Bikes are having a moment. The way to avoid hot, stuffy public transport and, for Londoners, Olympics-congested streets, now it’s even possible to look stylish while riding one thanks to the wave of new designs to choose from. The Stylist team tested five of the best...
Bikes available from Bike Republic at Selfridges; bikerepublic.com
Pashley Parabike, £540
Tested by Anna Fielding, editor of Emerald Street and stylist.co.uk
The perfect bike for a land girl: sturdy, a military colour, but with feminine, vintage styling. The wide handle bars mean it’s not great for nipping through traffic, but it’s well balanced so you can lift both feet off the ground while stationary and it barely wobbles. A bit slow, but stylish – and has space for a basket or pannier.
Kranium KR1 Electric, £1,895
Tested by Francesca Brown, production editor
I was terrified of my electric bike. Utterly terrified. Big, unwieldy – not unlike a tank in bike form – I couldn’t bring myself to brave rush hour. However, in terms of a fun way to cycle, this is it. A tiny bit of pedalling, the engine kicks in and off you go. Tight manoeuvres can be tricky but on the straight it’s glorious.
Mekk , £1,299
Tested by Lauren Smith, online editorial assistant
I’m training for a triathlon, but so far most of my cycling had been confined to the safety of a gym. So when my sleek racing bike arrived, eliciting many ‘oohs’ and ‘aahs’ from my colleagues, I was excited to give it a spin. So light I could hoist it above my head with one hand, it moved at breakneck speed down hills, making it best for experienced racers.
Schindelhauer Siegfried, £1,295
Tested by JP Nicholas, deputy production editor
Like an Amsterdam bike, this has wide curved handlebars; which puts you in a very comfortable riding position, but denies you the joy of weaving through the permajam of London’s traffic. Probably a good thing safety-wise, but quite frustrating when commuting. Once the traffic cleared, it was good, speedy fun.
Kranium Worx SR02, £899
Tested by Clare Ferguson, art director
My bike was by far the best looking. I was keen to try something sporty as I normally cycle around on my Brompton which, although practical, isn’t high in the cool stakes. The titanium bike frame was a beautiful shade of champagne and at a mere 12kgs, its speed and lightness shaved at least six minutes off my commute.
What do you think? Will you be jumping on a bicycle this summer? Do you have a favourite bike design or cycling memory? Tell us your thoughts on Twitter or in the comments section below.