The term 'hybrid' is a really lazy term that everyone in the bike world uses, but one that has lost all specificity. Unfortunately, it seems to have stuck. It was first coined to describe a cross between a tradtional utility type road bike and the newer mountain style bike. But such has been the proliferation of bike styles in recent years that the term now serves little purpose - 'hybrid' of what? you may well ask. These days, you can buy a cross between all manner of types, with all manner of gears, wheel and tyre sizes. If it means anything, it means versatile - these bikes can do a number of things well. Here, we have settled on a simple distinction between 'Comfort' and 'Sporty.' Set out below, are the more upright types that we offer.
Comfort hybrids are basically a cross between traditional short distance and upright town bikes and touring bikes designed for long distances. Some designs share a similar geometry to the classic touring bike, but all of them have a much more upright riding position than a traditional touring bike, whether they come with swept back comfort bars (most Gazelles), or simple 'riser' bars (Ridgeback Meteor). Most of the models that we sell feature fully adjustable handlebar stems - both for reach and for height - which makes it much easier to achieve the perfect fit.
Although some are unequipped, most have the equipment that you would require of a day to day town bike, such as mudguards, racks, and often a lot more, but with the crucial difference of derailleur gears. Derailleur gears make these bikes lighter than city bikes and effectively extend their range, making them better able to cope with the more varied gradients and terrain which you are likely to encounter on longer day rides.
Comfort hybrids are basically road bikes, so although they can be ridden gently off-road, on smoother bridleways and cyclepaths, they are not as agile off-road as some sports hybrids. If you want a bike for transport, but also want to go on leisurely excursions into the country or for longer trips, then a comfort hybrid is ideal. Note that some brands use the term 'trekking' for this type, no doubt to make them sound more sexy, but we're not bothered about that - they are what they are - comfy and versatile.