Dahon goes sexy; unveils a non-folding 'Mini Bike'

The world's biggest folding bike company makes many clunky folders for the mass-market but this year's new range - to be seen for the first time at the Eurobike show in Germany next week - is drop-dead gorgeous. It includes a retro singlespeed folder with Brooks saddle and wooden mudguards; a new, full-suss MTB designed by Joe Murray; and a number of bikes in a category Dahon is calling 'Mini Bikes'. These are high-performance, 700c-aping road bikes that are small, but don't fold.
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"Small is in," said Dr. David Hon, founder and president of Dahon.

"Many of the most coveted products today are small and portable, like the iPod, the mobile phone, the compact digital camera, and the notebook computer. And we're seeing the same thing today with bicycles.

"In many of the world's fashion capitals - New York, London, Tokyo and Barcelona - small wheel folding bikes are the hot new mobility accessory."

"As Apple Computer has demonstrated, a company that can combine design and function, has the chance to do some great things. We plan to continue to push the design and technology envelope as we reach out to a whole new generation of potential cyclists."

Dahon's 2006 product line includes niche folding bikes designed to get Dahon noticed.

The Hon Solo is a singlespeed folding bike fitted with Brooks B17 Champion saddle, Nitto Moustache handlebar, Sugino cranks, and Suzue flip/flop rear hub. The Hon Solo's lacewood mudguards and chainguard are hand-made in an Oregon workshop. Dahon will build 300, each to retail for $899.

The Fuego is a full-suspension MTB designed with Joe Murray, Hall of Fame mountain bike racer and two-time U.S. National Champion. The bike is designed for XC/Enduro riding and features two new Joe Murray suspension technologies. The $2299 Fuego dissembles in 10 minutes and packs into a suitcase for easy transportation.

The HammerHead 7.0 headlines Dahon's new Mini Bike line of bicycles.

The HammerHead features Shimano 105 components, road geometry, and Kinetix Pro TT bars that allow riders to adjust the reach to the STI levers, perfect for riders with smaller hands.

"Mini Bikes solve many of the compromises that designers make when designing performance bicycles with 700c wheels for shorter riders," said Dahon.

The bike has pedals and a stem that fold away but the frame doesn't concentina. Retailing for $999, Dahon belives the HammerHead will be seen as a high-performance, urban mobility bike that fits into tight spaces.

http://www.dahon.com

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