Many people have the misconception that we have to compromise performance for the convenience and portability of folding bikes. This might be true for some cheap options, but how about the high-end Allen Sports Ultra 1? Let’s figure it out in the review.
Features and Specifications
- Folded Dimensions: 33.5″ x 27.6″ x 13.8″ (85cm x 35cm x 70cm)
- Weight: 21.2 lbs (9.6 kg)
- Speed: 20
- Frame: Carbon Fiber
- Forks: Carbon Fiber
- Tires: 20″ x 1-1/8″
- Wheel Size: 451MM
- Valve on tires: Presta
- Shifters: Sram X9 Trigger
- Front Derailleur: Shimano
- Back Derailleur: Sram X9 10 Speed
- Rims: Alexrims Alloy
- Crankset: Lasco
- Front Brake: Tektro
- Rear Brake: Tektro
- Brake levers: Tektro
- Pedals: Folding
- Kickstand: not included
- Handlebar Post: Alloy adjustable
- Handlebar: Aluminum
- Saddle: Velo VL-1220
- Seat post: Aluminum
- Fenders: not included
- Recommended Rider Height range: 4’11” to 6’7″ (150cm to 200cm)
- Max Rider Weight: 242 lbs (110 kgs)
My first impression of the Ultra 1 is that it is incredibly lightweight. The Allen Sports website says the weight is 23.15 lbs but when I put the bike on my scale and weigh it myself, I found out that the actual weight is just over 21 lbs. Therefore, the Ultra 1 has become the lightest folding bike I’ve ever tried till now (the statement is no longer true after I used the high-end Allen Sports Ultra X). So, you can imagine how easy it is to carry the bike and put it into a car trunk.
Folding or unfolding the bicycle is also very fast, the mechanism is similar to other Allen Sports bikes I’ve reviewed here. You can see the video on top for clearer instructions, I tried to slow down the processes so that you can follow easily. Now I can fold the whole bike in roughly 10 seconds. The folding mechanism is my favorite so far because the hinge levers require almost no effort to snap on the frame, and they still manage to keep the frame sturdy. This is amazing and you will have to try it yourself, seriously no muscle required, even my 3-year-old girl could close those latches.
The Ultra 1 is obviously not built for urban riders. It would be overkill to use a 20-speed bike to run errands in the city. Besides, the Velo VL-1220 saddle is so uncomfortable if you sit on it without a padded bike short. Therefore, forget about riding this bike with your pants.
Having said that, this is the fastest folding bike ever. Apart from its light weight, the 451MM wheels contribute significantly to the high performance. The wheels are made extremely narrow and smooth to decrease rolling resistance. For the first time, I could reach the average speed of over 13 mph and the maximum speed of nearly 18 mph. Additionally, climbing moderate hills on this bike is a piece of cake. I can ride this folder for hours without making my leg muscles tired. Honestly, this is a dream come true for all folding bicycles and also a challenge for good-quality regular bicycles out there.
The bike utilizes carbon fiber frame, so it manages to damp out vibrations pretty well, you can see the difference when riding on a little bumpy roads. Shifting gears is another pleasure on this bike, it is so smooth and you hardly get stuck or hear a noise from the front and rear derailleurs.
- Compact and lightweight
- Fast and smooth riding
- Easy to fold and unfold
- High price tag
I highly recommend this bike if you need a high-performing folding bicycle. This is one of a few folders that can deliver such a high speed in a compact size.
Disclosure: I might earn commission from qualifying purchases. We use the commission to maintain the website, buy new products and create content for free, so thank you!