Need Software Support on my 2017 BULLS Bike...Resolution Found.

Goodair

Member
I purchased a brand new 2017 BULLS FS 2 27.5 Plus, between my Yamaha and Bosch, the Brose motor is under power and slow. My bike was shipped without the factory update, so I contacted a local dealer, the wanted $100 to do a software update, ITs a BRAND NEW bike, just spent $4K on the bike, rode it once, and now a local dealer wants another $100. CRAZY!!!! My HAIBIKE worked right out of the Box, no software update required!!!!

I contact the Factory for HELP, and told them that my bike was shipped without the new software. I live 30 mins from them, and can bring it, they said, they can flash it, but will not do it. This is absolutely insane, stay away from buying a BULLS, I will not buy another BULLS. They will turn their backs on you if you need help. First they made a crappy product, should have fixed it at the factory level, the bike was shipped without the fix, in order to fix their shortcoming, I have pay $$$$$$$ to get it fix. The bike is a 2017, Brand New, and now I am expected to pay for their mistakes...

God forbid if something major goes wrong with their product, forget about the 2 year warranty, they can't even fix a 2 Day Old Bike. This is a simple software update, like a phone update, and they want to jam you with $$$$$.

I was at Sea Otter last week, manufactures had tents set up, Haibike was there with Shimano, SRAM, all had techs to service your bike, No questions ask! Nothing like this craziness, one dealer told me that he wouldn't even touch my bike, because I didn't buy it from them. Wow!!

Buy a HAIBIKE, GIANT, FOCUS, SCOTT, IZIP, E-Motion, but never a BULLS, I learn my lesson!!!!!
 
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BULLSBarney

New Member
Hey Sam, again I'm sorry to hear about the inconvenience. Let's recap our conversation because it looks like you misunderstood some of the points we talked about. I'm going to start by clarifying that your bike was bought elsewhere and not through a local dealer which is the reason some of the local shops are charging you labor to perform a software update.

All of the BULLS eBikes that ship from our warehouse go through quality control inspections which include loading the latest firmware available. Unfortunately some time between your bike getting shipped to our dealer and then getting reshipped to your house there was a new update released which is why your bike doesn't have the most current firmware loaded, not because it was shipped without a factory update. Again, like we discussed on the phone there are no defects on your bike it's ready to ride out of the box without any firmware updates. If you want the latest firmware loaded, then that's a slightly different story.

Now when you contacted me for a firmware update I told you that we could not service your bicycle here at the warehouse but I NEVER turned my back on you. I actually got your contact information and took about 45 minutes of my day to reach out to a few of the local dealers to see how BULLS could help you. After gathering information I found out that most of the BULLS IBDs here in SoCal offer free updates for life as long as you buy the bike from them. I gave you the quotes (found a shop that would save you $55) and even offered to schedule something to make it as easy as possible for you. I’m truly sorry you feel like I turned my back on you, we take our customer service very seriously and we want everyone to be happy with their BULLS Bike. Contact me at your earliest convenience so we can make this right.


-Barney
barney@BULLSBikesUSA.com
 

Goodair

Member
He could be the best in the business, the answer that I was given, was that I need to pay a dealer to get this fix. He called a couple of dealers for me to get a price quote. How ridiculous does that sound, the FACTORY calling a dealer to get a price quote on something that can be done at the FACTORY. As Barney stated, the BULLS dealers wanted $$$$$ to help. I called one dealer and they told me that they don't want to flash it, fearing if they broke it, they'll be responsible, go figure, it was probably an excuse because I didn't buy the bike from them. This puts the customer in a Catch 22 dilemma.

I am just asking for the bike to be flash, so that it can perform as well as my Yamaha and Bosch bikes, not asking for the world.

You would think BULLS would want ALL their bikes to be the BEST on the trail, they should do this without hesitation.

If the product was good to begin with, there would be no need to upgrade the firmware. Obviously, this firmware enhances their product, but you have to pay for the enhancement.

This is plan obsolescence, release a product and the charge the customer for firmware upgrades, Brilliant Marketing Strategy!
 
