Cannondale & Schwinn

The Active Team recently stopped by Manhattan’s Altman Building for a hands-on preview of Cannondale and Schwinn’s 2011 lines. After signing a waver and strapping on complimentary helmets we got to take the models of our choosing for an indoor whirl. (And…we have the photos to prove it!)

Both brands had a wide range of models to test, but we were really excited to get our hands on a few, specifically intended for the urban enthusiast and commuter. We’ve been following the development of urban bicycle trends for a few seasons, so to experience the latest in what’s new was a real treat!

Starting on the Schwinn side of things, the team tested the company’s new eco model – The Vestige. This model sits on a unique biodegradable flax fiber frame that hides self-powered LED safety lights for road riding, while the rest of the bike is kitted out with bamboo fenders and recycled rubber tires. The model was shockingly light, came in male or female-specific geometries and provided a smooth ride, perfect for the everyday commute. Next up the team tested Schwinn’s high-end traditional commuter models, the Coffee for men, and the Cream for women. These models provided the same smooth commute as their more innovative twins, but with top-notch retro styling and tons of nice aesthetic details.

Next, the team moved onto the Cannondale side of things, to test out the companies’ more technical models. The Hooligan, a European-inspired city bike designed to fit in the trunk of a car with no folding required, was first and its innovative frame shape, mono fork and BMX-inspired touches provided a fun, fast and unexpectedly solid ride.

Cannondale’s other urban model, the Bad Boy, was the team’s favorite bike of the day. We were pretty stoked to sit down with Curt Davis, Cannondale’s Director of Product Management for Recreation & Urban Bikes, to discuss the brand’s new whip. The bike was specifically developed for an ultra-urban cyclist commuter who happens to not only need superb performance, but also wants the bike to, after all, look really sharp. Check out those pedals!

The tonal all black matte finish is ideal for any city dweller and from what Davis said, “this isn’t a bike for a garage, it’s for an apartment.” Cannondale went to great effort to produce a bike that could seamlessly blend into someone’s cramped apartment and wouldn’t stick out like a sore thumb.

Thanks to everyone at Cannondale and Schwinn for the invite. See you in the bike lane!

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