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Exclusive First Look: Gary Fisher Simple City

by Commute by Bike

Here is an exclusive first look at the pictures, prices and final specs for the Gary Fisher Simple City.

Update: We’ve got more pictures with better color options.

Every since the first pictures showed up of a prototype from the 2007 Trek World, people have been clamoring for news on when this bike will appear and what all the specifics will be. Well here they are…

The bike will be released on April 1 and will most likely sell out quickly.

There will be four models available. A men and women’s (stepthrough) internal 3-speed and a men and women’s(stepthrough) internal 8-speed.

Price:
Simple City 3 (w/o basket): $549.99
Simply City 8 (with basket): $879.99

Specifications:

3-speed

  • Rear Derailleur: Shimano 3-speed internal hub
  • Shifters: Shimano Twist Shifter
  • Wheels: Shimano 3-speed hub with coaster brake
  • Brakeset: Coaster rear brake, alloy caliper front brake

8-speed

  • Rear Derailleur: Nexus 8-speed internal hub
  • Shifters: Shimano Alfine
  • Wheels: Nexus 8-speed hub with roller brake
  • Brakeset: Shimano roller rear brake, alloy caliper front brake

Both:

  • Sizes: MD(18.5), LG(21), XL(23.5). Stepthrough – SM(16.5), MD(18)
  • Frame: Fisher Gold Series Aluminum
  • Fork: Cromoly unicrown, lowrider mounts
  • Headset: Steel headset
  • Crankset: Bontrager Nebula 44T
  • Pedals: Alloy pedals with toe clips
  • Cassette: 18T Nexus cog
  • Tires: Satellite Nebula Aramid HD puncture resistant 700×32
  • Handlebars: Bontrager Satellite
  • Stem: Alloy road quill 80mm
  • Saddle: Bontrager Satellite Plus, gel padding
  • Seatpost: Bontrager Sport

Men’s 3-Speed (click to see bigger)
Gary Fisher Simple City

Women’s (stepthrough) 8-speed (click to see bigger)
Gary Fisher Simple City

So what do you think of the bike?

 
Burley nomad 229

57 Responses to “Exclusive First Look: Gary Fisher Simple City”

  1. JoelGuelph says:

    Wow! I’m happy to see a large American brand took an interest in ‘Dutch’ style bikes. $549 is a price point that I think a lot of people can justify.

    Check out the spring on the fork of the 8-speed. I assume that is to help steering with a loaded basket?

    This had better not be an April Fool’s joke!

  2. Bike Jax says:

    It’s beautiful looking bike. I’m sure you’re also correct when you say it will sell out fast. And being a big time Fisher fan, I would be in the front of the line. If the frame were steel. I personally hate the ride and feel of aluminum.

    Before everyone starts gathering the villagers for the monster hunt. Note that I didn’t say aluminum is bad. I said I don’t like it.

  3. Michael says:

    Price Point…. ugh.

  4. jorge says:

    from rough guesstimating with the provided image, that fork has way too much trail for the size/capacity of that rack…check out kogswell’s P/R and the painstaking work they”ve done to resurrect the french front-loading style bikes of yesteryear

  5. bikesgonewild says:

    …joelguelph…i think the spring is to help center the fork when you’re loading the basket, but it might help when riding…

    …micheal, you can’t seriously be complaining about a price point of $550.00 on the men’s bike can you ?…i AM a friend of gary’s & i AM a former employee (almost 20 years ago) but DAMN, that looks like a very nice bike & fisher bikes have a great reputation for their handling…
    …haven’t had the opportunity to ride one, but i guarantee $550.00 would be money well spent…

  6. dwainedibbly says:

    Front fenders are too short in back and the basket should be an option on the 3-speed versions . I’m sure their owners will get a lot of enjoyment from these.

  7. Mike Myers says:

    Aw, now I’m disappointed. I was hoping the production model 8 speed would look just like the Trek World prototype. I don’t like the color. I also don’t know if the 18.5 will fit me, as I’m 5’7″.

