Urban Velo

Internally Geared Commuter Bikes for 2010

A good friend of mine is in the market for a new bike and asked me for some recommendations. While he’s attracted to the aesthetic of fixed/singlespeed bikes, he’s definitely a fan of gears. So in addition to flat-bar road bikes and cyclocross bikes, I suggested he take a look at some of the current crop of internally geared commuter bikes. Hence this blog post…

Kona Worldbike – $399
Jamis Commuter 1 – $445
Torker Graduate – $500
Schwinn World NX7 – $550
Gary Fisher Simple City 3 – $599
KHS Cidi 8 – $659
Norco Corsa One – $685
Felt X-City 3 – $799
Bianchi Milano Alfine – $799
Masi SoulVille 7 – $895
Novara Fusion – $899
Globe Live 2 – $940
WorkCycles Secret Service – $1000
Swobo Baxter – $1099
Mongoose Sabrosa Ocho – $1100
Trek Soho – $1149
Giant Seek O – $1200
Charge Mixer – $1250
Dahon Cadenza XL – $1400
Raleigh Alley Way – $1425
Civia Hyland – $1590
Breezer Finesse – $1799

Feel free to suggest more bikes in the comments below!

About Urban Jeff

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  1. jamesmallonApril 13, 2010 at 11:28 am

    I like these comparative postings, like those for steel road bikes and cyclocross. What this one is missing, because the manufacturers are missing them, are DROP-BAR internally geared bikes (ideally, STEEL!). Once the Shimano Alfine 11 comes out, with it’s huge range (24″ to 100″) and smoother workings, maybe we’ll see more.

    In the meantime, there’s a few pickings, none I can get too excited about, except the Civia Bryant:
    Felt Gridlock http://www.feltbicycles.com/USA/2010-Product-Catalog/FIXIE/FIXIE-Series/GRIDLOC.aspx
    Civia Bryant http://civiacycles.com/bikes/bryant/
    Dynamic Synergy http://www.dynamicbicycles.com/buy/Bikes.php?prodid=75
    Mercier 2010 Kilo S3X http://www.bikesdirect.com/products/mercier/kilott_s3x.htm

  2. TimApril 13, 2010 at 11:38 am

    It is nice to see such a large selection of commuter bikes! However, some manufacturers are still missing the point. A commuter bike is a tool. First and foremost it must be PRACTICAL. This raises a few requirements:
    1. price. a THOUSAND dollars for a bicycle?!
    2. basic set of features absolutely must include brakes, fenders, kickstand, a bell, a set of lights, a chain guard and a rack.

    Some bikes have these features, some don’t, which is sad. Otherwise, it is very nice to finaly see city, not offroad tires, standard fenders and all. We’re moving in the right direction.

  3. Urban JeffApril 13, 2010 at 12:06 pm

    Yeah, I do recall seeing some drop bar internally geared bikes at Interbike and NAHBS, but I only went to far as to include production bikes here.

    Thanks for the link suggestions. Keep em’ coming, folks.

  4. kdtApril 13, 2010 at 12:17 pm

    How about

    The gorgeous Velorbis Scrap Deluxe (5 speed) for $1895

    The less-expensive href=”http://www.copenhagenbike.com/bicycles/batavus/Batavus-Fryslan-Classic”>Batavus Fryslan Classic (5 speed) for $950

  5. Slow Joe CrowApril 13, 2010 at 12:17 pm

    This may be a little out of your parameters but Co-Motion is now making a Rohloff equipped version of their Americano touring bike
    http://www.co-motion.com/single_bikes/amerohloff.html although the combination of building them in Oregon and using a Rohloff hub means it costs over $5000 but you can get optional S&S couplers for traveling.

  6. TinkerApril 13, 2010 at 12:46 pm

    Kona Africa bike 3.0 $400
    Torker Cargo T $600

    Both are three speeds, internal gears, the Africa bike is fairly plain (basket, fenders?), the Cargo T is loaded out (fenders, front and rear rack, coaster brake rear, roller brake front) The gearing is fairly low on the Cargo T, could use a new rear sprocket, if you do not spend a lot of time in hauling mode. I figure I’ll upgrade to an 8 speed, when the rear wheel needs service.

  7. KeithApril 13, 2010 at 1:53 pm

    Don’t forget the Swobo Baxter:


  8. AaronApril 13, 2010 at 2:05 pm

    Norco Ceres belt drive fits in very nicely next to the Trek Soho. Very similar in configuration, but with a Reynolds 525 Chromoly frame, disc brakes front and rear, and slightly lower gearing for hills.

  9. davidgApril 13, 2010 at 3:17 pm

    I don’t know how many of you buy your outdoor gear at REI, but they have a house brand novara. The MSRP is right, my wife and I just bought one. We commute together on nice days. It doesn’t have the load capacity of my LHT, but she likes the ride. Loves the shift of the nexus 7. I liked the minimal assembly, the steel frame. The headlight connects to the dynamo much easier than my schmidt/lumotec set-up, “plug and play”. The parts list at this price point were really nice. Vittoria rando tires, novatec dynamo, fenders look like sks clones, but work well and installed easily. The headlight is halogen and comes stock with a 2.4w bulb though. I’m going to replace with an LED and tail light anyway. List for around 650, we used our dividend and a couple of gift cards, that with an offered coupon the price shipped was significantly lower. And it’s a really nice machine.

