Giant No Longer a Value Brand? A Tale of Two Similar E-bikes, Two Years & $900 apart

Ebiker01

Well-Known Member
Specialized e-bike
Their marketing is brilliant , subliminal messages in the ads work too and it got a lot of newbies to buy them. Paint job is very poor but it says on the downtube something special and their customers EGO is bigger then an 🐘 . Soooo it's a BIG power statement, hey i'm special 😉.

One can look at BULLS, ORBEA, BH, CANYON, CUBE and a few other top European brands that have a much better value. Should have put BH first but Mr. Stefan Mikes has an intense non seasonal allergy to this brand.
 

StevenC56

Active Member
Region
USA
I think Specialized makes great bikes. I would own one myself if their pricing was a bit closer to the competition, and their dealers were flexible with selling prices. I bought another major brand last year's model (2020) new in the box and got over 30% off MSRP.
 

onlineaddy

Well-Known Member
Region
USA
City
San Diego

jabberwocky

Well-Known Member
In 20 years of cycling I've never owned a Specialized, but know lots of people who do and they do make a fine bike. Depending on the price point you're shopping at and the type of bike you want, they can vary between price competitive and wildly overpriced.

Arguing about brands on a large forum is (IMO) dumb because there isn't that much difference between any of the major brands and in my mind it comes down to what dealer you actually have access to and like more than anything else, coupled with what geometry you tend to prefer (Trek makes a fine bike, for example, but their approach to bike geometry just doesn't mesh with what I like and I've just never ridden one I really liked).

You can't shop for bikes based on a spreadsheet.
 

Ebiker01

Well-Known Member
Arguing about brands on a large forum is (IMO) dumb because there isn't that much difference between any of the major brands
This happens all the time here on many threads . The folks who actually gave ur post likes do it too LOL...

Does that make the ebikers who argue about the brands dumb ? That's kind of dumb logic imo.

And NO ,there are many MAJOR differences between the big brands.

For ex. just 1 out of many FACTS : TREK has their OWN stores in NA. Specialized DOES NOT .
 

jabberwocky

Well-Known Member
This happens all the time here on many threads . The folks who actually gave ur post likes do it too LOL...

Does that make the ebikers who argue about the brands dumb ? That's kind of dumb logic imo.

And NO ,there are many MAJOR differences between the big brands.

For ex. just 1 out of many FACTS : TREK has their OWN stores in NA. Specialized DOES NOT .

Eh. Trek may have factory owned stores, but most stores that deal Trek or Specialized (and to a slightly lesser extent Giant) basically function like factory stores anyway even if not owned directly by Trek/Spec/Giant. Their dealer agreement probably dictates what percentage of their sales has to be the primary brand, dictates how prominently that brand needs to be displayed, etc. Generally you can't become a Trek/Spec dealer if there is already a shop dealing Trek/Spec in that area. Its one way the large players throw their weight around. Its also why the large companies have complete part and accessory lines (bars/cranks/saddles/etc, even bags, racks and clothes). They want to be a one stop shop.

My comment is that, mostly, there isn't that much difference between a Specialized and a Trek and a Giant (and many smaller brands) for most bikes in a given price range. Starting your shopping by saying "Giant is awesome and Trek and Specialized sucks" is dumb. Trek makes a good bike, Specialized makes a good bike, Giant makes a good bike. If you say "I want a class 3 ebike with gravel geometry running drops with clearance for 45s and the ability to go 50 miles on rough surfaces while carrying a light load" then we can discuss the options (that example takes Trek out of the running, because they dont offer a drop bar gravel ebike, and Giants and Specializeds options are very different). Nothing wrong with comparing bikes, and there will be real differences between them depending on what youre looking for. But that doesn't mean one sucks and the other is awesome.
 

Ebiker01

Well-Known Member
Giant is awesome and Trek and Specialized sucks" is dumb.
I didn't said that . My opinion: Trek is awesome , Giant is kind of 3/4 awesome and Specialized , look it's a great bike or brand if u like, but being so overpriced by about 15-40% depending on the models , doesn't make it that great for me and a few others.

And besides the GSTC brands, let me add BULLS , ORBEA and YAMAHA which based on price/performance r THE most awesome right now in the range of 2.5-6.5k price.

But enough of this b/c it's deviating from the main thread. Enjoy the ride whatever brand it is !
 
