Canyon Commuter Brooks 150 first ride review£1,499.00

A stylish and practical bike for the urban commute

The Brooks 150 is specced to celebrate 150 years of manufacturing by the saddle specialists. It has full-coverage mudguards, integrated lights powered by a hub dynamo and rear rack.

Canyon Commuter Brooks 150 spec overview

  • 6061 aluminium frame
  • Shimano Alfine 11-speed internally geared hub
  • Belt drive
  • Brooks waterproof pannier, Cambium C15 saddle, Ergon GP1 grips
  • VCLS seatpost
  • 11.5kg / 25.35lb

Canyon Commuter Brooks 150 frame and equipment

Shimano’s Alfine 11-speed internally geared hub means minimal maintenance
Shimano’s Alfine 11-speed internally geared hub means minimal maintenance

Shimano’s Alfine 11-speed internally geared hub means minimal maintenance, while the belt drive banishes fears of oily marks. Hydraulic disc brakes supply all-conditions stopping ability. This being a special edition, you also get a posh Brooks waterproof pannier, a Cambium C15 saddle and Brooks’ leather-clad Ergon GP1 grips.

Canyon also fits security skewers and a locking seat clamp, both of which release only if the bike is inverted, making component theft difficult when it’s locked up outside. This does make seat height adjustments tricky, though — and the clamp on our test bike was somewhat temperamental — but the idea is sound.

At the heart of the Brooks 150 is an elegant 6061 aluminium frame with matching tapered carbon fork. Like many belt-drive chassis, it splits at the dropout to allow removal of the belt, and the bottom-bracket shell offers eccentric adjustment to adjust the tension.

Canyon Commuter Brooks 150 ride impression

The Commuter is specced with Brooks finishing kit
The Commuter is specced with Brooks finishing kit

The ride is perhaps the least remarkable thing about the bike, being thoroughly inoffensive. With slightly-swept flat bars and a fairly upright position, the Brooks 150 is very much the city-going hybrid.

There’s considerable compliance built into the clever leaf-spring-style VCLS seatpost, so you can happily trundle over minor potholes. The front end is firm by comparison, but the generous tyre volume affords plenty of latitude with which to compensate. Canyon has judged the handling well — the 600mm bar and shortish stem giving confident control over a front end that changes direction with alacrity.

Enthusiastic riding doesn’t reveal any particular flaws in the package — there’ no appreciable flex from the rear end of the bike, and the belt drive has none of the elasticity you might expect under hard pedalling.

This isn’t a light machine (11.5kg), but with the amount of kit it’s fitted with that’s hardly surprising, and the hub gear offers more than ample range for lugging it all up hills and speeding down the other side. The Alfine is a solid performer, although downshifts can be clunky if you don’t relieve pressure on the pedals a little.

There’s a lot to like about the Brooks 150. It’s not the thrifty option (Canyon does offer significantly cheaper builds based on the same frame) but it’s perfectly suited to everyday urban riding and it looks the part, too.

Canyon Commuter Brooks 150 early verdict

The Brooks 150 is a stylish, practical and well thought-out package — a proper urban runabout.

Matthew Allen

Senior Technical Writer, UK
Former bike mechanic, builder of wheels, hub fetishist and lover of shiny things. Likes climbing a lot, but not as good at it as he looks.
  • Age: 27
  • Height: 174cm / 5'8"
  • Weight: 53kg / 117lb
  • Waist: 71cm / 28in
  • Chest: 84cm / 33in
  • Discipline: Road, with occasional MTB dalliances
  • Preferred Terrain: Long mountain climbs followed by high-speed descents (that he doesn't get to do nearly often enough), plus scaring himself off-road when he outruns his skill set.
  • Current Bikes: Scott Addict R3 2014, Focus Cayo Disc 2015, Niner RLT 9
  • Dream Bike: Something hideously expensive and custom with external cables and a threaded bottom bracket because screw you bike industry.
  • Beer of Choice: Cider, please. Thistly Cross from Scotland
  • Location: Bristol, UK

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