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View Full Version : Why doesn't Wally-World have Road Bikes?


lucas223
06-09-2004, 06:35 PM
This is a low tech layman question... maybe it will turn out to be a commentary about society, legal issues, etc. Why is it that Wal-mart, Target, K-mart, etc. have HUGE racks of bikes of all shapes and sizes and they are all MOUNTAIN BIKES? Everybody rides these bikes primarily or exclusively on pavement. 20 years ago, the same types of stores had tons of bikes with high-pressure skinny tires and road type saddles and handle-bars. You'd think you would at least see one el-cheapo road bike there. I just bought a brand new $57 mountain bike at Target that is not a stripped-down one-speed bike with coaster brakes. It has all the general components that a road bike has like multi-gear sprockets on front and rear, hand brakes, nice paint-job, but with the mountain bike tire and wheel configuration, etc. It was even available in a lighter stiffer aluminum frame with shocks for $20 more! You can't even get most accesories for a road bike for $57. Why isn't there a $57 - $100 road bike at these stores for the regular person who wants to ride on the pavement? I'm new to this forum and this is my first posting so maybe this issue has been discussed in other threads, but I don't know why a mountain bike is the only option for the common pavement rider who should be able to enjoy the practicality and efficiency of a bike to ride to college, etc. like it used to be 20 years ago. Those huge mountain bike tires and wheels just don't roll efficiently and they take a lot of work which puts many people off from bike riding... and they must cost more to mass-produce since they use more rubber and aluminum. Many people in this generation have experienced bike-riding, but they have never had a ride on a regular road bike because of the total lack of availability in the common marketplace. Why is the local bike shop the only option with bottom-end road bikes _starting_ at $600? Why has this become an elitist expensive sport when bikes are such a practical invention and were refined into the road configuration many years ago? Why are we going backwards in technology? Is this a legal "liability" issue nowadays? Are the big general merchandise stores shying away from traffic-accident lawsuits that may be generated when a bike is ridden on the road by classifying the bikes for "off-road use only?" I'm sure someone out there who is smarter than me knows the answer to this problem that is keeping many non-rich folks from enjoying the freedom and practicality of riding a more efficient bike on paved roads. :)

pale scotsman
06-09-2004, 06:47 PM
I'll bite on this one. WalMart sells what sells, and right now it's anything but skinny tire road bikes. I too remember the days of the freespirit, murry, huffy, and other dept store bikes. Heck I was weaned on a huffy aerowind.

But I've got to say I think you are right about someone offering low price dept store type bike. I can't even count the # of people that have asked me where they can get a road bike for low dough. I for one don't give a rats ass how much it costs because I see it as an entry point. They may stick with what they have, or they may really get into it and step up. I like to see new riders though I may not want to ride a paceline with 'em. :) Bottom line is you have to start somewhere and the entry point today for something decent is steep.

My .02 AlabamIan

ericmurphy
06-09-2004, 07:03 PM
Wow...a $57 bike. Not to sound elitist or anything, but I'm pretty sure my front derailleur cost more than $57.

A lot of price issues today have more to do with inflation than anything else. I was recently thinking of all the bikes I've owned that I paid for myself, way back to my first 10-speed, a Concord (anyone know anything about Concord bikes? I couldn't find out anything about them on the web). I paid $140 for that bike in 1975. Sounds pretty cheap, but $140 in 1975 is worth about $489 today. Still an entry-level price point, so I'm not sure that, taking inflation into account, bikes are any more expensive now. In fact, I bet a $500 bike today is a much nicer machine than my $140 Concord was in 1975.

But just for a little perspective, $57 today was worth about 16 bucks in 1975. I don't think you could get any kind of bike for 16 bucks in 1975.

But back to the real question, i.e., why aren't there any cheap department store road bikes these days? I think it's because bikes, like most consumer durables, are to some extent creatures of trendiness. Ten years ago, mountain bikes were where it was at. But today, people have finally realized just how inefficient those two-inch-wide knobbies are for getting from point a to point b over pavement. So now, bike sales are swinging back more towards road bikes. But trends always trickle downmarket. Department store bikes are probably ten years or more behind the cutting edge. (It's been a while since I've checked, but are department store mountain bikes even 8-speed yet?) So it will probably be a few more years before you see skinny-tire road bikes back in your local Walmart, Sears, JC Penny, etc. But they'll get there eventually.

