Trek’s belt drive bikes that were unveiled last August at Trek World are getting quite a bit of press this week in an AP story. The Trek Soho and District city bikes come in a belt drive version that’s getting a lot of interest from consumers and the story is now at CNN:
Trek Bicycle is part of a movement to bury the finger-pinching, pants-munching, rust-prone sprocket and chain, and usher in an era of belt-driven bikes that might have the inventors of the self-propelled transportation Schwinning in their graves.
Wisconsin-based Trek is introducing two models this holiday season that are chainless, instead using technology most often found in things like motorcycles and snowmobiles. While some smaller custom bike makers have used them before, Trek is the first to use the technology for mass-produced bicycles.
I’m a big fan of belt drive bicycles — no mess, and little fuss. What are your thoughts? Better than chains? Do they work well for fast riding, or should they be limited to slower, urban and utility riding or even for folding bikes like this Abio?
Another method that’s sometimes used to reduce maintenance and mess is the use of a shaft drive. What about shaft drive bikes like this Biria Newport? Is a shaft drive a realistic way to get the wheels moving on a bicycle?