Rose sees their new steel Hobo gravel commuter as a bit of a mix of retro and modern tech – topped off with a killer direct-mount modular front rack. A comeback for steel to their bike frame lineup, the affordable flatbar Hobo can be built up as a simple mixed-surface commuter or kitted out with an integrated modular rack, rack bag, fenders, and lights… you know, like a hybrid.
Rose Hobo steel flatbar hybrid gravel bike
Long live the hybrid. For a couple of decades, hybrid was a dirty word in the bike biz, but this new steel Rose Hobo do-it-all urban/gravel bike is everything that made hybrids the workhorses they were, just now updated with bigger tire clearance, capable modern brakes, better 1x drivetrains, and more braze-on mounts than you can shake a stick at.
Oh yeah, and it looks a lot cooler now, too.
What is it?
At its core, the affordable Rose Hobo is a simple modern 4130 chromoly steel gravel bike frame, built up with a full carbon fork and a flat 14° backsweep ergonomic handlebar with ESI Chunky silicone grips.
And it gets the option for a well-thought-out & unique modular front rack that direct mounts to the side of headtube.
You can run it with the optional alloy Hobo Rack, either a conventional narrow front rack, a wide-body porteur-style rack about the footprint of a pizza box with mini side rails, or even with a perfectly-fitted suitcase front rack bag that doubles as a backpack and also has a removable insulated liner to keep your post-ride adult beverages cool – or groceries, we won’t judge.
The Hobo features quick handling but still reasonably stable geometry with short chainstays, paired to long Reach and tall Stack for an upright chill ride position.
It features modern standards for modern builds – 44mm headtube for tapered forks, classic internal cable routing through the front triangle, flat mount disc brakes, 12mm thru-axles, and a UDH rear end. Yet it keeps some solid classics like a 27.2mm round seatpost, a good ‘ol seatpost clamp, a threaded BSA bottom bracket, a mid-bike kickstand, and an outer chainring plate to keep your pants leg out of the chain.
Plus, it gets 3 cage mounts inside the main triangle, a mount under the downtube, 3-pack anything cage mounts on each fork leg, and mounts for full coverage fenders front & rear.
A real core feature of any modern ‘gravel bike’ is tire clearance, and Rose gives the Hobo space for up to 650b x 2.1″ (55mm tires). All Hobos are intended for 650b wheels and built with great WTB 47mm Road Plus tires on 25mm internal tubeless-ready alloy rims, but… If you were looking to pop some road wheels in there, that 55mm tire is essentially a ~695mm outer diameter, which would equate roughly to a 700c x 37mm tire meaning you could swap in some fat slicks or skinny 700c gravel tires without changing the ride or risking tire rub, since there’s almost certainly space for bigger 700c gravel tires, too.
Rose Hobo – Pricing, options & availability
All three of the Rose Hobo builds are affordable – picking from 1x mechanical 10 or 11-speeds or a limited edition wireless 1x12sp build. The Shimano Deore 10sp build is the most affordable starting at 1600€, with a claimed weight of 11.7kg. Stepping up to GRX810 11sp brings the price up to 1800€, and weight down 100g. Then there’s a limited edition of just 500 bikes built up with SRAM Rival eTap AXS XPLR wireless 1×12 for 3000€ at 11.3kg.
But it’s the accessories that really make the Hobo. That dual-mode Hobo rack adds 150€, the Hobo Rack Bag another 100€ (even in leopard print!), SKS custom Hobo fenders 40€, and the Knog Blinder MOB lights an extra 100€ including the rack mounting bracket.
So, pimp your ride with the full urban Hobo setup for just under 390€ over the standard bike prices.
Get ’em all now, consumer-direct from Rose.