Godrej & Boyce, the holding company of the Godrej Group, have introduced its premium range of bikes, Bambusa in India. The frames of these bikes are completely built from bamboo.
It was a visit to Antarctica where Vijay Crishna, Executive Director, Lawkim Motors Group, a division of Godrej and Boyce Mfg Co Ltd. chanced upon a bamboo bike that had been ridden the entire length of North and South America. Inspired by the strength, agility and design of the bike, he thought of making these sustainable bicycles in India.
Currently, the products developed under the brand include Bambusa Sports Bike, Bambusa Kids Bike and Bambusa Urban Bike, which comes in two editions – Brown and White.
Bamboo is the fastest growing plant on earth and hence very sustainable. Bamboo has a greater tensile strength than steel and is nearly 4 times as absorbent as carbon fibre which serves to provide a smoother ride on bad roads. Bamboo is also lightweight, durable and can withstand compression better than concrete.
Using bamboo also has a positive effect on the environment. Manufacturing it as compared to steel and aluminium does not require many resources, like electricity, coal, etc. The economic benefits of their manufacture are spread along every step of the process, right from sourcing the material to the sale of the final product.
How are Bambusa bikes made?
Each frame of the Bambusa bikes is entirely crafted from bamboo. The work on this project started back in 2014, where a team of young designers were assigned the task to design the first bamboo bike. Godrej invited designer Craig Calfee from California to design these special cycles through a special 14-day Workshop.
The company has devised a precise method to identify suitable bamboo stems and choose the appropriate ones to be used on the frames. The material is treated properly to protect them from insects and the environment. The bamboo bikes have been tested by a government lab as per ISO 4210 standards. The entire process is carried out in-house at Godrej’s factory located outside Pune, with the know-how developed by Craig Calfee.
Presently the Bambusa bike frames are constructed from a special bamboo species called Pseudo-Oxytenanthera Stocksii, which grows near the factory site. Since the material is natural, no two bamboo stalks are same, which means every cycle rolling out from the factory will be unique.
The 4000 Km Journey – An expedition for girl child education.
The bamboo bikes have travelled almost the length of India during the monsoons to prove its strength and sturdiness on the road under the toughest conditions. The ride was not only to prove the bamboo bike’s worth, it was also done to support a cause and raise awareness about the girl child education in India.
Two cycling enthusiasts, cycled from Kanyakumari to Khardung la, on these bamboo bikes. The total journey travelled was 4400 km in 65 days which embarked upon on 14th July 2016 and was completed on 21st Sept 2016.
How to Buy a Bambusa Bike in India?
If you would like to buy one, they are exclusively available via the crowd-funding platform www.Fueladream.com.
At the moment you can pre-order the Urban Commuter bamboo bike for just INR 39999/- . There are just 10 bikes, 5 in the Urban White design and 5 in the Urban Brown design available at this price. Once this offer is completed, the price will increase to INR 44999/-.
There is a total of just 25 Bamboo frame bikes available. For every bike that is booked a girl child gets educated for a year.