At Bike Co-op HQ, we’re accustomed to our buyer Michael enthusing about the latest high-end offerings from, say, Whyte or Cervélo. Michael is the first to admit that these high-end models are all very well if you have the cash to splash, but he also understands that it’s at least as important to offer the best ‘bread and butter’ bikes too.
Our own Revolution commuter / hybrid bikes fulfilled this role for years, but they’re currently no longer available. We’re confident that you will find that a Raleigh Strada – our current best buy in commuter/hybrid flat bar road bikes – is a more than capable replacement.
Shop Raleigh Strada range >>
Better tyres guarantee a better ride
Every Strada rolls on high-volume 650b road tyres, previously reserved for 4-figure bikes such as the Whyte Glencoe.
These 650b tyres support the theory that nothing influences the ride quality of a bike more than its treads. They also go a long way to confirming the growing consensus that high volume tyres can improve almost any ride.
The Strada’s 650 x 42mm tyres offer close-to road bike-like speed potential on tarmac matched with shock-absorbing cushioning over potholes, cobbles and rutted tracks.
Riding a bike with tyres this good will do wonders for your confidence and comfort.
For a good read on the benefits of 650b tyres, check this road.cc article.
Available in three levels of quality – good, better and best – the Strada range makes it easy to see where you’re money goes.
For instance, the £339 Strada 1 is equipped with good V-brakes.
The £390 Strada 2 comes with better mechanical disc brakes.
So much more to love
As well as coming with superb tyres and excellent brakes, there’s so much more to love about the Raleigh Strada range.
We should have it in your size
Diamond frame Stradas come in five sizes
Women’s open-frame models come in 3 sizes
The smallest 14” frame is good for people from around 4’ 10”
The largest 22” frame fits people from around 6’ 1” to 6’ 5”
Shop Raleigh Strada range >>
A brief history of Raleigh bikes
Established in 1885, Raleigh is one of the world’s longest established bike companies.
For decades, Raleigh was among the world’s biggest bicycle companies. In the post World War Two years, Raleigh’s factories built millions of quality bikes from scratch, much as Giant does today. Check this amazing film about how Raleigh built bikes back in the day.
Up till the 1970s/early ‘80s, Raleigh bikes were recognised as among the best.
It’s generally acknowledged that Raleigh’s fortunes faltered from the mid-1980s when they misjudged the mountain bike boom, and customers turned to vibrant new bicycle companies such as Specialized. Such was Raleigh’s decline, they closed their production lines and stopped manufacturing bicycles in the UK in 1999.
Today the Raleigh brand survives the same way as 90% of their competitors – by intelligently designing their bicycles in the West and getting them built very efficiently and very well in the Far East.
Raleigh still remain one of Britain’s biggest bicycle companies, so they enjoy economies of scale that enable them to create bicycles like the Stradas, which can match any at their price points in terms of quality and spec.
Significantly, these Strada bikes pass the litmus test we applied when designing a similarly low-price Revolution bike. That is: ‘Would we sell this bike to a close family member or friend?’ The answer is a resounding yes.