If you know anything about touring bikes. It is that they are considerably heavy when compared to other bikes like most gravel bikes. Which are merging the line between road riding and adventure riding!

However a more traditional touring bike is made to be so robust that it can stand up to anything you through its way. Meaning carrying all the gear and supplies needed to tour around the world. This extra load results in a stronger bike and built from stronger materials which results in an overall heavier bike. For example, most touring bikes are made from steel and have racks to hold panniers.

In this article we are going to take a look at some of the lightest touring bikes available. Not to be confused with “light” touring bikes. This types of touring bike is built to carry less of a load than a full fledged touring bike. Having that said a majority of these bikes are more suited to “light” touring.

Generally speaking if you plan to go on an around the world voyage, you actually want a bike that is more suited to riding around the world with all your extra gear. And these bikes are heavier.

But the lightest Touring Bike goes to the Salsa Warbird, at a whopping 18.2 lb or 8.26 kg for the top of the line model priced at $6,999.

If you want to find out more details for all the other carbon touring bikes I have a list below. Also some great budget options if you want to save some cash!

Lightest Carbon Touring Bike

Salsa Warbird

The Salsa Warbird takes the cake for lightest touring bike in this list. But it comes at a cost! Salsa’s fully specced out, top of the line Warbird weighs in at 18.2 lb or 8.26 kg and priced at $6,999

With the base model at 9.12 kg or 20.1 lb. But if cutting weight is what you’re only after, checkout the Salsa Warbird Carbon AXS Wide model. The bike is ideal for gravel racing, but would also make a perfect fast touring bike. With rear rack capabilities thanks to the Salsa Wanderlust Rack and Salsa Rack-Lock Seat Collar.

However just incase you have some questions. We have answered some of the most common queries.

What is a good weight for a touring bike?

Touring bikes on average weigh between 26 to 33 lbs or 12 to 15 kg. Including racks and fenders. In this article I surveyed bikepackers and bicycle tourers to find the average weight of their bikes with gear.

However the bikes in this list range from the lightest at 18.2 lbs or 8.26 kg to 26.2 lbs or 11.9 kg. Which still weighs less than most ‘normal’ touring bikes.

How much does weight slow you down on a bike? Does a heavy bike slow you down?

A heavy bike doesn’t slow you down us much as you might think. Aerodynamics is said to be the most important factor when it comes to cycling efficiency. Which is why bikepacking is becoming more popular these days. Allowing for gear to be store don your bike in a more slipstream manner. Appose to touring bike panniers which can block more of the wind acting like sails slowing you down.

It is why I personally like steel bikes for adventure riding. Yes they weight a little more than carbon bikes. Say 3 to 4 kg more. But they are built to with-stand all the gear load you can imagine. And are overall better designed for bike adventures.

But yes the heavier the bike the more it will slow you down. But it is actually not as much as some might seem. Only if you are racing is where it would make sense to consider a lighter bike. Not really as much for touring.

Now that is out of the way. Let’s take a look at some of the lightest touring bikes.

The criterial for choosing these bikes was lightweight (obviously), upright and comfortable riding positioning, mounting options on the frame for racks, fenders even kickstands, large gearing ranges and ratios, more robust components and more readily available parts (from around the world). Long chainstays for weight distribution, and for providing clearance between panniers and the rider’s heels, higher trail than traditional road bikes for loaded stability,

This article goes into further detail about what makes a good touring bike. And compares them to gravel bikes, if you are potentially looking into gravel grinding.

Just quick, more adventure ready gravel bikes can make a great option and often some of these carbon touring bikes share similar DNA to them. However these types of gravel bikes are more suited to bikepacking, which might mean leaving those panniers at home.

But if you are looking to explore with panniers then these carbon touring bikes have the geometry to accommodate and avoid negatively impacting ride handling. Which if you don’t choose the correct gravel bike. It can be a big mistake.

The Lightest Carbon Touring Bikes (Listed lightest to heaviest)

BikePriceWeightFrame/ForkWheelsBrakesStack/Reach Ratio (MD)ChainstayTrail
Salsa WarbirdFrom $3,299 (USD)18.2 to 20.1 lb / 8.26 to 9.12 kgCarbon/Carbon700cHydraulic1.52430mm69.6
Giant Revolt Advanced (Pro 0, 0, 1, 2)From $3,599 (USD)18.29 to 20.94 lb / 8.3 to 9.5 kgCarbon/Carbon700cHydraulic1.5425mm70.5
Kestrel Ter-X$2,500 (USD)18.5 lb or 8.39 kgCarbon/Carbon700cHydraulic1.53435mm
Niner RLT9 RDOFrom $3,050 (USD)18.6 to 21.2 lb / 8.44 to 9.62 kgCarbon/Carbon700cHydraulic1.54430mm76.7 (Approx)
Viathon G1From $2,29818.81 lb or 8.53 kgCarbon/Carbon700cHydraulic1.48425mm
Jamis Renegade (C1 or C2)From $2,999 (USD)18.96 to 20.94 lb / 8.6 to 9.5 kgCarbon/Carbon700cHydraulic1.49430mm60.5
Trek CheckpointFrom $3,12919.1 to 21.4 lb / 8.66 to 9.71 kgCarbon/Carbon700cHydraulic1.48425mm64
Holdsworth MystiqueFrom $2,534 (USD) or £1,79919.4 lb or 8.8 kg ApproxCarbon/Carbon700cHydraulic1.57440mm67.3
Norco Search XR CarbonFrom $3,999 (USD)19.53 lb or 8.86 kg (Approx)Carbon/Carbon700c/650bHydraulic1.47422.5mm66
Specialized DivergeFrom $2,800 (USD)19.73 to 21.17 lb / 8.95 to 9.6 kg (Approx)Carbon/Carbon700cHydraulic1.55425mm60.4
Orro Terra CFrom $2,534 (USD) or £1,79920.02 lb or 9.08 kg (Approx)Carbon/Carbon700cHydraulic/Mechanical1.52420mm68.7
On-One Space ChickenFrom $2,111 (USD) or £1,49920.50 lb or 9.3 kg (Approx)Carbon/Carbon700c/650bHydraulic1.47422mm67.3
Bombtrack Hook EXT-C$3,900 (USD) Approx.20.7 lb or 9.24 kgCarbon/Carbon650bHydraulic1.51435mm62.8
Thesis OB1 Rival$3,299 (USD)21.3 lb or 9.66 kgCarbon/Carbon700c/650bHydraulic1.51420mm
Accent FeralFrom $2,682 (USD) or €2,272.5021.38 lb or 9.7 kgCarbon/Carbon700cHydraulic1.58450mm68.1
Fuji Jari Carbon 1.3$2,499 (USD)21.38 lb or 9.7 kgCarbon/Carbon700cHydraulic1.55435mm67.8
Fuji Jari Carbon 1.1$2,999 (USD)21.38 lb or 9.7 kgCarbon/Carbon700cHydraulic1.55435mm67.8
Salsa CutthroatFrom $2,899 (USD)21.4 to 24.5 lb / 9.71 to 11.11 kgCarbon/Carbon29″Hydraulic/Mechanical1.59445mm86.2
Kona Libre CR or CR/DLFrom $2,999 (USD)21.75 lb or 9.87 kg (Approx.)Carbon/Carbon700cHydraulic1.58440mm63.9 to 69.7
Diamondback Haanjo 5C EXP$2,000 (USD)21.8 lb or 9.88 kgCarbon/Carbon650bMechanical1.54430mm75.5
Diamondback Haanjo 7C$2,950 (USD)22.92 lb or 10.4 kgCarbon/Carbon700cHydraulic1.54430mm75.5
Rose Backroad Randonneur$4,023 (USD) or €3,29923.15 lb or 10.5 kgCarbon/Carbon700cHydraulic1.46427mm
Tifosi Cavazzo$3,027 (USD) or £2,19923.7 lb or 10.7 kg (with fenders)Carbon/Carbon700cHydraulic1.51430mm69.3
Salsa Fargo Carbon$2,599 (USD)26.2 lb or 11.9 kgCarbon/Carbon29″Hydraulic1.75455mm88.2

Above is a detailed look at all these carbon touring bikes. The table is organised from lightest bike to heaviest. Please note that the prices are from the lowest bike model cost. So for example the lightest Salsa Warbird (Carbon AXS Wide) at 8.26kg is actually a $6,999 bike not $3,299.

