Chinese company, not US. Does that even matter? Transparency does.

#2
I agree with you on the transparency issue. As for the quality of the bike, all you can really do is read the specs and watch/read the reviews and make your best judgement about the bike. Warranty? Who knows what you will get.

But on the resale value? That's an industry problem from the smallest to largest brands out there. Once that bike is yours the value drops like a stone, period. Since I've bought my first few ebikes over a year ago I've continued to watch the searches I set up on eBay ... and it's brutal. If you thought regular bikes didn't hold their value then you'll soon discover it's worse for ebikes. My opinion -- Once you buy it then enjoy the heck out of it because whatever you spent is a sunk cost.
 

George S.

Well-Known Member
#4
I'm reposting something a customer sent in about FLX bikes. I think it's important for our community to educate newcomer into the world of ebikes in an honest way and make sure they understand that they get what they pay for:

David Schorr (via Facebook)
I had a nice phone conversation with Robert Rast about the falling resale value of our FLX bikes. I came away with a clearer understanding of the FLX business model. I don't wish them any harm, but I do think that you all and all future potential buyers should be put on notice of exactly how FLX does business.
When I tried to pin Robert down to what address FLX uses in the U.S., he told me there wasn't any. He and Pete live in China. FLX is registered to do business in China. They pay no taxes in the U.S. or the E.U. and they are not subject to any regulation by any state or government outside of China.
Don't get me wrong. This is a brilliant way to do business!
Here's what they did... They set up shop in China and then used the internet to raise money. They came to the U.S. for some meetings and to film themselves riding around San Francisco on the FLX bikes. The company never had a physical presence in the U.S. They created a nice web site. Then they set up their phones with a 415 area code. You dial a 415 area code and expect to be talking to San Francisco, right? They set their phones up to ring the phones in their pockets in China. You call a 415 phone number and, without really thinking about it, you are talking to someone in China.
I, along with a lot of other customers, thought I was dealing with a couple of young entrepreneurs based in the U.S. importing bikes from China. They sure look young, energetic, and honest don't they? The early videos that they released look like they had to go to China to kick some butt at the factory so we could get our bikes back in the U.S. Remember those? The fact is, they never had to go back to China. They were there all along.
Remember when containers 5 and 6 were held up at the port for so long? That's because (emphasis here) there was nobody on the ground in the United States to do whatever needed to be done to move the process along. Remember the video they posted of themselves driving down the California coast from San Francisco (while playing air guitar) so they could kick butt at the port of Long Beach? The delay took so long because they had to fly in from China and they landed in San Francisco. Why didn't they just fly direct to LAX? Clearly, they wanted to bolster the image that they were based in San Francisco.
There is a very good reason why they are based in China. A good reason why they live in China and why their assets are in China. It's one word.... liability.
Companies in the U.S. and the E.U. have to spend buckets of money on insurance and attorneys because if something goes wrong with one of their products, they get sued.
Robert and Pete don't have to worry about getting sued. If you are riding your FLX at top speed and the frame cracks in half and you end up skidding down the street, you can't sue them. If some part of your FLX bike fails and a bystander gets injured, they will sue you, but you can't turn around and sue FLX.
That's because they don't exist in the U.S. or the E.U. If you can find out where they are in China and actually go through the trouble of getting them served in China, you might actually win at trial in your home country. But then, you'll never be able to collect. Their assets are in China and no Chinese court is going to recognize a foreign judgment against a Chinese company.
That's why FLX can sell their bikes at an incredibly low price point compared to the competition.
Now, I don't have a problem with this. I buy stuff from China all the time with my eyes open and I know that I have no recourse if something goes south.
The difference with FLX, and the thing I do have a problem with, is that they don't tell you this up front. In fact, Pete and Robert have done everything possible to hide the fact that they are Chinese company masquerading as a U.S. company.
I know there will be some apologists among you who will find fault with some or all of what I have written here. When one finds one's self hoodwinked, it is a natural response to come to the aid of the hoodwinkers.
To those of you who really want to defend the honor of Pete and Robert with every snarky comment you can muster, I ask that you take a deep breath and think about what has transpired with this company over the past year. Watch those old videos again and ask yourself, "Are these young, energetic people really based in the U.S., or are they just pretending?
Some people are calling for FLX to upgrade their motors at cost or to offer this or that warranty. A warranty is worthless, by the way, if you can't enforce it.
I'd be happy with some transparency.
Luna made a YT video showing the FLX on a hill and the FLX didn't do very well. It's a very small motor and I doubt it sheds heat very well. FLX promised a torque sensor. The video isn't there anymore and I heard something about FLX threatening to sue Luna. So maybe that is why the video isn't there anymore. That's wild. You can't sue FLX, but FLX will come back to the US to sue you? Maybe that explains why Luna is selling FLX stuff, undercutting them on price?

