Islabikes launches a range aimed at over 65s, and it’s not electric

The new Icons bikes are set to revolutionise how we think about cycling later in life


Islabikes is renowned for its children’s bikes that cater for the unique way youngsters’ bodies grow compared to adults. It has since realised that many of these design adaptations would also benefit older riders, and so the brand set to work creating the musically-inspired Icons range.

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“Older people have been ignored, much like children pre-2006”, says Isla Rowntree, founder of Islabikes.

Islabikes’ ethos has always been that as people change, bikes should change with them. The Icons range caters to riders who — despite also experiencing changes in their bodies — can take advantage of the “physical health, psychological wellbeing and those vital social connections that come from riding with friends.”

The Islabikes Icons range comprises three bikes that cover road, off-road and urban riding, and have been designed specifically for older riders. They’re claimed to be super-lightweight and are built with very low gearing and low step-overs. While specifically aimed at the over 65s, it would also benefit anyone who experiences mobility problems.

The Icons bikes have a purpose: to keep riders in the saddle for many more years than they might have. It’s a range that celebrates age, built for a generation who defined youth culture and are now defining old age. That’s why they’re named after musical icons of the 1960s: the Joni, Janis and Jimi.

When thinking about bikes aimed at an older audience, it’s common to think of e-bikes. Motors, though, are noticeably absent from the Icons range. “Not all older riders are ready to switch to an e-bike, so we are keen to provide customers with another choice,” says Steve Chapman, Public Relations/Event Manager for Islabikes.

Islabikes Icons is redefining our view of older riders

Islabikes Icons range overview

Urban — Joni

The Joni is a low-step urban bike that’s perfect for pootling around town
Islabikes

The Joni is the ideal bike for active over-65-year-olds, and is perfect for cycling to the shops, visiting friends and exploring local lanes with the family. The very low step-through frame makes mounting and dismounting easy, and it has a claimed weight of 11kg, which is pretty light for this type of bike.

Very low gearing (8spd 11-40t Sunrace cassette) caters for reduced strength, while the rims, specifically developed with a unique internal profile, should make for easier tyre fitting and removal.

The Joni comes with a soft foam saddle (though not of the ‘sofa’ kind), designed to provide comfort through shape rather than thickness, full length mudguards and an aluminium rack.

Finally, there’s an option to have a dropper seatpost fitted, to make mounting and dismounting even easier.

Islabikes Joni specifications

  • Frame: 7005 aluminium
  • Fork: Islabikes carbon fork with 1 ⅛-in straight steerer
  • Sizes: XS 14-in / S 16-in / M 18-in / L 20-in
  • Wheel size: 26-in (XS/S) / 27.5-in (M/L)
  • Handlebar: Aluminium flat bar 600mm (XS/S) / 620mm (M/L)
  • Brakes: SRAM DB Level A1 hydraulic disc, 160mm front rotor, 140mm rear
  • Tyres: Islabikes Mixte multi-surface 26×1.5 / 27.5×1.6
  • Bottom bracket: Square taper, cartridge, sealed bearings
  • Crankset: Islabikes square taper 160mm (XS) / 165mm (S) / 170mm (M) / 175mm (L)
  • Chainring: Aluminium 32t
  • Freewheel/cassette: Sunrace 8spd 11-40t
  • Pedals: Flat
  • Saddle: Islabikes saddle
  • Colour: Satin midnight blue
  • Approx weight: 11kg
  • £799.99 / $TBC

Road — Janis

The Janis is a good road option for club riders who may not be muscling their way uphill anymore
Islabikes

For enthusiast club riders, ex-racers and keen leisure riders who want to prolong their road cycling experience, there’s the Janis.

A medium frame has a claimed weight of 9.4kg, making it a fair deal lighter than the Joni. The Janis does share some of the same features as Joni though, such as low gearing in the form of a 10spd 11-40 Sunrace cassette, an easily mountable open frame and easy-tyre-change rims.

The Janis also features SRAM DB Level hydraulic disc brakes, which provide a high braking force for low force at the lever, meaning braking power isn’t compromised when hands become weakened.

The lever can also be adjusted to a very short reach if needed. It’s also fitted with Islabikes cranks with a narrow Q-factor and size-specific crank lengths. They’re fitted with a 30t direct mount chainring as standard, but riders can tailor their gear ratios, since it’ll take anything from 26t–40t.

Islabikes Janis specifications

  • Frame: 7005 aluminium
  • Fork: Islabikes carbon fork with 1 ⅛-in straight steerer
  • Sizes: XS 14-in / S 16-in / M 18-in / L 20-in
  • Wheel size: 700c
  • Handlebar: Aluminium flat bar 580mm (XS/S) / 600mm (M) / 620mm (L)
  • Brakes: SRAM DB Level A1 hydraulic disc, 160mm front rotor, 140mm rear
  • Tyres: Islabikes Road, 700x30c, folding bead
  • Bottom bracket: 30mm external, sealed bearings
  • Crankset: Islabikes SRAM fit direct mount, 30mm axle, 160mm (XS) / 165mm (S) / 170mm (M) / 175mm (L)
  • Chainring: Direct mount, narrow/wide 30t (other sizes available)
  • Freewheel/cassette: Sunrace 10spd 11-40t
  • Pedals: Not included
  • Saddle: Islabikes saddle
  • Colour: Satin midnight blue
  • Approx weight: 9.4kg
  • £1,199.99 / $TBC

MTB — Jimi

The Jimi is a capable mountain bike, great for exploring bridleways and singletrack
Islabikes

The Jimi is designed for exploring bridleways, singletrack in the woods and canal paths, and is billed as a highly capable mountain bike for those who maybe no longer get their thrills from jumps and drop-offs.

Again, the Jimi shares specific features such as a lightweight frame (9.9kg), low gearing (10spd 11-40 Sunrace cassette), step-through frame and specially developed rims.

It also features the SRAM DB Level hydraulic disc brakes and Islabikes direct mount cranks and chainring. Interestingly, the Jimi comes with a carbon fork rather than suspension. Islabikes says it chose the lighter and absorbing material to avoid adding extra weight.

Islabikes Jimi specifications

  • Frame: 7005 aluminium
  • Fork: Islabikes carbon fork tapered steerer, 12mm thru-axle
  • Sizes: S 15-in / M 16-in / L 18-in
  • Wheel size: 27.5-in (S) / 29-in (M/L)
  • Handlebar: Aluminium double-butted riser 680mm (S) / 700mm (M) / 720mm (L)
  • Brakes: SRAM DB Level TL hydraulic disc, 160mm front rotor, 140mm rear
  • Tyres: Schwalbe Rocket Ron Evo 27.5/29 (S/ML), Liteskin, Folding beat, Addix Speed
  • Bottom bracket: 30mm external, sealed bearings
  • Crankset: Islabikes SRAM fit direct mount, 30mm axle, 165mm (S) / 170mm (M) / 175mm (L)
  • Chainring: Direct mount, narrow/wide 26t
  • Freewheel/cassette: Sunrace 10spd 11-40t
  • Pedals: Not included (flat pedals available)
  • Saddle: Islabikes saddle
  • Colour: Satin midnight blue
  • Approx weight: 9.9kg
  • £1,199.99 / $TBC
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