Yes… Taipei Show. I know many took a gander at this and assumed it could be another NAHBS masterpiece, but it is in fact a collaboration between Tern and Kitt Design to develop a line called Roji Bikes.
Check out the details on this steel beast plus you can’t miss the Ferrari of folding bikes with Tern’s new flagship folder… The Blackbird…
Flat bars, quill stem, down-tube shifters and snappy geometry are what you might find hanging up in the back of a bike shop that was Frankenstein’d together into a lunch/”my car won’t start” bike from hell. I have some fond memories of ripping around on old race bikes turned shop bikes, and that was the first thing that came to mind when I saw Tern’s “Roji” Gleam… but it was gorgeous! The Gleam’s steel fillet frame had simple fast lines with a beautifully over-done head & seat-tube joints and a straight bladed fork to keep steering tight. The bike even sports Dura Ace downtube shifters to crank out the 10 speeds out back!
The super simple Tektro brake levers were right at home on this bike and the lock-on grips are further proof this bike is a pretty smart build. The frame rolls on 650c wheels and has eyelets for rack and fenders. All of this runs a not so bad $1,500, but, and this is a big BUT… The Roji line is currently only available in Japan (I know I know). However, Tern founder, Joshua Hon hinted that they might see wider release in the future depending on distributor’s interests.
Though there are a couple more models you can find on their site, the Clutch rounds out the line with this aluminum offering. Though it may not appear to be as exciting as the Gleam, it is just over 25% the price at $400.
For those that want a pretty badass folding bike with modern tech, this might need to be on the short list. Sporting some fairly big 26 inch wheels, the Eclipse x-22 runs an Ultegra/105 2 x 11 drivetrain and SLX hydraulic disc brakes. The paint color is even called “SR-71” which pays homage to the real Blackbird.
The frame folds in as little as 10 seconds with just a couple flicks.
The Syntace VRO handlebar/stem can be fine tuned to suit your ride position, so slam that stem if you wish!
The handlebar/stem folds in a way to keep things tidy and untangled when collapsing into the bike and locks securely in place when in ride mode.
Believe it or not, this it what it looks like when folded. Though a little on the pricey side, there is also a Shimano Tiagra version that goes for $1,500.