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fxr3

Active Member
The mfg. has the most at stake in these situations, and without a doubt- should be the most able to fix problem in a better manner than negotiating cost from local dealer.
Although Bulls USA is theoretically a master dealer, not mfg., Bulls and Bulls USA must realize they are breaking into the worlds biggest market and should act accordingly. I too own a bulls, talked with Barney about bring my bike to their place in SoCal for firmware and software updates and was told that they do not have ability to do it there. My only other SoCal contact is Bike Attack, and Barney said they were no longer dealers.
When their closest dealer is 500 miles from me, yet I liked their product enough to choose it anyway, they need to reciprocate their loyalty in a way that might not be the normal mfg, LBS, customer relationship. Their "warehouse" in SoCal was my backup plan in the event of weird problems I could not handle myself- because they are the closest bulls anything to me in Mesa, AZ and my Stromer experience over the last few years that much beyond a flat tire was me call dealer, dealer call Stromer and then me either dealing with Stromer on phone or with dealer on phone telling me what Stromer said.
Stromer, basically always satisfied me, as did Bike Attack.
The most important thing is to avoid someone jumping on forum and bad mouthing the brand.
It IS IRONIC, that bulls USA slings their non-ebike bikes direct in USA, but has an overly protective policy of protecting their local dealers on ebikes, even though most of their advertising, hustling dealers are encouraging buying from them, and they will ship it to you anywhere in USA for free, but as bike attack apparently learned, Bulls can be difficult to deal with on a dealer/ master dealer level.
Bulls USA needs to be reminded that they are ultimately responsible for bike owners satisfaction, and should be very appreciative and attentive to customers needs. Stromer had/has a bike unique enough to warrant any less than perfect
Master dealer support(although it has always been satisfactory), but Bulls has more than enough competition here in USA, they need to satisfy their customers in a noticeable way, or they will get left behind.
E-mountain bike magazine threw every brose powered bike under the bus in 14 bike shootout(because of low power)but suggested Rotwild had firm/software updates to enhance performance. If I didn't read that, I would not have called bulls USA. But I did, and they said performance gains were avaiable thru firmware updates. Should be their headline of USA website- not that they sell bikes direct! Uh, but not ebikes. Go figure
 

fxr3

Active Member
Ideally, if you want to play the mfg. LBS correctly, give stocking dealers exclusive territory and don't allow them to sell outside that area- otherwise get wit it from the standpoint that your dealer network is not ideal and fill in the gaps.
 

Goodair

Member
Ideally, if you want to play the mfg. LBS correctly, give stocking dealers exclusive territory and don't allow them to sell outside that area- otherwise get wit it from the standpoint that your dealer network is not ideal and fill in the gaps.
We are living in 2017 and riding 2017 E-Bikes, let's advance ourselves from the old 1940 business model, with E-Commerce, competiton and customer service is critical to stay in business. Look around you, all the mom and pop brick and mortar businesses are gone. Cars are being purchased over the internet and delivered across state lines. The bike industry needs to change their philosophy and business model as well.

If I owned a LBS, I would embrace all customers, especially those that didn't buy from me. I might spend 5 mins of my time to upgrade the firmware this time, but I am looking at it long term, just maybe, the next time I can get a sale. Does it really cost anything to plug the USB into the bike and push update? What it does do, it creates a relationship with the customer that the LBS is here for us, doesn't have to be profit driven every time. Create those relationships, the next time we buy something, we will look at the LBS first.

Verses the current practice, "you didn't buy from us, go away..." type mentality, or let's make up for the profit we missed from the sale, charge them $100 to do a software upgrade that takes 5 mins.

BULLS USA needs to step in and fix this, you have a building and most likely a reception area, how hard is it to have the customer wait in the lobby while a tech comes out, take your bike and do a 5 min flash, we are not asking for a full tune up, just a firmware upgrade, we those daily with our phones, BULLS do it daily in their warehouse.

Or, tell their dealers, if you want to be a BULLS dealer, you must do firmware updates at no cost to the customer. Again, look at potential future business, not stick it to them model.

E-Commerce is here to stay, get with the times, if your dealers are not picking up the slack and giving your product a BAD Reputation, change them. If you have a good product, they'll be knocking on your door to sell them, if you have a crappy product, you can have the best dealer network, and your sales will still be down.

Sell a good product, back it up with outstanding customer service, what a novel idea...
 

