Two wheels are better than four

With a racing pedigree spanning 60 years, Cooper cars know a thing or two about engines - they pioneered rear-engined racing in F1, won two championships, and then became a household name from their rally collaborations with Mini. So why have they launched a bike division?

"We've always had a passion for bicycles and have been thinking about diversifying the business for a while," explains boss Mike Cooper. "We wanted to turn our engineering know-how to making bicycles that offer the best possible components for the best possible price.”

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And, to be fair, the results look rather nice. The bikes are aimed at the urban bike market and as you'd expect, the styling is suitably classic and stripped-down. The first model, the T100, will come in two versions, named “Monza” (pictured) and “Sebring” after the circuits which saw the Company’s F1 Championship victory in 1959 and will be available from January. A second model, the T200, comes in March.

From £595 www.cooperbikes.com