Cargo bikes. The new SUV?

Bicycle times issue 24 cover

Bicycle times dropped on my mat recently, sporting the unlikely headline ‘CARGO BIKES! The new SUV’. So is there any truth in that? Are Cargo bikes really the new SUV? Nope. They’re not, they are categorically not. They’re immeasurably better than that. They don’t consume vast amounts of fossil fuel, pumping exhaust emissions up everyone’s hooter, nor appeal to the macho side of driver culture. At lights, you never see a cargo bike revving like it’s the start of Le Mans nor see cargo bikes lined up on beach fronts, like that scene from Point Break. Though if we’re being entirely honest with ourselves, it is rather unlikely that we’ll we feel our roads vibrating under the weight of human powered vehicles anytime soon. Still; I do love the cheeky title.

clock work bullitt

Clockwork Bullitt

Cargo bikes are – if my anecdotal evidence can be believed – on the up. They’re big, bold, beautiful, utilitarian, occasionally twee and sometimes sexy. There’s little doubt that their widening appeal is aided and abetted by savvy bike companies who can push all the right design buttons. If I had a four figure sum of cash knocking about with ‘SPEND ME’   written on it, a Bullitt would be somewhere near the top of my list. That said, keeping your eyes peeled can reap dividends. I spotted a 2012 Kona MiniUte available for £350. And as to lugging lots of stuff to the tip in your car or on your bike, then the bike would win every time. Dirty deeds, done dirt cheap (note to self – if I invest in a cargo bike, get one wired for sound).

Kona mini-ute

Please note: I don’t see SUVs are being entirely bad. On the contrary: the Nissan Qashqai commercial introduced me to the music of Amon Tobin. Cheers Nissan.

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