The 6 Best Titanium Road Bikes from Budget to Premium in 2021

Skyline Sage Titanium Road Bike | Source: Sage Titanium

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Titanium is known for its longevity and corrosion resistance. For some, it is not just material. It is a status symbol and exclusivity.

This article includes the best titanium road bikes from all price ranges. You will find low-end, mid-range, and high-end bikes on this list.

Below, I will also guide you through titanium road bike selection and provide you with a few tips to choose a titanium brand that is worth it.

Let’s dive in.


What Are the Best Titanium Road Bikes?

When choosing the best titanium road bike, I evaluated the price-value ratio and other areas like the length of the warranty, finish customization, components customization, and more.

CBPXHURRIV P1
Planet X Hurricane

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Skyline Sage Titanium Road Bike | Source: Sage Titanium
Sage Skyline

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Aspect DuraAceDi2 Side
Mason Aspect

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Skip to the comparison table…


Planet X Hurricane (Best Budget Titanium Road Bike)

CBPXHURRIV P1
Planet X Hurricane | Source: planetx.co.uk

Main Features

  • Frame warranty: 2 years
  • Customizable finish: No
  • Customizable components: Yes
  • Money back guarantee: No
  • Carbon fork
  • External cable routing

Technical Specifications

  • Frame material: Titanium
  • Weight: n/a
  • Groupset: SRAM Rival (2x11spd)
  • Wheels: Fulcrum Racing 800 Disc
  • Tires: Panaracer Catalyst Sport 700c Wire Bead Tyre (25mm)

A titanium road bike for around $2,500? Yes, please! Planet X Hurricane surprises you with its excellent price-value ratio. It is ideal for people with a limited budget but a desire for a titanium bike.

Its geometry is pretty aggressive, so it is perfect for performance-oriented riders. However, it is not as aggressive to be uncomfortable.

The Hurricane comes with decent Fulcrum Racing 800 Disc wheels and SRAM Rival groupset. However, you can upgrade the wheels when ordering the bike or later once you save some money (check out these wheels for inspiration).

SRAM Rival features disc brakes for perfect stopping power in all conditions. It is great news to see hydraulic disc brakes on a titanium bike at this price range.

You can also customize components like the stem, handlebar, saddle, etc. This is a significant advantage if you are picky.

The fork is made of carbon. It can absorb minor road vibrations, so your ride will be more comfortable.

Naturally, Hurricane has a few downsides. The weld quality is not as good as on expensive titanium road bikes (but it’s not too bad either) and external cable routing.

You also can’t customize the finish. But honestly, the stock finish looks nice, so why change it?


Sage Skyline (Best Premium Titanium Road Bike)

Skyline Sage Titanium Road Bike | Source: Sage Titanium
Sage Skyline | Source: Sage Titanium

Main Features

  • Frame warranty: Lifetime
  • Customizable finish: Yes
  • Customizable components: Yes
  • Customizable fit: Yes (upon request)
  • Money back guarantee: No
  • Carbon fork
  • Compatible with fender mounts

Technical Specifications

  • Frame material: Titanium
  • Weight: n/a
  • Groupset: customizable
  • Wheels: customizable

Sage is a titanium bike manufacturer from the US. You can customize its Skyline road bike almost as you want. Naturally, it depends on your budget and preferences. Let me guide you through some of the options.

You can first choose whether you want just a frame, frameset, or a complete bike. Complete bikes are available with Shimano groupsets.

Then, you can pick other components like the saddle, wheels, stem length, crank length, cassette & chainring gearing, etc. You can also opt for a Stages power meter.

Skyline’s frame has relatively aggressive geometry with tire clearance for up to 32mm tires. It is perfect for fast-paced rides or races. You can also use it as a gravel bike for light terrain.

Thanks to its compatibility with fender mounts, you will be protected against water and mud if you decide to go off-road.

Hydraulic disc brakes, carbon fork, and high-quality build are pretty much a standard at this price range.

