Saturday, July 18, 2009

Batavus Fryslân Vs. The Gazelle

Gazelle vs Fryslan

Gazelle vs Batavus Fryslan 2

Gazelle vs Batavus

Well, you know that I had to compare the Batavus Fryslân to the Gazelle Toer Populaire since I am kind of in love with it. When I put them next to each other I was surprised how much alike they looked.For anyone interested in the Gazelle but not interested in the price the two are very similar and the Fryslân is a perfectly adequate substitute. Certainly there are differences in appearance and performance. I still prefer the Gazelles looks. Just look at the curve of the handle bar, the shaped grips, and the white on the rear fender, the shape and proportion of the lights, the lugged fork, the handy dandy double stand thing, the large bell.

The thing about them is honestly the rod brakes at the moment. I could get the gazelle and have a few more gears added and coaster brakes put on, but I would still not be able to put my bobike mini on the front. Although my daughter is too big to be in that much longer, I do intend for her to have a sibling at some point and I love riding with the kid up front with me.

There is also a difference in the ride. The Gazelle is like flying by magic but the Batavus was just under that, a bit. I am of the impression that changing out the saddle would be an enormous improvement on the Batavus. Also the hubby thinks that the tires on the Batavus might have been more inflated than the Gazelle and that might be a big part of the difference.

I also am not sure about the fit. I loved the gazelle but I am not sure if it is too tall for me but I sort of felt like the Batavus was too small. The larger sized bikes I definitely have to hop off at lights but I felt like pedaling was much easier.

I really wish that Flying Pigeon LA had had the Batavus Breukelen in for me to test. Also I need to find out who sells Lepper Saddles I think I might need a comfotech.


  1. They do look very similar, so it's interesting to hear about their differences. I'm a big fan of the white rear fender and Brooks saddle, too.

  2. How did I miss this post! This is a great comparison, and you are so lucky to have a shop in your area where you can compare them side by side.

    The Gazelle Toer Populair was my big competitor against the Pashley when I was choosing, and like you, I did not want the rod brakes. With the rod brakes, it's not as easy as just putting in a coaster brake. The two systems are incompatible, so they would have to get ride of the whole rod brake system including the handlebars (which have special loops for the rods), rebuild the back wheel around a coasterbrake hub, and then replace the front brake as well. As you can guess, this costs lots and lots of money.

    The Batavus Fryslan is supposed to be a higher end alternative to the Old Dutch. As such, I really think it would have made a world of a difference in "image" if they put a Brooks saddle on it and used a more classic looking kickstand. Those design elements are relatively minor, but play a huge role in how the bicycle looks and feels.

  3. I know I am very lucky that Flying Pigeon is so amazing. That conversion certainly would have been over the top. The Fryslan is a bit nicer than the Old Dutch but I seriously disliked the SRAM shifters. Due to my lifestyle I have to sell any brooks saddle that comes on a bike since it doesn't look like brooks makes synthetic anymore. My Raleigh has a synthetic Brooks which is great.

  4. Hello!
    Did you ever find a Lepper comfotech saddle?

    I was just googling 'Lepper comfotech' as I am just about to sell one on and your article came up...

    Funnily enough, I am selling this lovely saddle as I have just removed it from my newly-purchased used Gazelle Tour Populaire as I already have a well-worn Brooks saddle of great sentimental value from my last bike to put on the Gazelle instead.

    Anyway, I would be happy to post to the US if you are still looking...

  5. Beverly, I am still looking for a comfotech actually.

  6. Let me know if you want me to send a photo or look into postage costs. Not looking to get a lot for it - just let me know what you'd be happy to pay...It's quite heavy, over 1kg, so it might be quite costly to send?

  7. Thanks Beverly, If you want to send me a photo you can send it to the email address over in the sidebar.

  8. In reading this - I wasn't sure if you CAN put a Bobike on the Batavus? I am ready to buy the Fryslan but want to make sure a Bobike fits.

  9. I think that you can attach the bobike mini, but you have to move the headlight. The rear bobikes would work just fine. You could call over to Flying Pigeon to confirm.

  10. What is your height? I am interested in a Gazelle Toer, but am afraid it is made for tall Dutch?

  11. Sagefemina, I am 5'4"ish. Certainly not tall.


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