Bakfiets.nl is a Dutch company born off the back of the brilliant cargo bikes designed by Maarten van Andel.
The word ‘bakfiets’ translates to mean ‘box bike’, and the box is certainly the most distinctive feature of these wonderful machines. Unlike conventional child/cargo carriers, bakfietsen are purpose-built for carrying bulky loads. What this means is that you can pop to the shops with your children, fill the box and panniers with a week’s worth of groceries, and then ride home – try doing that on an ordinary bike and you’ll soon run into problems!
Bakfiets.nl have been developing their bikes for donkey’s years, and so their designs are highly refined and full of practical features. It is nearly impossible to find these bikes on the second-hand market, not because there aren’t any, but because they are snapped up so quickly. They are built to such a high standard that they retain their value incredibly well (much better than a motor vehicle), and so although they might seem expensive at first, there is always a very significant return on the initial investment. Given that a bakfiets can do many of the same tasks as a car, the fact that you don’t have to pay to park them, fuel them, tax them, etc. means that they are actually an extremely cost-effective transport option for the typically short urban journeys that most of us make every day.
The basic two-wheeled box bike is characterised by its rigid monotube construction, and by the unsurpassed handling made possible by the bike’s low centre of gravity. Unlike trike configurations, the two-wheeler rides and handles just like a normal bike; aside from the fact that it is 2.6m long and can carry 4 children, you would be hard-pressed to find many differences in terms of the ride.
The bakfiets trikes are pure, unadulterated cargo-carrying machines. They are built to shift massive loads, and the extra wheel makes them easy to ride and very stable. Child passengers aren’t really too fussy about which they prefer – any journey by bakfiets is always an adventure!