Cheapest Carbon Touring Bike (Also Best Value!)

Diamondback Haanjo 5C EXP

The cheapest Carbon Touring bike in the list goes to the Haanjo 5C EXP by Diamondback. Priced at $2,000 and weighing in at 21.8 lb or 9.88 kg. It is about 1.62 kg heavier than the lightest bike listed. But 3.5 times cheaper!

Available with 650b x 47c tires, mechanical disc brakes and mid ranged components. Fairly upright with around 1.54 stack/reach, mid range (430mm medium) chainstay, and 75.5 trail. Its bar-end shifters give it that touring bike feel. Making for ease on-trail and tour maintenance. The Shimano 3×9 drivetrain offers huge gear ranges compared to most other 1x gravel options in this list. They also offer their 7C bike which costs more.

(Most Capable Carbon Touring Bike – Heaviest Bike Overall)

Salsa Fargo Carbon

The Salsa Fargo is a truely capable adventure / touring bike. Ideal for trail riding and dirt road touring. Coming with 29″ x 2.6″ Maxxis Ikon tires. It has those wide enough tire to truely take you just about anywhere. With a super upright stack/reach, long chainstay and large trail, all purpose built to be ridden under a load. It is however the heaviest carbon touring bike in this list.

2nd Lightest Carbon Touring Bike

Giant Revolt Advanced

Because weight seems to be the most important reason you would choose a carbon touring bike over a steel rig. We have included a top 5 feature of the lightest carbon touring bikes.

The Giant Revolt takes 2nd place with the Advanced Pro 0 model, weighing 18.3 lb or 8.3 kg and priced at $6,150. Yeah it is not quite as light as the Warbird but cheaper. Both bikes have the same tire clearance for 700c x 45c. Revolt with less mounting options. Looking at the table above, the Revolt is slightly less upright than the Warbird and shorter at the chainstay by 5mm (for a medium frame). Which puts the Revolt in that shorter side and Warbird Mid range. But both would still feel rather quick in the rear. With rather similar trails, in that high and stable range.

3rd Lightest Carbon Touring Bike (Also Lightest/Cheapest Bike)

Kestrel Ter-X

If you want to save some cash but also get a super lightweight carbon touring bike. The Kestrel Ter-X should be on your radar. Weighing 18.5 lb or 8.39 kg and only $2,500. Available in one model, with SRAM Rival 1 and 700×36 tires. It is nice and upright with a 1.53 stack/reach. While also boasting a 435mm chainstay (medium size) putting it in the mid range. Making it nice and balanced in the rear, giving it all-rounder status.

4th Lightest Carbon Touring Bike

Niner RLT9 RDO

The Niner RLT9 RDO is available in its lightest build at 18.6 lb or 8.44 kg and costs $6,100 for the 5-Star SRAM Force AXS 1X LTD model. Or the base model from 21.2 lb or 9.62 kg and $3,050.

The bike comes with 700×45 tires and tire clearance for up to 50mm tires. Slightly more upright than all the bikes we have looked at so far (medium size). The same chainstay length as the Warbird. But a slightly larger trail at about 76.7. making it rather high and almost sluggish up front. But quick in the rear.

5th Lightest Carbon Touring Bike (3rd Cheapest Bike Overall)

Viathon G1

If you are after another budget friendly option, this G1 road racer, mountain bike toughness, carbon touring bike. Is the cheapest so far, weighing 140 grams more then the Kestrel Ter-X at 18.81 lb or 8.53 kg. But it is $202 cheaper at $2,298! Cost wise this bike is third overall. However it is slightly less upright compared to all the bikes we have looked at so far and has a similar chainstay to the Giant Revolt.

6th Lightest Carbon Touring Bike

Jamis Renegade

The Jamis Renegade is the proper embodiment of a modern adventure bike. A bike that allows you to use it for a multitude of riding styles. The new frame and fork design makes the most of handling and comfort whether you’re road riding with 28mm tires, adding a rack and fenders for commuting with 32’s or exploring the backcountry wilderness fully loaded up on 37mm tires. If you are looking for larger tire clearance, the steel and aluminum Renegades will accommodate up to a  700c x 50mm/650b x 2.00”.