Tony Edwards
06-09-2004, 07:43 PM
One particularly ironic aspect of this is that the mountain bikes sold at Wal-Mart et al are dangerously ill-suited to actually being ridden off-road. Riding a Huffy or equivalent on anything more challenging than a perfectly-groomed fire road will foreseeably cause it to break into pieces within a half hour.

I can't seriously claim to have shopped for a department-store bike since I was a kid, but I do remember my sister and me having Free Spirits or some other very cheap ten-speeds as kids, and on balance they were almost certainly better for getting from A to B than today's 45-pound dual-suspension Huffies.

Dude
06-10-2004, 09:03 AM
The fact of the matter is, a lot of people don't like "leaning over" the handlebars. They would much rather sit upright on big cushy tires (that are pumped up to about 20 PSI anyway). The shocks look pretty impressive, and when cruising around the neighborhood actually do work.

If i had never ridden a bike or hadn't ridden one in 20 years, upright would sound pretty appealing. We all know skinny tires, on a road, are faster and handle well. But if you had never done it before, it can be pretty freaky.

Thats why Wally world sells crap mtn bikes. Thats what people want - and you can't play the "people want it because thats what they offer" card because every town in america that has a walmart also has a bike shop. So there are other things on the market.

Elefantino
06-10-2004, 11:07 AM
does that mean that it's probably not a real Serotta?

:crap:

Sandy
06-10-2004, 11:15 AM
I certainly hope that none of the other Ottrott owners read this thread. They will be as disgusted as I am to think that people buy and ride $57 bikes. I usually pay that much for some kid to watch my bike when I go into a local convenience store to buy a :banana: or a bottle of water.

Simply Snobbish Serotta Sandy

lucas223
06-10-2004, 12:00 PM
I asked a local bike shop in Carbondale, IL this same question and they told me that they do a pretty fair business in getting some cheap almost-quasi-road-bikes on the road by A) improving people's mountain bikes by putting "better" (ie. slightly thinner, slilghtly higher pressure tires) on those awkard wide 26 inch rims and by B) repairing old yard-sale 10-speeds for customers. Ericmurphy, about your gear question, yes, they have upped the number of gears on those cheap mountain bikes. The $57 adult-sized bike has 15 speeds and another adult-sized aluminum frame mountain bike with shocks that I got new for under a hundred bucks at Target has 21 speeds. They don't compare to a road bike when riding but, all the basic components are there with the complex derailleurs and all... they just take a horrendous amount of horsepower to roll those fat tires... The higher gears are next to useless with all that rotating weight and they offer the 21 speeds more as a sales gimmick than anything, because nobody is strong enough to use those higher gears on a flat road with the big knobbies. Dude, I think you also nailed the issue of "leaning over the handlebars" which doesn't sound appealing to the layperson rider... so the road bike doesn't look comfy and cushy to the average yuppie that wants to have a couple of bikes parked in the garage just in case they may want to get on a bike some day... I think you hit the heart of it as far as mass marketing goes. :bike:

Dekonick
06-10-2004, 12:19 PM
True - and sad. Ill bet alot of people are duped into buying 'mountain bikes"

While a bike with aggressive geometry wont appeal to most, a relaxed touring geo could make a nice cheap road bike...

and there is nothing wrong with a cheap cruiser type bike. In europe you dont see many mountain bikes, but do see alot of relaxed geo bikes with 3 speed or 5 speed internal hubs. Why cant you find them here???

Call me crazy, but I would rather have one of those than a mountain bike with a suspension...any day!
:bike:

Russ
06-10-2004, 12:44 PM
does that mean that it's probably not a real Serotta?

:crap:

No Elefantino, you are OK.... The CSI you got was the one they forgot to put the Huffy decals on.... BTW, do you know that Andy Hampsten got his 1998 Giro winning bike at the Wal Mart too?

Don't feel bad....

Russ
06-10-2004, 12:52 PM
I have been told that many people feel more comfortable on a mountain bike position than a road bike with drop bars. They also think that the fat tires are more comfortable and resist more beating than a skinny road bike wheel/tire.
Also, mountain bikes are the real 'merican design!!!!

