Bicycle Roots is proud to announce that our first shipment of Brompton folding bicycles have arrived. The Brompton is widely considered to be the gold standard of folding bicycles. Every product we carry at Bicycle Roots is selected for its ability to fulfill customer needs. Looking for a compact bicycle that is reliable but won’t take up valuable storage space in your cramped apartment? Want to travel with your bike, but don’t want to deal with high cargo fees? Or does your daily commute require modal changes, such as bus or train? Brompton’s innovative folding design delivers on all levels.

Folding bicycles aren’t a new concept. Engineers, designers and manufacturers have been refining the concept of a compact bicycle since the early 19th century. Although there are many folding bicycles on the market today, the Brompton folding bike stands out from the rest.

Bicycle Roots employee Mikki demonstrating the proper way to fold a Brompton. The Brompton folds small enough to fit into a suitcase in less than 20 seconds, yet is as comfortable to ride as a full-size bicycle.

What sets a Brompton apart from other folding bicycles? Firstly, its innovative design allows you to fold the bike into a package so compact that it can fit into a standard-size suitcase without having to remove components such as the seatpost, pedals, or the handlebar. This allows those who are traveling with their bike to avoid paying hefty oversize cargo fees at the airport. In addition, unlike many manufacturers of folding bikes, the Brompton is fully serviceable. Are your clamps loose or do you feel a wobble that wasn’t there before? Never fear, Bicycle Roots carries all repair parts for Bromptons as stock items, so we’ll get your bike back in road-ready condition posthaste. In addition, the Brompton has been designed to accommodate cargo both on the front and rear of the frame, a feature bike tourers and commuters alike are sure to appreciate.

Bromptons are fun to ride, can be folded in 30 seconds or less, and can be rolled when fully folded with the EZ wheels option (unlike other folding designs which require you to carry the folded bicycle). Cramped city dwellers and intrepid bike travelers rejoice—the Brompton is here and ready to ride out of our shop at 1078 Fulton Street in Bed-Stuy, Brooklyn!

A COMMITMENT TO QUALITY

Brompton is a relative newcomer to the market, as the company has been in continuous operation only since 1988. However, Andrew Ritchie, founder of Brompton, had been developing prototypes and manufacturing bikes to order since 1978. These prototypes had a cult following; it was clear that a market existed for high-quality, compact, folding bicycles. But since these bicycles were significantly heavier and cost nearly £20 more than other folders available in England at the time, Ritchie faced difficulties finding investors for his product. Without financing, Ritchie was unable to mass-produce and market his design. By 1984, these early models of Brompton were no longer available for purchase.

Eventually, an early fan of Ritchie’s design came to the rescue. Entrepreneur Julian Vereker had purchased several Brompton prototypes in 1982, and was disappointed to discover the bikes were no longer available just a couple of years later. In 1985, Ritchie approached Vereker for help with financing for his product. Once the financing had been secured, Ritchie wasted no time in re-engineering the earlier prototypes to make the bike lighter and sturdier.

Mikki takes the Brompton for a test ride. The verdict? “Comfy and easy to pedal!”

With financing secured Ritchie was able to have prototypes of the re-engineered Brompton available for the 1987 Cyclex exhibition. Dealers had long been wary of folding bicycles, which had gained a reputation for being impractical and unsafe. However, Ritchie’s innovative new design challenged this perception, even winning the award for Best New Product. By the time Cyclex 1987 was over, Richie had several orders for his product.

Ever since establishing their first manufacturing facility in West London, Brompton’s dedication to quality and innovation has been apparent at every step of the manufacturing process. Brompton manufacturers nearly all of their components in-house, and is one of only two major bicycle manufacturers currently operating on English soil. Approximately 80% of the components on a Brompton are unique to its design, and are not found (although often copied) on other bikes.

Manufacturing these components in-house allows Brompton to rigorously enforce quality-control standards, as well as to constantly refine their design. 50% of Brompton’s employees are involved in the design process, and this commitment to innovation is evident in the subtle changes from one model year to the next. Brompton refines their bikes to make them more lightweight and user-friendly each year, while never compromising their distinctive folding design.

Brompton bicycles are also fully upgradeable. A Brompton can be an investment, so if you’d love a folding bicycle that can serve you for years without breaking the bank, you can start out with a basic model and add cargo-carrying capacity, fenders, or other accessories over time until you have fully customized the bike to meet your needs. No other manufacturer of folding bicycles gives the rider so many options for increased performance over the lifetime of the bicycle.

BROMPTON, THE BICYCLE

At Bicycle Roots, we currently have six models of Brompton bicycles in stock. Since these bikes are so customizable, from paint to handlebars, fenders, racks, and built-in lighting, you may wish to order a custom bicycle (please be aware that since Brompton bikes are a handbuilt, premium product, it may take several months for your bicycle to arrive). Even if you choose a custom bicycle, you can stop by for a test-ride to see which gearing option you would prefer (Bromptons are available with one, two, three, or six speeds). You’ll also be able to determine which style of handlebar you find most comfortable. Our staff is also happy to provide a demonstration of the Brompton’s easy and ultra-compact fold, as well as help you to identify which accessories and cargo options will best meet your needs.