If there were true ebike journalists, someone might have talked to the FLX team during the campaign, nailed some of this down. But things don't work that way and there is a general war on journalists.
 
#5
I'm reposting something a customer sent in about FLX bikes. I think it's important for our community to educate newcomer into the world of ebikes in an honest way and make sure they understand that they get what they pay for:

David Schorr (via Facebook)
I had a nice phone conversation with Robert Rast about the falling resale value of our FLX bikes. I came away with a clearer understanding of the FLX business model. I don't wish them any harm, but I do think that you all and all future potential buyers should be put on notice of exactly how FLX does business.
When I tried to pin Robert down to what address FLX uses in the U.S., he told me there wasn't any. He and Pete live in China. FLX is registered to do business in China. They pay no taxes in the U.S. or the E.U. and they are not subject to any regulation by any state or government outside of China.
Don't get me wrong. This is a brilliant way to do business!
Here's what they did... They set up shop in China and then used the internet to raise money. They came to the U.S. for some meetings and to film themselves riding around San Francisco on the FLX bikes. The company never had a physical presence in the U.S. They created a nice web site. Then they set up their phones with a 415 area code. You dial a 415 area code and expect to be talking to San Francisco, right? They set their phones up to ring the phones in their pockets in China. You call a 415 phone number and, without really thinking about it, you are talking to someone in China.
I, along with a lot of other customers, thought I was dealing with a couple of young entrepreneurs based in the U.S. importing bikes from China. They sure look young, energetic, and honest don't they? The early videos that they released look like they had to go to China to kick some butt at the factory so we could get our bikes back in the U.S. Remember those? The fact is, they never had to go back to China. They were there all along.
Remember when containers 5 and 6 were held up at the port for so long? That's because (emphasis here) there was nobody on the ground in the United States to do whatever needed to be done to move the process along. Remember the video they posted of themselves driving down the California coast from San Francisco (while playing air guitar) so they could kick butt at the port of Long Beach? The delay took so long because they had to fly in from China and they landed in San Francisco. Why didn't they just fly direct to LAX? Clearly, they wanted to bolster the image that they were based in San Francisco.
There is a very good reason why they are based in China. A good reason why they live in China and why their assets are in China. It's one word.... liability.
Companies in the U.S. and the E.U. have to spend buckets of money on insurance and attorneys because if something goes wrong with one of their products, they get sued.
Robert and Pete don't have to worry about getting sued. If you are riding your FLX at top speed and the frame cracks in half and you end up skidding down the street, you can't sue them. If some part of your FLX bike fails and a bystander gets injured, they will sue you, but you can't turn around and sue FLX.
That's because they don't exist in the U.S. or the E.U. If you can find out where they are in China and actually go through the trouble of getting them served in China, you might actually win at trial in your home country. But then, you'll never be able to collect. Their assets are in China and no Chinese court is going to recognize a foreign judgment against a Chinese company.
That's why FLX can sell their bikes at an incredibly low price point compared to the competition.
Now, I don't have a problem with this. I buy stuff from China all the time with my eyes open and I know that I have no recourse if something goes south.
The difference with FLX, and the thing I do have a problem with, is that they don't tell you this up front. In fact, Pete and Robert have done everything possible to hide the fact that they are Chinese company masquerading as a U.S. company.
I know there will be some apologists among you who will find fault with some or all of what I have written here. When one finds one's self hoodwinked, it is a natural response to come to the aid of the hoodwinkers.
To those of you who really want to defend the honor of Pete and Robert with every snarky comment you can muster, I ask that you take a deep breath and think about what has transpired with this company over the past year. Watch those old videos again and ask yourself, "Are these young, energetic people really based in the U.S., or are they just pretending?
Some people are calling for FLX to upgrade their motors at cost or to offer this or that warranty. A warranty is worthless, by the way, if you can't enforce it.
I'd be happy with some transparency.
Great information!
 

