#bikeschool: Bike Prices

Bike Prices

by Aaron Madrid (#bikeschool student and guest professor)

Not long ago I was given the privilege of hosting a night of #Bikeschool. The second question I asked pertained to a subject that I personally have very strong opinions on, the price of bikes. Upon asking my question, it became clear that many others do as well.

Most of you who follow me on twitter, or have spoken to me in person, know that I am new to the cycling world. For me, the biggest obstacle to overcome was the cost of a nice bike. When I initially began asking around about what bikes to look into, the only responses I would find fell in to two separate categories. The first category of answers all essentially just said; don’t buy from a “big box”.  The rest of the answers all said something to the effect of “the brand doesn’t matter; just make sure the bike fits!” Armed with these two pieces of advice I headed out shopping…and was immediately disheartened by what I found. The cheapest bike I could find at one of my two local shops would cost me at least $400 dollars and when I asked for help, I was always pointed to a bike nearly twice that price, which would actually fit me. Eventually I ended up with a bike from a big box, until I saved enough to get a bike I really wanted from my local shop.

As I grew more and more fond of my new hobby, I began to learn more about the various bike companies, their products, and the nature of the industry itself. I could not believe that there were bikes out there that cost more than my car! I thought it would be a good question for #bikeschool. Is the price gap fair between a lower priced bike and a high-end bike? Answers were all over the place, from a simple “no” to some more interesting side discussions about high-end bikes being more like works or art and thus justifying the price. I felt that ever since that night, perhaps that question needed a little further flushing out, and that perhaps others would care to weigh in, in more detail. Personally I feel that if the cost to me accurately reflects the cost to the manufacturer (obviously leaving room for some profit for them, this is capitalist America after all) then that is all that matters. I don’t think anyone expects to be given anything for free. However, as I came to these conclusions, test rode different bikes, and explored the various models I began to wonder just how fair these price gaps were.

Page 1 of 3 | Next page