This one’s for the bikers out there in Bettyland: Do you understand the point of couture bikes? Because I’m having a little trouble with the concept, but maybe that’s just me. At any rate, Hermès will be selling carbon fiber bicycles starting in November for 8,100 euros—or about $10,750. Wowzers.
According to WWD, the French luxury firm has just unveiled two ultra-lightweight bicycles. The rides, called Le Flâneur d’Hermès (pictured above) and Le Flâneur sportif d’Hermès, come in red, charcoal, and white; they feature belt-driven transmission, hydraulic disc brakes, and a choice of eight or 11 gears integrated into the rear wheel hub. Oh, and they’ve got luggage rack supports and bull calf leather saddles, too. Because Hermès.
According to the head of Hermès Horizons, François Doré, the bikes are handmade in France by French cycling manufacturer Time. Said Dore, “We really want to work with people who have a very deep expertise, and wherever possible, we try to find them in France. We set out to make a real bike, not a decorative object. It had to be simple, efficient, easy to use, pleasant, and elegant.” For the curious, “flâneur” translates to “stroller,” “lounger,” “saunterer,” or “loafer” in English; so, the bicycles’ names mean roughly, “The Hermès Stroller” and “The Sporty Hermès Stroller.”
Now, it’s not unheard of for serious bikes to cost several thousand dollars; only the best for serious bikers, after all. But is a nearly $11,000 couture bike going just a liiiiiiiiiiiiittle bit too far? I think so, but again, maybe that’s just me. Is it about the brand name? The cachet of being able to tell people that you’re riding Hermès? Or maybe about the absurdity of couture bikes as a concept? Someone? Anyone? Enlighten me! Please!
For those of you not willing to drop over ten grand on a couture bike—or just for those of you not willing to wait until November—Hermès also has a $4,650 option available right this very minute. I’m still not sure if I’d ride it, but it’s there if you want it. Or something.
Tell us: Monstrously expensive couture bikes: Yea or nay?
Lucia Peters is BettyConfidential’s senior editor.