Motobecane Owners: Are You Taunted by Fellow Mountain Bikers?- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1
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    Motobecane Owners: Are You Taunted by Fellow Mountain Bikers?

    It seems like motobecane/bikesdirect bikes are treated like pariahs of the industry in a way that other direct to consumer brands are not.

    There are so many posters who lambast the company and brand. I have yet to see any of the more outlandish claims substantiated in any way shape or form.

    On the other hand, owners of these bikes rarely if ever post review videos or speak up in defense of their bikes and brand. Reviews from the mtb press or from well known youtube channels are non-existent.

    I've run into industry employees who taunted me because I own and ride a Gary Fisher hardtail so it's not inconceivable.

    Motobecane owners, do you run into this: snooty riders at group rides or individuals you encounter while on rides? I could see it happening, actually. Not sure if it does though.

  2. #2
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    If it wasn't for Bikes Direct bikes for snobs to be snooty about they would pick something else. I've heard BD bikes called bike shaped objects, even though that would put them in the far away territory of department store bikes.

    Mountain bikes more and more are very specific to the application. BD sells many that are very well suited to the application, if the application is properly matched to the bike. The snobs and snooty types, they will claim they know something you don't. It is the geometry, the parts spec, the country of origin, even the label on the thing or some other complaint. If you think those types are experts that really know something then I guess they are worth listening too. If not, get a bike that works good for the application. The naysayers are really hard to hear if you are riding anyway.

  3. #3
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    I have a 2015 Motobecane Fantom 29 Pro SL that I ride in group rides and never - ever has anyone said something snooty about my bike. Most people that talk about it say something like "Gee - that has some nice components - did it come that way?" It did.

    Honestly - I don't think many folks that I run into know about BD.

    Eric

  4. #4
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    I would hope that adults would be mature enough to recognize a bicycle is just a bicycle and that we don't identify emotionally with our purchases, they're just for fun and recreation.

    I don't get that sense on this forum however, which is why I ask. Every time I've mentioned motobecane or bikesdirect, there's a torrent of hate and name calling.

    I've got multiple weirdos following me around the forums trolling me simply because I mention motobecane or bikes direct. I don't want these loonies losing it on a group ride.

  5. #5
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    I started BMX riding when I was a kid. My brother taught me to ride a dirt bike when I was 10 and I got my first Yamaha 80 that year. I raced motocross through high school. I got my first road bike at 18 and then graduated to a Gixer 750 crotchrocket. I began MTBing in the late 80's. I have seen much come and go in the 2 world realm. One constant in all genres is people are quick to jump on the trendy bandwagon. A select few people will always look at products with a cynical eye for discerning what's a legitimate product and what's the flavor of the week. I feel the people who bash Motobecane are simply jumping on the uneducated bandwagon. All bikes share the same basic component manufacturers. Almost all bike frames come from Asia, many from the same factories. I feel that Motobecane strikes a point between boutique brands and big box brands.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by westernmtb View Post
    I would hope that adults would be mature enough to recognize a bicycle is just a bicycle and that we don't identify emotionally with our purchases, they're just for fun and recreation.
    Well now, that's an interesting comment. You see, I most certainly do identify emotionally with my bikes. And doing so doesn't mean I can't have fun with them and recreate with them. I can appreciate them emotionally and still utilize them as the amazing recreational machines they are. But a good bike -- a really good bike-- is damn near loveable.

    I've got nothing against Bikes Direct or Motobecane or Cannondale or DiamondBack or Santa Cruz or Yeti or any other brand. To a point. I certainly respect some brands more than others. Whatever the product -- bikes, apparel, furniture, guns, electronics, lawnmowers, any product -- can be built with quality or it can be built as cheaply as possible. I don't find the latter type of products loveable. Not in the least. In fact, usually when I try to go the cheap route, I end up getting frustrated because the product doesn't work right or it breaks or it wears out quicker than I want.

    Decades ago I heard something that's stuck with me, here it is: "Quality is the only true economy."

    Are Motobecanes quality bikes? I don't know, I don't own one. Quality is in the eye of the beholder, it's for each of us to decide. Does BD unload crap on an unsuspecting public? I don't know, I've never bought a bike from BD. But if they do, then that's the reputation they're creating for themselves. If they don't, then they're being maligned.

    Buy whatever bike you want. Ride it a lot. Love it or don't -- up to you. Meanwhile personally I've found that I'm a happier person whenever I don't care so much about what others think of what I buy or what I do.

    Time to ride,
    =sParty
    disciplesofdirt.org

    We don't quit riding because we get old.
    We get old because we quit riding.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by westernmtb View Post
    I would hope that adults would be mature enough to recognize a bicycle is just a bicycle and that we don't identify emotionally with our purchases, they're just for fun and recreation.

    I don't get that sense on this forum however, which is why I ask. Every time I've mentioned motobecane or bikesdirect, there's a torrent of hate and name calling.

    I've got multiple weirdos following me around the forums trolling me simply because I mention motobecane or bikes direct. I don't want these loonies losing it on a group ride.
    Can you link the threads where this happened?

    Sent from my Moto G (5) Plus using Tapatalk

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by tfinator View Post
    Can you link the threads where this happened?

    Sent from my Moto G (5) Plus using Tapatalk
    That happens all over the mtbr forums (and elsewhere)--especially when someone is asking for advice about whether to buy a motobecane.

