A cycle truck is a cargo bike with a standard-sized rear wheel, a smaller front wheel, and a cargo platform mounted to the frame above the front wheel. The smaller front wheel makes room for the platform, and the frame-mounted platform minimizes the cargo’s effect on the bike’s handling.
Cycle trucks have been around for many decades (here’s a rusted out Roadmater Cycle Truck from the 1930s-40s and a beautifully-restored 1964 Schwinn Cycle Truck). Traditionally they were used as delivery bikes, as well as for moving around heavy objects on factory floors and movie sets. In recent years they’ve gained in popularity as grocery getters and commuters.
This is by no means an exhaustive list, but the following cycle trucks are a good representation of the current offerings at three price points and quality levels.
Worksman Low Gravity – Worksman manufactures industrial-grade cycle trucks at their factory in New York. Their “Low Gravity” cycle trucks are super heavy-duty (and heavy) and start at around $500.
Civia Halsted – For 2011, Civia is introducing a cycle truck called the Halsted. Component details are sketchy at this point, but a recent post on their blog shows a good looking truck of traditional proportions, priced at $1000. The Halsted will be available in March 2011.
A.N.T. Basket Bike – Mike Flanigan at A.N.T. builds beautiful, handmade cycle trucks (aka “Basket Bikes”) specifically patterned after postal delivery bikes from the 1940s. Each A.N.T. Basket Bike is handmade-to-order with prices starting at $2150.