    A Gary Fisher rep told me the basket will be available separately, so that’s something.

  8. cafn8 says:

    That is a pretty good deal. A while back I was shopping for single speed commuters and had my heart set on a nice Fisher Triton, ’til, ironically, my car needed new tires and blew that budget. This seems to maybe have lower end specs, but at $200 less and with full fenders and 3 speeds it’s quite competitive with what’s out there from other manufacturers. I have to admit, though, I’m a bit of a fish head, having hung on to my old steel Hoo Koo E Koo for years.

    BTW, one thing that my LBS told me about Gary Fisher bikes is that we most likely will never see them with drop bars or anything that identifies them as “road bikes” as that may cause competition with big daddy Trek. I guess it makes sense when you look at their line. The only bike that I’m aware of that doesn’t have riser bars is the Triton with its bull horns (in previous years it had moustache bars.)

  9. Charlie D. says:

    If it had a rack on the back, it would be perfect.

  10. JoelGuelph says:

    No rear rack does seem like an odd omission. Especially given the aesthetics of the two bikes. I would want my rack to match.

    I was thinking about the spring on the fork. I bet it helps prevent wheel flop when the bike is on the dual kickstand and has a loaded basket.

  11. joel says:

    Bike Jax hit it for me – if it were steel I’d be upgrading and using my current ’74 speedster 3 speed as a back up. Since it’s alu I’ll be waiting a bit.

  12. Mike Myers says:

    Regarding a rear rack—if the bike color is black(it looks like it), getting a rack to match would be easy. But if you’re trying to get one to match the white bike, that’s tough.

    The basketed bike in the pics is white but the basket is mint green. I wonder if the basket on the black bike is black or if it will contrast as well.

    The price on the 8 speed is more than the Gary Fisher rep quoted me. I was told $799. The new price is getting pretty close to Surly Long Haul Trucker territory.

  13. Ghost Rider says:

    I liked the prototype a whole lot better. Bummer. Considering the tremendous buzz about those prototypes and the excitement they generated, it seems weird (at best) that GF chose to make the production models different.

    I think a similarly-spec’ed Euro-style city bike can be had from a few other manufacturers at similar price points (even less if you include the Schwinn Coffee Cruiser). Biria makes similar bikes that are competitively priced, and come in 3, 7 and 8 speed flavors in a few frame/carrying configurations.

  14. arleigh says:

    fork trail- can you honestly say from a photo that has no angles described ( and might be skewed from resizing) what a fork trail/ rake is?

    Aluminum- I would guess that if this series takes off they will have a steel model in the future. This is the company that has the steel ferrous and lemond has the poprad.

    Price- this is advertised msrp, most shops sell at the second tier which might be where that $799 came from

    Racks- rear racks are cheap to come by and if it came with it the bike would be $50-75 bucks more. And your favorite one from your local shop.

  15. Anonymous says:

    IM finding something Unfair- I’ll have to ride the step-through, just because of my short inseam :(

  16. Tim says:

    I like the internal hubs, I’m a big fan. (Just don’t call them derailleurs.)
    It’s nice to see a commuter focused bike from GF. I’d rather have the basket or a rack in the rear. The front mount with step-through looks a little odd to me.

  17. Logan says:

    WTF?
    1. You show prototypes of a bike.
    2. People get super excited and the pics go viral.
    3. You change everything about the bike except the rack.
    Good thinking GF. Half of the excitement about the bike was the fact that it was steel. What a bummer.

  18. Quinn says:

    Al vs.Steel – you guys expected something other then Z900 from trek/Fisher??

  19. JoelGuelph says:

    They still make the 520 out of Cromoly, don’t they? Therefore they should have tubing.

  20. JoelGuelph says:

    Or at least a supplier/source.