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Alvin1957

Member
Region
USA
City
Midlothian, TX
That's why I never considered a Specialized e-bike or acoustic bike for that matter. They are already priced quite high compared to equally equipped models from other brands , and the dealers seem to have a "that's the price, take it or leave it" attitude.
Hey there,
Seems that I agree. Started with a 2014 Specialized Crossroads Elite (return to biking after long absence). Reasonably priced. Two years later picked up a 2016 Awol Elite. Relatively more expensive than competitors but easily available at the time. Still, very happy with the ride. In 2019, the Turbo Vado was far beyond where I was willing to go while the Giant products were attractively priced. The local Specialized dealers are great guys and very helpful but the price was the price.
 

PedalUma

Well-Known Member
Region
USA
Dealers sign an agreement to all sell at MARC this is the Manufacture's set price, continent wide. Unless the item is blemished or damaged or used. Side bonuses such as, loyalty items, bonus gifts, dealer after market service incentives, prime race tickets, are not counted against MARC. Ask if they have a blem in stock. And some touch up paint for a tool drop nick on the chainstay. This gives a dealer wiggle room around MARC.
 

StevenC56

Active Member
Region
USA
Dealers sign an agreement to all sell at MARC this is the Manufacture's set price, continent wide. Unless the item is blemished or damaged or used. Side bonuses such as, loyalty items, bonus gifts, dealer after market service incentives, prime race tickets, are not counted against MARC. Ask if they have a blem in stock. And some touch up paint for a tool drop nick on the chainstay. This gives a dealer wiggle room around MARC.
While most manufacturers hold a dealer to MAP, (minimum advertised price-usually MSRP) they usually don't have the dealer agree to fixed pricing on actual sales. But apparently Specialized does.
 

PedalUma

Well-Known Member
Region
USA
I know of one Specialized dealer who in past (normal) years has an annual sale. They just cannot advertise the discount amount on Specialized and it is only offered in store. They cannot even quote it on the phone. That is the 'A' in MAP. They still can do loyalty points and other advertised incentives.
 

StevenC56

Active Member
Region
USA
Would you buy any other kind of product brand like a motor vehicles , appliances, or electronics if paying MSRP was the only choice, or would you look to other brands that allowed their dealers and retailers to sell for lower more reasonable prices?
 

jabberwocky

Well-Known Member
It honestly is mostly there to protect dealers. Margins on bikes isn’t all that much (especially once shipping, assembly and support is taken into account) and bike shops aren’t exactly raking it in. It helps keep them from doing a race to the bottom (basically who is willing to take the thinnest margin on a given bike). The large brands all protect msrp to some extent.

if you want a deal, buy other stuff with the bike. Parts and apparel and accessories have larger margins than bikes. Buy that sort of thing with a bike and you can often get a discount on the whole order.

If paying msrp bugs you there are lots of smaller brands that dealers handle as secondary brands that aren’t as protective, and of course lots of direct to consumer brands out there.
 

StevenC56

Active Member
Region
USA
My son worked at a bicycle shop several years ago. Guess things have changed. The margins were quite high and if you ordered more than just 1 or 2 bikes at a time, shipping was included. My son bought a Specialized bike while working there, and his cost was right at 1/2 of MSRP.
 

jabberwocky

Well-Known Member
Depends on the bike (I'm sure the margins on, like, an SWorks is large), but the big sellers are the lower cost bikes, like $500-1500, and the margins on those isn't amazing. Plus you have to pay your mech to assemble it, factor in future maintenance (if the shop offers free maintenance, which most do for a period after buying a bike), shop floor space, etc. Shops definitely make money off bikes, but compared to, say, apparel (which often has a nearly 100% markup and can just be unboxed and put on the shop floor), bikes aren't as a big a moneymaker as you'd think.

Shipping varies. I know shops around me have been rumbling about how much more they are paying for shipping, so not everything ships for free.
 

Elkman

Member
I live 60 miles south of the SF bay area and when it comes to buying a Trek or a Specialized or other high end brand I am going to have to drive for 3-4 hours round trip to buy the bike and that same amount of time to get any warranty or service work done on the bike. The only exception is REI in terms of a local store where I do not have to spend $7500 for a road e-bike. Customers are getting shafted when one considers the cost of the mass produced components used for e-bikes to the manufacturers that are buying the items by the thousands. I can only conclude that it is what is referred to as "value pricing" which means you charge as much as the market will bear. I would bet that the marketing people at Trek and Specialized and Giant are looking only at sales and gross profit numbers are will be very slow to respond to market share losses with Cannondale and Yamaha pushing hard into the entry level road bike segment.
 

Art Deco

Well-Known Member
Region
USA
City
Selinsgrove Pennsylvania
In ebikes it's not competition from Cannondale and such brands. It's the "no name" bikes for under $1000 that appeal to entry level buyers. While there appear to be some good inexpensive bikes, there is a lot of junk ... buyer beware.