Norco has redesigned the City Glide stepthrough for 2013 to achieve an elegant yet very sensible city bike that’s a joy to ride. An aluminum alloy mixte with a cromoly steel fork, color-matched fenders and chain guard, comfy saddle and a riding position that’s mostly upright but also relaxed. Best of all: a) the eight-speed gearing is encased and weather-sealed in Shimano’s famous Nexus 8-speed hub, which is extremely low-maintenance and gunk-free; and b) premium Schwalbe Delta Cruiser creme tires offer great puncture protection, a reflective stripe for night riding, and excellent grip on wet pavement. What else? A bell, a kickstand, grips that feel nice wet or dry, and the ability to accept both front and rear racks and bags or baskets. Easily accepts a rear rack and a front basket.
The 8-speed is normally $839 but is now on sale for $739. The internal gearing makes the bike a little more expensive initially (compare it to $510 for the external 7-speed version shown at bottom), but in the long run you’ll save both money and downtime. Want another advantage of internal gearing? You can switch from any gear to any other gear whether you’re pedaling or totally not pedaling. You can’t do that on most bikes. It’s especially nice for starting up again after a sudden stop—there’s no struggling against the pedals till you build up some speed, and no mashing of gears as you get going again.
What’s a “Norco”? Norco is Canada’s largest and oldest bike manufacturer, and they always make good stuff, including some of the world’s best mountain bikes. Based in Vancouver, BC, they sell most of their bikes in Canada and Western Europe. Joe Bike is one of a relatively small number of US dealers.
The other two City Glide stepthrough models—an internal 3-speed ($615, creme) and an external 7-speed ($510, black)–are available by special order. All you’ve got to do is ask. Here they are: