Sometimes the greatest innovations are born from a single moment of imagination, so when it comes to predicting where bike technology will take us in the future, who better to ask than a panel of school children. From integrated smoothie machines to the longest and slackest bike we have ever seen, are these the bikes we will be riding in 2020?
Scotland has long been known as the home of invention, from the flushing toilet to the television. Indeed, the first pedal cycle was attributed to Kirkpatrick Macmillan, a Scottish Blacksmith. To find out if there were any more budding inventors with great ideas, a pilot competition was ran across 6 primary schools in the bike-mad Tweed Valley, asking the pupils what a bike of 2020 will look like? The children put pen to paper and let their creativity flow, to a 10 year old 2020 is a very long way away and the designs were futuristic indeed.
We present to you a small selection of the amazing ideas that were submitted to the competition – who do you think got it right?
The Green House Bike
We love this, a two fingered salute to Trump’s climate change policies. Taking integration to new heights, not only does this bike feature a greenhouse in the main frame, but a small robot picks strawberries as they grow and deposits them in the fork to be blended into smoothies as you ride. We see that Specialized has already patented a system called BERY, to go with their SWAT, so maybe we will be seeing something similar on the next Stumpjumper.
Long, low and slack, this masterpiece of badassery has everything you could need. A full carbon frame features of course, but it’s the deadman cord that calls for help for 24 hours if you send it into the rocks that has us saving our pennies. The RFID chip helps for relocation should some light fingered miscreant try and help themselves. It also boasts a integrated tent in case you are ‘all the gear and no idea’ and find your stage times so slow that you need to overnight.
The Rainbow Warrior
Bikepacking is seeing a revival, around the world hipsters are heading to the hills armed with nothing but a fixie and a He-Man pillow case. If you don’t want to be a freezing hipster in a pillow case, Katie’s bike has all you need for the long haul, including a refrigerated water dispenser and space for your lunch, a massaging saddle will presumably distract you on the longer climbs. If you aren’t a fan of rainbow glow in the dark stripes, your soul is dead.
The Canyon Spectral:HEAT
Canyon are you looking for engineers? Quick, sign up Ruby Thornley. As snowmageddon and the #beastfromtheeast cover half the world in snow, this awesome ‘on-brand’ machine has all you need. Heated touch points and a frame made of a clear material filled with lights mean you’ll look like an avenging angel pinning down the hill. Integrated suspension will add the supernatural float to finish the look. We can see the Canyon design team crying into their coffee cups this morning, three years spent developing the new Spectral:ON and they could have built this!
‘Long and slack’ is dead – long live the flat bike.
OK, we hear you! You wanted longer? You wanted slacker? Is your Pole and Geometron just too short and steep? Well, here is your dream bike. With a 1500 mm wheelbase – 25 cm longer than an XL Nomad – and a head angle of, well, 0°, it does not get any gnarlier than this. You’ll look like superman as you put your elbows on the rests and engage the propeller on the climbs – haters gonna hate. Correct priorities are maintained with ample snack storage space close at hand.
This bike has some serious design flare, graceful lines and curves make it the bike equivalent of a concept Lamborghini. Don’t be fooled though, some serious functionality is built in. We love the water suspension that you can drink to reduce compression damping (just don’t ask how you add compression damping) and if you’re not a fan of plain H2O, get your milkshake on via the milk-shaker hubs! Flaming saddle for illustrative purposes only – we hope.
The Vegan’s Choice
As the global population increases, scrap heaps tower higher and higher and natural resources are depleted. So along comes a bike to save us all. Built solely from scrap materials and renewable products, this is the kind of future that we want to hear more about! With a frame fashioned from Bamboo – which can grow at a rate of 90 cm per 24 hours – it only costs €0.01 to produce, however in bike industry style it will retail for €7500.
Some riders consider the sole benefit of wider bars is the opportunity to fit more gadgets to the cockpit. If you are a closet accessorizer and want it all, here it is. Camera, motion sensors, phone charger and GPS all run off pedal power, or, if you can’t be bothered to pedal, the mud guard mounted solar panels will keep you topped up. Adjustable handlebar width will keep those in favour of the aero tuck happy and the polite warning for those ahead to ‘move please’ will ensure everyone remains friends.
A World Cup Winner
World Cup contenders, please form an orderly queue. Grippy wheels that are guaranteed not to deflate are rumoured to have already been fitted to a certain WC riders bike next year to avoid any more ‘on the rim’ gwins. As our climate turns inside out, DHers who are scared of a bit of weather setting in will be pleased to know that this bike boasts hail and lightning proofing, and the 50 gear drivetrain will ensure that you can keep your cadence within 0.1% of optimal. Please note: the Mega Fox Titanium suspension forks are still top secret and under embargo until 2019, please, no Instagram.
SRAM Eagle pft, this is SRAM Dragon!
All the mod cons on this bike are accompanied by something that will really ruffle the feathers of SRAM’s Eagle (pun intended). With a cassette range from 10-100 teeth, the range of this bike blows SRAM Eagle right out of it nest and into the distance. The on and off motor is sure to get the forums excited, but just look how long and low it is!
Navigation not your calling? You can be prepared with the Scout. If you’re caught out in the hills, the Scout bikepacking bike can be packed with everything you need for a night out in the open. The very hubs themselves are used as the structure of the tent and a torch will help you find your compass after you’ve thrown it away in disgust. Adjustable heated handlebars are the icing on the cake.
This pilot competition was ran by the Mountain Bike Centre Of Scotland with prizes from Hope, Canyon, Ridelines, Endura and Alpine Bikes. The winners were presented prizes at the iconic TweedLove festival by WC racer Ruaridh Cunningham.
Words: Trev Worsey, Cat Smith Photos: –