JoePah

Well-Known Member
#7
Did you buy this FLX eBike on Indigogo? Cause it says they are from Shanghai China... There is nothing on their webpage that says where they are from, if there is a USA office, and their warranty page is very uninformative about where you ship the bike for warranty work.

At this point of time with Internet shopping, everyone should be suspicious about any Seller and their location, their physical presence, and their reputation. It takes about 10 minutes of web searching to find the needed information...
 
#8
Did you buy this FLX eBike on Indigogo? Cause it says they are from Shanghai China... There is nothing on their webpage that says where they are from, if there is a USA office, and their warranty page is very uninformative about where you ship the bike for warranty work.

At this point of time with Internet shopping, everyone should be suspicious about any Seller and their location, their physical presence, and their reputation. It takes about 10 minutes of web searching to find the needed information...
I don't have an FLX but Like I posted above their FB page says "SF based business" a little misleading that's all!
 
#9
I'm reposting something a customer sent in about FLX bikes. I think it's important for our community to educate newcomer into the world of ebikes in an honest way and make sure they understand that they get what they pay for:

David Schorr (via Facebook)
I had a nice phone conversation with Robert Rast about the falling resale value of our FLX bikes. I came away with a clearer understanding of the FLX business model. I don't wish them any harm, but I do think that you all and all future potential buyers should be put on notice of exactly how FLX does business.
When I tried to pin Robert down to what address FLX uses in the U.S., he told me there wasn't any. He and Pete live in China. FLX is registered to do business in China. They pay no taxes in the U.S. or the E.U. and they are not subject to any regulation by any state or government outside of China.
Don't get me wrong. This is a brilliant way to do business!
Here's what they did... They set up shop in China and then used the internet to raise money. They came to the U.S. for some meetings and to film themselves riding around San Francisco on the FLX bikes. The company never had a physical presence in the U.S. They created a nice web site. Then they set up their phones with a 415 area code. You dial a 415 area code and expect to be talking to San Francisco, right? They set their phones up to ring the phones in their pockets in China. You call a 415 phone number and, without really thinking about it, you are talking to someone in China.
I, along with a lot of other customers, thought I was dealing with a couple of young entrepreneurs based in the U.S. importing bikes from China. They sure look young, energetic, and honest don't they? The early videos that they released look like they had to go to China to kick some butt at the factory so we could get our bikes back in the U.S. Remember those? The fact is, they never had to go back to China. They were there all along.
Remember when containers 5 and 6 were held up at the port for so long? That's because (emphasis here) there was nobody on the ground in the United States to do whatever needed to be done to move the process along. Remember the video they posted of themselves driving down the California coast from San Francisco (while playing air guitar) so they could kick butt at the port of Long Beach? The delay took so long because they had to fly in from China and they landed in San Francisco. Why didn't they just fly direct to LAX? Clearly, they wanted to bolster the image that they were based in San Francisco.
There is a very good reason why they are based in China. A good reason why they live in China and why their assets are in China. It's one word.... liability.
Companies in the U.S. and the E.U. have to spend buckets of money on insurance and attorneys because if something goes wrong with one of their products, they get sued.
Robert and Pete don't have to worry about getting sued. If you are riding your FLX at top speed and the frame cracks in half and you end up skidding down the street, you can't sue them. If some part of your FLX bike fails and a bystander gets injured, they will sue you, but you can't turn around and sue FLX.
That's because they don't exist in the U.S. or the E.U. If you can find out where they are in China and actually go through the trouble of getting them served in China, you might actually win at trial in your home country. But then, you'll never be able to collect. Their assets are in China and no Chinese court is going to recognize a foreign judgment against a Chinese company.
That's why FLX can sell their bikes at an incredibly low price point compared to the competition.
Now, I don't have a problem with this. I buy stuff from China all the time with my eyes open and I know that I have no recourse if something goes south.
The difference with FLX, and the thing I do have a problem with, is that they don't tell you this up front. In fact, Pete and Robert have done everything possible to hide the fact that they are Chinese company masquerading as a U.S. company.
I know there will be some apologists among you who will find fault with some or all of what I have written here. When one finds one's self hoodwinked, it is a natural response to come to the aid of the hoodwinkers.
To those of you who really want to defend the honor of Pete and Robert with every snarky comment you can muster, I ask that you take a deep breath and think about what has transpired with this company over the past year. Watch those old videos again and ask yourself, "Are these young, energetic people really based in the U.S., or are they just pretending?
Some people are calling for FLX to upgrade their motors at cost or to offer this or that warranty. A warranty is worthless, by the way, if you can't enforce it.
I'd be happy with some transparency.
I think , in the interest of transparency Roshan, you should have stated in your opening post that you own a competing e-bike brand and you could benefit from posting a less than flattering piece on one of your competitors ...
 
