History of Cannondale Bikes

 Cannondale is an American bicycle manufacturer that revolutionised bike design. The company does more than just design and produce bikes. Today, the manufacturer offers apparel and accessories just as innovative as the bikes that built their reputation. Cannondale claims to be the leading manufacturer of high-end cycles and the industry’s most competitive designer. The history of Cannondale dates back to 1971. 


In the Beginning

The Cannondale Company didn’t start by making bicycles. In 1971, founder Joe Montgomery began with backpacks and trailers to transport bikes for camping. The company website reports the first manufacturing site was a loft above a pickle factory across from the old Cannon railroad line in Connecticut. Not far from the pay phone the company would use for ordering was a display cannon with the label “Dale.” This was the beginning of the Cannondale Corporation. The company only made packs and apparel until 1983 when they introduce the first Cannondale bicycle.

Model ST500

The ST500 was the first Cannondale bike, launched in 1983, and it revolutionised the biking industry. ST500 has a welded frame that sits over aluminum tubes. This was the first time a manufacturer worked with TIB welding for bike design. The trend took and today many designers use aluminum to build their bike frames.

Mountain Bikes

Cannondale brought mountain bikes into the market in 1984. The SM500 featured the Shimano Deore XT drive frame and a Surgino Aero Tour crank, according to the Museum of Mountain Bike Art & Technology website. The first mountain bike from Cannondale provided BMX styling and a European sprung saddle. Cannondale mountain bikes are staples in world championship races and the cycling choice of two Olympic medalists.

Modern Cannondale

Cannondale Company has been a subsidiary of Dorel Industries. Today Cannondale produces all-aluminum, aluminum-carbon and all-carbon fiber bikes. They sponsor racing teams and get many design ideas from professional athletes. The company's mission is to create quality products with innovative designs that inspire cyclists around the world.

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From our Southern California beginnings in 1972 to today, we continue to remain true to our BMX and mountain bike heritage. GT mixes performance with serious fun to deliver good times everywhere our bikes are ridden. Because after all, Fun is Serious Business.


1972 - BMX Frames Of the Era Just
Weren’t Durable Enough

At least not according to Gary Turner. And so, using skills acquired from welding drag racing cars, he created the first GT frame in 1972 for his kid to use on the SoCal BMX race circuit. The frame was a hit. 


1974 - 1980 Born With a Simple Vision

GT Bicycles was born with a simple vision: to help riders push the envelope of what’s possible on two wheels by creating the most reliable, innovative frames. 


1981 - 1986 Speed and Durability

GT bikes became synonymous with durability and winning, bringing home more BMX wins and clout than any other bike brand of the era. 


1987 - 1994 Going Big

Applying the same attitude toward the emerging sport of mountain biking, GT set out to design the best bikes in the world. 


1995 - 1998 Full Suspension Development

Our commitment to building progression-enabling bikes continued. 


1992 - 2002 A New Suspension System

We introduced our ultra-reliable and efficient i-Drive® suspension to rave reviews. 


2003 - 2006 Continued Innovation

GT continued to test innovations that included the world’s first downhill bike with a production gearbox design, the IT-1 .


2007 - 2009 New Technologies

GT continued to adopt new technologies, introducing production 29’rs and a new proprietary carbon frame construction method 


2010 - now It's All About the Family

GT has focused on supporting the best athletes and teams to help inspire and develop the technologies that allow us to bring you the best bikes 


The Good Times Keep Rolling

Refusing to settle with the latest industry trends, GT’s engineers and athletes are hard at work scripting the next chapter in our storied history. 

 We’ve been in this business since 1972. We’ve seen fads come and go, but one thing has remained the same after all these years... The reason we are still here. It’s the same reason we threw our legs over our very first bike – pure fun, plain and simple. Even now, when we ride with our buddies, you can guarantee that there are hi-fives, laughs and the post-ride hang at the end of the day. We remain true to the good times on two wheels which GT was founded on because Fun is Serious Business 

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