A different style of compact bike from the many folding bikes we see here at New Atlas, the Minimal Bike keeps things simple, clean and light. Designed by Dutch bike guru Bram Moens, who's best known for his record-breaking M5 recumbents, the carbon fiber Minimal Bike tips the scales at under 15 lb (6.8 kg). It's designed for transitioning between traffic-filled city streets, open country roads and even dirt-and-rock trails.
The frame of the Minimal Bike has a distinctive three-pronged presence and looks more like a claw than a bike frame. It also has a more integrated design than the usual bike, with welded tubes and quick-release components replaced with a frame, seat post, stem and handlebars that flow together as if carved from a solid block of carbon.
That whole package isn't actually a single piece, but Moens has gone to the trouble of structuring the parts that way, creating flowing transitions and recessing attachment hardware for a smoother look. He's also routed the cables internally and pulled the brake levers back into the handlebar grips.
Beyond just looking cool, the Minimal Bike lives up to its name, weighing in as low as 14.8 lb (6.7 kg) thanks to the use of carbon fiber throughout the construction of the frame, fork, seat post, stem and handlebars. The Minimal Bike may not fold down to slide into a trunk or closet, but it should be easy enough to lift up staircases and into train cars.
We're not sure we'd trust that small, unsuspended, pronged frame on anything other than very smooth ground, but the Minimal is described as a crossover, designed for a combination of urban commuting, road cycling and mountain biking. The 20-in wheels will accommodate 1- to 1.9-in-wide (26- to 48-mm-wide) tires.
The Minimal Bike adjusts to fit riders from 5.2 to 6.9 ft (1.6 to 2.1 m) tall, has a 57.5-ft (146-cm) total length and rides on a 37-in (94.3-cm) wheelbase. Its concealed brake levers are cabled to front and rear discs.
Moens has taken to Kickstarter to raise money for further development of the bike and, if successful, he intends to tweak the steel molds he's made and get production started, as well as develop added features like carbon fiber cargo carriers. He's offering a single-speed version at the €3,025 (approx. US$3,250) pledge level and a 10-speed at the €3,275 ($3,525) level. The campaign has yet to earn its first euro, however.
Strangely, the prices on the Minimal Bike web shop are actually cheaper than the Kickstarter campaign prices, starting at €2,758 ($2,965) and change for the single-speed. We've reached out to the company via email to try to find out the reason for the discrepancy – maybe outdated prices or another mistake, maybe differences in components, or maybe something else. We'll update if we hear back, but in the meantime, it's worth keeping in mind if you're interested in pursuing your own Minimal Bike.
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