But at $57, I wonder how good is any part of these bike :confused:

Now, just wait for Lance to retire.... You will see how most bike shops will start facing out road bikes, as when LeMond was not racing. Road bike sales in the US, saw a low period between 1991 and 1999. Coincidence? I don't think so...

ericmurphy
06-10-2004, 01:20 PM
Ericmurphy, about your gear question, yes, they have upped the number of gears on those cheap mountain bikes. The $57 adult-sized bike has 15 speeds and another adult-sized aluminum frame mountain bike with shocks that I got new for under a hundred bucks at Target has 21 speeds.

Oops, I should have clarified. When I said "8-speed," I meant 8 cogs in back, which with a triple crankset means 24 gears total (most moderate-to-high-end bike shop mountain bikes have 9 cogs in back these days). So it sounds from what you've said that the answer is no, department store bikes do not yet have 8 cogs in back, and in fact some of them still only have 5 cogs in back.

Sorry for the confusion.

victoryfactory
06-14-2004, 07:36 AM
Your friendly neighborhood LBS should be happy that the "Wevil Wempire" has not yet fixed it's gaze on road bikes. When they choose to, the LBS will dissappear just like most small food markets, hardwear stores,
electronics stores, paint stores, lumber yards, plumbing electric and building
supplys, book stores, record stores, etc, etc....

VF, not that that's necessarily a bad thing.

Vancouverdave
02-04-2005, 02:35 PM
Probably because of the larger proportion of the bike market that consists of entry level "mountain bike shaped objects" and childrens' bikes. The numbers just aren't there in road bikes and for the most part the price points start too high. Seriously, I wonder how a $250 urban track bike/single speed would sell, made in mainland China with no-name components. I have no inside knowledge that anything like this is coming down the pike, but it is possible........

BumbleBeeDave
02-04-2005, 03:15 PM
Once Lance retires manufacturers are either going to have to find a new, equivalent hero who has cheated death, or try something else. Heroes who have cheated death AND who can with the TdF in a runaway are just not that common, and the American Bicycle industry does not have a good record of finding other things that work, aside from outsourcing all their jobs to Taiwan. (And note that mountain bikes don't qualify as that "something else." They were invented by Gary Fisher and friends, not the industry.)

BBDave

Kevan
02-04-2005, 03:37 PM
I knew this was the place where I could find a good job. I'm moving down to your neighborhood and will be guarding your bike 50 hrs a week. Based on your rate of $57 for guarding a bike for say 10 minutes that would be equivalent to an annual salary of, wait, including a 4 weeks paid vacation, which'll be much deserved,...... let me get the calculator ..... let's see here................................why, Wow!...That's almost $890,000!

I love you buddy! :banana:

dirtdigger88
02-04-2005, 06:27 PM
does that mean that it's probably not a real Serotta?

:crap:

that depends- did you buy it inside or out back- out back it is real- real hot that is....

lucas223 what shop in carbondale- I am an ex Saluki- I bought a Cannondale from the guy there in town- I stopped in a few months ago to say hi. . .

Jason

Lost Weekend
02-04-2005, 07:12 PM
I certainly hope that none of the other Ottrott owners read this thread. They will be as disgusted as I am to think that people buy and ride $57 bikes. I usually pay that much for some kid to watch my bike when I go into a local convenience store to buy a or a bottle of water.

Simply Snobbish Serotta Sandy

Good one Sandy :p

victoryfactory
02-06-2005, 07:39 AM
fifty seven bucks will also get you a very snazzy
carbon fiber (plastic) water bottle cage!!!!

(only one, though)

VF

TmcDet
02-06-2005, 09:41 AM
i have friends that work in bike shop and have seen many of these walmart bikes brought in to be worked on. For the most part all the bike shop does is adjust things and send the people on their way but what happens if they have to replace a part? I can just hear the customer, what do u mean 20 bucks for a chain the whole bike was only 57 bucks. I know that there is a place for cheaper road bikes but i am thinking more in the 200-300 range that are of a quality that a bike shop could sell them. It is very hard to get a bike down to this range but there should be a big market for it...actually I have seen several kid road bikes coming out now that are getting cheaper and that is for sure a market that needs to be tapped....last yr when i was looking for my daughter a bike the cheapest decent new bike i could find around was more in the range of 600-700

jerk
02-06-2005, 10:48 AM
because wall-mart sucks.

rhg
02-06-2005, 12:42 PM
<old person's alert!>

It has always been thus: kids are attracted to stupid crap. I mean, did having a Schwinn with high-rise handle bars and a banana seat help you ride further or better? No, obviously not. If having a "mountain" bike with surreally big, knobby tires makes you look cooler, well, by god you've got to have it. If having pants that would fit a size 48 waist comfortably make you look cool - so be it!

