As you’ve noticed from this blog, I’m a big fan of folding bikes. They open up bicycling to a lot of people who would not consider it. I imagine that most Americans don’t have large SUVs or trucks to ferry bikes to places that are more bike friendly. For most cars, you can get bike racks to carry your full-sized bikes on the outside. However, that is an added expense. Folding bikes solve this problem.
Folders are also more storable for urban residents who don’t have a large garage or big backyard. People who live in large high rise apartments or condos can benefit from folders. Just fold the bike and put it in the corner of the room or closet.
So, I was really excited to see that LL Bean, a major retailer,is carrying Dahon folding bikes. The bikes that I saw were Dahon Ecos and they are selling them at $379. I had not seen the Eco before, but they look similar to the Dahon Mariner/Vitesse. (Dahon tends to sell the same bike under different names to retailers). I also know that REI, another national retailer, is selling the Novarra Buzz Fly By at its stores and online. The Fly By is basically the Dahon Mu with slightly lower level components.
Progress? I hope so. Snapped this pix of the Dahon Eco at my LL Bean store: