Jumping right into the thick of things, what makes this bicycle so intriguing or defines it as being out there would be the fact that it's built around 20-inch tires. Wait a minute, aren't 20-inch tires typically reserved for urban settings? Well, yes, that's usually the case; however, Velo, the manufacturer behind this multifaceted trinket, decided that this is as good a base as any for a versatile and useful urban machine.
So, what the heck are we getting for almost €2,300 ($2,300 at current exchange rates)? That's precisely what we'll be exploring today, and to do that, I want you to imagine that you spent this cash and currently own your very own Gravel. Once you have it in your possession, perform a pre-ride checkup and hop on.
Ok, maybe I've been a bit too harsh on this trinket because once you really get into the thick of things, versatility is this bugger's middle name. Starting from the ground up, the wheels for this bike require a tad of attention. Why 20-inch tires for a bike that's designed to ride gravel? I have no dang idea, but once we factor in the fact that this bike's frame is a foldable one, the size of the wheels starts to make sense.
Now, all that defines this bike as an urban machine, but Vello chose to take things even further. So to ensure that you can also take this bike with you on those Saturday treks, the manufacturer decided that a pair of gravel tires and a set of flared drop bars is all that's missing. Throw on a 10-speed drivetrain from Shimano, and this bugger is almost complete. Yet, the cassette will boast only a range of 11-36T, so we're a tad limited there. Coupled with those 20-inch tires, you may have difficulty keeping up with your buddies with larger wheels. At least the Gravel only weighs 11.9 kg (26 lbs).
The minds behind such a twisted contraption? Vello is a team from Austria that has been in this industry since 2014, when their first bicycle was unveiled to the world. Sure, it's a relatively young cycling team, but with the sort of cash that flows through their native country, this manufacturer is sure to have pumped considerable cash into R&D to offer safe and versatile machines.
Still, I can't shake the fact that this machine looks so dang different than what we may be used to. However, if by taking a test ride, you find that the geometry works out, then, by all means, go for it. You just have to worry about finding one of these buggers in some local shop. Wear a helmet and drop a comment regarding the experience.