  21. rick says:

    Steel vs. Aluminum? We have to consider who the target market is for these bikes. Is it new riders we want to get out of their cars and onto bikes? Is it die hard cyclists that already own a quiver of bicycles? Try selling a steel framed bike that retails between $549 and $879 to a newbie. Steel is considered old fashioned and low tech. They are not going to buy it when the bike is surrounded by aluminum bikes sharing the same floor space. It’s the established cyclist that knows the difference between steel and aluminum framed bicycles and how they feel. I would hate to be a GF/Trek/Giant/Specialized etc in this environment because they can never seem to please the choir.

  22. annefi says:

    Why the heck did they change the color schemes? I’ve been really excited about buying the 8-speed stepthrough ever since I saw the prototpye photos from the 2007 show but now that I see the final color, I’m not so sure. I’m really disappointed about the color change.

    I think the prototype men’s bike looked much more attractive, too. And I thought the front basket on the men’s bike was a very useful feature for a bike intended for utilitarian purposes around town.

    What were they thinking?!!!

  23. annefi says:

    My mistake — both the men’s and women’s 8-speeds come with the basket.

  24. Logan says:

    The bike that got the response was steel, so clearly there is a market for it. And further, newbies don’t buy $850 commuters.

  25. Barry says:

    Was the prototype steel? I can’t find a link saying that. I had kind of assumed it was aluminum, being a Fisher. My biggest disappointment is the price of the three speed. From $400 to $549 is a big jump. I would have jumped at 3 speed for around $400,

  26. dwainedibbly says:

    Barry: I bet the weakening of the dollar had a LOT to do with that jump.

  27. rick says:

    Logan are you referring to the newbies in your neighborhood or the newbies that normally shop on Rodeo Drive in Beverly Hills? Commutting by bike has absolutely nothing to do with income level or disposable income. The rich can also be environmentally conscious and have the very same motives for wanting to ride a bicycle as the financially challenged.

    Peoples perception is very real though. Walk into any bike shop these days. The showroom floor is full of double/triple butted, hydro formed blah blah blah light weight aluminum framed bicycles. Who does a steel framed bicycle appeal to? Who is the target market for a company like Gary Fisher? It is the mass market. That’s why they will sell out quickly.

    The prototype was exactly that a prototype.

  28. Mike Myers says:

    I always figured the SC would be aluminum. That didn’t bother me, as I wouldn’t ride a bike like that very far. What bugs me is the appearance changes. I don’t want a black bike or a white bike. The cream color of the prototype was much better looking. Oh well, guess I’ll have to find another bike to lust over.

  29. Ghost Rider says:

    Rick, I’m having a hard time with your logic about frame materials…while it is true that most of the bikes in a shop these days are swoopy, lightweight aluminum, I find it difficult to believe that a so-called “newbie” would know, or care, enough about the frame’s material to make an informed choice of one material over another.

    I think someone, especially a person new to utility cycling, would be more interested in function, accessories and comfort than what the frame is made of. Of course, the salesman will blurt out something about the frame material as a selling point!

    And, for the record, there was no mention of the prototype’s frame material in the early views. However, the photos suggest that the prototype was aluminum, just like the production models. Crooked Cog’s very own Arleigh has a good picture of the prototype here: http://arsbars.com/?p=203

    The downtube and the toptube/headtube junction are just too chunky to be steel!

  30. bikesgonewild says:

    …rick…you make some excellent points…sounds like you’ve “been there, done that”…

    …speaking of newbies, the average person, through whatever source they get their info, be it print or electronic media, talking w/ friends, whatever, knows 1 basic fact…aluminum is lighter than steel…no qualifiers, just ‘aluminum is lighter than steel’…ergo, an aluminum bike makes sense because lighter means ‘easier’ whether that means riding or lifting or carrying it…

