Supply Problems/eBike Prices

Rickman1

Active Member
Region
USA
City
Aridzona
I know this topic has been discussed multiple times here and I paid little attention to it. I had already purchased my ebikes so it wasn't that big of a deal to me. This morning I went to the website where I purchased my ebikes to see if anything new has showed up. When I purchased my first one in Jan. of this year the base price was $1699. I paid extra for all of the upgrades that were available (making it a Pro model) and the price for the ebike was $2067.95 before tax. The base model today without all of the upgrades is $1999. I liked my first ebike so much that I purchased a 2nd (Pro SS model with all of the uprades included) in May at an increased price of $2499 before tax. In 4 months the price went up $431. I felt that wasn't to bad as I do like the ebike. Today.... I"m checking out the website and the same model that I have is now $2999! That is a pretty big price increase in 9 months. They sent out an email a little while back that said that their shipping costs had increased from $2k per container to $22k per container! Spare parts are hard to come by and have an extremely long lead time. I bent my rear derailleur loading the bike onto the rack several weeks ago and I took it their shop where they said would try and fix it themselves but.... if it needed to be replaced that it might take awhile to get the part because of the current shipping and supply issues. Now I'm paying more attention to the supply/shipping problems. I understand that companies have more costs involved with their products as a result of the supply chain and shipping issues and they pass some of those costs if not all of the costs to the consumer. I think this is going to cause problems for these businesses as when they increase their prices to cover their additional costs, the consumer is going to think twice before spending that kind of money for a given product. In this case even though I like the ebikes, I wouldn't pay the current price for them. They are decent bikes but for a bit more I could get a higher end ebike with better features. This bike company's last and current inventory sold out. These higher prices are for the next shipment of ebikes (shipping in November). I'm going to watch their site for availability and I'm willing to bet they won't sell out their entire inventory with those higher prices. I'm glad I bought my ebikes when I did because if I would have waited I would have spent quite a bit more (though I would have probably went with a different higher end model). I'm looking at the Evelo Aurora Limited right now but am holding off as I was going wait a little while to purchase a 3rd ebike. But seeing the price increases with some companies, I'm thinking I should go ahead and pull the trigger now before the prices go up again in the near future. Economists say that these supply/shipping issues will likely continue into 2023. If someone is on the fence about purchasing an ebike, this something to think about. My finger is hovering over the “Place Order” button now.
 
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AHicks

Well-Known Member
Region
USA
City
Snow Bird - Summer S.E. Michigan, Winter Gulf Coast North Central Fl.
I hear you for sure! We were on the fence regarding updating 2 bikes in our fleet of 4. Like you, we found a really good deal on a bike that looked like it might be worth rolling the dice on and ordered it last year about this time (1100.!!). Took months, including the time the container was lost for a month after it was unloaded, but we fell in love with that bike, and ordered 2 more! New price $1599! Now, all 3 bikes fully modified to our tastes, we know we are good to go for the next several years (hopefully!).

As far as astronomical price increases, not that hard to find similar instances. In the early 70's I could have bought a new Corvette for 5k. Try that now....and the increased price of today is STILL considered a pretty good deal.........
 

Fatknee

Member
Region
USA
Remember the supply and demand lessons in Economics 101...

Never mind inflation, have you seen gas prices?
 

Rickman1

Active Member
Region
USA
City
Aridzona
In this case a 69% increase in 9 months. I’ve another popular ebike that increased by $100 but it also came with better features/options. This is for the exact same bike with no improvements or options. A 69% price increase in such a short time frame is substantial.
 

LimboJim

Well-Known Member
Is it possible that they have such a limited supply of some models to sell that they have to mark up the few that they have substantially enough to survive until supply comes back? (Knocks wood.)
 

Catalyzt

Well-Known Member
Region
USA
Just a weird data point here: Bikes Direct's prices have not increased, and it looks like they still might have some models in stock, though others are sold out.

I was also stunned to see a small fleet of new Specialized bikes-- Levos, I believe, in a few different flavors-- at my LBS in Los Angeles, Safety Cycle. They never carried Specialized before, only Aventon (and the same Pace 350s have been sitting there for months!) I do not know what the usual prices are for them, and I couldn't hope to remember which models I was looking at and what the prices were-- I was very rushed-- but I believe they were all north of 5K, some closer to 8K.
 

arcom

Active Member
The New York Times recently ran a revealing article on the problems with the distribution system as it affects worldwide supply. One fact particularly impressed me. In some cases, the cost of shipping a container from China to Los Angeles increased from $2000 to $25,000! If the average Connex container can hold 200 boxed bikes, that would be an increase of $115 in transportation costs alone for each bike. And that’s before you even begin to consider the increased production costs for each bike. Added to this would be the increased domestic logistics costs, that is the cost to get a Connex container from the port to a distribution point, which have quadrupled in the last 18 months.

Not every ebike manufacturer is in a financial position to be able to absorb these costs either fully or partially. So I am not at all surprised when some of the prices have increased alarmingly.
 

AHicks

Well-Known Member
Region
USA
City
Snow Bird - Summer S.E. Michigan, Winter Gulf Coast North Central Fl.
Read a piece quoting the Port of Los Angeles manager in an article regarding the 24/7 thing. He had an interesting point (a few actually). He says 30% (that's 30%!!) of the available slots to load trucks, are currently going unused.....

