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Brompton and PortaPedal Bike

Author: Wizard Posted: 2015-08-29

The Brompton is definitely the “Cadillac” of folding bikes in my opinion! This bike is truly unique, durable, convenient and most importantly, efficient. The fine folks at PortaPedal Bike in Tempe, Arizona, USA delivered a high quality product. I live in Hong Kong, so having a bike that delivers in all the above mentioned categories is really important to me. I’ve had a few Bromptons and a Strida in the past. I fully understand the necessity of being able to fold a bike and take it with me on the subway, bus, taxi, car or even stash it in my huge 300 sq. ft. HK mansion apartment… 

I orderded the Brompton while in Hong Kong and had it sent to my mom’s house in Littleton, Colorado. A few short days later, the bike arrived and my summer vacation started with a nice, new, sleek Brompton Black Edition H6R (12% gearing). Upon opening the box, the bike was impeccably packed. There was absolutely no way this bike could have been damaged during transit, so to say I was happy with the detail of the wrapping, would be an understatement. I was certainly impressed with speed in which PortaPedal Bike shipped the bike from their shop after the purchase, as well as the quality of the packing. 

Unfolding and folding the Brompton 5-7 times a day is common. Taking it up and down stairs, rolling it through the MTR (Hong Kong subway), putting it on a bus to mainland China (Shenzhen) are all parts of my Brompton’s experiences. Now, back in HK, I decided to put the Brompton to the test and take it on a trip up the Peak on Hong Kong Island. Many cyclists start at the base by the Khalsa Diwan Sihk Temple and begin the 35-55 minute (depending on the fitness level) trek up the hill. There are certainly some steep sections where the lowest gear comes in handy. Winding around the mountain and eventually making it to the top surely tests the ol’ endurance. If you’re lucky, you’ll be treated to clear views of Victoria Harbour overlooking the skyscrapers on the HK Island side as well as the hustling bustling buildings on the Kowloon side. Luck was on my side this day, as the panoramic view was spectacular. 

The only thing that slows my 7 minute downhill decent is the occasional car. Zipping around corners on the Brompton feels very stable and safe, due to the long wheelbase and excellent design which leads to solid handling. The fast rolling high pressure tires enable the Brompton to achieve great efficiency. People are often amazed that this “circus bike” (as one colleague calls it) is able to roll along so quickly. While folding bikes are becoming less of an anomaly is the US, in many east Asian countries people deck out their small-wheeled foldies unlike anything you’ve ever seen before. 

PortaPedal Bike delivered, the Brompton Black Edition impressed, and I’m one happy customer. I don’t own a car in HK, so my bike is sometimes my transportation (esp in the winter months when it’s cooler). I’m excited to get my money’s worth out of this sweet ride for many years to come. Anyone who is thinking about a folding bike and who doesn’t mind spending a few hundred more to get a high quality product, I definitely recommend the Brompton. The ability of the Brompton to fold quickly into compact size AND roll easily and nimbly on the rollers is unparalleled. Last but not least, due to their speed and high quality customer service, I give a double thumbs up to the nice folks at PortaPedal Bike!!! 

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