, I might have done this light foldable bike a disservice by focussing on the 7-Speed version rather than the Single Speed in this list ranking.
The bike also looks sleek with a silver finish and brown seats, while frequent users can fold up the FabricBike Folding in under 15 seconds.
The best budget lightweight folding bike by a mile. Absolute bargain.
Cheapest Brompton Bike:
The B75 is Brompton’s cheapest folding bike and is the only new Brompton you’ll find for under £1000. But how much does a Brompton B75 weight? Well, just 11.6kg!
It’s still not cheap by any means, but it is a more accessible price point for anyone set on the Brompton experience.
The Brompton B75 hasn’t cut any corners on build quality either, you’ll still experience Brompton’s easy folding, durable steel frame and comfortable M-shaped handlebars, they’ve just removed the bells and whistles like mudguards and folding pedals, while also fitting it with a more budget bike seat and handlebar grips (all of which can be customised later if you want, though).
This is a 3-Speed folding bike which should be plenty for urban cycling and at, 11.6 kg, isn’t heavy to lug around.
Lightweight Brompton Bike under £1500
The Brompton M3L weighs the same as the Brompton B75, but you’ll enjoy a more luxury finish and accessories.
This lightweight Brompton is equipped with splashguards as standard, while the right pedal is also foldable to save you a few extra inches.
The M3L is a 3-Speed folding bike with enclosed gears to help protect against dirt and other things coming into contact with the hub.
A solid and light mid-range Brompton for commuting.
Lightweight Foldable Bike
The mid-range Tern folding bike has significantly bigger wheels than found on Brompton’s (20” v 16”) and the Verge P10 once again has more of a sporty look and feel about it.
Tern bikes are extremely easy to fold and take just 10 seconds to do so when you know what you’re doing.
The Tern Verge P10 provides a fast and agile urban cycling experience, with a 10-Speed drivetrain and hydraulic disc brakes. It also comes with a built-in rear light, a kickstand and a brass bike bell as standard – all of which help make this the ideal commuter folding bike.
Despite all of these handy commuting features, the Verge P10 weighs in at just 11.7 kg.
Best Light Folding Bike under £500
Another great budget folding bike that is also light is the BTwin Tilt 900, available from Decathlon for £450.
This folding bike is readymade for commuters, with built-in lights, a padded seat and splashguards as standard – none of which prevent this fold-up bike weighing in under 12kg.
The bike can be collapsed down in just 15 seconds and one feature I love about this bike is that you can actually push it around on two wheels (while folded), using the seat to control. This is great if you need to “carry” it longer distances, before pushing the seat post down quickly at the last moment.
Ultralight Folding Bikes – FAQs
Is There a Folding Bike under 10kg?
There are not currently any folding bikes under 10kg commercially available. The closest thing that comes to it is the Tern Verge X11 folding bike, which weighs just 10.2kg.
That said, it is possible to strip or swap the accessories of a light folding bike to get it under 10kg.
How Much do Brompton Bikes Weigh?
Brompton bikes tend to weigh between 11kg and 13kg, before accessories. However, the new Brompton T Line has been redesigned to weigh just 7.45 kg.
|1||Brompton T Line||7.45 kg||£3770|
|2||Brompton Superlight M6L||11.26 kg||£1995|
|3||Brompton B75||11.6 kg||£850|
|4||Brompton M3L||11.6 kg||£1040|
What Is The Lightest Brompton Bike?
The lightest Brompton bike currently available is the Brompton T Line, which weighs in at 7.45kg.
Most Brompton models tend to weigh in at 11-12 kg, with even their heaviest models weighing in under 13kg.
What is the Lightest Electric Folding Bike?
The lightest electric folding bike currently available from Brompton is the Brompton M2L Electric, which weighs in at 17.39kg.
What is the Best Lightweight Folding Bike?
The lightest folding bike currently availabe is the Tern Verge X11, which weighs in at just 10.2kg. It’s also a fast and agile folding bike, with an 11-Speed drivechain, 20″ wheels and hydraulic disc brakes.