There was a time when bike companies prided themselves on being able to supply a suitable model for everybody – whether it was the newly-pedalling infant, the commuter, the fair-weather leisure cyclist, the tourer, the mountain biker, the road racer, or anything in between.
Indeed, there was a time when bike dealers were able to satisfy all their customers with the offerings from just one brand. But outside of a concept store, could you imagine a bike shop stocking just one brand’s bikes now?
Well, actually, yes, we can.
While so many modern brands seem to feel the need for an almost myopic focus and specialisation, there is one bike company that has fully embraced the challenge of universal appeal – and it really can do it all. That company is Cube.
Rather than diluting its expertise or specialism, Cube’s broad focus in almost every pedal-powered (or even electrically-assisted) market actually helps to improve and perfect the technology across its entire range. So what Cube learns in, say, road bike design, it then successfully transfers to commuting bikes or e-bikes or even mountain bikes.
Below we look at some of the various highlights of Cube’s fantastically diverse catalogue to show how this company – which celebrates its 30th anniversary next year – manages to deliver across so many different cycling sectors. And we’re not just going to focus on bikes; Cube makes a mind-blowing number of parts and accessories.
But first, a little history.
Cube was founded in 1993 by Marcus Pürner and despite now being sold in 60 countries worldwide, the brand still has a strong link to its birthplace in the Fichtel Mountains of north-east Bavaria. In fact, Cube is one of the area’s leading employers with a 1,000-strong workforce, and the company remains owner-managed to this day.
Cube’s headquarters houses not just the necessary administrative and management functions but also acts as Cube’s creative research and design base. The 15,000sqm Cube Innovation Centre, test lab and showroom is home to Cube’s dedicated development team, whose job is to discover potential new cycling innovations, sophisticated technologies and optimal material compositions.
Every product that Cube makes goes through rigorous testing at the company’s in-house test lab, where Cube sets its own standards that are significantly above mandated safety and performance thresholds. After products have passed lab testing, they are then put through their paces in the real world by Cube’s engineers and sponsored riders.
Then, once products satisfy this, they are put into production at Cube’s own massive production and logistics centre. Every year, 35 million individual cycle components pass through the facility, and each day up to 4,000 bikes are built. Luckily, the logistics centre has space for 200,000 assembled bikes. It all goes to confirm the fact that Cube truly is a global-level bike firm.
But enough background, let’s get to the good stuff. Want to know how broad and impressive Cube’s range is? No problem. Here is a selection of our Cube favourites for all cycling tribes.
OK, so let’s start where the typical road.cc reader would want us to: Cube’s road bike range. From race bike, to time trial, to cyclo-cross, Cube has a dynamic selection of drop-bar wonder machines. The Attain range has established itself as one of the highlights, with an enticing supply of lightweight performance, yet comfort levels suitable for true all-day rides and a starting price below £1,000.
Cube calls the Heron the ‘ultimate road bike helmet’ and it’s easy to see why. The result of extensive wind tunnel testing, the Heron’s innovative design directs cooling air over the entire head thanks to deep ventilation channels while maintaining a sleek, ultra-aero shape. And weighing in at just 258g means that long-distance comfort is well catered for.
Because of the all-encompassing nature of Cube’s manufacturing, it’s sometimes easy to forget that the brand is also a genuine specialist in each area too. A quick glance at Cube’s mountain bike range is enough to remind you, with a collection of model names that regularly win top marks in magazine reviews the world over. This incredible Cube Stereo One77 – with its highly-rated four-bar suspension design – is a perfect example of an off-road winner.
It might only be an ‘entry-level’ shoe, but the Peak is a perfect example of how Cube’s commitment to cyclists spans all the way from beginner to professional. This fab mountain-bike specific shoe has a reinforced sole to take clipless pedal cleats, easy-to-use touch fastening and even features Cube’s own ‘Protection Shield’ for worry-free pedalling.
For many committed cyclists, something from Cube’s NuRoad range is all the bike they might ever need. The FE models come fitted mudguards and are ideal for everything from road riding, to adventure, to commuting and touring, while the HPA and the C:62 models offer enhanced performance. But we reckon the entry-level NuRoad is nigh-on perfect, with clean, simple looks – and simply the potential to do anything.
If you’re ready to see where the road and/or trail takes you, and you’re in no hurry to head home, perhaps a little bikepacking is on the agenda. In that case, Cube’s Edge Twenty backpack offers a fantastic way to transport all the essentials and a lot more besides. With Cube’s ultra-comfortable Natural Fit back system and the potential to fit a hydration reservoir, you’re all set for an adventure!
Cube’s has a huge selection of potential commuting and urban bikes, including NuLane flat-bar versions of the NuRoads mentioned above. However, we’ve gone for Hyde Pro as the ultimate in commuting style and substance. The looks come in the form of a smart satin-finish lightweight aluminium frame with retro tan sidewall Schwalbe tyres; the performance comes in the form of super-reliable Gates Carbon belt drive and Shimano Alfine hub gear.
We said earlier that it’s hard to remember absolutely everything that Cube does, and does well. For example, we’ve not mentioned anything about Cube’s clothing options yet, but the brand’s apparel ranges are as impressive and they are varied. This hi-viz Blackline jacket, for example, is hard-wearing, loaded with pockets, reflective, breathable, water repellent and – perhaps most importantly for chilly morning commutes – very warm.
Cube’s children’s bike start at the very beginning with Cubie balance bikes for toddlers, and go right the way up to the competition-ready Elite C:62 SLX Rookie. What unites all kids’ Cubes, though, is the use of fantastic size-specific design features, all underpinned by Cube’s customary attention to detail. This Acid 260 comes with Shimano gearing, Clarks hydraulic disc brakes, a Suntour suspension fork, and enough potential to satisfy even the most demanding young rider.
Getting children used to wearing a helmet when on their bikes from an early age is a pretty positive habit to learn, but it helps if the helmet is something they actually want to wear. Cube’s Talok helmet comes in four awesome colourways to entice young tastes, while its inbuilt MIPS safety technology means your child has the best possible protection.
If you want to take your cycling a step further and truly explore the world by bike, Cube’s touring bikes are ready and waiting. The Kathmandu range offers the most globe-trotting potential, with this range-topping SLX model coming with Shimano XT gears and brakes, a RockShox Paragon suspension fork, and Cube’s unique rear Integrated Carrier 3.0. Just add a tent, your panniers, and don’t forget the map.
We said at the start that Cube was one of the few brands that really can do it all, and this accessory rather proves it – how many other mainstream bike makers do you know who produce suspension fork-specific front racks? If you decide that a rear rack doesn’t offer quite enough carrying capacity to take on the world, this lowrider system is a practical and convenient way to up your load.
The truth here is that we could have written all our words about almost every tribe while solely focusing on e-bikes, because Cube makes electric models in designs suitable for mountain bikers, commuters, cycle tourists, et al. However, as a single example of Cube’s pedal-assist prowess, you don’t get much better than this Cube Supreme Sport Hybrid Pro 625 with its ultra-practical spec and super-smooth Bosch Performance electric drive system.
The beauty about e-bikes is that they become your easy go-to transport option. But that means you do have to take some measures, especially in winter. Cube’s full-finger All Season glove – with its fleece lining, windproof outer, reflective highlights and touchscreen compatibility – provides the kind of performance and protection you need to make hopping on your e-bike feel as natural as can be.
To find out more about Cube’s incredible range, visit www.cube.eu.