The Humu is a 2012 bike but Kona say stocks are good and it will be selling well into 2013. But still, shop around. We’ve already seen a few being advertised well below the recommended retail price.
The bike comes from an enticing but often forgotten breed – the single-geared cruiser. This is the genre that gave birth to mountain bikes all those years ago, and it’s still relevant today for riders who just want a do-anything-without-even-worrying-about-cleaning-it bike, and one with a bucketful of style that hybrids can never offer.
True, some bikes in this category are overburdened with stylistic flourishes and more expensive than they have a right to be, but the £350 / US$499 Kona Humu (short, hilariously, for Humuhumunukunukuapua’a, a Hawaiian triggerfish that grunts like a pig when cornered) is a great option. Why? It keeps things comfy, efficient and simple.
A butted aluminium frame helps keep weight to just over 11kg (26lb), you can fit a bottle, mudguards and a rack and – should your trails be particularly hilly and steep – all you need is a smaller chainring. It comes with 42/18 gearing that’s more suited to road use, and while the tyres are fine in dry dirt they block easily in mud.
Oh, and the 31in cruiser bar doesn’t squeeze between the trees on our local singletrack, though the sky-diving stance will appeal to riders with a more laid back approach and, potentially, wider-spaced forests.
This is a bike that, despite its low price, is easy to ride fast and massive fun through rolling singletrack, even with its big gearing. We love the coil sprung saddle, too.
Kona humu: Future Publishing
This article was originally published in What Mountain Bike magazine, available on Apple Newsstand and Zinio.