$70,000 Thonet Bike: Furniture on a Roll

Thonet Wooden Bicycle

These days, everybody is getting in on the cycling boom. Recent years have seen introduction of bicycles with names from the luxury automobile industry and from the world of fashion. And, although bicycles often appear within the context of architecture and interior design, from hipster haunts in Brooklyn to stylish fleets at high-end hotels, seeing one that draws inspiration from home furnishings seems more novel.

Bentwood chairEnter the new Thonet bike (above). The beechwood frame, with its spare, cursive lines designed by architect Andy Martin, is formed by the process of steaming and bending wood developed by Michael Thonet in the 19th century and used to produce the iconic No. 14 chair (right). And yet, in showcasing Thonet’s heritage of bentwood craft, this two-wheeler is anything but old-fashioned.

“We wanted the bike to have a progressive aesthetic and still feel handcrafted,” Martin told fastcodesign.com.

In addition to its covetable beauty, what this limited-edition design shares with some of the plushest bicycle designs is a wallet-walloping price tag. For $70,000, prospective buyers might be more tempted to clear spaces on their walls than in their garages — especially since this is a fixed-gear bike. No brakes.


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  • Almost any bike appeals to me, but this is nothing more than an irresponsible indulgence. It won’t ride well, either.
    Design is not just about looks!

    • Matt, thanks for reading and for your comment! Got to agree that the ride could be a little shaky. On the other hand, variety is the spice of life.

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