The once legendary Favorit bicycle brand, which used to be exported from Czechoslovakia all over the world, is launching a new racing model, the daily Hospodářské noviny reported on Friday. The highest quality models will be priced of 250,000 crowns.
The history of Favorit, a Czechoslovak brand specialising in road bikes, dates back to 1922. Between the 1950s and 1980s, Favorit bikes were frequently competing at world Championships, Olympic Games as well as at the domestic bike race, the Závod Míru.
The company went bankrupt 15 years ago, but in 2011 it was acquired by Slovak engineer and businessman Richard Galovič, who invested millions of crowns into development and promotion of new models, targeting mainly urban customers who use their bikes on a daily basis.
In 2015, Favorit launched three basic models, called Aviator, Bigboss and Diamante. All of them are belt-driven, hand built and individually customized in the Czech Republic and Slovakia, with a choice of either carbon or steel frames. The elegant and minimalist design by Petr Novague won the Red Dot Design Award for 2015.
Last year, Favorit posted a profit of 12 million crowns and, as Mr Galovič told Hospodářské noviny he hopes that it will be five times higher this year.
The newly introduced carbon racing model with a tailor-made frame is targeted at amateur and semi-professional riders. According to Mr Galovič, the company doesn’t have sufficient capacity yet to provide bicycles for the elite racing teams. The company will start taking orders on March 31.
The highest quality model, the F1 Super Special, will cost 240,000 crowns. The price of the F1 Special starts at 108,000 and the basic line F1 Sport can be purchased for 65,000 crowns. Deliveries take between two to three months, but in the future the company would like to cut that to 30 days.
As of April, Favorit is moving production from Jeseník to the reconstructed manufacture in Rokycany, where Favorit bikes have been produced since 1922. The company currently employs 25 full-time employees and 15 seasonal workers.
Favorit bikes have so far only been sold in the Czech Republic and Slovakia, exclusively through individual orders placed on the company website. The company has a showroom in Prague’s Vinohrady district and plans to open a new store in Bratislava this year.