Goodair

Member
The mfg. has the most at stake in these situations, and without a doubt- should be the most able to fix problem in a better manner than negotiating cost from local dealer.
Although Bulls USA is theoretically a master dealer, not mfg., Bulls and Bulls USA must realize they are breaking into the worlds biggest market and should act accordingly. I too own a bulls, talked with Barney about bring my bike to their place in SoCal for firmware and software updates and was told that they do not have ability to do it there. My only other SoCal contact is Bike Attack, and Barney said they were no longer dealers.
When their closest dealer is 500 miles from me, yet I liked their product enough to choose it anyway, they need to reciprocate their loyalty in a way that might not be the normal mfg, LBS, customer relationship. Their "warehouse" in SoCal was my backup plan in the event of weird problems I could not handle myself- because they are the closest bulls anything to me in Mesa, AZ and my Stromer experience over the last few years that much beyond a flat tire was me call dealer, dealer call Stromer and then me either dealing with Stromer on phone or with dealer on phone telling me what Stromer said.
Stromer, basically always satisfied me, as did Bike Attack.
The most important thing is to avoid someone jumping on forum and bad mouthing the brand.
It IS IRONIC, that bulls USA slings their non-ebike bikes direct in USA, but has an overly protective policy of protecting their local dealers on ebikes, even though most of their advertising, hustling dealers are encouraging buying from them, and they will ship it to you anywhere in USA for free, but as bike attack apparently learned, Bulls can be difficult to deal with on a dealer/ master dealer level.
Bulls USA needs to be reminded that they are ultimately responsible for bike owners satisfaction, and should be very appreciative and attentive to customers needs. Stromer had/has a bike unique enough to warrant any less than perfect
Master dealer support(although it has always been satisfactory), but Bulls has more than enough competition here in USA, they need to satisfy their customers in a noticeable way, or they will get left behind.
E-mountain bike magazine threw every brose powered bike under the bus in 14 bike shootout(because of low power)but suggested Rotwild had firm/software updates to enhance performance. If I didn't read that, I would not have called bulls USA. But I did, and they said performance gains were avaiable thru firmware updates. Should be their headline of USA website- not that they sell bikes direct! Uh, but not ebikes. Go figure
Well said, I know I am not the only guy out here with the same problem, if you experience the same thing or had to pay for your updates, please chime in.

If Bulls truly cares about their customer, first thing, change your website to include a customer service phone number, currently, there is nothing, like they don't want you to call them. I had to search on the web to find a number. See Link (Link Removed - No Longer Exists)
 
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fxr3

Active Member
Hey Sam, again I'm sorry to hear about the inconvenience. Let's recap our conversation because it looks like you misunderstood some of the points we talked about. I'm going to start by clarifying that your bike was bought elsewhere and not through a local dealer which is the reason some of the local shops are charging you labor to perform a software update.

All of the BULLS eBikes that ship from our warehouse go through quality control inspections which include loading the latest firmware available. Unfortunately some time between your bike getting shipped to our dealer and then getting reshipped to your house there was a new update released which is why your bike doesn't have the most current firmware loaded, not because it was shipped without a factory update. Again, like we discussed on the phone there are no defects on your bike it's ready to ride out of the box without any firmware updates. If you want the latest firmware loaded, then that's a slightly different story.

Now when you contacted me for a firmware update I told you that we could not service your bicycle here at the warehouse but I NEVER turned my back on you. I actually got your contact information and took about 45 minutes of my day to reach out to a few of the local dealers to see how BULLS could help you. After gathering information I found out that most of the BULLS IBDs here in SoCal offer free updates for life as long as you buy the bike from them. I gave you the quotes (found a shop that would save you $55) and even offered to schedule something to make it as easy as possible for you. I’m truly sorry you feel like I turned my back on you, we take our customer service very seriously and we want everyone to be happy with their BULLS Bike. Contact me at your earliest convenience so we can make this right.


-Barney
barney@BULLSBikesUSA.com

Feel free to correct me, but seems you refer to upgrade as a casual "software update" if performed by dealer, but if it's firmware that needs to be loaded- that's a different story". They are the same thing.
If you can upload the firmware ahead of shipping in LA, then why could you not do it after the fact in LA?
And you almost sound like customer has done something wrong by not buying locally, yet you are allowing your dealers all over the country to compete for online sales knowing this situation will arise.
 

fxr3

Active Member
In fairness to LBS, I can't blame them for charging for firmware upgrade. And I have a date with bike shop to upgrade mine in about two weeks(that I scheulded a week ago). We didn't discuss cost, if they charge me- no problem. But, would have much preferred to take it to Bulls n L.A. simply because it would be the most up to date- best install possible- even if I had to pay them to do it. Bulls in L.A. is a 9 hour drive, Dealer I'm going to is 10 hours, but I have other business and pleasure going that way anyway.
 

Mikey

New Member
How do you know which firmware you have? Just bought an FS3 few weeks ago and planning on getting an enduro this summer. After reading this thread, not sure if I can go with another Bulls bike. Any recommendation for other brands with strong dealer support?
 

BULLSBarney

New Member
Hey @Goodair, it was great talking to you today. Again I apologize for the misunderstanding. I’m glad we were able to move towards solving this issue. Have a great day and enjoy your weekend!
 

J.R.

Well-Known Member
I was leaning heavily towards Bulls for my next as well, I hope to do some test rides somewhere this summer.

@BULLSBarney, I'm glad you sorted the issue, but given the public nature of the issue now, to an extremely dedicated community of ebikers, it would be helpful to know some of the details of the greater solution.
 

