Because they're made in small batches by hand, most of the bikes at the North American Handmade Bicycle Show are ... well, they ain't cheap. One in particular, the Italian-made Sarto 18K, had a price tag of US$27,000 when you could still get one. What would you get for that price? Gold and crocodile skin, for starters.
Yep, all of the gold-colored bits that you see on the bike are in fact plated with 18-karat gold. One of those pieces, a circular medallion located at the front of the top tube, bears the initials of that specific bike's individual owner – the 18K was made-to-order, and its production run was limited to just 25 units.
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The handlebars, chain stay and saddle, meanwhile, are clad in black crocodile skin leather.
Its frame and pretty much all of its main structural components are made of carbon fiber, resulting in a weight of just 9 kg (19.8 lb). The mechanical components are mainly Campagnolo, with Campy's Super Record EPS system electronically shifting gears.
The 18K is an entry in a contest currently underway at NAHBS, where judges will decide upon the best handmade Campagnolo-equipped bike. If only that contest was for the best crocodile-equipped bike, its win would be a sure thing.
Company website: SartoView gallery - 10 images