I am sure you will also appreciate the possibility of customizing the decals and the color of components like the stem, spacers, or handlebar tape.

Overall, Sage Skyline offers excellent value for its price.


Mason Aspect

Aspect DuraAceDi2 Side
Mason Aspect | Source: masoncycles.cc

Main Features

  • Frame warranty: Lifetime
  • Customizable finish: Yes
  • Customizable components: Yes
  • Customizable fit: No
  • Money back guarantee: Yes (30 days)
  • Partially internal cable routing
  • Carbon fork

Technical Specifications

  • Frame material: Titanium
  • Weight: 8.2kg / 18.08lb (size 54)
  • Groupset: Dura-Ace Di2 (2x12spd)
  • Wheels: Hunt (customizable)

If you are looking for a high-end titanium road bike, Mason Aspect Dura-Ace Di2 Hydro should catch your attention.

Its geometry should fit most riders because it sits somewhere between aggressive and relaxed geometry.

You can expect the best and latest components, including the Shimano Dura-Ace Di2 (R9200 series). The built quality is also on another level.

Mason allows you to choose from Hunt wheels, tires, handlebar, stem, crankset, gearing, and brake level set up.

Thanks to its partially internal cable routing and simple design, Aspect looks clean and minimalistic.

If this high-end version is too expensive for you, you can choose the more affordable version with mechanical Shimano Ultegra.

Frankly, except for the price, it is hard to find any downsides on this bike. If you can appreciate the craftsmanship in a modern package, Mason Aspect is the right choice.


You might also be interested in these titanium gravel bikes.


Litespeed T1SL

t1sl rim
Litespeed T1SL | Source: litespeed.com
T1sl
Litespeed T1SL Disc | Source: litespeed.com

Main Features

  • Frame warranty: Lifetime
  • Customizable finish: Yes
  • Customizable components: Yes
  • Customizable fit: Yes
  • Money back guarantee: No
  • Available with rim or disc brakes
  • Partially internal cable routing (disc brake option)
  • Carbon fork

Technical Specifications

  • Frame material: Titanium
  • Weight: n/a
  • Groupset: customizable
  • Wheels: customizable

Litespeed still proudly offers a rim brake version of its T1SL titanium road bike. But don’t worry, the disc brake option is available too.

Considering the rich history of Litespeed that dates back to 1986, their bikes are still relatively affordable.

The T1SL is an endurance road bike. Its relaxed geometry makes it perfect for people with limited flexibility and those who prefer comfort over speed.

Before you order this bike, you can opt for components from Shimano or SRAM, wheels, and frame finish (including decals, anodize, etc.).

As on most titanium bikes, even T1SL features a carbon fork for better bump absorption and increased riding comfort.

The main downside of the rim brake version is narrow tire clearance (just for 25mm tires). The disc brake version has tire clearance for up to 30mm tires.

Both versions have no compatibility with fenders. They are ideal for smooth, dry roads. Not for rainy days or the terrain.


Ribble CGR Ti Sport

Ribble CGR Ti Sport | Source: ribblecycles.co.uk

Main Features

  • Frame warranty: 3 Years
  • Customizable finish: Yes
  • Customizable components: Yes
  • Customizable fit: No
  • Money back guarantee: Yes (30 days)
  • Partially internal cable routing
  • Fenders included
  • Carbon fork

Technical Specifications

  • Frame material: Titanium
  • Weight: 10.65kg / 23.4lb
  • Groupset: Shimano 105 (2x11spd) or higher
  • Wheels: Mavic Aksium 19 DCL
  • Tires: Schwalbe G-One Tubeless-Ready, 700x40c

If you buy a bike from Ribble, you don’t buy just a product, but also a part of history. Ribble was established already in 1897!

Ribble CGR Ti Sport is a titanium all-rounder bike made for adventures. It is a versatile bike that is fast on paved roads but also easily handles terrain.

Its relaxed geometry will allow you to sit more upright and experience better riding comfort.

