CHARGE Lazy Susan, £499, www.chargebikes.com
- By London Cycling Campaign on at 8:38pm 10 May 2011
- Posted in: Bikes
- Tagged with: Charge, cargo, hybrid, bikes
Charge has made a strong impact in recent years with its Plug singlespeed and Tap eight-speed hybrid among others – however, many urbanites rate this as the primo ‘bike named after kitchen fitting’.
A ‘Dutch bike with attitude’ is one way to describe this burgundy machine that shares a steel frame, sprung saddle, mudguards, chainguard and sturdy rack with its Euro cousins. Helpfully, the rack also includes a platform for giving mates a 'backie' (something that’s commonplace on the continent, but liable to get you a frown or fine over here).
Shifting comes courtesy of Sturmey Archer’s trigger-controlled three-speed hub gear, and there’s a pair of drum brakes for stopping. Kenda supply the 1.95in whitewall tyres, with the majority of other kit being Charge’s own, including a kickstand.
On the road, the Lazy Susan's an enjoyable ride, with its bulbous tyres adding to its predictability and comfort. The wide bars take a bit of getting used to, but the riding position is perfect for laid-back cruises around town.
Despite an overall positive impression, the boxy chainguard (covering the upper chain run) didn’t work for us aesthetically. Minor niggle apart, this is a great take on the modern, do-it-all transporter. Impressively, it’s sized all the way from XXS-L, plus there’s a gents’ version called a 'Steamer'.
PROS gears, tyres, comfort
CONS ugly chainguard