British TV legend, Timmy Mallett has recently published a book and it may surprise many, Timmy is a cyclist and not just any cyclist – he rode an old pilgrim’s route of 4,000km and painted along the way. Timmy is also one mean painter! Here is the link to the book https://www.timmymallett.co.uk/utterly-brilliant-my-lifes-journey/
I heard about Timmy’s cycling on the every wonderful, The Cycling Podcast and their Explore episode. Timmy rode the adventure on a Giant eBike and it took me back to talking to Chris at Gron eBikes and what they want to achieve with their folding eBike. We wrote about the tech spec of the bike previously and here some more thoughts and info on eBikes and also on the Gron.
You see, Gron are trying to do something a little different. Their bike is sourced in China and this is like so many bikes, no matter what the brand or badge. To help with the carbon footprint, Gron plant a tree for each bike sold and not in any woodland – in a Swedish forest! Gron want people to buy their bikes and to see the world by having a bike. They want people to leave the car at home more and as we know, eBikes are encouraging people to get out more as they level out the hills – it’s like cycling with your very own tailwind.
The folding eBike provides a few advantages over the rigid bike:
- Security – no need to leave them outside of somewhere you are visiting – fold them up and take them inside
- Carrying on the train, the boot of the car, or in a caravan
The Gron enables the rider to be more like Timmy – to have confidence in our abilities to travel across the countryside and to stop and take things in. This type of travel has need have no Strava, no segments to beat – surely the journey is all about the stopping and taking in what we see and the sheer wonder of the world in which we live. As Timmy says, we may never take a route again, so why not stop every now and again and create happy memories. This to me is what eBikes are creating – an ability for many more people to get out there, for utility or enjoyment.
Okay, you get it, so let’s get down to the good and the not so good of the Gron – a £2,000 folding eBike:
- Rides well and is planted on the road, or trail (we did take it properly off-road and it was fine)
- The battery is mounted on the bike, allowing you to swap it for another spare battery
- The battery can be removed and it can be ridden as a straight bike
- 5 e-gears and 9 Shimano standard gears
- The carbon frame looks the part
- Very good bar grips and the overall look of the bike is quality
- The stand is a doddle to use
- Very easy to carry and not get chain oil on oneself
- Comes fitted with a rack and mudguards
Could do with some improvement
- For Brompton users – it doesn’t fold quite as neat and the stand doesn’t work like on some other folders – the means that when folded, the bike rests on the chain-ring guard
- When folded, the bike needs a bungy-spring attaching to keep it together. Not a major issue and Gron tell us that they are addressing this now
- Not as light as the carbon frame spec might lead you to believe. It’s a robust bike and still manageable to carry up four flights of stairs.
- The motor works fine and not to the standard of the Bosch motors that we’ve tested
Gron are trying something different. Yes, we can buy an eBike and even a folding eBike elsewhere. With Gron, their journey is for those who adore leisure and who want a bike that suits their leisure time and style. People who want to think that some good has been done when they hand over the money for the bike (the tree). Gron also plan events for their ‘Grony’ owners and this may well start with the ‘Gron Tour.’
Contact Gron at https://gron.uk/
Wishing you many enjoyable stops on your bike rides