The CGR Ti line includes multiple bikes at different price points. They all come with the same titanium frame but differ in the wheels and groupset. This wide offer allows you to choose a bike depending on your preference and intended use.

The CGR Ti Sport comes with 40c tires. These are ideal for forest, dirt, and gravel roads. If you live in an area with more paved roads, you can replace them with narrower tires to improve your speed.

At Ribble, you can customize components. This is a huge benefit for people who know what they want.

The biggest disadvantage of Ribble titanium bikes is the short frame warranty (3 years). The CGR Ti Sport is also relatively heavy, exceeding the 10kg (22lb) mark.


Lynskey R500

2021 R500 Complete Ultegra Di2 i9 Navy Blue Ano 1500x1000 01b debrandedwheels 25646.1631283926
Lynskey R500 | Source: lynskeyperformance.com

Main Features

  • Frame warranty: Lifetime
  • Customizable finish: Yes
  • Customizable components: No
  • Customizable fit: No
  • Money back guarantee: Yes (30 days)
  • Partially internal cable routing
  • Carbon fork

Technical Specifications

  • Frame material: Titanium
  • Weight: n/a
  • Groupset: Shimano Ultegra (2x11spd)
  • Wheels: Vision Team 30
  • Tires: Kenda Valkyrie 700x30mm

R500 is one of the most popular road bikes from Lynskey – a US titanium bikes manufacturer. Lynskey is well established because they have been on the market since 1986.

The geometry of R500 is relatively relaxed, so you don’t have to worry about riding discomfort caused by too aggressive riding position.

This bike comes with 30mm tires, but its frame has tire clearance for up to 32mm tires. These are suitable for dirt roads or light gravel.

The 30mm tires are perfect for rough tarmac. Thanks to the lower tire pressure, they better absorb road vibrations and bumps, making your ride more comfortable.

Speaking of comfort, the carbon fork contributes to it as well. It better absorbs vibrations than titanium, aluminum, or steel fork (learn more).

The Lynskey’s framesets are covered by a lifetime warranty. You can also take advantage of their 30-day money-back guarantee.

The biggest downside of the Lynskey R500 is the fact you can’t customize the components. You can only choose the finish.


BikeFrame WarrantyCustomizable Finish, Components, FitGroupset 
Planet X Hurricane2 years❌ ✅ ✅SRAM RivalCheck Price
Sage SkylineLifetime✅ ✅ ✅customizableCheck Price
Mason AspectLifetime✅ ✅ ❌ Shimano Dura-Ace Di2 (or lower)Check Price
Litespeed T1SL (rim)Lifetime✅ ✅ ✅customizableCheck Price
Litespeed T1SL (disc)Lifetime✅ ✅ ✅customizableCheck Price
Ribble CGR Ti Sport3 years✅ ✅ ❌ Shimano 105 (or higher)Check Price
Lynskey R500Lifetime✅ ❌ ❌ Shimano UltegraCheck Price

My Verdict

The following titanium road bikes stand out from the rest:

  • Planet X Hurricane for its excellent price-value ratio. It is one of the most affordable titanium road bikes on the market.
  • Sage Skyline for its high built quality, customizability, attention to detail, lifetime warranty, and great price-value ratio.
  • Mason Aspect for its top-tier components, highest quality standards, minimalistic look, lifetime warranty, and customizability.

How to Choose the Best Titanium Road Bike?

This is a shortened version of my How to Choose a Road Bike guide. If you want to learn more about road bikes, I recommend reading it. However, even after reading this shortened version, you will know what to expect and how to choose a titanium bike.

Road Bike Type

Did you know there are eight road bike types? Yes, even gravel, CX, TT, and triathlon bikes are classified as road bikes.

However, this article only includes standard road bikes with more relaxed (endurance) and more aggressive (performance) geometry.

Due to the nature of titanium and the manufacturing processes, there are no titanium aero, TT, or triathlon road bikes.