    …to be honest, aluminum bikes pretty much all used to ride harsh…ask the guy who paid big bucks for a high-end full-zoot alloy road bike 25 years ago…handled great, went where you pointed it & beat you to death on any long ride…a lot of inroads have been made in the technology over the years & some of the new alloys offer a much greater range of resilience…

    …as far as some of the cost concerns…well, you get what you pay for & while bike Z might have one more geegaw bike X doesn’t, that should not be your qualifier…it’s a bike, you’re gonna ride it, whether it’s for commuting, cruising or store runs, so you want to buy the one that comfortably handles best & if you have to buy your own geegaw, so be it…i’ll reiterate, fisher bikes handle well, period…

    …i do fully agree on the color of the womans bike…a nice off-white to cream would have been much classier…little too appliance-y bland there, gary…did you let some trek market research-y type talk you into that one ?…

    …anyway, sensible bike economics are not always defined by the lowest price point to the discriminating cyclist…

  31. Shanyn says:

    Keep the bike- I’m afraid that I am underwhelmed at the look of the production version of this bike, especially as spec’d out. I’ll keep my Breezer Uptown 8- cost a bit more than the SC8, but came with an dynohub, front and rear lights, rack , the Red Band Shimano 8 internal hub and an integrated lock. But where can I get that rack?

  32. latortilla says:

    still seems a bit expensive. when i looked into getting back into riding around town, i had a budget of around $300 – i worry once you get over the $500 range, you’ve priced a lot of people out. that’s more than 4 wks of groceries, if you spend about $100 a wk on groceries!

  33. rick says:

    I live in the core of our city. My wife and I gave up our car over four years ago. It costs $60 a month to park a car in the underground parking lot of our building. Savings = $2880. It was a POS Ford Tempo and insurance was $90 a month. Savings = $4320. Gas is around $4.50 a gallon in Canada right now. Money spent on gas for the last four years $0.00 Savings = $$$$. Money spent on maintenance for the last four years $0.00. Savings = $$$$.

    Because we don’t drive a car we can afford to eat organic food and fuel our bodies instead. Groceries for my wife and I per month $500 – $600. My god how can a bicycle that cost under $1000 be considered expensive these days!!! HOW MUCH DOES IT COST TO BUY AND MAINTAIN THE LEAST EXPENSIVE CAR IN THE U.S RIGHT NOW?

  34. annefi says:

    As great looking as that rack on the SC8 is, I’m wondering about its practicality.

    I just brought home a week’s worth of groceries (for one person). Everything fit in two Ortleib panniers — with the tops rolled down on both — and a messenger bag. When I got home and carried the panniers into the house I was struck by how heavy they were together. I can’t imagine carrying that load in a front basket. It would be very challenging to control the steering. The hokey-looking spring on the 8-speed stepthrough is most likely intended to help adjust for that problem. It seems like a design flaw to me.

    I agree with Shanyn that the Breezer Uptown-8, with its long rear rack and all its handy built-ins, seems more practical. I just wish Joe’s stepthrough came in more girly color schemes.

  35. Quinn says:

    I agree with annefi, I max out an Axiom Odyssee rack to get 1 week of groceries (1 person), that makes me really question the usefulness of a portuer rack/basket.

  36. SteveG says:

    An absolutely beautiful bike that looks like it’d be dreamy to ride. But I wouldn’t dare leave it locked up anywhere.

  37. Dwainedibbly says:

    If you’re really worried about carrying a lot of weight, something like the Kona Ute might be a lot more practical.

  38. Mike Myers says:

    I’ve been emailing customer service at Fisher. I told the tech that I saw the Simple City on CbB and that I was unhappy with the color choices. If you’re unhappy it seems like they’re open to suggestions. The email address for Fisher is consumer_help@fisherbike.com . Marv, the tech who emailed me, said he forwarded my email to higher ups. Maybe if they get enough emails they’ll figure out that black and white weren’t the best choice.