    I don't own a Motobecane (yet), although I do own a Windsor from bikesdirect. I'm really interested in Motobecane bikes, and have been actively searching for a good deal on a used one. If I needed a new bike, I wouldn't hesitate to buy a Motobecane if it met all my needs.

    I think the reason Motobecane/Bikes Direct gets so much hate (online) stems from a few factors. First--people who have been riding for years are (by necessity) coming from a paradigm where their LBS was their only link to the sport. They're extremely biased towards local brick & mortar bikes. But the entire global economy has shifted away from that paradigm and moved towards online purchases. Next, Bikes Direct does themselves no favors with their 2003-era website, coupled with some of their over-the-top marketing claims (e.g. crazy MSRP claims, constant boasting about the value of their tubeless-ready wheels). It's just cheesy and looks relatively low-class IMHO. Finally, Motobecane/Bikes Direct isn't an innovator in any way. They're basically selling Kinesis engineered reference designs. The geometry sometimes lags behind current trends and dudes who are buying new high-end bikes each year scoff at this.

    Bikes Direct could do lots to improve their standing with bike snobs, but I honestly don't think they care. They seem to be selling plenty of bikes as-is, and I'm not sure what the benefit to their pocketbook would be if they made any attempts. Personally, I think they should overhaul their website, maybe do some YouTube sponsorships (like Diamondback has with Seth's Bike Hacks), and generally just preach the gospel of Motobecane as a high-end bike at a killer price. But again--it doesn't appear that not doing this is affecting their sales.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Forbin View Post
    That happens all over the mtbr forums (and elsewhere)--especially when someone is asking for advice about whether to buy a motobecane.

    I don't own a Motobecane (yet), although I do own a Windsor from bikesdirect. I'm really interested in Motobecane bikes, and have been actively searching for a good deal on a used one. If I needed a new bike, I wouldn't hesitate to buy a Motobecane if it met all my needs.

    I think the reason Motobecane/Bikes Direct gets so much hate (online) stems from a few factors. First--people who have been riding for years are (by necessity) coming from a paradigm where their LBS was their only link to the sport. They're extremely biased towards local brick & mortar bikes. But the entire global economy has shifted away from that paradigm and moved towards online purchases. Next, Bikes Direct does themselves no favors with their 2003-era website, coupled with some of their over-the-top marketing claims (e.g. crazy MSRP claims, constant boasting about the value of their tubeless-ready wheels). It's just cheesy and looks relatively low-class IMHO. Finally, Motobecane/Bikes Direct isn't an innovator in any way. They're basically selling Kinesis engineered reference designs. The geometry sometimes lags behind current trends and dudes who are buying new high-end bikes each year scoff at this.

    Bikes Direct could do lots to improve their standing with bike snobs, but I honestly don't think they care. They seem to be selling plenty of bikes as-is, and I'm not sure what the benefit to their pocketbook would be if they made any attempts. Personally, I think they should overhaul their website, maybe do some YouTube sponsorships (like Diamondback has with Seth's Bike Hacks), and generally just preach the gospel of Motobecane as a high-end bike at a killer price. But again--it doesn't appear that not doing this is affecting their sales.
    Did you read my post? Is this just a very long 'no'?

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by tfinator View Post
    Did you read my post? Is this just a very long 'no'?
    Yeah, I did, but the hate directed at Bikes Direct is so ubiquitous on the internet that I figured you were joking that you wanted examples.

    Since you do, here's one from the mtbr forums.
    Bikes Direct = social darwinism for the twentyteens.

    Betting Joebikesdirect will have this thread closed and removed in under 15 minutes.

    All you have to do is google for info on a Bikes Direct bike, and you're almost certainly going to come across anti-Bikes Direct screeds in virtually every online forum.

  11. #11
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    If Motobecane got geo "right", they could be a respectable name brand, considering some of their highest priced stuff is made in the same "factory" as Transition, Mondraker, Niner, Haibike, KHS, Vitus, etc. (Astro engineering). They instead seemingly go for the bottom dollar open designs, and from factories like Kinesis that further reduce frame cost, in order to hang their fancy spec on, to pass on the OE price savings. Their marketing and site is quite dated too...

    Hard to tell the difference between someone getting brand X for better geo and compromising on spec, and someone getting Motobecane for better spec and compromising on geo. If they paid the same price, I question if you can really call the former a snob if they challenge the latter to see who got the better deal in the end. I personally lean on the geo > spec side of the argument.

    I admit to being a snob when seeing anyone on something super cheap, in the sub-600 MSRP range, and making an attempt to tag along. I blame my competitive nature. The comparisons just have to be made... I can name 2-3 parts on my bike that cost me about that much alone (fork, frame w/o shock, and maybe rear wheel w/insert+tire+cassette+rotor). I give credit to these parts for contributing hugely to confidence levels, and I'd feel a hard-to-control urge to demonstrate the difference. If it were a Motobecane rider, who got something as pricey, I'd just warn them to be careful of drops and jumps that I'd likely be hitting, and hope they don't go OTB... xD

  12. #12
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    The most recent post on that was from the end of 2015. I don't see much hate around here anymore. I think most people are pretty over the whole discussion. What is worth saying has been said... hundreds? thousands? of times. This thread sounds like some guy imagined people were hating on him and decided to complain on the internet. Then people jump on board because they want to feel like they're in some kind of club.

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