A design worthy of being the Stratus reciprocal, the V-Rex has cult and classic status, and its own identity. The stretched short wheel base design gets the ride right where it should be... double sweet like a CLASSIC should be. Tour, commute, cruise, race... a lot.
Strengths: Fast. Quick. Stable. Comfortable. Smooth shifting. Powerful brakes. Good gearing for speed and climbing.
Weaknesses: Flip It is wobbly and under seat rack is expensive. Had to put a inner tube around seat clamp so it wouldn't slide. Where do you put the bottle cages? You have to burn holes through the seat with a soldering iron. Seriously. Check out the website.
This bike KICKS ASS! No bike is perfect but this thing is darn close.
Date Reviewed: March 19, 2013
Strengths: very aerodynamic, very fast (just as fast as a road bike), doesn't hurt your back, sort of light weight, easy to drive and steer, I got mine from a non-profit bike shop i volunteer at, the owner found it in Maine used for $800.00, i put in a ton of hours in trade for it, because i couldn't have afforded that even.
Weaknesses: You can't lift it up very far, it is a bit heavy, but still light enough for doing some racing without tiring you out. I use mine for everyday commuting and i ride 3 miles each way, and plus sometime even more than that in a day.
I would recommend it to everyone it to any one who's looking for a good recumbent to ride, whether for fun or commuting, this is the best you can buy, and i have tried many different types of upright recumbent's. I have had mine for almost a year and it has been the best bike I've owned.
Keep on Biking....
Date Reviewed: June 30, 2012
Strengths: I have the 2000 version of the V (royal blue paint - gorgeous) and have enjoyed many comfortable miles along/in the Colorado/Wyoming Front Range. After having ridden my upright Eddy Merckx/Campagolo Record in my younger years, I finally wised up and got 'bent. No more sore crotch/back/neck/arms, etc. I can't believe more people don't choose to ride in comfort.
The VRex (mine anyway) comes well equipped with SRAM 9.0 grip shifters and rear der. Shimano 105 3 ring crank and front der. Avid Dial7 brake levers and really nice ArchRival brakes. Ritchey headset and the most comfortable recumbent seat I have yet found. Alex rims, LX hubs, and Comet Primo tires have run true all these years (yup still on my original pair).
I installed a RadicalDesigns rear pannier and a GreenSpeed kick stand and a Sigma Sport 800 computer and I could not be happier.
Weaknesses: It is a bit pricey ($1500) new, but worth it. I just saw one for sale for $600 in my local paper. On a whim I went by and took a look and it was a newer model than my own. The owner was an older fellow who could no longer ride. I thought about picking it up...but i don't need another as mine has lasted forever!
This is the classic short wheel base (SWB) recumbent. Fast, manuverable, and fun. Yes it is not as stable/forgiving as a long wheel base. Even so the enjoyment factor is so high I could not imagine not owning one.
Strengths: Ergonomics and utility. The RANS seat sets the standard for comfort in the recumbent world. The back is mesh for good ventilation, and it's angled up enough to give a great view of the world while you're riding. The pedals are at seat level, just high enough for good aerodynamics without going to extremes. The triangulated chromoloy frame is bulletproof, as well as stiff and responsive.
Weaknesses: I'd have to say the RANS Flip-It(tm) stem is the biggest weak point. Although it's functional, it's chintzy. When it wears and starts getting sloppy, replace it with a Terracycles Glide-Flex stem and never worry about it again. Also, like many recumbents, the OEM wheels are kind of heavy; replacing them with a nicer set of low-spoke-count wheels will help performance noticeably.
The V-Rex epitomizes the 'standard' short wheelbase recumbent. It is fast enough to let you keep up with your non-racer friends, and it's comfortable enough for non-stop century rides. Or, you can add panniers and really load it down for touring. It climbs nearly as well as an upright bike, and handles high-speed downhills with aplomb. I've had mine for 14 years, and every time I sit in it, I have an "ahhh!" moment. I may never sell it, because everyone I know who's sold theirs was ultimately sorry they did. Yeah, it's that good.
Similar Products Used: Optima Baron, Velokraft NoCom, and an M5 Carbon highracer
Bike Setup: Mine is a 1997 V-Rex24, with a 451 (20") front wheel and a 507 (24") rear wheel. Wheels are Velocity Aero rims built on Shimano XT hubs. The transmission is Shimano 105 crank and derailleurs, 3x9 using SRAM X-7 Grip Shifters. The range is as wide as I can manage: front is 30/44/56T and the rear is 11-32, for a gear range of 21 to 114 gear inches. It uses a V-Brake in front and an Avid BB-7 mechanical disk on the rear wheel.
Date Reviewed: May 27, 2011
Strengths: Well made, light, fast, the seat is great.
Weaknesses: I guess some kind of saddle adjustment for the angle would be good. Its a minor issue. other than that. no weakness.
This is my second SWB bent. I sold the first 1, A Sun EZ SX SWB. The V-Rex is smooth, light, well made, etc. I ride for exercise, I have had Hernia surgery and my knees are not great. - Too many years of riding uprights. I therefore wear knee braces and an abdominal brace. I can do 16 miles on the V-Rex without any problems. The bike tracks well and is very fast. 1 point to remember when first riding an SWB: Make sure the vertical steering tube is at the same angle as the front fork. If you do not have the geometry right, the bike will feel very unstable. I would recommend this bike to anyone that loves to cycle.