The Raleigh Grifter was a children's bicycle manufactured and marketed from 1976 and until early 1983 by the Raleigh Bicycle Company of Nottingham, England. It was the "must have" bicycle of its time and bridged a gap between the Raleigh Chopper and the Raleigh Burner models. Like an upside down Chopper, it was part of a range of age-specific bicycles and was positioned at the top of that range. The smallest in the range was the Raleigh Boxer with the Raleigh Strika in the middle.
There is a strong following with enthusiast groups.
The MK1 Grifter dates back to May 1976, although this pre-mass production version of the bike is quite rare (frame numbers starting with NG6). Main production started in June 1976 and continued until 1979. The MK1 changed slightly as production progressed, there are a few differences between the earliest and later MK1 Grifters. The early pre-mass production models had Super MX tyres instead of the Supergrips and skinny handlebar foam.
The MK1 came in either Metallic Blue or Metallic Red, although the earliest Grifters were mainly blue. It is now known that the later MK1 models were more of a bronzy red rather than the original candy apple red. The Grifter featured a 3-speed Sturmey Archer hub gear controlled by a handlebar-mounted twist grip.
Raleigh also produced the MK1 for export around the world with some slight changes to the model such as chain guards and decals. These export models have now become very rare and very collectible.
Raleigh produced the MK2 Grifter between 1979 and 1983 (but there have been replacement frames found as late as 1984). Available in seven various models:- Flame Red, Blaze Blue, Silver, XL, GS, Black and Gold Super Grifter and Silver and Blue Super Grifter. The MK2 also featured a longer rear mudguard.
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