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I bought a hybrid bike about one month ago. It's a BMC Alpenchallenge AC02 Tiagra. Have been having a blast on it to the point of considering to eventually get into road bikes

Full Specs can be seen here: http://www.bmc-switzerland.com/int-en/bikes/lifestyle/mountainroad-alpenchallenge-ac02-tiagra/

Chainwheel: Shimano Tiagra, 50-39-30T

Cassette: Shimano Tiagra, 11-34

Tyres: Continental Sport Contact II, 35mm

Rims: DT SWISS R522D

So the question is, if you were to do some upgrades what would you get?

I plan to get a road bike in 1.5-2 years time. In the mean time I'd like to use this one to train (likely uphilly stuff like http://www.cycling-challenge.com/col-de-la-faucille - over 1000m altitude). In terms of improving performance/handling/speed what kind of sensible upgrades can be done for a budgeted $500 tops?

Thanks in advance, would much appreciate your inputs!

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    Any money spent replacing still functioning parts will likely be wasted. you likely won't see or feel the improvements. Your efforts would be best spent riding and training to increase speed and endurance. If something wears out or breaks replace it possibly with an upgrade. – mikes Jun 28 '17 at 22:55
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    I would put the $500 in the bank and use to either upgrade sooner, or upgrade to a better bike. Putting it into you current bike will not significantly add to the bikes resale value. – mattnz Jun 28 '17 at 22:55
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    I would spend some of it on quality front and rear lights, a helmet, and padded cycling pants/gloves. Possibly a bright riding shirt too. There is no part of the bike that will be worn enough to need replacement. – Criggie Jun 29 '17 at 8:01
  • Certainly not after a month. If it's so new, one might ask why the OP doesn't simply return it and buy a nicer bike with the n+500 dollars he has. – RoboKaren Jun 29 '17 at 21:17
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    To reinforce other comments from a different perspective: That's already pretty fast and well-specced for a hybrid. You can't really improve on the gearing or the tyres and you're already planning to upgrade the frame when you're ready. Personally I'd regard the ability to carry some luggage as an upgrade, but that's a matter for you to choose based on your use. – Chris H Jun 30 '17 at 12:36
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The best upgrades would be a set of clipless pedals, compatible shoes, and some nice cycling clothes and helmet. And maybe a good set of lights. You can carry all these over to your next bike.

Another nice upgrade is a bike repair stand and a basic bike repair toolkit.

Finally, a good GPS bike computer or GPS watch will set you back a few hundred dollars.

I think you get the idea. There are no "upgrades" to an essentially new bike itself that need to be made. Only buy things that will encourage you to cycle more (Strava premium membership!) or that you can take with you to the next bike.

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    Strava on a smartphone works well enough for me, no need for a poncy garmin. – Criggie Jun 29 '17 at 7:58
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    True. So spend the money on a nice smartphone mount for your bike. :) – RoboKaren Jun 29 '17 at 21:16

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