If you’re looking for a fun and relaxed way to enjoy cycling, cruisers or beach cruisers are one of the best types of bikes. Beach cruisers combine an elongated wheelbase, chopper-like styling, and a comfortable upright seating position for cruising the streets or local trails. The Priority Coast combines all the desirable features of beach cruisers with a lightweight aluminum construction and low maintenance drivetrain. Priority offers the bike as either a step-through or the diamond frame style shown in this review. Both frame designs are available either as a $599 single speed or a $679 three-speed option which uses a Shimano Nexus internal hub. Whichever frame and drivetrain option you choose, the Priority Coast comes equipped with Gates Carbon belt drive that require nearly no maintenance and will never rust.
The Priority Bicycles Coast combines the classic styling and comfort of a beach cruiser with a modern Gates Carbon Belt drive system and aluminium frame.
|Retail Price||$599 (single speed) / $679 (three-speed)|
|Rating||Design: A |
|Weight (lb)||28 (diamond frame)|
|Likes||+ Smooth Gates Carbon Drive|
+ Affordable and low maintenance design
+ Sleek cruiser frame design with classic design elements
|Dislikes||– Limited color selection|
– Wide handlebars may not fit smaller cyclists
|Where to Buy (US)||Priority Bikes|
The Priority Coast comes well packed in a large recyclable Priority Bicycles branded cardboard box. The motto “Happiness in Motion” is also printed on the bike box which captures the essence of cycling. Once you’ve opened up the box you’ll find:
- Priority Coast bike with protective coverings
- Assembly tools (wrench and allen keys)
- Small bottle of touchup paint
- Instruction manual
Although the bike is very well packed with plenty of foam and protective wrapping, we did have some minor shipping damage. The front fender had a small divot which was easy to push back out with a little hammering.
Before you start riding, there is some minor assembly required with the Priority Coast. In order to get the bike to fit inside the box, Priority has left the front wheel, pedals and handlebar removed from the bike. This allows the bike to fit in the smaller box, but does require about 10-30 minutes to put back together. It’s a very straightforward process as you only need the provided tools and some patience to remove all the protective wrapping. You’ll want to first attach the handlebar to the frame by sliding the Quill stem into the frame, adjusting the position and then tightening the top cap bolt. After that, you’ll need to attach the front wheel to the bike and slide the fender onto the wheel and bolt it onto the attachment points.
The Coast comes with standard flat pedals that thread onto the crank with convenient labeling to indicate which side is which. The last step is to install the seat and seat post using the simple quick release mechanism. With everything assembled, you’ll want to do some final adjustments to ensure everything is aligned and properly positioned. We’d recommend checking the front brake to ensure the pads are aligned with the rim and are at the correct tension (if loose – simply loosen the attachment and pull the cable tighter). Fitment can be adjusted by moving the seat upward/downward as well as rotating the handlebars until you feel comfortable on the bike.
FIT & FINISH
Visually, the Priority Coast sticks to the classic smooth and sleek styling cruiser bikes are known for with an attractive frame design that looks equally at home on the beach or riding around town. As the name implies, cruisers are quite similar to choppers with long wheel bases and slack seat / headtube angles. Aside from the straight seat tube and head tube, the Priority Coast is mostly constructed of curved aluminum tubing. We chose the diamond frame option which gracefully connects the two seat stay tubes into the downtube. Priority offers the bike in a number of options and either tan or black accent colors. The white paint scheme features tan tires, seat and grips which is a classic color combination.
To achieve the accessible price point and low maintenance design, the Priority Coast sticks to simple but well designed components. The broad curved handlebars are unbranded and use a traditional quill stem. The angle of the handlebars can easily be adjusted by loosening the stem plate bolts. A dual cantilever front brake helps slow down the bike while a coaster rear brake provides additional braking force. The coaster break allows you to pedal backwards and takes a little adjustment to get used to if you’re accustomed to rim or disc brake setups. The aluminium seat post has a quick release style clamp that can be quickly adjusted or removed and is topped with a wide and plush seat. Again, the seat is unbranded but has two springs beneath it and a leather-like finish that complements the bike well.
The Priority Coast also have full front and rear metal fenders that attach via eyelets onto the frame. They give the bike a classic commuter look and provide weather protection if you’re caught in rain or ride on wet roads. Robust spoke rims are wrapped in puncture resistance 26×1.25” tan Kenda tires. The color matched tires not only look great but they also provide a cushy ride that dampens out any potholes and can even do light offroading or riding on sand. With the three-speed option, the Priority adds a Shimano Nexus 3 speed internal hub into the rear wheel and a grip shifter on the right side of the handlebars. While it’s not as slick as a modern electronic drivetrain, the grip shifter has a large indicator and is easy to use.
One of the best features of the bike is the Gates Carbon Belt system which replaces traditional chains with a reinforced belt. It’s paired with the Gates S150 170mm crankset and 122t CDN belt. Unlike chains which require regular cleaning and replacement, the belt drive is low maintenance and weather resistant. It’s similar to the Priority Ace of Spades bike, but uses the urban Gates CDN version of the belt and coaster brake functionality. It’s a great upgrade to traditional chain setups as beach cruisers aren’t regularly maintained which can lead to dry or rusted out chains. You also don’t have to worry about grease marks or on your clothing as the belt system is completely dry and only need to be occasionally wiped.
As a beach cruiser, the Priority Coast combines a long wheel base with slack head and seat tube angles. This means you’re very upright when riding the bike which gives the bike slow but predictable handling. It’s a very beginner friendly setup and doesn’t have the “twitchy” feel road bikes are known for. Combined with the thick tires the Coast is more comfortable cruising down trails than weaving through traffic like the Priority Ace of Spades. We’d highly recommend the 3-speed drivetrain option as the additional gears allow you to ride the Coast on a variety of terrain. Even with only three speeds, the gear range can let you comfortable climb moderate hills and descend them on the other side. One fact of note is that the one-size-fits-most approach means the wide handlebars may not be comfortable for smaller cyclists. In our case, it didn’t feel all that great for someone who typically rides a 380mm wide road bike handlebar .
Overall we found the Priority Coast to be a comfortable and fun cruiser to ride. The combination of classic styling, modern belt drivetrain and aluminum construction retain the desirable riding style beach cruisers are known for while eliminating any maintenance or concerns over rust. Particularly with 3-speed variation we reviewed, the Coast is the perfect bike for exploring coastal trails or cruising around town. The bike has an upright geometry and beginner friendly handling that new or experienced cyclists can enjoy. Our main issues with the bike is that the one-size-fits-most approach means the wide handlebars may not be comfortable for smaller cyclists. That aside, if you’re looking for a stylish beach cruiser that needs minimal maintenance and won’t rust than the Priority Coast is a solid option.
Disclaimer: The product for this review was provided by Priority Bicycles. The views expressed on this website are solely those of the authors and are here to help people make an informed choice before a purchase. The authors or the blog itself does not get any monetary compensation from the product manufacturer or third-party websites/vendor links that are posted here.