#10
Thanks for the post Roshan. Hope your eBike company, Biktrix is doing well. We're not really in the business of trying to spread falsities and negativity about other companies. It's easy to do in this day and age but we'd rather devote time and resources into bike building.
In response to David's comment, we certainly haven't tried to mislead anyone as to our whereabouts. The majority of our customers know very well that we actually operate in China AND the US, largely due to all the videos we've posted pertaining to the fact.
The truth is, we could easily be based in the US. Rob is from Sacramento and I love the US (UK citizen). We'd love to be based there full time but in the interest of ensuring the highest quality products possible at the most competitive price, that just isn't practical. Living and working in China is incredibly demanding but we're more than willing to make the personal sacrifice in order to make FLX succeed.
We're in contact with all of our factories every single day. The lack of time difference makes it far easier to operate and we regularly jump in the car and go and visit our factories. Not just a few weeks for production but for every minor design change / pre production meeting / conveyance of any important idea etc etc etc. Constant communication and supervision is absolutely critical out here if you strive for perfection.
Rob has been in China for seven years now and myself, the last three. I rotate for three months in Shanghai and three months in California. Guess which location I prefer?
When containers 5 and 6 were delayed, Leah and I drove 7 hours from the FLX office / house in Rohnert Park, California to our fulfillment center in LA. We resolved the issue and then drove the 7 hours back that night. Fly in from China? No idea where that idea spawned from but it's 100% incorrect.
We're officially registered in the US and the UK and are therefore completely liable in both countries. It's not just legal liability though, we also have strong personal and moral ethics (hence you won't find us bad mouthing other companies... online at least anyway).
I think this post is a little old now which is great for us as we can look back and prove that any warranty claim or any other customer concern matter has either already been resolved or will definitely be resolved soon.
The 415 number is indeed a local SF number. We set that up as initially, we didn't have anyone in the US when I was in China. The company started off with just Rob and me with a dream. Instead of using our Chinese numbers, which would have cost a fortune for our backers to reach us on, we thought it was reasonable to set up a call forwarding service so our backers could call us on local rates. We answered that phone religiously at all hours, day and night. Even when sleeping on the floor in our makeshift office in the main factory during the early days. Not sure how that can be viewed as dishonest?
Honestly hope is doesn't look like we go back to China occasionally to 'kick butt' at the factory. The reality is, we're here 'kicking butt' at all our factories all of the time. This might not make sense to some people who have the fortune of living full time in the US or Canada (Roshan), but in a few years we'll prove that this sacrifice will have all been worth it by delivering the best eBikes in existence.
Thank you.
Pete. P@FLX.BIKE.
 

