New Cargo Bike previews
Details on a couple of new cargo bikes came out this week, and they are worth taking a peek at if you’re contemplating buying one.
Argo Cargo v 1.01
First is the “version 1.01” of the Argo Cargo kit, which is a bakfiets-style front end that you add on your own bike. I have one of the original version from their Kickstarter, and despite some shortcomings it hooked me on cargo bikes. You can read my initial impressions from last summer in “My Cargo Bike Arrives.”
The new Argo has some fancy chrome, a battleship-grey paint job on the box, and simplified construction so you hopefully won’t have to spend 5 hours putting it together. This version will start at $1,099 with availability starting in early April.
Blix has a new project on Indegogo. It’s the Packa longtail cargo bike, and in just one day it got fully funded. Blix has been building e-bikes for a few years, so they’re not a newcomer to the business. Electric Bike Review got a pre-production unit and did an in-depth look at it.
I don’t like longtails for a number of reasons, but a lot of folks swear by them, so take a look and see what you think:
Keep in mind that buying a bike through a crowdfunding platform is not actually buying a bike. You’re backing a project, and there’s no purchase agreement, so you could get screwed out of your money if the project falls apart. Shipping dates are estimates, and projects I’ve backed have taken years to either ship or fail completely. You’ll also need a friendly local mechanic who’s willing to work on an oddball bike if you have trouble with it, so keep that in mind as well.
It’s exciting to see more cargo bikes in the US market, and hopefully they’ll soon make it out of speciality shops and into more general bike retailers. If you’re looking for a cargo bike, let your local shop know. The more they hear about them, the more likely they’ll consider carrying utility bike in the future.