Canadians Talking Tech

Walmart’s $99 Fixie Bicycle

by Noah Bloom Posted in Bike, Sports, Travel

Walmart is selling a $99 single speed bike (was $149). Wow. What does this mean? To the popular Bike Snob blog, it may mean that the supposedly cool, hipster stylings of the fixed gear bike has “officially attained complete pop-cultural absorption.” Is it time for hipsters to grieve? Bike Snob has more:

I began to liberate the Cachet from its packing materials. (Not an excited child, mind you; more like a really depressed child who suspects his alcoholic parents may have given him a single used sneaker again this year.)

The Fixed Gear Apocalypse is upon us…

At this point, I can be a snob and claim that, through my meticulous carings of my own bicycle collection and each tiny bolt and cable on it, this is a piece of crap bike, fit for nobody who appreciates bicycles. And I could complain that Walmart undercutting everyone on bike price is the sign of the capitalism bike-apocalypse. But I’d be completely wrong.

I’ve been apprehensive for years to commute regularly on a bike for fears of theft or, perhaps worse, public piecing apart. If you look on Craigslist these days, $100 will get you a pretty horrific piece of old rusting, steel mangledness. I’ve resorted to bike sharing like Bixi, but that just doesn’t do the trick.

Maybe this is the future. $99 generic bikes. Add some customization just to set yours apart. And then, just imagine, the government kicking in a subsidy. Eventually, this bike could drop to $79 retail. Have the government pop in a $40 per bike subsidy (that’s pretty nominal, no?). And then nobody will have an excuse not to get a $39 commuter that you’re not afraid to lose.

Is this the future? Well, as soon as I can get down the US (oh yeah there’s that, this is not available in Canada yet), you’ll see me cruising to the pool training, organic grocery store, and yoga class on this just-good-enough bike.

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