Veteran Italian icons team up for luxury carbon bike
By Paul Ridden
December 14, 2011
When a cycling helmet is priced at nearly US$900, a pair of cycling gloves at over US$300 and a water bottle at US$105, it's a sure thing that the bike that goes with them is going to be really, really expensive. Such is the case with the new Bianchi by Gucci carbon fiber two-wheeler, which sees two Italian veterans come together for the release of this US$14,000 bike. Read on for a rundown of the key specs.
Designed by Gucci's creative director Frida Giannini, the Bianchi by Gucci bike is available in two models - an eleven-speed black carbon fiber model that's described as an urban/off-road bicycle, and a white single-speed city bike fashioned from steel. Both come with Gucci's famous signature green-red-green web stripe branding on the tube.
The 22 pound (just under 10 kg) Carbon Urban (model number Y2BM1) has a Shimano ALFINE internal gear hub at the rear, with ALFINE shifters, crankset, sprocket and derailleur, and a 116-link Shimano CN-HG73 super narrow chain. There's a Shimano XT front hub, Shimano PD-A530 pedals, Shimano ALFINE hydraulic disc brakes front and rear, an FSA Orbit CE Plus headset, HL TDS-D392 B-8, 3D forged alloy stem, and an HL Alloy AL-110BT EN-M handlebar with Velo grips. Rounding off the specs are Ambrosio Pulse alloy rims with Vittoria Randonneur Hyper tires, an RC SP-928-G carbon fiber seat post and a custom San Marco Mantra saddle.
If your budget doesn't quite stretch to US$14,000 for the Carbon Urban, the white hydro-formed steel single-speed bike called the Pista (model number Y2BM3) is available for a slightly less heart-stopping US$6,200. This model features a VP-692W headset, a Leechi stem and Leadtec handlebar, and Shimano caliper brakes. There's an FSA model Gimondi CK-633S crankset, VP-189TR pedals, a KMC Z610H chain in white, a Track F15 wheelset with Hutchinson Nitro tires, a Kalloy SP-600 seatpost and San Marco Regal saddle.
Stumping up such a huge wad of cash for even the basic model may seem somewhat out of place in the current economic climate, but folks who snap these up will very likely be the same kind of style-conscious buyers who can afford to pay US$295 for a Gucci-branded scented candle without so much as a second thought.
Even so, with the cost of replacement in the event of theft being so high, buyers might want to consider swapping the designer water bottle for one that offers built in security. Better still, why not remind the rest of us that your new Gucci ride is way beyond our reach by actually stowing it way out of reach between trips?
The Bianchi by Gucci bikes are available at a limited number of Gucci stores around the globe, and will also be shown off at the Bianchi Café&Cycles; concept store in Stockholm.