Dirt Rag Magazine

Trek Transport: Last Impression

By Eric McKeegan

I was in such a hurry to get on this bike and get riding I neglected to get a first impression post written and published. Now that the review is wrapped up and printed, seems like it would proper to write a follow up post about it.

Quick intro to the bike for those of you who haven’t read the review (get your subscription here): The Transport+ is a longtail cargo bike from Trek (check it out on Trek’s website). The + part of the name denotes an electric assist motor in the rear hub. Regardless of some crotchety folks’ opinion on the matter this does not make it a motorcycle, any more than the pedals on moped make it a bicycle. The motor is only an assist, there is no throttle and power is only added when the rider is pedaling. The motor is a great help in hilly areas, running out of steam on a steep hill, on a cargo bike in traffic is pretty scary. You’ve got to get your feet down, keep your bike upright and figure out whether it makes more sense to try to push up the hill or turn around and coast down and find another way around.

One of the most common larger loads I carried on the transport was a second bike. The lower rack supports made it pretty easy to get a bike strapped down and secure, although a bit of padding wouldn’t hurt to keep paint from getting scratched.

Best accessory for this bike you won’t find in a bike shop? Six foot bungee cord. I’ve strapped flat out ridiculous stuff to the Transport, and you can make it out in the picture above holding the frame and wheels to rack. I’ve always got one stashed on my personal Xtracycle longtail, and usually one in my motorcycle top box.

What were we talking about? The Transport! The market for cargo bikes continues to grow which a great sign for the future of transportation and utility cycling in the U.S.A. I’m not here to preach to people about going car-free, with two kids I realize how difficult that would be. But bike like this can replace the car in shorter trips, or maybe even replace a second car altogether for some households. With better cycling infrastructure being created everyday I often feel we are on the cusp of a sea change in car dominated transportation system.

Worst part about reviewing this bike? I’ve got to box it up and send it back. It’s a BIG box.

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