As Brompton folding bicycles can be customized to your needs, there is no “stock” model (although, of course, you may purchase an in-stock Brompton “as-is” if you wish). Bicycle Roots carries Bromptons equipped with the S-Type (flat) handlebar, the classic M-type handlebar, and the H-type handlebar, which offers the most upright riding position. Also available is the P-type handlebar, which has been designed with a variety of hand positions to reduce fatigue for the touring cyclist during long rides.

Take a closer look at three of our in-stock models of Brompton folding bicycles in order to see for yourself just how customizable they are. We have provided in-depth breakdowns of these models so you can familiarize yourself with the different configurations available. Please note, these are not the only models we have in stock. If you’d like to try one of the other in-stock Bromptons, including single-speed models, please let one of our sales staff know and we’ll be happy to set you up for a test ride.

Danny showing off the S-type Brompton in sporty red and black.

The S-type Brompton is an entry-level model for the individual who’s just getting started developing a full-fledged folding-bicycle habit. At $1,337, it features an extended seat post topped with the standard Brompton saddle, keeping riders with an inseam up to 35″ comfortable. The bike is outfitted with firm suspension, which is suitable for riders 175lbs and over as well as those who ride more aggressively or those who prefer a more responsive ride.

The S-type handlebars are lightweight and allow for a sportier ride. It’s got a two-speed derailleur, making this bike ideal for city riding as you have one gear for cruising and another for climbing or taking off after a stop. True to its profile, it’s outfitted with the narrow and smooth Schwalbe-Kojak tires. In keeping with the sporty build, this bike does not include racks although it does have a mounting block for a front bag.

In short, the S-type has

  • Flat and lightweight handlebars
  • An extended seat post (accommodating an inseam up to 35″)
  • Standard Brompton saddle
  • Firm suspension
  • 2-speeds
  • Schwalbe-Kojak tires

Mikki and the 3-speed Brompton in bold Claret and Turkish green.

Mikki is posing with the classic M-type model in eye-catching claret and Turkish green ($1,621). These handlebars are only 58 grams heavier than the S-type. With a medium-ride stem and handlebar, the M-type offers a markedly more upright riding position. The three-speed internally geared hub is Brompton’s reinterpretation of the classic 3-speed Sturmey-Archer hub (Sturmey-Archer used to supply Brompton with this hub; when they discontinued production Brompton developed their own version for use on their 3-speeds, finding no suitable substitute already in production). This style hub is ideal for everyday riding.

A soft suspension block provides a cushier ride, as do the wider Brompton tires. With fenders, mudguards, and a Shimano dynamo lighting system (both head and tail lamp), it’s set up for the daily rider. If you ride your Brompton regularly, you’ll appreciate the EZ wheels which allow the bicycle to be rolled even when completely folded.

The M-type:

  • M type handlebars for upright riding
  • 3-speed internally-geared hub
  • Regular seat post (up to 33″ inseam) and Brompton saddle
  • Softer suspension
  • Brompton balloon tires
  • EZ wheels
  • Fenders and mudguards
  • Rear rack
  • Shimano dyanamo lighting (lights up when the front wheel turns)

Cassandra with the H-type Brompton in Raw Lacquer.

Cassandra models the H-model handlebar Brompton in Raw Lacquer ($1,832), polished so you can see weld details and the character of the steel (please note that Bromptons in the Raw Lacquer finish may vary in color due to the nature of the metal). The H-type handlebar has the highest rise stem and handlebar for a relaxed ride. The telescoping seat post makes this bike comfortable for riders with an inseam up to 40″. The Brooks saddle matches the handcrafted, premium aesthetic of the Brompton brand.

Tourers and those with longer commutes will appreciate the fenders, mudguards, and the 6-speed build. With Brompton’s 3-speed hub (inspired by Sturmey-Archer’s classic design) and a 2-speed derailleur, you’ll find a gear ratio suitable for all terrain. Paired with the firm suspension, you’ll find this bike accelerates easily and handles responsively. Brompton balloon tires help to cushion the ride and reduce impact from the firmer suspension. This bike comes with a bicycle cover that stows into its own saddle bag and EZ wheels for easy storage.

Let’s break it down for you….

  • H-type high rise handlebars
  • Telescoping seat post (inseams up to 40″)
  • Premium Brooks saddle
  • Fenders
  • Firm suspension
  • Regular Brompton tires
  • EZ wheels
  • Stowable bike cover and saddle bag

We encourage everyone who test-rides a Brompton to try out a variety of models so as to familiarize yourself with all the different features. Our knowledgeable staff will be happy to explain the differences between models as well as to help you determine which configuration works best for you. If none of the showroom Bromptons work for you, our staff will help you to order a custom bicycle with the colors and components that best meet your needs.

Please be aware that custom orders may take up to 6 months to fulfill. Each Brompton folding bicycle is handcrafted in their London factory, in order to ensure that every bicycle meets their rigorous standards.

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