History

 
At Felt, our mission remains as it’s been since the beginning: to design, develop, and deliver the best bicycles in the world. Period.

The roots of this mission trace back more than two decades. It all started in the late 1980s when motocross star Johnny O’Mara asked his ace motorcycle mechanic Jim Felt to build him a time trial bike. Johnny was competing in triathlons as training for motocross.

A competitive age-group triathlete himself, Jim had a distinct vision of how he could improve on the designs of the time. He focused on optimizing rider position to maximize aerodynamic efficiency. It worked. Johnny immediately started winning races, and before long Jim was building bikes for many of the world’s top triathletes. When Paula Newby-Fraser won the1991 Kona Ironman on a Felt, Jim found himself officially in the bicycle business.

Ten years after Jim Felt built that first triathlon bike, it was time to expand. Enter Bill Duehring and Michael Mullmann. Bill, a bike industry veteran, brought years of product development experience and strong global supplier ties. Michael owned a successful distribution company in Europe.It was the perfect melding of skills. Felt now had more than 70 years of combined experience in developing, manufacturing, and distributing high-quality bicycles. Jim brought his respected name, design experience, and athlete relationships. Bill had broad-based product development knowledge and vendor connections. Michael had extensive experience in distribution and marketing.

“We didn’t want to be the biggest bike company in the world, just the best” was the trio’s shared maxim. Together Jim, Bill, and Michael developed a singular goal: to build a bicycle brand dedicated to technological innovation and unmatched quality.

Since those fledgling days, the Felt brand has grown far beyond its triathlon roots, and today includes a complete bike line that touches all of cycling’s various disciplines. Whether climbing the highest peaks of the Tour de France, bombing down single-track, racing your first triathlon, or commuting to work, Felt delivers a bike with uncompromised performance, maximum comfort, and optimized efficiency.

In engineering, product development, sales, marketing, and customer service, the same underlying values that sparked the start of the company continue to drive every Felt employee, every day. Indeed, every Felt bike is designed and built to make your cycling experience the absolute best it can be. No matter how you measure success, be it product development, milestones, or race wins, Felt has delivered. From innovative manufacturing processes such as InsideOut and Dynamic Monocoque Construction, to breakthrough technologies such as Equilink suspension and the Bayonet Steering System, Felt is constantly expanding the boundaries of possibility and making them a reality.

The core to this success is a company-wide mandate to continually improve on past success. Nothing is done in a vacuum. Instead, each new Felt bike, be it road or off-road, high-end performance to entry-level recreation, utilizes critical lessons from past designs, and then incorporates new enhancements. The results speak for themselves. The world’s fastest UCI legal time trial bike, the DA, continues to dominate the international time trial and triathlon circuit. The Edict full-suspension mountain bike is a stalwart on the world’s elite cross-country scene. The top-tier AR and F road bikes are mainstays of the European peloton. And, the TK1 has been raced on the track at two Olympic Games, Beijing in 2008 and now London 2012.

Felt has also made a dramatic incursion into cyclo-cross with its top-end FX series, a World Cup worthy carbon fiber platform that helped American star Ryan Trebon continue his dominating ways in 2011. Felt also launched the new Edict Nine, a 29-inch wheeled mountain bike racing machine that provides the ideal balance between weight, strength, stiffness, ride quality, and durability. And of course we remain exceptionally proud of our Verza line. These bikes are so popular that after just one year, they had to be expanded into Verza City and Verza Path series just to keep up with interest and demand.

On the competition front, Felt is a dominant player. Recent highlights include the Project London track team shattering the U.S. team sprint record, Argos-Shimano ace sprinter Marcel Kittel’s conquest of Belgium’s testing Scheldeprijs race, and Kristin Armstrong’s time trial victory at the Tour of California. Other notable Felt driven efforts include triathlon star Andi Böcherer’s victory at the Ironman 70.3 European championships, and of course, Thomas Litscher’s U23 UCI Mountain Bike World Championship.
Competition is only part of the Felt story. Our Café cruiser series continues to offer a contemporary and stylish solution for anyone looking to make cycling part of a healthy and environmentally responsible lifestyle. And the Verza City and Verza Path lines further demonstrate that Felt is helping change the way people think about bikes and transportation in general.

