Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Tandem Tadpole Tornado?

Is that what this thing is? OMG, how did I miss the release of this? I happened to go through the Utah Trikes website looking at a BROL member's ICE trike and accidentally fell upon a blue tandem KMX trike! Wow! Pretty nuts.

Doesn't look that slick though. A design issue with these tandems always has to do with the connection btw the front section and the rear. Looking at this awkward pyramid shaped contraption isn't very attractive. Bold yes, but it looks like I could have designed and welded this at home in my garage - not the look we're going for KMX! Could I have done better? No and that's the point! Ugh. The color's cool and I'm glad they have something new for their new product, but the execution of a tandem isn't quite working. And at $4k, I'd like to know who's buying these.

With my criticisms aside, I'd still like to take this thing for a test spin both as a front/rear rider. Looks like fun, but I'm disappointed there aren't any improvements in the technology or design of it overall.

I'm happy to see better components. The gearing uses an 11-34T rear cluster which is nice for hill climbing. What were they thinking w/the design of the rear rider's handlebars? It doesn't even look like that thing would really work. Not excited about this new one KMX. Please try again.

UPDATE: 12/31/11
A buddy of mine informed me that the KMX Tandem is actually a Utah Trikes custom build. No wonder. I guess it's a good way to show off what UT can do at their shop. Pretty ingenious and it's cool that they made the effort. This explains the unrefined look that I hope KMX otherwise would have mastered if they had done it themselves.

I still can't imagine many people buying this thing. There aren't many tandem buyers to begin with and to choose a KMX for that purpose doesn't seem to make a whole lot of sense to me. Most tandem rides tend to be longer than single person rides. I can imagine tandem rides are more for exercise and leisure than they are for commuting or running errands. For long rides, KMX just isn't the natural company to go to.

Surely, I've completed the ALC on a KMX but it's far from recommended. Super durable and I'm glad I took it to prove to myself (and perhaps others) that it's possible, but I would not have picked it as my first choice if I had the luxury of choosing another trike.


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