Big news from HP Velotechnik / Greenspeed arrives

In less than 24 hours HP Velotechnik is going to unveil their latest machine.  I’m very impressed.  I can’t say anything more.  Once again, HPV leads the pack.

And the first Greenspeed GT3 trike arrived today.  Nice paint job, beautiful seat.  I plan to build it this evening and take it around the park tomorrow morning.

Update, written later: The Greenspeed GT3 turned out to be a fantastic ride.  I really liked it.  Very tight turning radius — it seemed even tighter than the spec says — and with a low center of gravity you can take the turns at good speed.  Then, with the stiff, steel un-suspended frame, you actually get a ride that’s almost like a BMX bike in the way it responds to bumps.  Frankly, I was very impressed with the ride quality especially considering the price.  For trike riders on a budget, you really must not overlook the GT1, which is basically the same as the GT3, but with more basic components.

The GS is also a really cool look, with the bright yellow (almost high-viz) seat and red frame (nice paint too).  I’m not sure if people know that the GT3 actually uses 16 7/8 (Brompton-sized) wheels instead of 20″ wheels (like HPV).  This is quite smart of Greenspeed.  Their stock tires are a custom Greenspeed brand of grippy slick (and they’re good).  But riders have access to all those tires (and wheels and rims) that are available for the popular Brompton, like Schwalbe Marathons and others.  The small wheel size also enables a smaller fold!  Pretty clever.  I like it.

So, what’s the difference bet. HPV and GS?  The main difference I noticed was at high speed, like when I crossed 25 mph or so.  All HPVs have this ride quality where you don’t really notice the speed in your body or hands.  (Same as when you drive a BMW.)  It’s only from your streaming eyes that you know you’re going incredibly fast.  The GS transmits a bit more “thrill” at high speed and you start to wonder if the smart rider really shouldn’t throttle back a bit (which he or she may or may not do at this point).

The way I might translate this for a customer is that the 20 mph and below — and lightweight — crowd may be content with the GS.  The 20mph and above — and heavyweight — crowd should really be looking at HPVs.  Note that the GS GT0 is another story, made specially for heavier riders.  Don’t overlook it.  Another big difference is seat height.  The GS is lower to the ground than the HPV; lower center of gravity, better stability and traction on the ground, but lower head height in traffic.  HPV brings back the stability and traction into the Scorpions with advanced engineering (and at a price).  So, what do you like?

HPV’s new Gecko is priced very close to the GT3, so trike riders are liberated to choose based on performance, style, personal preferences and what fits them the best, and not so much due to price considerations.  Great developments all around.

Robert Matson
New York City Recumbent Supply (TM)
The Innovation Works, Inc.
copyright 2010 Robert Matson

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