CX titanium bikes are niche-specific. If you are interested in gravel bikes, check out this article on titanium gravel bikes.

types of road bikes
Basic types of road bikes | Product pictures were used with permission of canyon.com and trekbikes.com

Endurance Titanium Road Bikes

Endurance road bikes have a more relaxed geometry. They allow you to ride in a more upright, comfortable position. They are ideal for beginners or less flexible riders.

Due to the more upright position, you won’t be as aero, so that you will be slower. But if you buy a titanium road bike, you want to enjoy the ride.

COMFORT > SPEED

Do you agree?

Performance Titanium Road Bikes

Performance road bikes are also sometimes called ‘race’ or ‘lightweight’ bikes. Their geometry is more aggressive, allowing you to ride in a more aerodynamic position with a lower drag coefficient.

There are titanium performance road bikes out there. They are ideal for performance-oriented riders who enjoy speed.

Groupset

Titanium road bikes come mostly with 2X groupsets. They provide a wide gear range (2×10spd, 2×11spd, 2×12spd) to allow you to conquer steep climbs, ride fast in descents, or on flats.

1x chainring
1x chainring
2x chainring
2x chainring
3x chainring
3x chainring

NOTE: You may also encounter 1X groupsets. They are lighter and easier to maintain, but they have fewer gears and bigger jumps between them.

Here is a little tip: If you ride 2X (eventually 3X) groupset, avoid cross chaining. Proper shifting will improve your drivetrain’s efficiency, and you prevent damaging the components like the cassette, chainrings, or chain.

Cross-chaining vs. good shifting
Avoid cross-changing to reduce chain friction and drivetrain damage. Follow good shifting best practices to improve efficiency.

What Groupset Manufacturer to Choose?

Many titanium road bike manufacturers allow you to customize the groupset.

There are three leading groupsets manufacturers:

  1. Shimano
  2. Campagnolo
  3. SRAM

So, which one to choose?

Shimano is by far the most widespread. According to Credit Suisse, it had about 80% of the global share in bike components in 2016.

Campagnolo is an Italian classic and SRAM modern challenger. Choose the brand depending on your preference and budget.

Check out the following table that shows groupset ranges from various manufacturers and how they compare to each other.

 ShimanoSRAMCampagnoloType
Entry levelClarisMechanical
Entry levelSoraMechanical
Entry levelTiagraApexMechanical
Mid range105RivalCentaurMechanical
Mid rangeUltegra R8000ForcePotenza
Chorus
Mechanical
ProUltegra Di2 R8070
Ultegra Di2 R8100
Force eTap AXSChorus EPSElectric
ProDura-Ace R9100REDRecord
Super Record
Mechanical
ProDura-Ace Di2 R9170
Dura-Ace Di2 R9200
RED eTap AXSSuper Record EPSElectric

Mechanical or electric?

Another thing to consider is whether you opt for a mechanical or electric groupset.

I summarized their advantages and disadvantages in the table below.

ShiftingProsCons
Mechanical• Lower price
• Lower weight
• No need for recharging
• Not as smooth
• Manual front derailleur adjustment
Electric• Effortless shifting
• Automatic front derailleur adjustment
• Multiple shift points
• Customizability
• Needs to be recharged
• Higher price
• Higher weight

Brakes

Titanium road bikes mostly come with hydraulic disc brakes. A very few models come with rim brakes.

Based on my research, about 85% of road bikes available on the market features disc brakes. So, how do these two compare?

  • Rim brakes are cheaper, lighter, and easier to maintain than disc brakes. However, their main downside is their low effectiveness in wet conditions or in long descents (especially if you have carbon wheels).
  • Disc brakes are much more effective in various weather conditions, so your stopping power is not affected. Their downside is the weight, more difficult maintenance, and higher price.

