I’m a big fan of foldable bicycles: When I’m tired, they fit into car boots effortlessly; they sit inconspicuously in a small corner of my 4-room HDB flat, never asking for a larger space; and, of course, the eyeballs they attract when they do a “transformer”.
All the aforementioned reasons, coupled with the emergence of brands such as Tern, Dahon, Tyrell and Bike Friday, have contributed to a spike in the number of foldies in Singapore. Thus, it is of little surprise to see brands like homegrown Vert jumping onto the foldie bandwagon.
To me, the ease of fold is of utmost importance. So I’m glad to report that the Vert V8 folds well and newbies will take no more than 60 seconds to fold or unfold it. The bike folds into half like most foldies and consists of foldable pedals to make it even more compact. It doesn’t have a magnet or lock-in device to secure the fold, but the problem is solved with a handy Velcro tape.
Its frame, crank arm, stem, handle bar and seat post are all made from aluminum, which contributes to its 11kg weight – somewhat of an average for most mid-range foldies. But unlike the majority of foldies, it uses disc brakes instead of the commonly used V-brakes. Lastly, driving the Vert V8 is a Shimano Tourney TX 7 gear.
To put the Vert V8 through its paces, I took it out for a long spin, starting from Yishun all the way to Punggol Waterway Park to meet my friends. To get there, I took the Seletar North Link via Yishun Dam. The entire journey was a mixture of pavement and road, and I have to say the V8 performed fine despite having to go on the road at Seletar North Link.
Its trigger shift is, firstly, ergonomically designed, making it easy to shift gears – one can just use the thumb to shift up and the index finger to shift down. As Seletar North Link is often populated with heavy vehicles, good handling is a must. Luckily, the V8 was sturdy enough and didn’t waver when a cement mixer roared past.
I took 30 minutes to reach Punggol, where my friends who are leisure cyclists, were waiting. The first thing they said about the V8 was its sleek appearance. They were also visibly enticed when they found out that it only cost $398. Overall, the Vert V8 is a formidable contender amongst bikes for the occasional cyclists looking for a fuss-free weekend ride. , They are the occasional cyclists and said that they wouldn’t mind getting it for weekend rides.
From there, we cycled along the park connector opposite Coney Island, connected to Lorong Halus and finally ended up at Jalan Kayu. We even took a short trail opposite Coney Island and I have to say the Vert V8 performed admirably.
I admit: I’m a stickler for the ease of folding and the Vert V8 fully met expectations in that department though it could do with a lock-in device. Ride quality is good and it proves that it can withstand most terrains in Singapore (just don’t treat it like a MTB!). Its relatively low price, especially for a foldie, gives it an extra edge over some of its more renowned competitors and is really a no-brainer for someone who wants to try out a folding bicycle.
Interested? Visit https://www.bicyclesg.com for more information.