Goodair

Member
I received a call today from BULLS today, apparently, they had an emergency meeting to discuss this issue, they are very concern on providing the BEST customer service in the industry. Barney called me right after the meeting, and informed me that BULLS had changed their policy with firmware updates. According the Barney, the limited access was due to insurance and liability issue, they are hoping to resolve this matter ASAP. Barney spoke with me at length and reassured me that I will get the firmware update needed at NO cost.

Stay tuned, I am keeping my fingers crossed! I have a few friends that are in the market to buy new E-bikes, they are on hold to see if BULLS comes thru. I have another friend that picked up 2017 Bulls Monster FS, the quality on Bosch Bike is impeccable, we compared it to a 2016 Haibike Fat Six, the BULLS definitely has a better component group, the welding is top notch. I think their product is superior to Haibike, just need to fix their LBS issues.

Customer Service in this emerging market is critical for newcomers. If you can have a great product backed by great customer service, there is no way you will fail. I hope this sends a loud and clear message to the leadership of BULLS. Unlike 20 years, the flow of information is much faster, customers are much more informed, they need to re-think their business model, hanging your hat on just LBS, might not be a wise business decision, in fact, all it takes is one or two bad LBS, and your reputation is done.
 

Goodair

Member
In fairness to LBS, I can't blame them for charging for firmware upgrade. And I have a date with bike shop to upgrade mine in about two weeks(that I scheulded a week ago). We didn't discuss cost, if they charge me- no problem. But, would have much preferred to take it to Bulls n L.A. simply because it would be the most up to date- best install possible- even if I had to pay them to do it. Bulls in L.A. is a 9 hour drive, Dealer I'm going to is 10 hours, but I have other business and pleasure going that way anyway.

FXR3, I would not take it to a dealer for this, I heard a local dealer near my house screwed up the update and BRICKED the motor, BULLS had to send a new one out, but took time to receive a new motor and remove/install. I would contact Barney on this one, he seems to have a good handle on this matter.
 

fxr3

Active Member
The Bulls bike is a nice, tight rig with top notch components. It is underpowered(coming off my st2), but I knew it would be ahead of purchase. And after riding all mid drives in Long Beach, I really could not tell the difference between Bosch, brose and Yamaha powered Giant. It is a well thought out battery/motor install and that combined with45kph made it an easy choice for me. Once I read of performance gains avaiable through software- I wanted them. E-Mountainbike magazine threw brose powered bikes at the end of the line in their shootout, but also said if you own a rotwild bike powered by brose- it can be hopped up by rotwild dealer. Barney confirmed with me on phone that new firmware would improve performance and other software adjustments could also enhance performance. I had already made an appointment with dealer to do the enhancements ahead of this post, but couldn't help add to it as Goodair was mad enough to post a STRONG NEGATIVE SLAM on bulls based on his dealings with Barney. And seems Barney wanted to clarify the conversation more than anything.
That seemed wrong, so I said my piece.
Barney almost suggested it was the guys own fault that he did not buy local, and, imo, should have just paid for flash instead of allowing situation to escalate to where it is now. But, it should all play out ok. Brose knows by now it needs to squish out every possible drop of power they can or they will certainly be left behind. If mine runs substainally hotter after software manipulation- I will be thrilled. And I never was exactly disappointed with power, in fact my only true complaint so far is throwing my leg over the thing, and I defiantly was aware of that ahead of time. Both my stromers are step-thrus for that reason.:)
 

fxr3

Active Member
FXR3, I would not take it to a dealer for this, I heard a local dealer near my house screwed up the update and BRICKED the motor, BULLS had to send a new one out, but took time to receive a new motor and remove/install. I would contact Barney on this one, he seems to have a good handle on this matter.
I don't even know how to address that. So, Barney and you had a 180 degree change of plan in less than 24 hours?
Maybe I misjudged Barneys ability to sell! Lol
 

fxr3

Active Member
I'm going to have a trusted source try to do it remotely this weekend- hopefully that works and all this can be forgotten.
 

fxr3

Active Member
For the record, I perfer LBS purchase as long as they can more or less compete with online slingers.
Bike Attack is textbook example of why Mfg. HAS to be ultimately responsible for customers satisfaction. If I still lived in Ventura, I would have bought my bulls from Bike Attack, then they parted ways with bulls- that would have left me with no LBS.
 

Goodair

Member
FXR3, my buddy just picked up a 17 Bulls Monster FS from a LBS at a $200 over preminum, we do support the local economy, but not blindly. The other purchases, they weren't even in the same zip code with pricing, about $800 off. BULLS should contract out to VELOfix or during DEMO Days, have their techs work on customer's bikes. I know Intense Bikes do routine services on ALL Intense bikes during Demo Days, BULLS can do the same.
 
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