1. The most important thing about buying a new bike is to make sure it fits. The only way you'll know if the bike is right for you is to size up the bike and make sure that the bike's geometry matches your body's geometry. Ask questions and do some research.
mtn. biking 101
2. If possible, try to find a shop that will let you demo the bike on real dirt. Five minutes in a parking lot won't cut it. You wouldn't buy a car without a real world test drive, and a bike should be no different.
3. Don't belive the hype. Just because your favorite rider or best friend rides a certain bike, that doesn't mean that's the best one for you. Have an open mind and be realistic about your needs and ability.
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  1. #1
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    GT Aggressor 2.0 or Motobecane 550HT?

    My 15 year old son needs a new mountain bike. We've looked around quite a bit, and landed on a new 2013 GT Aggressor 2.0 as his choice. He loves the matte black paint, disc brakes, and lever style shifters. Beyond that, I'm not sure he cares about much else. He was able to ride a "large" frame Aggressor 2.0 in the right color this past Friday night and thought it felt good.

    He really only rides with the family on paved roads and light trails while camping. He is about 5'9" and 140lbs.

    i haven't purchased a decent bike since buying my '00 GT XCR 5000, and my wife's '00 GT Aggressor. Both of them have been flawless since day one. However, searching for reviews and opinions, I ran across Bikes Direct and the Motobecane 550HT.

    Could anyone help me decide between the $420 GT Aggressor 2.0 and the $350 Motobecane? Which one is the better value? I don't mind wrenching, and I can't find anything remotely interesting used at the moment.

    Thanks.

  2. #2
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    He is tall enough to test ride a 15.5 or 16" 29er. They are becoming the hard tail norm. They may be easier on road and for learning on bumpier trails.
    In 29s I would go for the Gravity Point1 for 450 shipped.
    Save up to 60% off new Mountain Bikes - MTB - Gravity 29Point1 29er Mountain Bikes
    The Shimano drive components on the 2.0 are too low level for me. Alivio is adequate for shifters and rear derailleur. X5 for Sram.

  3. #3
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    Thanks for the response. My son doesn't like the feel of the 29er bikes he's tried. He says they feel weird.

    As it turns out, neither bike I asked about is available any longer. We found a close out deal on a 2013 GT Avalanche 3.0 Hydro for $460. I think we're going to buy it tonight as it seems like a great bike with a decent price.

  4. #4
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    It should give him a good chance for skill development.

  5. #5
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    My friend just picked up a 500HT and its a pretty nice bike. Your son would fit an 18", or 19.5" would work fine if he is still growing. They still have them in stock, and other than the brakes, its a better bike than the 550HT:

    Mountain Bikes - MTB - Motobecane 500HT

  6. #6
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    I considered the 500HT, but factoring in the brakes on the Avalanche, LBS setup, and I've known the LBS owner for 20+ years, I thought it was the better choice. My son also preferred the look of the Avalanche (matte black).

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