Trek Checkpoint

The Trek Checkpoint is a very popular gravel bike, with most availability worldwide. Designed for gravel but fully capable of so much more. Whether you’re riding for fun, commuting to work or getting into gravel racing, Checkpoint does it all. Oh yeah and even bicycle touring and bikepacking!

Holdsworth Mystique

Holdsworth claim they have been selling super fast carbon fibre adventure bikes for years, before the bandwagon even started. The Mystique is described as their pro-quality, aero framed, high velocity carbon adventure gravel weapon. With a very upright and long chainstay you know this thing is built for adventures all around the world!

Norco Search XR Carbon

For the adventure seeker. The Search XR Carbon is up for whatever spontaneous, uncharted, off-piste adventure you can conjure. The little slacker and longer geometry over road bikes helps on rough terrain. Whether you’ve put in months of planning, or you just decided to turn right on a whim, it’s built to thrive off the beaten path, and wherever adventure takes you.

Specialized Diverge

The Specialized Diverge comes in many styles and designs for all budget ranges. Categorised as adventure/gravel bikes. They also do make great light touring bikes for whatever adventures you have in mind.

Orro Terra C

From the UK, the Orro Terra C is designed to be fast and agile, comfortable and responsive. Allowing you to ride on road or trails. It is their ultimate do it all and travel everywhere bike. Making it perfect for touring. With a rather short rear feeling jumpy and quick. Up front the trail is rather stable feeling and in the high range for similar bikes.

On-One Space Chicken

Considered a gravel monster bike with the option to run 700c or 650b wheels. With tires up to 48mm. Part gravel bike, part tourer, part cyclocross and all fun!

Bombtrack Hook EXT-C

This has to be one of my favourite bikes in the list. It is a truely capable adventure bike. Up there with the likes of the Salsa Fargo but not quite as much tire clearance. Bombtrack describe this bike as the one to take you to wild places fast! With all the mounting eyelets you could need, forks, top-tube, rear rack and bottles. You are all set for an epic bike adventure on this rig!

Thesis OB1 Rival

The Thesis OB1 is a carbon all-road gravel bike made for perfect asphalt to rocky trails and everything in between. It’s fast, versatile, brilliantly equipped, and built to last. Available in a wide variety of colours and build options.

Accent Feral

A  full carbon gravel frame made in Monocoque technology features really light weight and is also very rigid in critical parts. The Feral by Accent is made for sideways fun and around world adventure. With clearance for up to 50mm tires.

Fuji Jari Carbon 1.3 & 1.1

Fuji have combined their go-anywhere Jari with their lightest, race-quality carbon fibre, giving you a quality adventure/gravel bike. Built with a sub 1000g C15 frame which is the first in its class made of monocoque carbon. It is optimised for both performance and utility, during racing, gravel riding and bikepacking.

Salsa Cutthroat (One of the Best Carbon Touring Bikes you can buy!)

Drop-bar mountain bike, ultra-endurance mixed surface machine, tour divide inspire, bikepacking rig. The Salsa Cutthroat is your ultimate fast touring bike! Built with the ability to ride comfortably over huge distances with gear it is one of the best bikes we can recommended in this carbon touring bike category!

Kona Libre CR or CR/DL

Another favourite is the Libre Carbon line up by Kona. These bikes are fun, fast and ready for you to strap some gear on and go on an adventure.

The Carbon Touring Bike With The Most Gadgets

Rose Backroad Randonneur

Built in Germany the Rose Backroad Randonneur carbon touring bikes. Comes with all you need for an around the world expedition. B + M Lumotec IQ-X 100 Lux lights, mudguards, and a rear rack. It is said to be a bike that has no compromises. Allowing for sport and performance riding to touring and off-road riding. As it is claimed to be a multi discipline bike the stack/reach is around 1.46 not as upright as you would expect for a proper touring bike geometry.

Tifosi Cavazzo

Another do it all bike, the Tifosi Cavazzo is the ultimate gravel and adventure bike. Build it the way you want, for bike packing, commuting or gravel racing.

About The Author



Codey Orgill, a seasoned bicycle adventurer, has been exploring the world on two wheels for over 10 years. Since embarking on his initial cycling journey, Codey Orgill has traversed numerous countries, experiencing a series of epic adventures.