Wheels & Tires

When choosing road bike wheels, you need to consider the following three features:

  1. Wheel type
  2. Tire width
  3. Rim depth

Wheel Type – Clincher vs. Tubular vs. Tubeless

clincher tubular tubeless
Clincher vs. Tubular vs. Tubeless Tires
  • Clinchers are the most widespread type of wheels/tires. Clinchers have an inner tube that can be made of rubber or latex. They are popular thanks to their easier maintenance and lower costs.
  • Tubular wheels are more common among professionals than among amateurs. The tire is glued to the rim which allows you to inflate lower pressures. They are also more puncture-resistant and more comfortable. Their downside is difficult maintenance.
  • Tubeless tires are getting more popular in recent years. You need a tubeless-ready wheels for them. The sealant that is put inside the tire fills out eventual holes, so they have self-repairing capability. They are also pretty comfortable but more expensive than standard clincher tires.

NOTE: If the wheels are ‘clincher tubeless-ready,’ you can use them with tubeless tires.

The following table lists the advantages and disadvantages of different types of wheels/tires.

Wheel/TireProsCons
Clincher• Easy to replace
• Easy to repair
• More prone to puncture
• Heavier than tubular or tubeless
Tubular• Allows very low and high tire pressure
• Less prone to puncture
• Lightweight
• Difficult to replace
• Difficult to repair
• More expensive than clincher
Tubeless• Allows lower tire pressure
• Self-repairing capability (sealant
fills out small holes)
• Difficult to replace
• Difficult to repair
• More expensive than clincher
Sources: theproscloset.com, cyclingtips.com

Tire Width

The recommended tire width is often discussed topic, and it changes every few years.

A few years ago, road cyclists used 18mm tires, then 23mm, 25mm, and nowadays, 28mm is becoming a standard.

Wider tires are more comfortable because you can inflate lower pressures. Lower pressure means that the tire can absorb more bumps and road vibrations.

What about the rolling resistance and aerodynamic?

According to bicyclerollingresistance.com, 28mm tires have lower rolling resistance (lower means better) than 25mm or 23mm at the same tire pressure.

But, I cannot forget to mention aerodynamics. If the rim width is not designed for 28mm tires (e.g., it is too narrow), the transition from the tire to the rim won’t be smooth, and vortexes start to form. These vortexes cause drag that slows down the wheel.

I recommend watching the following video by Hambini, a former aerospace engineer and aerodynamics expert if you want to learn more about wheel aerodynamics.

Conclusion
Get 28mm tires. They are more comfortable and have lower rolling resistance. They are slightly heavier than narrower tires and less aerodynamic on narrower rims that are not optimized for 28mm tires.

Rim Depth

The general rule of thumb is that the deeper the rims, the more aero they are.

Based on my discussions with people who consider buying a titanium road bike and various titanium bikes owners, they don’t purchase deep wheels for better aerodynamics but the appearance.

Deeper, for example, 45mm wheels look great on bikes. Rims deeper than 50mm start to remind TT bikes.

Rim depth vs aerodynamics
Rim depth vs. aerodynamics (simplified)

Deep section wheels have one downside. They require more focus on riding in crosswinds because the wind can cause loss of control and eventual crash.

Road Bike Size

When you spend thousands of dollars on a titanium road bike, you must make sure it fits you.

Some titanium bike manufacturers can build a custom geometry based on your dimensions. Otherwise, follow their bike size charts.

Road bike size is usually given in centimeters (48cm, 50cm, 52cm…) or descriptive sizes (S, M, L, XL, etc.).

You can also use my road bike size calculator to get recommended bike size based on your inseam length.

The bike geometry that fits you is also essential. If you are a rider who prefers comfort over speed, go for ‘endurance’ geometry that is more relaxed, and you will sit more upright.

Otherwise, ‘performance’ geometry that will push you into a more aggressive and aerodynamic position is the way to go.

I recommend using the Bikeinsights tool for comparing bike geometries.


Titanium Road Bikes FAQ


This post is regularly updated to provide you with the most up-to-date tips on products. If you find a product that is not up to date, please, contact me.

Preview picture source: Sage Titanium

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