Cargo Bike Review – CETMA Margo

Momentum Mag reviews the CETMA Margo.

Price $2,850 USD (complete) / $1,850 frame only

Find it at US online, will ship to Canada

The CETMA Margo is a front-loading, Long John style, chromoly-steel-framed cargo bicycle built in Eugene, OR. The Margo comes equipped with swept-back FSA Metropolis handlebars, a Brooks B17 leather saddle and disc brakes. With a SRAM nine-speed derailleur, a Paul Component stem cap light mount, the bike weighs 40 pounds (18.2 kilograms) and has a load capacity of 300 pounds (136 kilograms). CETMA offers a marine-grade plywood box as an available accessory if you want carry children and or small items. The model tested with box is $3150 USD.

Tell Your Friends

The Margo has a unique frame design that can separate in the middle for shipping, travel, or storage. A complete bike can be separated and loaded into a car in a few minutes. It is one of the lighter front-loading cargo bikes that I have tested to date.

Wish List

Since this bike can be customized when you order it, I would choose to install a triple-ring so I don’t have to feel the steeper hills. Fenders would be a nice addition as well, as it can be difficult to find a pair of fenders for two different-sized wheels

Ideal Rider

The CETMA Margo has a sloping top tube that matches the angle of a mixte-frame. This makes the bicycle easy to step over and adaptable to many sizes of riders. This might be a clincher in families with a large height difference between the two parents.


A linkage arm with a ball joint connects the steering from the handlebars to the front 20” wheel. Learning to ride with the front wheel offset by a linkage in the front is a matter of 15-20 minutes in a parking lot. My best tip is don’t look down, focus on the horizon and trust you inner balance, if you look down your eyes seem to trick you and it can take a little longer to master. 

The elliptical bottom bracket was not necessary on the model tested with a SRAM X7 derailleur. However the elliptical bottom bracket allows the bicycle to be easily fitted with an internally geared hub. The advantage is that the vertical drop outs for the back wheel make it easy to attach while keeping the disc brakes aligned. And the elliptical bottom bracket takes care of maintaining proper chain tension.

The frame has a simple coupling mechanism that allows the rear section of the frame to be detached from the front flatbed. This is not something that you will want to do every day, but it does allow for easier shipping and transportation if you need to take the cargo bicycle with you in a vehicle or on a train.

Carrying children can work well, but the box provided with the bicycle does not include seat belts, leaving it to the owner to make these on their own or order them custom built. The current design of the box has the seat included but we ended up removing the seat all together as it brought the childrens’ heads pretty close to the handlebars. Purpose built bakfiets style front cargo box bicycles tend to have a more swept steering column, which reduces this problem.

The CETMA Cargo comes in two sizes of flat beds, one is 18” and the other is 24”

I found the low center of gravity combined with the ability to carry the load right in the midpoint of the bike make it a smooth ride. Bikes are ready to ship in 4-8 weeks from the time a purchase deposit is made.

The CETMA Margo is great value for anyone looking for a front-loading cargo bike. It’s a smooth ride that can haul your goods with ease.

This bike was generously put together and hand delivered to the reviewer by Lane Kagay of CETMA Cargo himself.

Gwendal Castellan is an Energy Specialist from Vancouver, BC  he likes to spend his weekends seeking out urban adventures with his two little kids and fabulous wife! Gwendal is looking for a Stand-Up Paddle board that he can easily transport on any of his cargo bikes. @gwendal_c


  • Andres S

    I’ve had my Cetma Margo for 1.5 years now, and I love it. I went with a Cetma over an Xtracycle because we’re a car-free family, and I wanted to be able to take my son before he was capable of sitting in a normal seat. The Chicco Keyfit 30 infant car seat fit *perfectly* into the Margo; combined with ratchet straps and a Blaq Designs rain cover, we were set for the Seattle winter. He went on his first 50mi ride when he was 4 months old. For a while, the easiest way to get him to sleep was to put him in the Margo and go up a hill (of which there are plenty in Seattle; I recommend a Nuvinci N360 hub to deal with them).

