Luxury on Two Wheels

Leather holster, crocodile skin saddle or gold tube with embedded Swarovski crystals. A difficult choice. These are some of the accessories of the super luxury bikes that many brands have started to market. The consolidation of bikes in contemporary cities transformed this vehicle, which was created in the 19th century, not only as an object of worship but also as a symbol of status. The luxury companies have realized this and today they make models full of glamor.

“It’s definitely a growing industry. There is a certain group of people who not only like to ride a bicycle, but also want to ride in a certain style,”says Miguel Gatoo, founder of Slow Room, Madrid’s bicycle store. Faced with this interest, designers and brands have turned to both wheels with the goal of consolidating the vehicle as the newest object that everyone, with a certain level of acquisition, must have.

Hermès launched last year with Flâneur, an urban bike with eight gears, a classic aesthetic, carbon frame and full of the remarkable details of leather, symbol of the French company. For 9,000 euros (29,700 reais) it is possible to buy one. Price high, but a very well-kept aesthetic.”The bike is very successful not only among the usual Hermès customers, but also among cycling fans who see it as a new product,” said François Dore, the company’s director general.

Before Hermes, Lacoste had already discovered the sex appeal of bicycles. The first approach of the brand with the pedals was through a series of ads focused on urban life and fixies, fixed-pin bikes. His proposal came soon after, a limited edition sold (at 2,500 euros) in the exclusive boutique Colette of Paris, designed by the architect Masamichi Katayama and with a showcase in the very thin Rue Saint-Honoré.

At the same store, Lorenzo Martone, former Marc Jacobs, began his approach to the sector: “My bikes are a bridge between fashion and the universe of two wheels,” he said when presenting his creations in Madrid, in the exclusive shopping center of Las Rozas Village Do not leave for less than 1,000 euros and are customizable, meaning the customer can choose some of the components. For many designers – among them Phillip Starck, who just a few months ago launched not only bicycles but a line for cyclists-this is the key to the emerging industry, since the bicycle has become something as important as clothing, bag or The suit. Reveals who uses it. Lets say what are your aesthetic concerns. And show your economic power.

But what makes a bike luxurious? The brand? The high price?”The label of luxury is difficult to define. It is necessary to evaluate the model, the performance, the accessories and, of course, the price”, answers Miguel Gatoo. Playing with all these elements, brands like Chanel, Louis Vuitton, Armani or Dolce & Gabbana were also seduced by two wheels. The figures corroborate this interest; In recent years, and despite the crisis, the luxury sector not only consolidated its sales, but also increased them. This year it expects to close with growth between 2% and 4%, according to consultancy Bain & Company.

The pedal industry did not want to be left behind. Thus, the centennial bike brand Biachi has joined Gucci to launch an exclusive and neat line. The consolidation of the high-end bicycle market is reflected in Monaco. Not because in the Principality everyone is cycling, but because next year will host Like Bike, the first fair dedicated to cycling of high standard and that will show, in May 2015, “products that combine design, technology, innovation, Trends and luxury, “as the organizers of the meeting say. If anyone had any doubts, you can be sure: the rich also pedal.

In fact, not everyone can afford the expensive bike, why not choose a more economical bike with better wheels, RELATIONSHIPSPLUS.