With an exciting array of bikes for all types of riders and disciplines, plus a host of new technologies, 2013 promises to be another exceptional year. Don’t expect Felt’s mission to change. Just as it was when Jim Felt started the company all those years ago, we continue to design, develop, and deliver the best bicycles in the world. Period

Our roots go back more than 20 years, to the man whose name appears on the downtube. It all started in the late 1980’s when Jim Felt, an ace motocross mechanic at the time, designed and built a triathlon bike for motocross star Johnny O’Mara. Johnny was competing in triathlons for training and asked Jim to build him a new tri bike.

That first Felt bike was a revelation. A competitive age group triathlete himself, Jim had a distinct vision of how he could improve on the current designs. He took great care to optimize the rider’s position for aerodynamics. Johnny started winning, and before long, Jim was building bikes for many of the world’s top triathletes.

Since then, the Felt brand has grown well beyond its racing roots, but the guiding principle remains the same. Every Felt bike – road or off-road, high end performance to entry level recreation-is meant to make the cycling experience the best it can be. Whether climbing the steepest peaks of the Tour de France, bombing singletrack trails, racing a first triathlon or commuting to work, each promises uncompromised performance, comfort, and efficiency.

Ten years after he built that first triathlon bike, Jim wanted to expand and make his bikes available to more riders. Enter Bill Duehring and Michael Muellmann. Bill, a bike industry veteran, wanted to be a part of a company that could capitalize on his years of product development experience and strong relationships with suppliers all over the world. Michael owned a successful distribution company in Europe.

It was easy for the three to agree on a direction because they had the same goal: a bicycle brand dedicated to quality and technology. Jim brought a name, design experience and athlete relationships. Bill had broad-based product development knowledge and vendor connections. Michael had the experience in distribution.

A bicycle company had never been established with so much experience from day one. The day Felt incorporated, it had more than 70 years combined experience developing, manufacturing and selling high-quality bicycles. “We don’t want to be the biggest bike company in the world, just the best,” is a maxim often uttered by Jim, Bill and Michael.

Over the last decade, Felt has grown into one of the world’s most respected cycling brands by staying true to its principles. In engineering, product development, sales, marketing and customer service, the same underlying values that sparked the start of the company drive every Felt employee, every day. However you measure success—product development, milestones or race wins—Felt has experienced it. The products speak for themselves. From Felt’s innovative manufacturing processes including InsideOut Internally Optimized Molding and Dynamic Monocoque Construction, to breakthrough product design such as the FAST suspension and the Bayonet 3 Steering System, Felt is constantly seeking to push the technology envelope. The world’s fastest UCI legal time trial bike, the DA, has dominated the international time trial and triathlon circuit. The Edict full-suspension mountain bike also had a spectacular entrance to competition, taking on the proving grounds of UCI Elite XC racing. The TK1, which was first raced at the 2008 Beijing Olympics, has been updated for 2012 and will compete at the Olympics in London this year.

This year, Felt is intoducing the FX Series cyclocross bike, a world- class carbon fiber platform that is significantly lighter and stiffer than Felt's previous cyclocross bikes. The TK1 that delivered Sarah Hammer to multiple World Championships has also been refined and is now available in either a Sprint or Endurance configuration. The Verza Line, introduced just last year, was so successful that it has expanded to include the Verza City and Verza Path series of bikes.

On the competition front, Felt had a tremendous year led by Team Exergy, Felt-Oetztal X-Bionic, Peanut Butter & Co. TWENTY12, and a world class stable of individual athletes. Team Exergy stepped up to the competition in its first year as a UCI Continental squad and has already accumulated impressive palmares. X-Bionic advanced to UCI Elite status in 2011, and has already delivered World Cup wins. Led by Olympic Time Trial Champ Kristin Armstrong, Peanut Butter & Co. continue to emerge as one of the premier women’s race teams in the world. Sarah Hammer won another World Championship in the Individual Pursuit and continues her preparation for the 2012 Olympics in London. In multisport, World Champions Mirinda Carfrae and Terenzo Bozzone continue to dominate the Ironman and Ironman 70.3 events.

Of course, competition is just part of the story. Felt’s iconic cruiser lineup continues to expand, and the Café series offers a modern, stylish solution for anyone wishing to make cycling part of a healthy, responsible lifestyle. The Verza City and the new Verza Path lines are two more examples of how Felt is changing the way people think about bikes.

With a multitude of exciting bikes for all types of riders and disciplines, 2012 promises to be a great year for Felt. We’re confident that every bike and product you see with the Felt name on it honestly represents our goal of making your cycling experience more enjoyable. We hope you agree.