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2012 launch for electric-assist folder 'in UK & Germany'

Long-running Project X tease from UK's biggest bike maker is revealed to be an electric-assist version of the popular folding Brompton bike.

For some months Brompton has been mailing anyone who cares to receive its regular newsletters with a Project X storyline designed to build interest in a forthcoming exciting new product.

According to Brompton, guesses at what Project X might be have ranged from a fully titanium Brompton - which would have been nice but apparently not - to a carbon fibre folder - we saw one of them at Eurobike but not made by Brompton - to a pair of Brompton-branded slippers to complement the new Oratory Jacket.

Today, however, it let the cat out of the bag with an announcement that it's an electric Brompton - the eBrompton - that is in the works and it will be rolled out first in the UK and German markets during 2012 with a worldwide launch in 2013.

There are no pictures or drawings yet but they promise a 'powerful electric motor' that will in no way detract from its compact folding size and that it will 'outperform its peers.' Intriguingly, from 2013 there will be a retrofit kit which suggests that the iconic overall shape won't be changing too much. Good news for travellers who live on steep hills, we think.

Potential customers will soon be able to sign up for first dibs but meanwhile they're still teasing.

Details: www.brompton.co.uk

7 comments

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steff [81 posts] 5 years ago
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I for one can't imagine these will be massively irritating at all.

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nick_rearden [436 posts] 5 years ago
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steff wrote:

I for one can't imagine these will be massively irritating at all.

Brompton owners are annoying enough as it is, sneaking up on the unwary with their corduroy trousers and open-toed sandals. Now you'll have to be looking for a give-away power unit or listening for a high-pitched whine. Oh no, that's just them complaining about the cancellation of the 5.17 from Paddington via Didcot Parkway  1

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sonyjim [46 posts] 5 years ago
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You may lust after a titanium Brompton but after contact with Brompton I doubt if they have the know how or the demand for quality to turn one out. There quite happy to turn out mediocre products with poor build quality. I don't think they realise that people will pay more the the dogs !!! I do believe a very high quality titanium Brompton with good quality components say campag would sell very well at £2000. Plus but don't get excited. You firstly need the passion to do it and I don't think they have.

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nick_rearden [436 posts] 5 years ago
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sonyjim wrote:

...I doubt if they have the know how or the demand for quality to turn one out. ...

Joking aside, Jim, don't you think you're being a bit hard on them? Know-how and passion are all very well but in the end staying in business and, even better, growing for 20 years lies in knowing what your customers want and what they're prepared to pay. Much as I like the idea of a titanium Brompton I doubt whether I'd actually buy one, even if it cost the £2,000 you're drastically underestimating there, but I most certainly would buy one of the present models if that was what I needed. I went to the Brompton World Championships and the 700 or so riding seemed smarter than the average, I'd say, and I work in a building in which seemingly half the workers ride Bromptons. I suspect they would say "My Brompton does the job - move on."

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sonyjim [46 posts] 4 years ago
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Dear Nick,
Long time no hear, hope your ok in the new job. I can tell you it must beat the TV business !!!!!!!

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sonyjim [46 posts] 4 years ago
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Dear nick,

what I also meant to say was that about 99 percent of road riders don't ride campag super record but some do and will pay a premium for genuine quality and long life. How many people buy a roller or a Ferrari . Moult on have exploited this market very well, heard of them.?

There will always be some that do and some that dont . Just look at julien vereker and Ivor tiefenbrun in the hi Fi market. They exemplify my comments

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nick_rearden [436 posts] 4 years ago
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sonyjim wrote:

Moulton have exploited this market very well, heard of them.?

I LOVE Moulton; just wish I could afford one. But seriously, of course you're right but the bicycle business is already packed out with the sort of niche providers you're talking about. The challenge is getting some of that loveliness spread around to a wider audience at more popular prices. But it's happening.

I just need to work out who you are now? Richard last met at the Victoria Park crits in May?