It's a good thing we adults aren't so subject to these fads. I mean - I NEED a Hummer! :butt: Really!

Grant McLean
07-07-2005, 11:21 PM
This is a low tech layman question... maybe it will turn out to be a commentary about society, legal issues, etc. Why is it that Wal-mart, Target, K-mart, etc. have HUGE racks of bikes of all shapes and sizes and they are all MOUNTAIN BIKES? Everybody rides these bikes primarily or exclusively on pavement. 20 years ago, the same types of stores had tons of bikes with high-pressure skinny tires and road type saddles and handle-bars. You'd think you would at least see one el-cheapo road bike there. I just bought a brand new $57 mountain bike at Target that is not a stripped-down one-speed bike with coaster brakes. It has all the general components that a road bike has like multi-gear sprockets on front and rear, hand brakes, nice paint-job, but with the mountain bike tire and wheel configuration, etc. It was even available in a lighter stiffer aluminum frame with shocks for $20 more! You can't even get most accesories for a road bike for $57. Why isn't there a $57 - $100 road bike at these stores for the regular person who wants to ride on the pavement? I'm new to this forum and this is my first posting so maybe this issue has been discussed in other threads, but I don't know why a mountain bike is the only option for the common pavement rider who should be able to enjoy the practicality and efficiency of a bike to ride to college, etc. like it used to be 20 years ago. Those huge mountain bike tires and wheels just don't roll efficiently and they take a lot of work which puts many people off from bike riding... and they must cost more to mass-produce since they use more rubber and aluminum. Many people in this generation have experienced bike-riding, but they have never had a ride on a regular road bike because of the total lack of availability in the common marketplace. Why is the local bike shop the only option with bottom-end road bikes _starting_ at $600? Why has this become an elitist expensive sport when bikes are such a practical invention and were refined into the road configuration many years ago? Why are we going backwards in technology? Is this a legal "liability" issue nowadays? Are the big general merchandise stores shying away from traffic-accident lawsuits that may be generated when a bike is ridden on the road by classifying the bikes for "off-road use only?" I'm sure someone out there who is smarter than me knows the answer to this problem that is keeping many non-rich folks from enjoying the freedom and practicality of riding a more efficient bike on paved roads. :)



http://tinyurl.com/b8gva


Ta DA!!

aLexis
07-08-2005, 12:00 AM
I enjoy that they put it in the Toys section i/o Sports.

Ahneida Ride
07-08-2005, 08:24 AM
Just remember that Sergio Walmarto Bicycles have a limited life span.

They know that most people will ride em just a fewe times and then
they will be collecting dust in the garage. THey are not built to last.
Most LBS don't even want to work on them.

Spinsistah
07-08-2005, 09:08 AM
I certainly hope that none of the other Ottrott owners read this thread. They will be as disgusted as I am to think that people buy and ride $57 bikes. I usually pay that much for some kid to watch my bike when I go into a local convenience store to buy a :banana: or a bottle of water.

Simply Snobbish Serotta Sandy
Wow Sandy, you actually go into the convenience store?? I just pay the kid to go get my water for me..................after all, the convenience store is a first cousin to Walmart................ :p

Grant McLean
07-08-2005, 10:20 AM
I enjoy that they put it in the Toys section i/o Sports.

My favorite part is:
Specifications
Shipping weight in pounds: 29.0
Product Measurement in inches: 31.0 x 51.0 x 7.5
Assembled Country of Origin: Imported
Components Country of Origin: Imported


I read in "BicycleRetailer" that if Walmart sells more than a few hundred thousand units, their supplier may consider adding another size (other than 57cm) which is the only size it comes in now.

I think E-Richie is spinning in his early grave....

-Grasshopper

Jeremy
07-08-2005, 10:30 AM
According to a recent article in Brain, Wal-mart will introduce a road bike. It will be a one size fits all (I think it will be close to a 56cm) aluminum frame w/alloy wheels and index shifting. It will use gripshift rotational style shifters on the top flats of the drop h-bars. They couldn't make the price point of $179.00 (I think) with STI style shifters. The h-bar will be a 2 piece unit that is joined after the shifters are installed and the seam will be hidden by the stem.