I don't know about others, but to me that seems to point out quite an issue regarding the current back log.

He goes on to say it's NOT just about the ability to get those containers off the ships. It's about how to do that while getting them organized in an orderly fashion, so as not having to handle each container as frequently (once or twice vs. 3-4 times), as well as just having a place to put them all! He also points out a shortage of trailers set up to handle containers, both by rail and by truck.

The way I see it, kinda like learning to ride an e-bike efficiently, it's not as easy as it might appear. There's a LOT to this....
 

Rickman1

Active Member
Region
USA
City
Aridzona
I talked to one of the technicians at the store/shop and along with the increased shipping container costs, long lead times and component availability, is the issue of getting them trucked in to their facility. Not enough trucks. The normal supply chain he used for getting his products delivered is stretched too thin, he has to wait in line to get his stuff. He would send out emails about every month informing his customers that it would be another month or two if not longer before their bikes would arrive. The owner had to contract with some private individual truckers to get his products delivered from the port in California to his facility (at additional cost) to get the bikes to his customers sooner. Again I see the reason for the price increases but how much more is the consumer ‘willing to pay for the same items that were much cheaper just several months ago? If someone wants it bad enough they will pay whatever price but for someone who is thinking about purchasing their first ebike may hold off until things get better and hopefully the prices drop back down, or not buy at all because it’s too expensive. That could hurt some of the ebike retailers.
 

m@Robertson

Well-Known Member
Region
USA
Here's one you may have not heard about: In CA, starting a few years back, clean diesel engines of a certain flavor were mandated for new commercial truck registrations. After a certain date a few years down the road, if an older commercial truck pre-dating the regs was not retrofitted (almost impossible to do $$$-wise) it was no longer allowed on CA roads. That means MANY trucks that are perfectly legal to own/operate across the CA border (i.e. almost all of them in 49 other states) cannot cross the border into CA, and freight loads may need to be dropped off at the border so a CA-certified truck can pick it up and take it into the state.

As you might guess, the drop-dead date for this phase of the regulations has passed. It was a problem before COVID. Three guesses whether it has played a role in the trucking shortage in the LA and Long Beach ports.
 

billmeek

Active Member
Region
USA
City
Summertown, TN
From what I've read, the biggest issue is getting drivers to pick up the cargo. There is a serious shortage of truck drivers right now. Most of that stems from the low pay, lack of benefits, poor working conditions, and stupid federal regs. Imagine getting paid by the mile and being stuck waiting to get into the Port of LA.
 

Mike TowpathTraveler

Well-Known Member
I have not looked at the maritime forum over a gCaptain lately; so I don't know if the following is being addressed by the shipping industry: With that backlog in LA and Long Beach in mind, it's up to the shipping industry to divert their ships to the ports in Washington State and British Columbia. Just as well, but a little longer voyage around Africa and the entire US east coast is there to take in these ships. Plus remember, the CSX and Norfolk Southern railroad systems are joined with UP and BNSF in Chicago; just a matter of handing the cargo off to them to go westward.

If it's a case of one state, California, enforcing it's CARB rules for older trucks; then it becomes almost a hostage crisis for the goods of an entire nation. And that should not fly. But we live in abstract times, where a US President and his out-to-lunch Secretary of Transportation are more in-line with CA politics then middle america politics. And that particular situation, is why we will continue to see this nation in a commerce goods crisis for the long term future.....
 

PedalUma

Well-Known Member
Region
USA
We need to start somewhere with cleaning up the air. LA has come a long way from where it was in the 1970's. Leadership stars somewhere. IMO a lot of the price ramifications are to do with 'Just In Time' breaking down. Stuff is sitting around waiting at sea or waiting for a subcomponent. All of that needs to be financed. It costs a lot to finance something you cannot sell.
 

billmeek

Active Member
Region
USA
City
Summertown, TN
With that backlog in LA and Long Beach in mind, it's up to the shipping industry to divert their ships

All the west coast ports have a backlog at this point. If you look at the live map of marine traffic, there are ships stacked up on the east coast too. There's roughly 20 cargo ships at anchor just north of Virginia Beach, VA and even more off the coast of Savanna, GA.


There's an estimated 22 billion dollars worth of goods at anchor off the ports of LA and Long Beach.
 

Mike TowpathTraveler

Well-Known Member
All the west coast ports have a backlog at this point. If you look at the live map of marine traffic, there are ships stacked up on the east coast too. There's roughly 20 cargo ships at anchor just north of Virginia Beach, VA and even more off the coast of Savanna, GA.


There's an estimated 22 billion dollars worth of goods at anchor off the ports of LA and Long Beach.
Marine Traffic's live maps are a great tool for every single person here interested in the status of our US shipping ports; what's in port, what's underway, what's at anchor. Thank you for that link, Bill. Looking at Virginia Beach, I believe you are referring to the anchorage inside of the Chesapeake Bay. (there are no anchorages off the east coast in this area as this is the Atlantic) Click on those ships and you'll find they are bulk carriers; coal and othe products. The Hampton Roads area is the biggest area where the CSX and NS offload their coal onto bulk carriers; the biggest operation for this kind of product on the entire east coast.

The Port of New York and New Jersey (Port Newark/Port Elizabeth NJ is busy as they always are, Staten Island, all quiet. Port of Wilmington, DE, quiet. I recall the governor of Florida last week, put out in the press that his state is open to taking some of these anchored ships in.