  10. JazzboApril 13, 2010 at 5:01 pm

    Also the Kilo WT5 – Drop bars, wide tires and 5 speeds. $479


  11. spudApril 13, 2010 at 5:17 pm

    I’ll be getting the charge tap soon… a very simple spec, but utilitarian and looks great…


  12. GianniApril 13, 2010 at 6:02 pm

    What about Breezer? They’ve been doing internally geared bikes for longer than any of these guys. Since 2002!

  13. louisApril 13, 2010 at 6:43 pm

    Breezer makes 3,7, and 8 speed IGH bikes http://www.breezerbikes.com/index.php/component/content/article/35-bike-categories/51-citytrekking-bikes.html

  14. cuntoonApril 13, 2010 at 7:49 pm

    My roommate showed me this Rodriguez Rohloff bike. High End (~$5,000) touring bike. It has cantilever brakes, though. I’d prefer linear pull for a heavy load.

  15. MichaelApril 13, 2010 at 7:57 pm

    Stop Cycles Proletariat – http://www.stopcycles.com/Our_Rides/Entries/2009/11/15_Jane_%26_Jennys_Birthday_Trip.html

    Mine is being built and should be on its way soon.

    With some good photos at http://bikeportland.org/2010/04/11/bike-show-a-few-rides-that-caught-my-eye/

  16. MattApril 13, 2010 at 8:59 pm

    Swobo has a whole bunch: Otis, Dixon, Novak, and someone already mentioned the Baxter. 3 speed to 9 speed rear internal hubs. Range from $740 to $1,000

  17. BikeBikeApril 14, 2010 at 8:03 am

    Brodie Bikes makes a very cool handful too!

    Ocho – Alfine
    Section 8 – Nexus 8
    Section 7 – Nexus 7
    Pax – Nexus 7 for the ladies!


    Also, everyone would be remiss to forget about some of the “original” commuter bike companies…

    Batavus, specifically the Breukelen, and Pashley, specifically the Roadster and Princess.


    Thanks for the lists! I always end of finding out about bikes i have never heard of before.


  18. binny binApril 15, 2010 at 10:56 am

    what about the Breezer’s? they probably have 3 or 4 different models. my Uptown 8 is an amazing bike. the hub still runs perfect with no adjustment in 4 years, because Joe Breeze uses the PREMIUM Nexus 8 and not the Regular Nexus 8 that is heavier with seals that are not as good. Joe Breeze didn’t cut corners on spec. with this bike….and not too many people know about the Premium version of the Shimano Nexus 8. I think you guys should include the Breezer Uptown 8. (especially if you want Fuji to advertise with ya’ll–and plus, it’s an amazing bike with features that you cannot find on any other bike, such as the german lighting system with Dyno front hub and capacitor.

  19. 2whls3spdsApril 19, 2010 at 6:40 am

    Torker also has the T530 which is a bit more upright than the Graduate. They also have a T300 which is a 3 speed.

    I have the Redline version of the T530 (no longer made) and have been very happy with it.


  20. JasonApril 19, 2010 at 7:31 am

    The Kona Africabike is a ridiculous amount of bike for $400: double-walled aluminum rims, stainless spokes, Continental tires, integrated rear rack with 75 lbs. capacity, basket, lock, fenders, and kickstand all stock!

  21. patrickApril 26, 2010 at 9:53 am

    A coworker of mine just picked up a Scott Sub 35 for a song, owing to an EMS membership discount:


  22. BillApril 27, 2010 at 1:36 pm

    I very much agree with the sentiment expressed by Tim that a dedicated commuting bike should have fenders, chain guard, lights, etc.

    Its not that other bikes can’t be used as a commuter, heck even a unicycle could be used as such, but we are specifically talking about bikes that are particularly well suited for commuting. To my mind, that means they should be set up to allow the rider to ride in most any condition possible… and that means fenders and lights. If we look at countries where bike commuting is seen as normal, many commute wearing street clothes, that means you need a chain guard. An upright seating position would be a good idea too.. it lets you see further down the road, and makes you more visible to cars.

    To my mind, a lot of the bikes on this list are not really commuting bikes (though some come close) and some bikes that are well set up as commuting bikes are omitted. AS others have pointed out, the omission of Breezer bikes is kind of ridiculous. Other bikes that should have been included are the Trek Belleville, and the Novara Transfer (While I like the Fusion, it doesn’t really have a chain guard… granted the Transfer’s is not great, but it is better than the Fusions).

  23. DickMay 8, 2010 at 6:00 pm

    Are any of these bikes under 25 pounds? The hubs add a lot of weight, although I know there are differences.

  24. Getriebenabenfahrräder | Das Bike-DingJanuary 3, 2011 at 3:30 pm

    [...] Nachdem urbanvelo sich schon um die Singlespeedmodelle von 2010 gekümmert hat, sind heute Fahrräder mit Nabenschaltungen das Thema: Internally Geared Commuter Bikes for 2010. [...]

  25. Commuter BikeJune 21, 2011 at 11:00 am

    Brooklyn Cruiser makes a stylish looking hybrid bike – looks like they’re offering an internal kick shift hub…eager to ride.

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