  39. Logan says:

    Rick – I sell bikes for a living to a pretty wealthy demographic. Customers coming in for their first commuter bike don’t buy $850 commuters, even if they pull up in a Maserati. Of course there are exceptions, about 3 a year.

  40. rick says:

    In our store entry level 700c wheeled hybrid/commuter/flat bar road bikes start at $750-900. We do sell loads of them to new cyclists.

  41. rick says:

    Here is some interesting data on the way Canadians spend their money on bikes and the way our spending compares to our southern neighbors in the U.S.

    http://www.btac.org/files/2006_Data_Capture-Media.pdf

  42. Mike Myers says:

    I don’t think the SC is meant to perform the same job as a Kogswell P/R. The front basket was designed to handle two bags of groceries. It’s an errand bike. I’m sure that with a rear rack and some grocery panniers one could get a decent amount of shopping done.

    But yeah, if you want to carry a lot of stuff, a Kona UTE or an Xtracycle would be much much better.

  43. SCRider says:

    Fisher has updated their website with specs and pics of the SC.

    http://www.fisherbikes.com/

    I ordered one from my LBS for my wife last weekend.

  44. Mike Myers says:

    And now it’s over for me. The SC8 men’s version is, I believe, too tall for me. Damn. Others have mentioned the trail. Having looked at the geometry—-why would Fisher design a bike with a big front basket but make such high trail? The trail is 78mm or so—that bike is going to handle pretty squirrely with any sort of front load. It’s not even close to having the right geometry. BUT—-it’s going to sell a ton of units and make lots of people happy, because it’s beautiful and has a really cool basket.

    So what’s on my horizon? I guess I’ll have to pony up the bucks for a Kogswell. Does anyone think a Kogswell P/R with really a really wide(48cm) Nitto Noodle bar and a basket would be a weird setup? If I’m going to spend the $$ on a P/R, it has to do double duty as a commuter or even a tourer. I’ve never seen a front load-centric bike with drop bars.

  45. Barry says:

    So according to Fisher’s website, the 3 speed triangle framed is black, while the 8speed is the custard? Why can’t we have it either way? And if I wanted the 8 speed, I wouldn’t want the basket.

    Why do so many manufacturers do this? Wouldn’t more options mean more sales?

  46. jt says:

    Amazed at the amount of responses this bike has gotten here. I agree….the price point is still high. $550 is alot of money for a great deal of people. It is a significant amount. If the bike gets stolen you are out alot of money.

    I think that companies should be able to come out with a basic, outfitted commuter bike for under $300.(racks, chainguard, fender….which makes me think….why is it some expensive option to have a chainguard and fenders? seems like all the bikes years ago simply came standard with them) The higher priced models could have more gears, better componentry, whatever, but for the lower priced ones…create a single speed bike with a coaster brake. (or maybe a simple three speed) Keep it simple and that will keep costs down. Seems like if we want to promote and encourage commuting by bike and urban cycling, than there needs to be solid, functionable bikes for very reasonable prices. I bought an SE draft for $250 and I thought it was fairly priced and great for the money. (fenders and guard not included however). Not the ideal commuter bike, but in a flat environment works very well.

    Cool bike GF…..wonder if the GF designers have seen the utility bikes they have in Colombia…..they have a very sturdy rack on the front and back. The front one folds down in a way that turns it into a stand for the whole bike. Hard to describe, but I saw these bikes all over and the design seemed very well thought out. The rack systems on them are incredible for carrying things….wider and more sturdy than what we generally see here.

  47. hank says:

    I wrote to Marv at Fisher as well. I asked about the color change on the stepthrough 8spd and if it was possible to swap colors with the 3spd. I also asked why no water bottle holders on the step thru and why steel handlebars. His response was the bikes are sold “as-is” and a water bottle “would interfere with the step-through design”. I wanted to mention that the Trek step-throughs (same parent company) have water bottle braze-ons (just a bit higher than diamond frames) and what about the bars? But it was clear he didn’t care. I asked about my desires for changes on the new Masi Souville mixte and the Masi-Guy responded that he would work the issues inside Masi. Different companies, different responses.

