This weekend’s 4th Berlin Bike Show brought together a good mix of European specialty cycling producers together with some of the bigger international brands. The public show gives many smaller companies and distributors the opportunity to show their products directly to the end user; and Berlin is definitely a very cyclist friendly city and turned out big crowds. It also had several fun events, including a big bike polo tournament, an indoor BMX/4X track, several trials courses, and a junkyard-style cylcocross race that came in the exhibition hall and out through the junk out back…
Big German companies like Lightweight, Tune exhibited their wares together with big companies like Cannonade, BMC, ENVE, etc. But many of the interesting highlights of the show came from some of the smaller companies that we don’t often see and their unique products. Some of these smaller companies haven’t developed full English-language websites, but everyone we saw was happy to chat, and recommended to feel free to email with any questions.
In a city with so many people getting around by bike, it’s pretty interesting to see so many cargo bikes. Clearly there are a huge number of options from utility racks on bikes to box bikes for carrying all sorts of things and children. It was also great to see that there were a several different cargo bikes locked up outside of the show each day, ones that clearly got a lot of everyday use. Cargo bikes don’t show up too much in our day-to-day coverage, but if readers are interested (let us know in the comments) I could certainly expand on some of these options.
We spotted a nice solution or two to rack mounting panniers. Apparently tubular stainless steel fabrication is especially strong in Berlin. Urbix offers a modular low profile stainless steel option that can connect directly to the brake bosses and a new custom tubular stainless porter-style fork rack. Everything is custom made-to-order based on the standard design, so pretty much anything is possible, but prices start at 80€ and can climb.
urbix-berlin.de or firstname.lastname@example.org
Fahrer, a Berlin-based producer or panniers and other bags also had a nice low-key welded tubular stainless rack made just for their bags that mounts to the brake budge and rear axle (no rack mounts needed.) Also around 90€, the price of cool isn’t cheap.
We saw some nice looking Gropes real-leather lace-up grips that would add a classic touch to many city bikes. Based in the UK the grips range from £25-42 (~$42-70), with shipping to the states from their online shop for less than 8 bucks more.
Electrolyte, who we featured before for their unique e-bikes with the motor and battery in a unified fork package. Their new prototype with 20” wheels and custom S&S couplers looks like it might be a more ideal application.
This crazy art bike stood out in a gallery installation at the show.
Esprit Nouveau No9 by Saadane Afif & Jofroi Amaral, 2012.
“When the first bicycle constructors tried to solve the technical issues of building a frame, they sought advice from experts in chair-making an came up with using bended wood. A few dozen years later, bike constructors had moved on to making frames from metal. Young designers of the time that wanted to create furniture from bended metal, now came back to seek the expertise of those who were already familiar with this technology: the bicycle constructors. Since this exchange there has been a mutual influence. Elements from one appareled in the other one’s work and vice versa.
‘Esprit Nouveau No9’ is the result of joint reflection of Saadane Afif and Jofroi Amaral.
It emerged from their desire to combine different structures in order to reveal their hidden connections and correlations. ‘Esprit Nouveau No9’ is a hybrid object, a distinguished monstrosity that offsets its absurd shape with the beauty of its lines.
Plus, we’ll have more in the upcoming week or so, including:
- A wide range of carbon and titanium bike from VPACE;
- A fatbike prototype that will hopefully make it into production from Veloheld;
- A new road bike from 8bar that should be affordable and ready for anything;
- More updates on the FABIKE that we’ve talked about a few times before;
- More on Loop wheels, and their expanding offerings;
- The very interesting sustainable clothing lines of Triple 2; and
- A steel cyclocross bike from Tannenwald getting ready for production.