the iconic copenhagen bike

THE CLASSIC PRIZE 2010/11

Jury’s words:
Factory: Christiania Bikes Aps
Design: Lars Engstrøm & users, family, staff members, friends

The Classic Prize 2010/11 goes to Christiania Bikes.
It has been present in Danish streets and lanes for more than 25 years and has earned its well deserved icon status.The design is simple and robust and has proven  its durability through many years of daily transport  of shopping bags and children. The bicycle is a beautiful example of design that springs from a simple, good idea that stays viable due to function  and charm. It has inspired other manufacturers’ and designers’ development and innovation efforts and can practically be seen as the ancestress of  new generations of bicycles.

Christiania Bikes is still manufactured in Denmark, but it also makes an appearance in cities around Europe, where it helps to boost the tradition for cycling and to highlight a convenient, green and innovative mode of transpotation. There is, therefore, no doubt that Christiania Bikes has deserved the Classic Prize 2010/11.

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Press Release Bornholm, 7 October 2010.


The Classic Design Prize 2010/11 goes to Christiania Bikes
The jury behind the Danish Design Prize has awarded the Classic Design Prize for 2010/2011 to the famous tricycle Christiania Bikes tricycle. The prize is given to an outstanding Danish product that has remained almost unchanged for at least 25 years.

Christiania Bikes is now going to be part of the league of former prize winners such as Lego, B&O, Toms, Carlsberg, Royal Copenhagen, Irma, Louis Poulsen, Stelton etc. Having in mind Christiania as a car free area, the idea to develop a handy family transport bike for daily use emerged many years ago. The tricycle in the modern version took shape already in 1984, when it was secretly created in Christiania as a birthday present for Annie, – she wished a racer bike but was rather surprised to see an enormous present that had been stored in the garden, wrapped in a Irma´s birthday table cloth which had been tied up with a red string.

In 1990 the production moved to Bornholm, with the aim to focus determinedly on the production of the tricycle and to offer an alternative to the traffic congestion in Copenhagen. “It is as if being in the middle of a fairy-tale, what no one believed in is growing very big, from the establishment of a bicycle factory in a former farm outside Klemensker to receiving the Classic Design Prize for our product… – honestly speaking, we have almost never experienced anything like this before.”

The tricycle has, from its beginning, and throughout all its years, been improved and developed with a single minded focus on utility value and functionality. Although it has never been the aim of Christiania Bikes’s creators to make it look ‘fancy’, they have created a design icon that is today awarded with a prestigious prize.

Christiania Bikes APS is a productive activity that acts in accordance with everyday market conditions and that works to maintain its originality and soul.  The design is made to be long lasting and the overall quality excellent. For some children all over the world, Christiania Bikes have become a second home.

Christiania, free-town and a car free zone, has been a determinant factor for the creation of  Christiania Bikes. The Bornholm’s production unit is currently employing 15  workers, who, together with friends, negotiators, family, users and  enthusiasts have created today’s Christiania Bikes.

Christiania Bikes is today widely exported in Europe but also to other markets such as  Japan and Australia. It is also now on its way to the USA.

The Classic Design Prize is presented to Christiania Bikes by His Royal Highness the Crown Prince Frederik at a Prize presentation  today at the Danish Design Center.