Electra make unisex bikes, but a large chunk of their sales go to women.
The bikes are unashamedly loud, unblushingly stylish and brazen in their appreciation of all things beautiful. They’re the antidote to any ideas that cycling has to be all about performance and never about pretty things – and that appeals to a large audience that’s crying out for bikes that are just fun – to look at and to ride.
Electra bikes formed in the early 90s, and received a huge vote of confidence from American giant Trek when the brand acquired them in 2014.
The move caused quite a stir – Electra, the Californians who make cruiser style bicycles for easy ambles around town, bought by the makers of exquisite, peloton ready race machines. However, what Electra offer is a whole different approach to riding: one that’s about comfort, control, easy cruising, and accessibility. Trek wanted a piece of all of that and they allowed Electra to continue to operate as normal, whilst offering them use of their supply chain and resources to grow the brand.
There are several bike brands out there making Dutch style bikes with stunning designs that appeal to a specific style of rider. However, very often the focus is on creating something that’s incredibly feminine in the traditional sense. What we love about Electra is that they make pretty bikes for customers, many of them women, in styles to suit almost any taste.
There are Cruiser’s in pastel colours, with delicate pink and purple flowers, midnight blue options with tiny stars and matching ‘night owl’ saddles and grips. And then there’s the ‘Glam Punk’ with its golden studded saddle, hell’s angel style tassels, and the Sugar Skull [pictured]. The Sugar Skull is probably our favourite nod back to the Mexican tradition of celebrating the lives of the dead with elaborate but beautiful skull designs.
Electra take the idea of stylish, attractive town bikes, and make them something everyone can enjoy. There really are so many styles that there has to be something for everybody – and we really like that.
Flat foot technology
Lovely paint jobs are great – but obviously they’ve got to be fun and comfortable to ride. The good news is that Electra offer much more than a pretty façade.
Electra’s own Flat Food Technology has received two patents. It refers to their own in-house designed geometry, which lets the rider sit in an upright position that’s easy on their back, and allows for greater control, but still offers a full leg extension so that their strength can be utilised.
The end result is a position that means the rider can still put a foot down on the ground whilst riding, with the saddle at a height and position that also allows them to stretch their legs, thus making use of all the muscles available.
Riding an Electra really does feel like a unique adventure – your legs power you forwards with ease, yet you’ve always got the option of touching base with the ground. Not only that, the swept back handlebars offer easy steering that takes a bit of time to get used to, but feels effortless with a little practice. These bikes really are the epitome of laid back chic – in terms of appearance, rider position and ease of operation.
All the matching pretty things
We couldn’t talk Electra without a nod to the huge range of accessories available to owners, and wanna-be-owners who want a touch of Electra glamour without shelling out for a bike.
Electra offer baskets, bells, amazing cup holders, useful mirrors, racks and lights, as well as simple ‘bike bling’ that just looks great and isn’t too concerned with practicality.
Electra bikes aren't for every ride - though they're light for the style, you probably wouldn't want to go climbing in the Alps on one. However, pretty much every rider sometimes needs a bike just for getting around - and we do believe Electra have something that could tickle anyone's fancy.