Jeremy

cdmc
07-08-2005, 07:22 PM
The bottom line is that there has been very little demand for low cost roadbikes like the old free spirits. Accordingly, stores don't carry them and they are not made.

The sad fact is most people who are looking for an inexpensive fun bike end up buying one of these pieces of junk that is improperly assembled, doesn't shift properly, and then they hate it. The problem is that these same people buy based on the principle that if 24 gears is good, 27 is better, and if front suspension is better than none, then full suspension is better. Imagine how much better their riding experience would be if they bought a $100 single speed comfort bike. Problem is they don't sell so nobody makes them.

Companies do make inexpensive quality bikes, and they make up the majority of bike shops sales. You can get trek Navigator for $230, a trek cruiser single speed for $209, or a hybrid for $260. Other companies like Fuji, Giant, and Jamis have options for $200. The problem is that most people don't want to spend that much. Here is a great article from the National Bicycle Dealers Association actually discussing the breakdown of sales:

Bicycle sales are accomplished in this country through four primary and distinct channels of distribution the specialty bicycle retailer, the mass merchant, full-line sporting goods stores, and "other," which is comprised of a mixture of retailers, including multi-sport stores such as REI, outdoor retailers and mail order.

Department, discount and toy stores sell mostly price-oriented products. Approximately 74% of bicycle units were sold through the mass merchant channel in 2004, but this represented 37% of the dollars due to the declining average selling price of $69.

The approximately 5,000 specialty bicycle retailers feature higher quality merchandise, and also rely on adding value through added customer services such as bike fitting, expert assembly and repair. This channel commanded approximately 16% of the market in terms of unit sales in 2004, but 47.5% of the dollars, a dominant dollar share. Dealer price points generally start at around $200, with the average at approximately $400, though prices can range into the thousands. While the number of specialty bicycle stores has declined in recent years due to consolidation, this is the only distribution channel that maintained or increased average retail bicycle selling price. The recent trend has been for mass merchant gains in unit sales market share, but stability in dollar market share due to declining prices in the mass segment.

Chain sporting goods stores sold approximately 5% of the bicycles in 2004, and 9.7% of the dollars, at an average price of $270. These are merchants that fall somewhere between mass merchant and bicycle dealers on the spectrum, and include merchants such as The Sports Authority, Champs Sports, JumboSports, Sportmart and Big 5.

The "other" category sold 4% of the units, representing 5.7% of the dollars, with an average price of $199.

Specialty bike dealers commanded the vast majority of parts and accessories sales, and virtually 100% of the service market. They dominate the market in bicycles selling for $250 and up.

Bottom line is we really do have a skewed view of bike costs.

Kevan
07-08-2005, 07:37 PM
cough it up! You only paid me a quarter the last time we rode together and you were in that deli for well over an hour refreshing yourself, as you put it.

Kevin
07-09-2005, 07:38 AM
I certainly hope that none of the other Ottrott owners read this thread. They will be as disgusted as I am to think that people buy and ride $57 bikes. I usually pay that much for some kid to watch my bike when I go into a local convenience store to buy a :banana: or a bottle of water.

Simply Snobbish Serotta Sandy

Sandy,

When I took delivery of my Ottrott, the "K" model, as opposed to the low end "S" model you purchased, it came with its own domestique. She fetches me water on demand. If I get a flat she gives me her bike to ride while she fixes the flat. She then catches up to me (which is not very hard to do) and gives me back my bike. When the ride is over she gives me a massage and washes down the bike. I can't believe that you have to stop and wait for some kid to run into a convience store to get you water.

Kevin

Sandy
07-09-2005, 08:07 AM
I just sold my Stupid S model and bought 5 of the King K models. What is my domestique's name? Hopefully Kinky Karen. :)

Kandy

santacruzxt
11-30-2006, 02:59 PM
maybe the reason that you don't see any road bikes on the shelves is the fact that Americans are getting too fat to even be able to fit the geometry of a road bike. Thanks to those like Ford that make it easier to be bigger by enlarging seat sizes or all the restaraunts advertising the LARGEST meals....man this winter weather is turning me into the grinch.

