Wednesday, March 30, 2011

The Allant: Trek's Best Bicycle?


I work at the Bicycle Center here in Issaquah and we sell Trek bicycles. Trek makes a wide range of bikes, from carbon Madones that go really fast when some guy named Lance is riding them to the laid back Pure cruisers with wides seats and cushy tires. And Trek makes mountain bikes, kids bikes, sport-fitness bikes, the classic 520 touring bike, commuter bikes and well, we've got a pretty good sized shop and we don't even come close to having enough space to stock every bike that Trek makes. We can order anything Trek has in their warehouses and have it in a shop in a week, but like any business we have to pick and choose what we have in stock and on display.

We have one spot in our shop that is the prime spot -- the front window display. And there is one bike that owns that spot -- the olive green women's Allant. Trek did something very, very right with this bike. It's a women's bike that's not pink or purple. The bike is pretty but not overly girly. The Allant is a practical city bike with a light aluminum frame and a good range of gears so it works well in our hilly part of the world. The tires are a good width for city streets or a gravel bike path. It comes with real metal fenders, a front rack and and kickstand. It is both comfortable and fun to ride. And pretty much as fast as I can build them up, they roll out the door. At less than $600, it's a good bike at a great price. And yes, I'm biased. I sell Allants. I sell a lot of them.

I've seen women drag their husbands into our shop, point them at the Allant and say "this is what I want." When we don't have the Allant in the window, we have women coming into the shop asking "where did that bike go?" I even had one woman say "where did my bike go?" She'd been saving up and was thrilled when I told her I was building up another Allant.

We tend to stock the 15" framed Allant, which works well for women from 5 feet to 5 foot six or so. We order in bigger models for taller women, but it is so nice to have a bike in stock that works for a small adult. Iruru, who is pictured at the top of this post, is five foot nothing. See the smile on her face? I see a similar smile on the face of almost every woman who tries the Allant.

The men's Allant is similar but it's black and comes with a rack on the rear instead of a front. The men's version is a very good bike and it sells well, but the men's Allants don't fly out the door the way the women's bike does.

I'm thrilled that bikes like the Allants exist. For too long it seemed like the entire bike industry had plenty to sell you if you wanted to race on the road or thrash bomb down a mountain but nothing if you wanted to ride to the store, ride with your kid or go to the coffee shop. Trek makes a bike that's great for the kind of biking that a lot of people do every day. It's called the Allant.

Keep 'em rolling,

Kent "Mountain Turtle" Peterson
Issaquah WA USA
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