  48. dan-O says:

    bought one of these for my wife for her 40th bday. hope it arrives before april 14th. any word on when they will arrive? i heard the west coast trek warehouse sold out of pre-orders and i had to get my bike shop guy use the east coast supplier. this bike looks great and it’s a bit pricey. someone’s got to keep those china factories going…

  49. annefi says:

    After comparing specs between the Breezer Uptown8 and the Simple City again and again, and test riding the Uptown 8 twice (long rides), I went back today and bought the Uptown. Sorry Gary!

    It won’t come in for a month because they sold out of my size of the U-frame in December and the next shipment isn’t coming in until mid-April. It feels weird to spend nearly $1000 and bring nothing home with me, but it’s worth waiting for. I’m having them upgrade the tubes to extra thick thorn-proof ones and they’re putting a snap-in/out basket on the front, which I was inspired to add because of the basket on the SC.

    It turns out the guy who owns the bike shop — a long-time friend of Joe Breeze — lives only a mile from my house and when the bike comes in he’s going to deliver it to my door. I know I’ll be as happy as a kid with my new bike.

    If I knew Shanyn’s info I’d put her name down on my warranty registration so she could get free stuff from Joe Breeze for recommending their bike.

  50. Tomas says:

    Can anyone explain why they don’t use track dropouts for the Nexus-equipped rear wheel? Thanks!

  51. Wayne says:

    I have the 8 speed for three weeks and 250 miles now. The ride is good for aluminum, look at the top tube shape, ovel with the wide part horizontal. It absorbes a lot of vertical vibration yet provides reasonable side to side stiffness.

    The basket is in storage and there is now a rear rack. It holds the rain gear for to and from work.

    The gearing is a little high putting 7 an 8 out or reach most of the time and spaces the rest out farther than they need to be. And the brakes are a little weak.

    These can be fixed.

  52. Steven Bailey says:

    I bought this bike in August(08) and I LOVE IT! I have owned 9 other bikes and at times road over 8000 miles/year. Since I was 40 years old (I am now 49) I have only been able to utility bike (10 miles or less round trip) due to repeatedly hurting my right shoulder. I road the Breezers, the Amsterdam, some steel bikes,and I seriously modified 3 of my mountain bikes and nothing helped. I have the 8 speed Simple City and it is the most comfortable bike I’ve ever cruised around on. I did have the big front rack removed and I traded it for a nice rear rack when I bought it. I have the Brooks vintage grips. I can now cruise around up to 20 miles with no numb right hand or sore shoulder. I would agree that the top two gears have no use for me they are just too high.

  53. Derek says:

    Thomas,
    Horizontal or semi-horizontal dropouts are more appropriate than trackends for this bike since it is assumed owners will keep the fenders on the bike all the time. It’s a PIA to remove the wheel to fix a flat with trackends and fenders.

  54. Bike Seeker says:

    Is it possible to put a rear rack on the Simple City 3? Does it have braze-ons to do so? (Not that I know what braze-ons are, I’m new to all of this and just want to get a bike.) Did e-mail the Fisher customer service several days ago, but no response.

  55. Scott says:

    Looking for the front rack for this bike. I got a”3″, so it was an optional extra. Need a deal so hope you have one just collecting dust. I’ll figure out contact info somehow by keeping an eye for a response, Thanks!

  56. Samantha says:

    Hopefully this thread is still active…

    I am interested in this bike, and I’m moving to Portland. For that reason, I’m a little concerned about the coaster brakes on the 3-speed as far as stopping power. But, I don’t want to waste my money on an 8-speed if I’m not going to use all the different gears. Suggestions?

  57. Jake says:

    I recently bought the 3-speed, and I love it. The coaster brakes are actually really nice, even though I also had my doubts. It’s my favorite bike I have owned to date :)

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