- Raleigh UK is an iconic bicycle brand with manufacturing done around the world, including China, USA, Taiwan, and Nottingham, England.
- Accell Group NV currently owns Raleigh with factories across Europe and Taiwan.
- Raleigh Canada opened a factory to manufacture bikes in 1973.
This article may contain affiliate links where we earn a commission from qualifying purchases.
Raleigh bikes are popular, but the brand’s history is a bit confusing. So let’s unveil the mystery and find out where these bikes are currently made.
Raleigh Bicycles started as a small workshop in Nottingham, England. Through the years, ownership has changed causing factory locations to change from the UK market to the USA, Canada, Netherlands, and Taiwan. Nowadays, production is done in Taiwan and across Europe.
In this article, we will dive into the history of Raleigh Bikes, explore the changes they have undergone as a company, and provide insights into the quality associated with the brand in the context of its current manufacturing processes. So, buckle up, and let's take a ride through Raleigh's fascinating story.
Where Are Raleigh Bikes Made? Exploring the Brand’s Origin
Raleigh bikes are made all over the world. Originally, these bikes were built and manufactured in the UK. But because of various management and ownership changes, this shifted between the UK, USA, Taiwan, and even the Netherlands.
As a cycling enthusiast, I often explore different bike brands. One such brand that caught my attention is Raleigh Bikes. With a rich history dating back to 1885, Raleigh Bikes is considered one of the oldest bicycle companies and most reconizable European brands in the industry.
Fast forward to modern times, Raleigh underwent several changes in production locations. By 1984, the majority of Raleigh bikes for the American market were produced in the Far East, except for the top-of-the-range Team Professional and Prestige road bikes which were still made in Ilkeston and Nottingham.
Today, the Raleigh Bicycle Company is a division of the Dutch corporation Accell, which means some bikes are likely produced in the Netherlands, Germany, and France, too.
So, while exploring the world of Raleigh bikes, I discovered that their production has become quite global, with origins in the UK initially and later expanding to other parts of the world.
History of Raleigh Bikes
The history of Raleigh bikes goes back to 1885, when the founders set up a small bicycle workshop on Raleigh Street, Nottingham, England. As a bicycle enthusiast, I find it fascinating how they started advertising in the local press just a few months later.
Being one of the world's oldest and best-known bike brands, Raleigh has a rich heritage.Three Englishmen - Woodhead, Angois, and Ellis - started building bicycles, later becoming Raleigh Industries.
They went on to become the world's leading manufacturer of bicycles for many decades. There's just something special about seeing an iconic brand grow from humble beginnings.
Although Raleigh originated in the UK, they've had international connections throughout their history. In 1982, for example, Huffy Corporation purchased the rights to the Raleigh USA name.
This partnership allowed Huffy to design and distribute Raleigh bikes in the US, giving them immediate access to a nationwide network of bike shops. Around the same time, TI Raleigh won over 900 professional races in 10 years.
To this day, Raleigh bikes continue to be known for innovation, quality, and maintaining their long-standing cycling tradition.
Is Raleigh a Good Bike Brand?
As an avid cyclist, I can say that Raleigh is indeed a good bike brand. With a rich history dating back to 1885, Raleigh has produced high-quality bicycles that have stood the test of time.
Personally, I admire Raleigh bikes for their durability, comfort, and reliability. Over the years, this renowned brand has catered to cyclists of all ages and skill levels, producing various styles of bikes to suit different preferences.
One thing I find especially impressive about Raleigh bikes is their ability to balance quality and affordability. While their higher-end models are manufactured in Taiwan, the majority of their less expensive models are made in Indonesia.
This production strategy enables them to offer good value for money – a factor that has certainly contributed to their long-lasting success. They remain a popular choice for cyclists like me who seek performance and style without breaking the bank.
Notable Raleigh Bike Models
Throughout my experience riding Raleigh bikes, I've come across a few models that really stand out. Today, Raleigh is known for their mountain bike design and they have a large share of the youth bicycle market.
Their acquisition was big news in the bicycle industry too. Let me share some of the notable Raleigh Cycle Company models with you.
This bike was introduced in the 1970s and became a cultural icon. It featured a unique design with a high backrest and a long seat, which gave it a chopper-like appearance. The Chopper was a popular choice among young riders and remains a sought-after collectible today.
The Superbe was first introduced in the 1930s and has since become a classic. It was designed as a comfortable and practical city bike, with features such as a sturdy frame, wide handlebars, and a comfortable saddle. The Superbe remains a popular choice for urban commuters today.
The Record was introduced in the 1950s as a lightweight road bike. It was designed for racing and touring, with a lightweight frame, drop handlebars, and high-quality components. The Record was a popular choice among serious cyclists and remains a classic today.
Current Raleigh Bike Factory Locations
Operations stopped in the UK for about 15 years, but there are multiple factories in the UK today. The Raleigh factory handles all production and assembly of the most popular Raleigh Company bikes.
However, a recent sale of the company has also caused operations to shift. There are factories in Taiwan handling a bulk of the manufacturing for the Raleigh team.
Nowadays, many bike companies have shifted portions of their production to different countries. Raleigh bikes are not exclusively made in Taiwan. Some parts of their production have moved to countries like Cambodia, Bangladesh, and Vietnam, where labor costs are lower, making the bikes more affordable for consumers.
So, when you're shopping for a Raleigh bike, just be aware that their manufacturing facilities are distributed across multiple countries. This doesn't compromise the quality of their products, but rather, adapts to the evolving global market trend.
In 2022, KKR purchased Accell Group, the Dutch company that owned Raleigh Bikes. This means we will likely see more production shift into Europe and the Netherlands.