Folding bikes, Bromptons and Design Excellence

English Cycles

The image above is not a Brompton. An obvious statement (especially as you can easily read “English” on the down tube –

However, if you board a train at commuter time in the UK, look down and see a folding bike, what you will invariably see is the classic form of a Brompton (

Bromptons have become the de facto brand for city commuters for two main reasons. (1) They do the job they are asked of VERY well. (2) They are the epitome of a British success story, and the brand value that carries is valuable.

The bikes that Rob English manufactures are exquisite collapsible race bikes to enable packing for stowed travel on aeroplanes. For the more prosaic use of hopping on and off trains, a quicker fold is needed and this is where the Brompton design excels.

There are now innumerable alternatives, but the Brompton stands clear. As a new brand, Tern, ( launches, it will be interesting to see if the Brompton hegemony continues.


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