Do you need a gravel bike? Does anyone?

Watch our video and join the debate

Where do you stand on the whole gravel debate?

Gravel bikes are just one of the niches that have exploded into the mainstream in recent years, but do you actually need a gravel bike? Would an XC racer do the job just as well? What about a road bike? 

BikeRadar's Joe Norledge is firmly wedded to his XC race bike, which he uses for everything from riding trails to training on the road. Tom loves his mountain bikes, but thinks drop bars are where it's at for rough roads and gravel. Who's right? Is there even a right answer?

Watch our video to see Tom and Joe hash out the debate. Where do you stand? Will your next bike be gravel-specific? Let us know in the comments below.

Matthew Allen

Senior Technical Writer, UK
Former bike mechanic, builder of wheels, hub fetishist and lover of shiny things. Likes climbing a lot, but not as good at it as he looks.
  • Discipline: Road, with occasional MTB dalliances
  • Preferred Terrain: Long mountain climbs followed by high-speed descents (that he doesn't get to do nearly often enough), plus scaring himself off-road when he outruns his skill set.
  • Current Bikes: Scott Addict R3 2014, Focus Cayo Disc 2015, Niner RLT 9
  • Dream Bike: Something hideously expensive and custom with external cables and a threaded bottom bracket because screw you bike industry.
  • Beer of Choice: Cider, please. Thistly Cross from Scotland
  • Location: Bristol, UK

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