The '90s were a pretty good time for angst-driven rock, pogs, and Tumi T-Tech luggage, a line which Mike Landry, the national sales manager for Tumi Special Markets, described as "hipper than hip and cooler than cool". Unfortunately, as the economy boomed, Tumi turned their attention away from the affordable T-Tech line to focus on higher-end luxury lines. But in 2010 Tumi relaunched T-Tech, bringing the functional and affordable suitcases back to the market. This year's T-Tech Cargo finally returns to the hipness of its predecessors.
The four hardshell suitcases under the T-Tech Cargo umbrella blend durability with affordability. The smaller International and Continental Carry-ons are perfect for weekend travelers; true jet-setters will be happy to load up the larger Medium Trip Packing Case or the granddaddy of them all, the Extended Trip Packing Case. The style-conscious will be happy to note that the suitcases come in green, grey, red, blue, red camouflage and our personal favorite, (Gear Patrol) orange. Made from lightweight polycarbonate plastic, the suitcases are easily maneuverable thanks to sturdy four-wheel rolling systems but also offer solid protection for anything you pack inside.
When you consider that the suitcases come standard with many of the same technologies featured in Tumi's higher-end suitcases -- the Omega Closure Zipper System, which reduces zipper damage, the Tumi Tracer, which stores your suitcase's unique 20-digit serial number along with your contact information in a Tumi database and helps aid in the recovery of lost luggage, and aircraft grade aluminum extension handles -- you'll see why they're such a bargain, and why we'll be using one the next time we head to the airport.
Excellence, innovation, craftsmanship, and an unwavering desire to challenge expectations -- these are the constants that have captivated our attention since Gear Patrol's inception in 2007. This year we're proud to announce the next step in our role as a champion of quality in product design and execution: welcome to the GP100. Our inaugural product awards are dedicated to honoring the 100 best consumer products released during the calendar year by companies of all sizes and scope.
The GP100 is not a ranking or a contest. These selections represent the collective expertise of our entire editorial staff, who have scoured every corner of the vast product universe -- from automotive and electronics, to men's style essentials, home goods, spirits and outdoors -- to find the inspiring and the practical, the ground-breaking and the traditional, the priceless and the accessible. In short: products that define or defy their respective categories to better the life of the modern man.
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