We hotfooted it down to the smoke yesterday to have a look at the latest creation from Charge Bikes. The Lazy Susan (there's more stuff in the kitchen you can nick for a bike name than you might think) is a bike that sits somewhere between a Charge Plug and a Pashley Princess – a Dutch bike with a bit of attitude.
There is a men's version but really the Lazy Susan is aimed at the laydeez, and it's a practical bike as well as a nice looking one. You get full mudguards and a half chainguard, and low-maintenance hub brakes. Shifting is courtesy of Sturmey Archer's dependable three speed hub, and Charge have presuaded Sturmey Archer to resurrect the old graphics for the shifter... aaaah, the memories.
You also get a Kona Africabike style rear rack that's part of the alloy frame, (the fork is Tange steel), and there's a platform on the back too for giving your mates a quick lift up the road. Practicality was meant to extend to a basket as well but that ended up being prohibitively expensive: Charge told us it would have added £90 to the cost of the bike. Look out for that as a probably future accessory.
The rear rack on the production models will lie flush with the frame and the galvanised mudguards won't be polished - the Taiwanese factory polished the ones on the prototype because they like their metal shiny. Production bikes will also come with a kickstand.
Expect the Lazy Susan to come in at under £500 when it hits the shops.
The male version – the Steamer (pictured below) will be the same price too.
More from the Charge do coming up later…
Plucked from the obscurity of his London commute back in the mid-Nineties to live in Bath and edit bike mags our man made the jump to the interweb back in 2006 as launch editor of a large cycling website somewhat confusingly named after a piece of navigational equipment. He came up with the idea for road.cc mainly to avoid being told what to do… Oh dear, issues there then. Tony tries to ride his bike every day and if he doesn't he gets grumpy, he likes carbon, but owns steel, and wants titanium. When not on his bike or eating cake Tony spends his time looking for new ways to annoy the road.cc team. He's remarkably good at it.