Rooster

Active Member
#11
I'm reposting something a customer sent in about FLX bikes. I think it's important for our community to educate newcomer into the world of ebikes in an honest way and make sure they understand that they get what they pay for:

David Schorr (via Facebook)
I had a nice phone conversation with Robert Rast about the falling resale value of our FLX bikes. I came away with a clearer understanding of the FLX business model. I don't wish them any harm, but I do think that you all and all future potential buyers should be put on notice of exactly how FLX does business.
When I tried to pin Robert down to what address FLX uses in the U.S., he told me there wasn't any. He and Pete live in China. FLX is registered to do business in China. They pay no taxes in the U.S. or the E.U. and they are not subject to any regulation by any state or government outside of China.
Don't get me wrong. This is a brilliant way to do business!
Here's what they did... They set up shop in China and then used the internet to raise money. They came to the U.S. for some meetings and to film themselves riding around San Francisco on the FLX bikes. The company never had a physical presence in the U.S. They created a nice web site. Then they set up their phones with a 415 area code. You dial a 415 area code and expect to be talking to San Francisco, right? They set their phones up to ring the phones in their pockets in China. You call a 415 phone number and, without really thinking about it, you are talking to someone in China.
I, along with a lot of other customers, thought I was dealing with a couple of young entrepreneurs based in the U.S. importing bikes from China. They sure look young, energetic, and honest don't they? The early videos that they released look like they had to go to China to kick some butt at the factory so we could get our bikes back in the U.S. Remember those? The fact is, they never had to go back to China. They were there all along.
Remember when containers 5 and 6 were held up at the port for so long? That's because (emphasis here) there was nobody on the ground in the United States to do whatever needed to be done to move the process along. Remember the video they posted of themselves driving down the California coast from San Francisco (while playing air guitar) so they could kick butt at the port of Long Beach? The delay took so long because they had to fly in from China and they landed in San Francisco. Why didn't they just fly direct to LAX? Clearly, they wanted to bolster the image that they were based in San Francisco.
There is a very good reason why they are based in China. A good reason why they live in China and why their assets are in China. It's one word.... liability.
Companies in the U.S. and the E.U. have to spend buckets of money on insurance and attorneys because if something goes wrong with one of their products, they get sued.
Robert and Pete don't have to worry about getting sued. If you are riding your FLX at top speed and the frame cracks in half and you end up skidding down the street, you can't sue them. If some part of your FLX bike fails and a bystander gets injured, they will sue you, but you can't turn around and sue FLX.
That's because they don't exist in the U.S. or the E.U. If you can find out where they are in China and actually go through the trouble of getting them served in China, you might actually win at trial in your home country. But then, you'll never be able to collect. Their assets are in China and no Chinese court is going to recognize a foreign judgment against a Chinese company.
That's why FLX can sell their bikes at an incredibly low price point compared to the competition.
Now, I don't have a problem with this. I buy stuff from China all the time with my eyes open and I know that I have no recourse if something goes south.
The difference with FLX, and the thing I do have a problem with, is that they don't tell you this up front. In fact, Pete and Robert have done everything possible to hide the fact that they are Chinese company masquerading as a U.S. company.
I know there will be some apologists among you who will find fault with some or all of what I have written here. When one finds one's self hoodwinked, it is a natural response to come to the aid of the hoodwinkers.
To those of you who really want to defend the honor of Pete and Robert with every snarky comment you can muster, I ask that you take a deep breath and think about what has transpired with this company over the past year. Watch those old videos again and ask yourself, "Are these young, energetic people really based in the U.S., or are they just pretending?
Some people are calling for FLX to upgrade their motors at cost or to offer this or that warranty. A warranty is worthless, by the way, if you can't enforce it.
I'd be happy with some transparency.
Sounds to me like the ebike business is becoming quite the cut throat business.
 
#12
Update.
Our new warehouse / shop front / US office is located at:
4170 Morena Blvd. Ste D
San Diego, CA 92117
We've just taken possession of the keys to this new facility so we'll be up and running in a few weeks. Please keep an eye on our FB page for more updates.
Basically what that means now is, we'll have fully operational facilities in the US as well as China. Team China will continue to ensure the highest quality control on every single one of our bikes. The UK / Dutch / Chinese Engineering team in China will also be responsible for the majority of our extensive research and development program.
Even though we've had a presence in the US the entire time we've been in business, we'll now be able to step up customer support yet another level and also have bikes available to test ride. We're also taking over the fulfilment side of the company so purchases will be sent out even faster.
Please let me know of any other US operated eBike company that has made this sort of commitment to building and selling bikes...
Thanks for the continued support, hopefully see you all at the new facility v.soon!
P.s. There's a micro brewery located directly next door if awesome eBikes aren't already enough of a draw for you!
Pete
FLX