Car video reviews:
The ESO Bike Is So Naked It’s “Literally” Bomb-Proof
Electric or not, used full-time or for recreation purposes only, cheap or expensive, old and new, bikes are fun. They’re also a lot of work in terms of maintenance because, well, stuff gets worn out and stuff breaks.

The ESO Bike Is So Naked It’s “Literally” Bomb-Proof

The so-called "bomb-proof" ESO BikeThe so-called "bomb-proof" ESO BikeThe so-called "bomb-proof" ESO BikeThe so-called "bomb-proof" ESO BikeThe so-called "bomb-proof" ESO BikeThe so-called "bomb-proof" ESO BikeThe so-called "bomb-proof" ESO BikeThe so-called "bomb-proof" ESO BikeThe so-called "bomb-proof" ESO BikeThe so-called "bomb-proof" ESO Bike
In the context of the current health crisis, bikes have seen an unprecedented surge in popularity, to the point where major suppliers are out of stock, overwhelmed by demand. This means that more bikes will be populating city streets worldwide soon and, with them, there will be more problems to fix.

The ESO Bike is unlike any other in this regard. Currently crowdfunding on KickStarter, it claims to be the first bike in the world that will be truly, really maintenance-free and so solid that it will be “literally” bomb-proof. We’re not sure if “literally” is used correctly here (as in, they tested it and saw that you could drop bombs on it and nothing happens to it) or if it’s one of those cases when the term is used liberally and erroneously as an enforcer.

Either way, ESO claims to be everything that other bikes are not: it’s simple, clean, minimalist to a fault, strong and durable. It’s also maintenance-free because it simply gets rid of all the things that can make a bike such a hassle: chain, gears, brakes, cables, paint, everything.

“The ESO bike is so radically different, so over-the-edge future proofed, that you will want to know how we got a time machine to find it. It is literally the toughest bike made,” the description of the campaign on KickStarter reads. 

That sounds like a lot, so let’s see what’s so special about ESO. First of all, it’s not an electric bike. It’s of the old, traditional, human-powered variant and has one single gear. However, the makers promise it’s got enough torque to get you moving through the city and even up the hill or off-road. Those last two options are debatable – and entirely dependent on the rider and his or her physical condition or willingness to bust their butt off the trodden path.

Instead of a chain or belt drive, the ESO has a fully-enclosed shaft-drive drivetrain. This means you will no longer have to fix your chain, get your hands dirty or worry about clothes getting caught in it. Because there’s nothing exposed, there’s nothing that can break.

A single gear means no gearboxes, shifters, derailleurs or any of the cables you normally see on a bike. Instead of the traditional, non-hydraulic brakes, the ESO uses coaster brakes, of the kind that are activated when you pedal backwards. This means no regular adjusting and no weather-dependent riding from now on.

Instead of the usual tires, the ESO uses Tannus Aither 1.1. solid tires mounted on 48-spoke deep V double-wall rims, effectively doing away with any chance of getting a deflated or flat tire. Because no one likes to ride around with hand pump and sealant for a “just in case” situation.

Coming to complete this very stripped-down look is the frame made of stainless steel, without a single spot of paint of it, so you won’t have to worry ever again about rust or chipped paint.

“This bike can live outdoors, too. It’s type 304 stainless steel frame is paintless, like a DeLorean or the Tesla Cybertruck,” the makers say. “There is nothing to break, wear out, deflate, or stretch. Just pure, clean design, to get you riding with total peace of mind.”

The ESO Bike weighs 29 pounds (13 kg) and only comes with a 56-cm frame, which should fit riders ranging from 5'6" to 6'2" (168 to 188 cm). Pledgers on KickStarter can get it for $1,400, a small discount from the retail price of $1,500, but it will only go into production once funding is secured. As of the time of press, it only reached one percent of that goal, but with 26 more days to go in the campaign, things could change.

The question is, are there people out there willing to break a sweat in order to ride this bomb-proof bike?

Editor's note: This article was not sponsored or supported by a third-party.


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