Mud
11-30-2006, 03:37 PM
but I actually know something. Some years ago I actually saw the prototype for a $149 Walmart road bike. One of their major suppliers is located here in NJ and the people in charge at that time are riding friends. Why it did not go into the store I don't know, never thought to ask. But there seems to be a market for dollar a pound bikes.

Kevan
11-30-2006, 04:00 PM
http://www.walmart.com/catalog/product.do?product_id=3663046

http://www.walmart.com/catalog/product.do?product_id=4698938

http://www.walmart.com/catalog/product.do?product_id=4994755

http://www.walmart.com/catalog/product.do?product_id=4994756

Last one sized: 20", 22", 25"

Steelhead
11-30-2006, 04:26 PM
I have yet to see a mountain bike in a Wal Mart. I have seen toy bicycles in Wal Mart but never a mountain or road bike. :rolleyes:

Erik.Lazdins
11-30-2006, 04:29 PM
Much as I've resisted this thread it has drawn me in!

I believe the reason that WMT sells the "mountain" type bike as opposed to a road bike has a number of reasons.

1. Americans have been fed a diet of lies that road bikes are not as comfortable as these "moutain" bikes. That is a piece of bovine schoisizm if ever there was one. These comfort bikes put you on your butt so riding more than 15 minutes becomes a pain.

2. This lie is perpetuated by the fact that most non-avid cyclists have had the pain in butt caused by a supposed comfort-bike - then they see a smaller saddle on a road bike and assume this would hurt even more. Or they see a wide softish looking saddle and assume or are steered to assume that this is more comfortable.

3. I believe the economies of scale have swung in the favor of these "mountain/comfort" bikes so we don't see many road bikes.

I realize I've left a lot out here but I'll stop for now.

Thanks for reading

gt6267a
11-30-2006, 04:35 PM
http://www.walmart.com/catalog/product.do?product_id=3663046

http://www.walmart.com/catalog/product.do?product_id=4698938

http://www.walmart.com/catalog/product.do?product_id=4994755

http://www.walmart.com/catalog/product.do?product_id=4994756

Last one sized: 20", 22", 25"

the description from the website: The classic is back, updated and upgraded for today's more aggressive riding styles. Schwinn's handcrafted, lightweight-aluminum Varsity road frame is built up with Shimano 7-speed shifters and a 14-speed Shimano drivetrain for a ride that's equally responsive on hills and flats. Virtually bombproof alloy roadie pedals round out the package.


i am wondering what they mean by hand crafted. i seriously that frame was made by hand ?

stevep
11-30-2006, 04:54 PM
at the end of the original bike boom.. several times what are now classic bikes were sold off to liquidators.
i remember
atala professional ( all nuovo record ) bikes sold complete for $200. the bargain center in quincy mass had probably 100 of these bikes..sold pretty quickly. they had no idea what they were... just bikes
i bought a few campy record equipped maseratis for $200 from a customs liquidator in boston... nice bikes...never heard of the brand again
raleigh had a huge warehouse in boston that they moved. when they did they closed out hundreds of raleigh internationals for as i remember $200 ea and raleigh pros ( much better bikes ) for $300.
the shop i worked for at the time bought about 300 of these in assortment.
wish i had a few now as the saying always goes.

stevep
11-30-2006, 04:55 PM
the description from the website: The classic is back, updated and upgraded for today's more aggressive riding styles. Schwinn's handcrafted, lightweight-aluminum Varsity road frame is built up with Shimano 7-speed shifters and a 14-speed Shimano drivetrain for a ride that's equally responsive on hills and flats. Virtually bombproof alloy roadie pedals round out the package.


i am wondering what they mean by hand crafted. i seriously that frame was made by hand ?

those bikes are made by atmo. hand made. thats why his backlog is so long...hes working his tail off building these thinmgs for $100.

dirtdigger88
11-30-2006, 05:25 PM
hey at least this bike can run 28c tires

Jason

Grant McLean
11-30-2006, 05:33 PM
i am wondering what they mean by hand crafted. i seriously that frame was made by hand ?

you're thinking they were made with feet?

g

Karin Kirk
11-30-2006, 05:43 PM
What is my domestique's name? Hopefully Kinky Karen. :)

Kandy
Phew! Luckily I can see by the improper spelling that you are not referring to me. :)

I think the cheap mountain bikes are popular because they are the bicycle equivalent of the POS SUVs that Americans feel they (we) can't do without.