  • Doug D

    I have the second CETMA to reach the wild, and it still rocks. Lane has made some substantial advances since he made mine, but even my early model kicks butt on other bikes.
    I have carried my kids, and a ridiculous assortment of other things over a variety of distances. I used my bike to carry a kid and our stuff on a week-long dirt trail tour. I have carried many 300 pound loads of firewood. I got 300 pounds of decorative gravel for free when I rode the 10km to the rock yard to get it and then filled up the box of my bike. I have had as many as five kids in the box (assorted limbs hanging out) and I have carried several adults as well.
    This summer I used it for flood relief transport when all our city roads were blocked with traffic.
    I now have a Rohloff hub on mine and my only regret is not putting it on sooner. I also had the frame re-coated this past spring after 4 years of heavy use – it gleams like new again and it is ready to face the salty slush that our winter inflicts on it.
    Lane (CETMA owner and builder) has been totally reasonable with any service I have needed – I have broken or worn out a few parts over the years and he has always come through with reasonable repair or replacement.

  • Todd Consentino

    You may have noticed I said I’ve 3 kids and the Largo carries but 2 of them, efficiently. Well, that’s because my third kid is but weeks old and has yet to take a spin in our CETMA, as it’s winter here in Boston. I’m sure there’ll be room for #3, when she’s ready for it.

  • Todd Consentino

    I’ve always loved riding bikes and once upon a time I feared that having children would force me back into a car. The CETMA has freed me from that concern. The CETMA Largo is the perfect minivan substitute for our family. My wife and I have three kids and live in a city. Our Largo efficiently carries two kids and four bags of groceries. It takes us to the zoo, the beach, playgrounds, and to my daughters’ schools. It is my dream bike.
    Lane Kagay, the person behind CETMA, has been awesome at getting back to me every time I’ve had a question. I’ve a more detailed review on my blog:

  • Clint

    My Wife and I own a CETMA “Margo” and we are really happy with it. Some things we like about the design: 1)The bike can separate into two halves which makes putting it in our hatchback possible. This wouldn’t be possible with a Bullitt. I didn’t expect to be separating the bike ever, but it really comes in handy for bike camping trips where riding all the way there with a kid is not practical. 2) The design is safer than a Longtail or a regular bike with a kid’s seat. The flatbed and box of the CETMA is low to the ground, so if you take a spill, the box will only tip over about 25 degrees. Compare that to a Longtail, which is essentially a normal bike, but longer. If you fell over on on one of those, you and your passenger would be sideways, on the ground. The disc brakes on our bike certainly make the ride safer also.

    One other feature which really sold me on the CETMA was the cromoly frame. Since cromoly is far more durable a metal than aluminum, we decided on it instead of the Bullitt(which has an aluminum frame) The steel frame also has a great bump absorbing effect on rough roads or dirt. This benefit is particularly important for our 2 year old, not so much for us, but love the ride quality too.

    As far as safety is concerned, the CETMA is nimble, stops on a dime, and if you were to be cut off by a car or SUV, the box and flatbed of the frame would provide extra protection to the passenger.

    The box of our Margo is the smaller version that CETMA offers, but we can still fit our daughter and an adult passenger in it comfortably! A kid’s bike could be put in the box and bungeed in place.

  • jamie

    hi. I see you also reviewed the bullitt, and own it according to the editorial note. How does the CETMA compare to the bullitt?

    For my cargo bike I’m debating between these bikes and a Yuba Mundo. ( some issues I’m debating include: price; the front cargo area of the longbikes seems a tight fit for combining a 4 to 6 yr old plus a weeks worth of groceries for a family, etc.; with the Yuba Mundo I can easily stow/tow a kids bike once little legs get tired, but this seems more difficult with the long bikes; I wonder if the low, front child sitting area puts kids more exposed to cars cutting in front of the bike, or doors opening from parked cars. Any thoughts?)

    Thanks. j

  • jeff

    I pointed the stem backwards to avoid the handlebars hanging over the box and also ’cause I wanted a very upright riding position.

    I have a review of the CETMA Largo on my blog @

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