Batavus Intermezzo

We asked Tom a daily commuter and reader to ride the Intermezzo and blog about it for us. Below is his review.

How to get more people using bikes for transportation? Convenience. And what could be more convenient than a Dutch designed city style bike? I reached a stopping point in my work and decided to take the Intermezzo out for a spin. Let’s see: I’ll need to put on some shorts and a cycling jersey and change into my cycling shoes. Wait, this isn’t that kind of bike. It’s a come-as-you-are kind of bike. OK. So out to the garage, grab a Velcro band to keep my pants cuff out of the chain. Hey, look at that: full chain guard. So all I need to grab is a U-lock and my keys. What’s that? Built in lock? And the key is captive until you lock it? So all I need is my helmet (yes, it’s the law here).

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Down the big hill to the beach. Yikes! I hope the roller brakes hold. At the bottom of the hill I need to cross a busy boulevard and I’m in the wrong gear. Ah, no problem for the NuVinci. At the park I stop to show the Intermezzo to a few friends. Check that out one says; it’s even got a Batavus branded tire pump. Good thing too as the valve stems are like nothing I ever seen before. They are not presta and they’re not schrader. Maybe it’s some new European standard that has yet to make it big here. How about this: you can adjust the handle bar and headset angle without tools. There is simple cam release on the headset. Think “tilt-steering”. I’m not sure it was such a good idea to try this out while I was riding.

I took a ride along the sea wall as the sun was setting. The hub dynamo powered headlight came on automatically as the daylight faded. Interestingly it shut off as soon as I came to a stop. Isn’t there supposed to be some sort of capacitor that keeps it lit when I stop at an intersection?

Heading home meant going back up the big hill. Twist the shifter to drop down to the lowest range. Wow, more than a full turn to go from highest to lowest range. That’s nice when I want to fine tune it to find just the right ratio. When I need to down shift for a hill climb it’s kind of annoying. As for that low range: it worked just fine for the climb up the short ramp from the sea wall to the street. For climbing the big hill it just wasn’t low enough.

Summary: This bike is convenient; just jump on and go. This bike would be great as a rental in a relatively flat seaside town. Here in hilly Seattle I need lower gearing and more substantial brakes.

The Intermezzo is available from your local Independent Bike Dealer and the MSRP is $1699.00