Schwinn Saga

In the late 1960s, the Varsity and Continental pioneered the use of auxiliary brake levers, which allowed the rider to rest hands on the straight, horizontal center section of the ram’s horn handlebars, yet still have braking control. To further improve control from this more-erect riding position, the levers used to move the derailleurs were moved from the traditional position on the “down tube” to the top of the headset, on a ring which would turn with the handlebar stem. This feature, attractive to older riders, soon found its way to other Schwinn models, especially those intended for senior citizens.

However, due to heavy competition in the 1990s, schwinn bicycles’s sales dropped and the company was forced to declare bankruptcy. However, many were left wondering if Schwinn bikes are still worth the money after the company was sold off to Pacific Cycle in 2001. VIP models include carbon composite, ultra-light frames with stylized forks; SRAM, Vision, Bosch, and Fizik components; LCD display screens; internal wiring cable system. By the end of the decade, Schwinn managed to hit more than 1 million bicycles per year. Although the market was becoming hostile to investors, Schwinn was flourishing thanks to its motorcycle division. In fact, the company was doing so great that in 1928 it was placed third after Harley-Davidson and Indian.


That stake was reduced to 18 percent when China Bicycle sold shares on the Shanghai exchange this year. Schwinn’s sales peaked at $212.5 million in 1988, according to records filed in the bankruptcy case. Although lack of cash precipitated the bankruptcy, the company was also suffering from lack of profits, with a $10 million loss projected for 1992. Schwinn owns a 30 percent stake of Cycle Composites, which would not be included in the proposed deal. We’d like to increase our share of the market but we have to be realistic. Our strategy is to get the middle-bracket customer to upgrade his bike and buy a Schwinn.

Instead, Schwinn was overwhelmed by demands from creditors that it be sold as quickly as possible. With Schwinn estimating a loss of $19.4 million on sales of $143.6 million in 1992, sale proponents contended that if the company’s business deteriorated further over the next few months, then Schwinn would attract disappointing bids. According to the offering documents, a 1990 component shortage in Asia left Schwinn unable to fill many bicycle dealers’ orders. With the fitness craze fading, Schwinn lost $2.9 million on sales of $189 million that year. The plant was never able to produce more than one-third of its potential capacity and was finally closed in 1991, at much expense.

As a fresh-off-the-boat arrival, Ignaz probably should have been a bit intimidated by this hectic scene, but if he was, he sure didn’t show any signs of it. Schwinn Signature bikes are available only at independent bike shops, we invite you to see for yourself, the best of Schwinn. The Sting-Ray sales boom of the 1960s accelerated in 1970, with United States bicycle sales doubling over a period of two years. In the December 1963 Schwinn Reporter, Schwinn announced the arrival of the Deluxe Sting-Ray. This model included Fenders, white-wall tires, and a padded Solo polo seat.

The slightly-curved handlebar isn’t as dramatic as some super-wide cruiser bars, but still has enough room to attach a bell or basket. The bike is also equipped with shiny chrome fenders to keep the puddles from splashing up onto your sandals. Take a friend with you and cruise in style on Schwinn’s aluminum Tango Tandem.

Models for Mountain Bikes in the catalog include 5 models with their subsequent customizations and off-shots. Those 5 models are the Mesa, Timber, the Moab, the Protocol, the Traxion, and the Bonafide. All have an aluminum frame design, the difference between one and another lies in its suspension system, wheel size, geometry, and color. The company was founded in 1895 in the city of Chicago by German-born mechanical engineer Ignaz Schwinn. For most of the 20th century, it was the dominant manufacturer of bikes in America. Over time, Schwinn transformed into a representation of the American culture; as wholesome as the 4th of July and apple pie.

Its extensive line of road and mountain e-bikes attract riders who want to pedal the old-fashioned way, but get a boost when the going gets tough, like up hills, and the small, built-in motor kicks in. “We’ve gotten butts back on bikes and want to keep doing that,” said Nando Zucchi, president of Pacific Cycle, a division of Montreal-based Dorel Industries, which owns Schwinn and several other bicycle brands. Dorel’s second-quarter revenues were up 8.1% from the same period a year ago, to $724 million from $670 million. Yet, because virtually every factory in China — where Schwinn’s products and the lion’s share of all bikes and parts are made these days — had been idled for nearly six weeks beginning in February due to the pandemic, the pipeline dried up. So like graduations, weddings and vacations, Schwinn’s big birthday bash had to be put on hold.

Therefore, with the release of a single photograph, the Corvette was introduced. The picture showed company executives standing behind their new product, that would remain in production for 10 years. 1955 was the first year in which the Corvette appeared in the Schwinn catalog; it was Schwinn’s top listing in their “middleweight” category.

The Chicago factory was basically producing the bicycle equivalent of the Mustangs and T-Birds coming out of Detroit, and the biggest challenge was just keeping up with demand. Right from the beginning, Schwinn and Arnold set the goal of producing a bicycle of undeniably superior design; something that would separate itself from the sea of cheap ramshackle models flooding the market. The company branded its product the “World” bicycle, and loaded its early catalogs with flowery language of international conquest. From your first ride without training wheels to a summer cruise at the beach with your friends, the thrill of riding a bike never gets old. Many of our fondest memories are tied to experiences we’ve had on bikes, rooted in unbridled joy and carefree fun. Even if you haven’t hopped on a bike in a while, it won’t take long for the smiles and laughs to come back.