In Brief

Cycling revolution: ‘demand for bikes has gone ballistic’

Brompton to launch bike rental subscription service after lockdown surge

British folding bike company Brompton is planning to launch its own subscription service next month following a surge in demand for cycling during the lockdown.

To hire a Brompton M3L, which has a retail value of more than £1,000, The Guardian says subscribers will pay £30 a month for a yearly contract or £42 a month for a rolling monthly deal.

Brompton Bike Hire, an existing arm of the business, trades on daily hiring for the price of around £6.50, which can be almost halved with a £25 annual fee. But the new service marks a clear desire to capitalise on the changes in attitudes provoked by the pandemic.

Included in the hire price is insurance, repairs and yearly servicing for the Brompton M3L. If the bike needs repairing the subscription will let customers take out another on loan and also provides a discount on other Brompton products.

According to the London Evening Standard, the UK government is looking to invest around £2bn in walking and cycling infrastructure after cycling increased by almost 300% during the coronavirus outbreak.

Brompton folding bike

Brompton

Brompton Bike Hire managing director Julian Scriven told CNBC that “demand for bikes has gone ballistic”. And in an interview with YourMoney.com he added: “There is a significant shift towards cycling now more than ever, but not everyone wants to or can afford to buy a bike outright. 

“Our pay-as-you-ride schemes are already enormously popular, but we wanted to give the public another option which allows them to keep a bike for longer periods. 

“This new subscription service will revolutionise the way people own a bike, giving them a premium product without the upfront price tag. It’s an option to make everyone’s life easier, whether you’re a commuter, student, family or just want to cycle on the weekends but don’t want to commit or have the space to own a bike forever.” 

Following the UK launch the company hopes to introduce the same sort of scheme in Germany and the United States. 

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