Think about the similarities:
-no actual off-road capabilities, despite the "rugged" styling
-perceived saftey and comfort benefits, again, not based on actual performance
-yet somehow terrifically popular.

Anyone know where I can get a $57 MTB equipped with a GPS navigation system?

oracle
11-30-2006, 06:28 PM
my guess would be that target has the market cornered.... (http://www.target.com/gp/detail.html?ie=UTF8&frombrowse=1&asin=B000G221WM)

JohnS
11-30-2006, 06:46 PM
[url]http://www.walmart.com/catalog/product.do?product_id=4994756

Last one sized: 20", 22", 25" Features & Specifications


The GMC Yukon XL is a lightweight road bike that can be purchased with your choice of a 20", 22" or 25" aluminum frame and fork. Alloy components makes your pedaling energy more efficient, and integrated Shimano STI shifters and levers help ease riding and braking.

Play it safe! Always wear a helmet and safety pads when you ride. See our recommendations below.


Did dnovo write that last paragraph for Walmart? :p

palincss
11-30-2006, 07:15 PM
Dude, I think you also nailed the issue of "leaning over the handlebars" which doesn't sound appealing to the layperson rider... so the road bike doesn't look comfy and cushy to the average yuppie that wants to have a couple of bikes parked in the garage just in case they may want to get on a bike some day... I think you hit the heart of it as far as mass marketing goes. :bike:

In fact, most of the time, don't they call it "all hunched over"?

My, that does sound painful... unless, of course, you turn those drop bars around, so they point upwards and look like the bars on those "artistic cycling" bikes.

Ahneida Ride
11-30-2006, 11:23 PM
Perhaps another reason is that Mtn Bikes are more amenable to a
"decent" fit.

Sergio Walmarto is not going to stock sizes from 52 to 65 in two or
three models. Thus the road bike will not fit correctly, instigating pain and
discomfort and the eventual exit from the sport.

Again I have to ask, What is the life expectancy of a Wally Word bike?
3 months or 1000 miles?

Steelhead
12-01-2006, 09:36 AM
Here is another spin on this - the last shop I worked in would not service Wal Mart bikes - or bikes from Target, Sears, etc...that was their policy that they would not work on them. It was a fairly high end shop but every now and then we'd get a Huffy, Next, Roadmaster etc...and have to turn them away. The shop wouldn't take them because there really wasn't much they could do with them and as soon as they sent them out the door the owner would go out, ride it again and be right back saying that it "still didn't work right".

What do you think about that??

Birddog
12-01-2006, 10:32 AM
What do you think about that??
A local shop here gets a fair amount of business from improperly set up and assembled mass merchandised bikes. They do work on them, but grudgingly, and they let them out of the shop with a slurry of warnings. The wrenches hate em.

Birddog

Bittersweet
12-01-2006, 11:29 AM
Upright bicycles are more comfortable. The mountain biking scene is way cooler if you are a kid. If you are an adult, the baggy shorts and shirts mountain bikers wear look way cooler than the gay-vague costumes us road riders wear. No self respecting, NFL loving, beer drinking, guys guy is going to ride a road bike - period. Road bikes are for fitness freaks or the loser who lost his license to a third DWI.

Alan Schietzsch
07-11-2007, 10:45 PM
Here up North, Canadian Tire is marketing the exact same bike as the "GMC" pictured earlier in the thread.

They are much worse on closer inspection - stamped dropouts, bubbly welds, mis-aligned rim joints that are guaranteed to THUMP if you brake, etc. Scary!

Ahneida Ride
07-11-2007, 10:54 PM
[QUOTE=Bittersweet]Upright bicycles are more comfortable. If you are an adult, the baggy shorts and shirts mountain bikers wear look way cooler than the gay-vague costumes us road riders wear. No self respecting, NFL loving, beer drinking, guys guy is going to ride a road bike - period. /QUOTE]

My Legend fit is rather upright ....

I too get VERY nervous every time I don a pair of Lycra shorts. :confused:
I'll never really feel dressed in them. :eek:
I ride with a high visibility shirt and a Bell Metro Helmet, so I don't look
too freakish.

There are numerous NFL loving, Beer guzing, 250 pound monsters here,
and they ride bikes and love it.

rwsaunders
07-12-2007, 01:32 AM
Because you'd spend too much time riding and not enough time spending money. Do you think that preserving Walt's brain in liquid nitrogen is cheap?