Ortlieb Office Bag 2 £160

The suited commuter’s boot

BikeRadar score 3.5/5

This hard-shell polycarbonate briefcase looks more business than bike. It doesn’t fit on the side like a standard briefcase pannier but on top, using an adaptor that bolts to your existing rack.

It quick-releases on and off with fittings that are more subtle than traditional hooks and cleats. It’s tough, waterproof – even the zip – and there’s a three-digit combination lock to retain the zip tags and prevent casual theft of its contents. (Thieves with scissors will rob you regardless.)

In the 24-litre interior there are dividers and pockets for papers, pens, mobile and laptop. Vibration is worse on the top of a rack than in panniers suspended from the side, so a laptop is the last thing we’d put in it unless the bike’s rack is suspended – like on some German commuter bikes.

We thought it would reverberate like a drum over bumps but there’s a layer of foam inside to muffle this. Dimensions are a chunky 36x44x19.2cm, which boosts capacity but means your saddle height limits how far forward you can fit it on your rack. There’s an optional shoulder strap, and it comes in black or silver.


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