The last letter of a Brompton configuration defines your fender/rack setup, or a lack there of. You can choose no fenders, fenders, or to have fenders and a rack. Each option has it’s pros and cons, so let’s dive right into it!
E Version: The E version is popular among those who like to shave weight, and like the no fender look. Typically those who use the Brompton mainly for recreation will go this route. Since you have no fenders, you’ll have nothing to prevent getting sprayed from puddles or wet roads, so it’s best to use the E version in fair weather conditions. The E version also gives a slight lean when folded, since you don’t have the 3rd mudguard wheel to stabilize the folded bike. We typically don’t keep many E versions in stock, mainly because we’re all about functionality, but we can of course remove fenders from a Brompton upon request. If you’re mainly riding the bike under the sun, or want a sporty lightweight ride, the E version is perfect for those scenarios!
L Version: The most popular Brompton choice. Fenders, or mudguards as they’d say across the pond, are essential for commuting! The Brompton front fender has a large front flap, which offers great protection from the wet roads spraying up into your bike or your face, and the rear keeps your back dry. The fenders also support the balance of the folded bike. This is because there is a small roller wheel on the L version fender that works with the two roller wheels on the frame to stabilize the bike. They just make a lot of sense for the bike overall, and keep form with the bike’s classic look. For the most functionality, we recommend the L version.
R Version: This Brompton type serves a few purposes with the rear rack. While most cyclists on traditional bikes have a rear rack to be able to carry cargo on their bike, the Brompton rack also serves the purpose of providing a smooth stable roll while the bike is folded. This is typically why most people get the rear rack, so they can roll the bike while folded on 4 roller wheels rather than 3. The rack is certainly able to carry cargo with the use of the included bungee cords, or with the use of Brompton’s Rack Bag, and can hold up to 22 lbs. The R version is a great choice for those using the Brompton for touring, or those multi-modal commutes where rolling the folded Brompton is ideal!
The Ultimate Brompton Buyers Guide by NYCeWheels Links: