Montante Cicli mixes vintage 1920s features with state-of-the-art technology to create stylish urban bicycles
Cycling has never been so relevant to our leisure, health and environmental concerns, especially in urban settings, which makes this the perfect moment for Italian luxury bicycle makers Montante Cicli. Its limited-edition classics fuse the elegance of 1920s and 1930s styling with the latest technology for a ride as comfortable as it is good-looking.
Montante Cicli’s signature heritage models use retro brake rods and dynamo lights to recall an elegant, vintage era, but the company also produces a dynamic range of mountain, racing and endurance bikes. “We only produce around 50 of each line, it’s very specialist,” explains the firm’s director Antonella Nigro. “In Italy, we still have a lot of artisans who we trust to make our bicycles to the highest standards.”
Montante Cicli bicycles are handmade in Italy, from the frames – individually inscribed with each owner’s personalized number – to the hand-stitched leather handle grips. “Every season, we update colours and accessories,” says Antonella. “We keep a close eye on changing fashion, but we also apply hi-tech engineering to the design.”
The Montante Cicli story begins in Sicily in the 1920s, when a teenage Calogero Montante developed a passion for cycling, inspired by the Giro d’Italia. His talent for engineering beautiful, durable bicycles made an instant success of the company. Montante’s racing heritage has made it the ideal collaborative partner for, among others, Maserati, for whom it has produced limited editions based on classic Maserati models. “We’re also creating a limited-edition bike for the Rolls-Royce Enthusiasts’ Club celebration of the Flying Lady’s 110th birthday,” says Antonella. “It speaks to our mutual histories of luxury, quality and excellence.”
Montante Cicli only sells directly to its customers in its two Italian shops, through pop-ups such as one held in Selfridges in London, and via its website. “Choosing a bicycle from the website is only the first step for a new customer,” says Antonella. “Then we get to know them, take their measurements and discuss exactly what they want. We adjust what is available on the site to their taste.”
The company is set to launch a new family-friendly diffusion line to meet increased demand. Meanwhile, its heritage bicycles and racing classics ensure that Montante Cicli is riding high on the great cycling revival.