Cycle Show 09: Viva bikes

Danish flair comes to the UK

If you were at this year's Cycle Show in London, you would have been hard pressed to miss Viva bikes on the AMBA Marketing stand as you headed into the show.

A Danish company, Viva have been operating for 20 years. They certainly know how to make an eye-catching machine with the urban rider in mind, from singlespeeds to fat-tyred shopping bikes. We're sure we'll be seeing more of them on the UK's city streets.

Their flagship model is the Juliett, a classic women's sit-up-and-beg shopping bike. Viva call it "pure elegance for the sophisticated lady" – we'll let you make up your own mind about that.

The step-through frame comes in two sizes, 47 and 52cm. It features a rear carrying rack and for an extra £85 you can fit an aluminium shopping basket on the front. Other standard features include mudguards, a full chainguard, flat pedals and Schwalbe Delta 35c tyres.

Viva obviously have the discerning cyclist in mind as they offer seven different versions of the Juliett: steel or aluminium frames, three-speed or seven-speed, a variety of colours, calliper or roller brakes, Brooks or Selle Royal saddle, and a price range between £625 and £975.

The beefy Kilo

The Kilo is a beefier, more angular version of the Juliett, and is available in both men's and women's models. The key feature is the Schwalbe Fat Frank tyres, which means it can handle some pretty large potholes and bumps. There are two men's and three women's models in three- and seven-speed options, with prices ranging from £815-£1,025.

The not quite so beefy but racier Velo

And if you want something slightly racier, there's the Velo. It's also a classic town bike, in men's and women's versions. It features Schwalbe Delta 28x1 1/2 tyres – thinner than those on the Juliett and the Kilo – and again you have the choice of three or seven speeds. Prices range from £945 to £1,175.

For the fixie aficionados, there's the Eurobike award winning Duro. It's a sleek chromoly steel frame in either gold, grey or a limited edition white/blue, and comes in four sizes, from 50 to 59cm. The twin down tube, while serving no practical purpose, at least separates it from the crowd.

The Eurobike award winning Duro

A Brooks Swift saddle and leather grips add a touch of class, and we also noted the V for Viva logo on the flat pedals. Tyres are Schwalbe Lugano 23c clinchers. The gearing is 52x18, which seems a little on the tall side for city riding. How much? At £1,450, it's certainly not cheap, but it is different.

The Pista in green

Viva have another fixie offering in the form of the Pista. Frame materials, tyres and gearing are similar to the Duro but the tighter geometry, drop handlebars and toe clips and straps make this more of a traditional track bike.

It's available in five sizes, from 50cm to 58cm, and metallic green, blue, gold or red. Prices range from £965 to £2,085, the most expensive being the gold frame built with Reynolds 631 tubing.

Click here for more Cycle Show 09 coverage.

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