Folding bikes are not typically associated with being the most lightweight folding bikes around, they generally have an assortment of locking mechanisms and additional extras that almost always push the weight up considerably. This however, is most definitely not the case with the Allen Sport Ultra X folding bike, this premium folding bicycle comes in at a meager 18.65lbs. As a result it is the lightest bike we have reviewed to date and it is also one of the lightest folding bikes in the world. It is clear to anybody when they first see the Ultra X that it is not simply any ordinary folding bike, every individual component of it has been manufactured to the highest of standards. This review of the bike is designed to illustrate what a fantastic bike this really is.
Allen Sports only really became a household name within the folding bike industry in 2013, they released their full range of folding bicycles back in early 2014 – initially selling 7 different bikes with a range of specifications and prices from between $500 and $5000. Allen Sports have pushed the boat out to extraordinary lengths with the Ultra X, this folding bike is a true work of art. Firstly, I have to say that this is one of the most stunning bikes that I have laid my eyes upon in all my years of riding folding bikes. It exudes true elegance, something that you would expect from such a pricey model.
Every time I got off the bike to stroll around I was repeatedly stopped and asked various questions about it. This is something I have yet to experience on any other bike I have ridden. The frame is entirely crafted out of carbon fiber, this weighs significantly less than its aluminium or steel counterparts that are found on the majority of folding bicycles. Not only that though, the Ultra X also has its handlebars, handlebar post, derailleur, forks, cranks, brake levers, seat post and saddle all crafted out of this extremely lightweight material. The 18.75lbs this bike weighs makes it incredibly easy to maneuver around, wherever you intend on going.
To top these already outstanding features off, the Allen Sports Ultra X also can be folded away in under 7 seconds (yes, seven!). We tested this statement out immediately after getting the bike out of the box and were absolutely stunned when we managed to in under 8 seconds on our first attempt. The folding mechanism on this bike is absolutely incredible and far more advanced than anything else we have seen. This facilitates riders to jump off the bike and almost instantly be on the move again with a completely folded up bike, unbelievable. What’s more, while the Ultra X doesn’t fold down to the smallest size we have seen, it is still pretty tiny and very easy to hold comfortably. The bike comes with 451mm wheels over the 20″ wheels that are pretty much standard across the market for folding bicycles, these are quite thin and therefore are very efficient on the road due to their larger size (the bike also handles far better as a consequence of these wheels!). The carbon fiber frame is completely stiff and therefore it provides a truly smooth ride, not only that, but the bike is extremely quick too. Regardless of whether you are tackling a flat road or a steep hill, the Ultra X flies up them effortlessly, it is by far the most efficient hill climbing folding bike around. Boasting 20 gears with a derailleur to aid rapid shifting, this bike is an absolute beast to ride that exceeds all expectations.
If there was one qualm I had about this premium bike, it would be that the saddle is not the most comfortable around. It is light, yes, but being made out of carbon fiber (with little padding whatsoever), it certainly isn’t ideal for cycling long distances. Obviously if this is an issue for you, you can easily purchase a replacement saddle that provides you with a comfier ride. Another issue with the Ultra X is that it is so expensive that if anything ever happened to it, most people would be truly devastated. One cool feature that the Ultra X boasts is the wheel lock system that enables the bike to be rolled around when folded away. The large price tag on this bike is enough to put the majority of people off, however if you can afford to lose it then I can’t see why it isn’t a good investment. This is without a doubt the best folding bicycle on the market currently, and I can see it staying there for a while.
- Front Derailleur: Shimano X
- Back Derailleur: Sram X9 10 Speeds
- Rims: Alexrims Carbon
- Crank Set: FSA Carbon
- Speeds: 20
- Tires: 20″ x 1-1/8″
- Wheel Size: 451MM
- Shifters: Sram X9 Trigger
- Weight: 18.75lb / 8.5kg
- Folded Dimensions: 84cm x 34cm x 69cm
Best Available Price: $3999
All in all, it is what it is. The Allen Sports Ultra X is a top of the range folding bike that has been designed to be the best, and nothing less. Allen Sports have achieved this by a particularly large margin and I can’t recommend this bike highly enough. Obviously it is out of the price range of your average commuter, however if you have the cash to spend, then I think this bike will impress absolutely anybody. Check out my other Allen Sports folding bike reviews today.
The finest build quality around
Entirely rust resistant
Gorgeously styled bike that will turn heads
The most lightweight folding bike around
20 gear speeds to facilitate easy hill climbing
Can be rolled around when folded up
Easily adjustable frame
Rapid folding motion (less than 7 seconds!)
Relatively small when folded away
Saddle isn’t comfortable over large distances