After working on commuter bikes for the last 10 years, Breezer Bikes founder Joe Breeze recently returned to his roots with a new line of 26-inch hardtail mountain bikes.
With 2011 fast approaching, Breeze is adding yet more offerings to his line — his first 29ers. The Cloud 9 will come in two carbon versions (Pro and Limited) and the Jet Stream will feature two aluminum models (Comp and Sport).
Breeze has a long history of spurring the bike industry. In the 1970s, he and a select group that included, among others, Gary Fisher and Tom Ritchey, began building “mountain bikes.” Breeze says he is now embracing the 29-inch segment with the same gusto.
“We have spent lots of time optimizing the design of our 29ers to make them the best-riding two-niners on the market,” Breeze says.
Notably, the Breezer 29ers will be exceptional climbers, he says.
“By shortening the chain stays I am addressing the Achilles heel of 29ers — their less-than-optimum traction on climbs,” Breeze says. “Cyclists will be delighted by the lively, fast ride.”
The short chain stays are possible because of modifications to the seat tube. The result is a more compact and nimble 29er that places the rider right above the wheels for better traction. Another feature is the chain stay-mounted disc brake. This forward brake mount is more rigid for less brake howl, and more protected due to the seat stays that wrap around the discs. Breeze-In dropouts are light and rigid, and their reduced length provides a clean look that accentuates the curved tubing of the seat stays.
Breeze uses his D’fusion tubes for his frames. The tubing features D-shaped cross sections that diffuse stress and eliminate the need for heavy and ride-deadening gussets. A curved down tube at the head tube junction provides clearance for long-travel forks and is light and resilient.
The addition of the 29ers expands the Breezer mountain bike line to four base models, including the Lightning and Thunder 26ers, which marked Breeze’s return to his mountain bike roots after a decade of focusing on commuter and transportation bikes.
Purchased in 2009 by Philadelphia-based ASI, the parent company of Fuji, Kestrel and SE Bikes, Breezer will continue to expand its lineup in future years. In addition to the U.S., Breezers are now sold in Germany, Austria, Switzerland and Australia. The 2010 line of Breezers can be seen at www.breezerbikes.com.