Takara Kabuto Single Speed Road Bike Review

Updated May 31, 2013
cs-product-header
Takara Kabuto Single Speed Road Bike
Bottom Line Bottom Line

If you need an inexpensive bike for riding around town or commuting to work or school, the Takara Kabuto Single Speed Road Bike is worth a look. It offers excellent ride quality and durability for its price, and has a unique yellow color scheme.

Performance

Flip-flop hub means versatility. Owners like the Kabuto's flip-hub feature that provides an alternative to riding in a fixed gear. One reviewer notes that the tread on the rear tire is directional, however, so the tread will be backward when you flip the wheel for riding in fixed mode. Even so, this doesn't necessarily spoil the ride.

ProsGreat value for the price, Easy to upgrade, Flip-flop hubConsFlimsy inner tubes, Plastic brakes, A bit heavy

Most riders like the performance of the bike's steel frame and fork, although some complain that it's slightly heavy for a road bike. There are also mixed reviews concerning its gear ratio's efficiency on hills, but all agree that it excels on level ground. The alloy side-pull brakes are another point of contention; many users say they require some adjustment initially and are a hassle to adjust.

Comfort

Bigger tires. The Kabuto's tires are larger and thicker than those on a standard road bike, and some riders say they provide additional comfort. Others complain that the bike is on the heavy side, weighing just under 30 pounds; despite that, it rides smooth and fast like a much more expensive model, reviewers say. This bike is designed to fit riders who are about 6 feet tall.

Durability

A great value. Experts and owners agree that the strong, handcrafted Tig-welded steel frame offers excellent durability for a small price tag. Users also appreciate the bike's sturdiness that contributes to easy handling on city streets.

Some riders who put the Takara Kabuto to heavy use note that the toe hooks can wear out or break rather quickly under extreme pedaling stress. A few also have problems with the brakes, saying the plastic doesn't feel very durable; some simply replace them early on.

Many owners appreciate the Kenda hybrid tires, noting that they're thicker than typical road tires and seem to stand up well against city potholes and bumpy rides. However, several complain that the inner tubes are flimsy and recommend that owners check inner tubes before embarking on any long trek.

Customer Service

Quick setup. Assembly is easy and fast, requiring only basic tools to get the bike up and running within 10 minutes. Several users say the bike arrived damaged after ordering it online and the manufacturer, Kent International, is a bit slow to respond. Once contact is made, feedback is positive; one user whose bike was missing a spoke upon arrival got a refund for the $15 spent to have it repaired at a local bike shop.

Our Sources

1. Amazon.com

Takara Kabuto Single Speed Road Bike, Contributors to Amazon.com, As of June 2013

Amazon.com allows customers to post reviews of products they've purchased. Nearly 250 users share their experiences with the Takara Kabuto, giving it an average rating of 4.2 stars out of 5.