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Taiwanese Gold and Silver National Awards of Excellence
by: David Díaz Blanco

The whole Taiwanese industry competes each year to reach the Gold and Silver National Awards of Excellence.  This year, nine bicycle products were chosen at the 9th Annual Awards of Excellence. Giant, Merida and Taiwan Hodaka were each awarded this honor. The awards shows how important the bicycle industry is to this Asian country and what and important source of richness and creativity it has.

These are the awarded products:

GIANT:MR4 Compact Folding Road Bike

All in one: Road bike, foldable, suspended.... A try to make the classic racing bicycle a little more friendly than usually. When folded, it just takes 30x60x70 cm (11.8x23.6x27.5 in), it can be assembled without tools, and its weight is just 10.5 kg (23.17 lbs). It mounts 24" wheels and features a four linkage rear suspension for very plush rides.

LAFREE (GIANT): Think Electric Folding Bike

"The Total mobility solution". That is how Lafree describes this product. Lightweight, foldable and electrical: maybe the solution for the daily traffic jam. If there were more bikes like this, maybe gasoline were cheaper.


Merida: Metropolis & Maglight 909

The metropolis is a bicycle that joins beauty and convenience. Its suspension frame, three strut "aero" wheels, hidden rear derailleur and single arm. The frame is made from magnesium; light, comfortable and safe. And all this can be turned into a very little package thanks to the symmetrical placement of both wheels when folded.

The Maglight 909’s frame is also made of magnesium alloy, weighing only 7.5 kg (16.5 lbs). But being a light road bike doesn’t mean that it is not comfortable. Its monocoque frame allows an outstanding shock absorption, even when it is also really stiff. And magnesium is too and environmentally friendly.

Taiwan Hodaka (Fastrak): RSC Lite & F4 S C

The RSC Lite is a road bike with a Scandium SC 7000 aluminum alloy frame and a impressive set of components, Dura Ace. The weight, just 7.6 kg (16.7 lbs), and it has the feeling when ridden as being one the best racing machines.

The F4 SC is also made of SC 7000 aluminum, and ads an advanced rear suspension system and a Rock Shox SID fork for increased performance  in all type of terrain without paying the toll of energy losing or increased weight.  Its Sram componentry follows the same philosophy.

Dahon: Presto

The Presto weights only 7.9 kg (17.4lbs) due to its radial butted Omega aluminum frame that features the I-Beam technology which allows it to be easily folded. The amazing weight is achieved by optimizing every little piece of this bicycle, from its carbon fiber seat post to the aluminum spoke nipples through kevlar brake cables or SRAM composite brake levers.

Falcon: Trigger Shift Lever & VS Hidden Rear Derailleur

The Trigger Shift lever features a liner wire pull mechanism that allows a lighter action and increased precision, while the gear display makes unnecessary looking the sprockets while riding. It is designed the way it is really ergonomic and can be mounted combined with any brake lever in the market.

The VS hidden rear derailleur features a direct cable routing and inverse parallelogram displacement that results in a light operation and an outstanding precision. By placing the spring out of the main body, the system becomes smaller and hides under the chainstay. Its  nice carcass protects and makes it good looking.

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