Introducing: Urbana Bikes

Something fun showed up at the half-snowy Bike Commuters midwest proving grounds. Once I pried the shipping box open, I could tell this would be good. Sturdy rack, big fenders, massive balloon tires. What on EARTH is this thing?

We first covered Urbana at Interbike 2009 and it looks like their concept made it to market as-is. Sometimes, you get a watered down product once it hits mass production. I’m happy to say I have the real deal in my hot little hands. I haven’t tried putting the entirety of my clydesdale weight on the rear rack, but I’m pretty sure it would support it.

The highlight reel for my demo unit includes a Nexus Inter-8 hub with ventilated drum brake (not a coaster), Avid disc brake in the front, a chain guard and SKS fenders.

Between grocery-getting and a little bit of recreational roaming, I put about 15 miles on it yesterday. The hefty weight of the bike is evident, but the herculean tires actually roll smoothly and with surprisingly little effort.

Urbana pitches the bike as a dutch-inspired utility bike that’s built to withstand the thrashing of North Shore huckers. While I’m not certain I’d feel alright lobbing this thing off of a ladder bridge, it’s certainly over-engineered in every single way imaginable. This beefy urban bike appears to have no fear for all the elements that a modern metroplex can throw at it, and I intend to put it to the test.