Will a Road Bike Be Easier?

I'm new to biking, so please bare with me with the obvious question:) I've been biking as exercise on the road, but have been using my very cheap (purchased at Target) mountain bike. I bike mainly on the road. This bike is ready to bust (the gears really don't work) and I'm getting really out of breath going... show more I'm new to biking, so please bare with me with the obvious question:)

I've been biking as exercise on the road, but have been using my very cheap (purchased at Target) mountain bike. I bike mainly on the road.

This bike is ready to bust (the gears really don't work) and I'm getting really out of breath going up hills with this bike.

Will my miles be much easier if I purchase a road bike instead? Is there more speed and smoothness on the road?
Update: Also, I realize a decent road bike is going to cost me. Do you know of any affordable brands that are good quality (and do they let you finance)?
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