The famed Bridgestone XO-1 was made for only two years, 1992 and 1993. The XO series of bikes were "hybrid" bikes, but Grant Peterson (the Bridgestone USA visionary) didn't want them associated with the typical hybrids, and always used quote marks around the word when he used it.
The XO-1 is an odd bike that defies categories. It has traditional road geometry, but is build from oversized tubing. The bike uses 26" wheels, and the rear spacing is 128mm - so that it can accept 126mm and 130mm rear wheels (the common road spacing at the time). The bike came with a triple crank, but only two rings (making it easy to convert to a triple if desired), and came stock with the infamous Nitto Moustache handlebar (you either love it or hate it). The '92 model used side-pull road brakes, and the '93 used cantilevers for additional tire clearance (accepting up to a 2.0 inch tire).
Sizing has always been a discussion of topics for the XOs. Bridgestone made a 55cm and 59cm (measured center to top) frame, but for some reason failed to make a 57cm bike. According to Bridgestone's own catalog, the XO bikes should be sized between a road and mountain bike. I ride about a 58 (c-t-c) road bike, and owned a 52cm MB-1, so the 55cm is where I would fit on an XO (or at least that's what I think, and that's the size I own).
The ride on the XO-1 is nice, but does not encourage fast riding. I don't know if it's the bike's geometry, or the moustache bars, but when I ride the bike it takes me longer to go places, and I tend to take in the scenery a bit more. Was that Grant's intention? Hmmm....
I bought the bike NOS from a local shop that I failed to sell the bike after nearly 10 years of displaying it. An orange XO-1 in fresh-out-of-the-box condition is not something that you expect to stumble across regularly. The bike's the cult-like following combined with my love of orange bikes made this an easy sale.
As I said, the XO-1 is nice for a slow leisurely ride. It's a fun alternative to a "standard" bike.
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