Why are road bikes progressively declining in value?

by Fishy   May 9, 2011  

Is it me, or is everything more expensive than a couple of years back?

Case in point,

2008/9 Spesh Allez's - Tiagra / Sora mix 9-speed set up.
2011 - 2300 set-up

Seemingly to get the £500 'basic' set up of 2009, you now have to stump for the £700+ 'sport' version, which still has an inferior rear casette / mech combo (Sora sora)

Ditto with my chosen, admittedly overpriced steed courtesy of the branding:

Bianchi Via Nirone 7 Tiagra 2010 - £820 or so (I got mine for £740)
Bianchi Via Nirone 7 Tiagra 2011 - £920

Why why why?

I realise inflation is one factor, but surely increased demand should equal better economies of scale.

Also, why a couple of years ago was 9 speed Sora/Tiagra the standard, whilst now we've 'regressed' to 2300 8 speed. Is there something I'm missing here or is 7-speed about to make an appearance?

Seems like profiteering to me!

5 user comments

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I'm completely unqualified to answer this, but that's never stopped me before... so here goes. I guess there's a bit of foreign exchange rate that comes into play here - prices are often set on a speculative 'guess' at forward rates, combined with an increase in UK V.A.T. Oh, and a bit of profiteering too I'm sure. Bikes are still selling well, and I guess most manufacturers have hungry shareholders towards whom their true allegiance lies. Why make x% on the sale of a bike when you can just as easily make x+1%? That's a fact of the world we live in.

What I really do object to through is the deliberate downgrading of components from one year to the next. Strikes me as being morally dishonest. An Allez with Tiagra is simply not the same as one with 2300. How many 'new' riders know enough to question the facts? If components so integral to the performance of the bike are changed (I've seen the same done with wheelsets) it's simply no longer the same bike.

simonmb's picture

posted by simonmb [360 posts]
9th May 2011 - 13:11

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But I must just add, there are many bikes around that remain cracking value for money. What else can you spend a few hundred pounds on a have so much fun with year after year?

simonmb's picture

posted by simonmb [360 posts]
9th May 2011 - 13:19

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True true,

It's also true that your average rider isn't going to notice much of a difference between 9 and 8 speed.

What irritates me more is that it can't be saving manufacturers much / if any money. As 2300 appears (correct me if I'm wrong) to be sora minus one gear, what's the point from the manufacturer's perspective, surely the added cost of one extra cog must be completely negligible. The only impact is to make 9 speed 'seem' fancier (despite being entry-level 2 years ago) and make upgrading prohibitively expensive, hence driving future sales.

It all seems part of a ploy to use entry level components on mid-level prices, mid-level stuff on high end, and put high end out of reach.

Grr Sick

posted by Fishy [49 posts]
9th May 2011 - 13:58

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The way i see it, there are a few factors

The price of most metals have risen to their highest in a long time over the last couple of years

The UK have taxed the arse of everything thats being imported and then the 20% VAT now

Also, as with everything, the price does go up and increasing demand for cheaper end bikes will then increase the profit companies want to make off their higher end bikes

Gkam84's picture

posted by Gkam84 [9001 posts]
9th May 2011 - 14:27

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Across the cycling world tbh. Same with mtb's - I have a XCR forks on my mtb. They were appearing on bikes around the £400 mark in 2008 (the model year mine is) and now appear on bikes around the £700 mark.

posted by Super Domestique [1636 posts]
9th May 2011 - 16:16

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