I've written a great deal about Detroit Bikes. Their first model, the A-Type is my favorite bike they offer. This manufactured-and-assembled-in-Detroit bicycle is all about distillation if you want a regular bike to get around on. Just look at it:
It has a simple and low maintenance three-speed hub, fenders, a rear rack, a coaster rear brake and a caliper front brake. In the last year, I have come to love a three-speed hub. Here in Lubbock you just don't need 21 or 24 or 27 different gears. Three speeds keep it really simple and they are super-low maintenance. If I were to buy this bike, the only addition I would need is front and rear lights; otherwise, this thing is absolutely ready for a daily commute. Would it fit your needs? ($699 plus $50 shipping) (Check out the B-Type if you'd rather have a step-through.)
Or would you like one even simpler? Well, check out the Republic Studio. This thing is very simple cool:
Ah, the simple life!
So, what makes it so simple? First and foremost, it can't get a flat. It runs airless tires!
And it has no greasy chain - it has belt drive. And it has some really killer Shimano Roller brakes that are inside the hub. And it has the same Shimano Nexus 3-speed hub as the A-Type above. And it only weighs 26 pounds. This is a get-on-it-and-go bike. It's even shipped ready-to-ride. (This one is $799 and shipping is $99. It also comes as a step-through.)
Since this is Mesquite Hugger, you may be asking yourself Where are the simple electric bikes?
Well, I've covered a few in recent months - bikes like the Vilano Core, the Sondors Thin, Populo, the Propella, and the Karmic Koben, but today I present to you the most simple and beautiful e-bike I've seen - the Budnitz Model E. (One small warning - this one falls well outside the budget of us poor boys and girls, but snagit, it's cool!)
The Zehus all-in-one-hub motor and belt drive
The Budnitz Model E in these pics is the Titanium version. Before shipping, this one runs just shy of $9,000, but those of you with thriftier budgets can get the painted steel model for $4,000. Cool in this case is not cheap, but it's sure easy to admire the simple elegance of this machine. Budnitz claims that this is the lightest e-bike on the market and that it can achieve 100 miles per charge if you pedal hard enough.
Well, I guess it's time for me to hop on the old Huffy and head home.
May you achieve your own distillation and find that simplicity can be wonderful.