I am kind of curious about Bikes Direct. I recently purchased a bike from Bikes Direct, and I must say that, so far, I am quite satisfied:
It's a Motobecane Mirage.
This was my first Bikes Direct purchase - my other bikes (a Trek mountain bike and a Surly Long Haul Trucker) came from LBS's. My reason for buying a BD bike was that
1. I purchased this bike to use during a 6 to 9 month out-of-town work assignment.
2. I was looking for a cheap bike that I wouldn't feel too bad if, at the end of the job I just abandoned it, or gave it away instead of shipping it home.
3. Being unfamiliar with the area I didn't want to take the time to find a used bike or locate an LBS to deal with.
4. I'm pretty tall and require a 61cm frame.
5. I decided I wanted to try a "retro" bike with DT shifters, and one that was simple enough for me to make any necessary adjustments.
A little quick research on the 'net revealed that Motobecane USA bikes are made by Kinesis Industry of Portland, OR at a plant in Guangzhou, China, and that they also make Diamondback, Felt Bicycles, GT Bicycles, Schwinn, Jamis, K2, Raleigh, Trek, Kross and Kona, as well as Motobecane USA, Dawes USA, Cycles Mercier, and Windsor America sold through BD.
I appears that BD goes lowball on their components such as brakes and derailleurs, but the basic frame looks and rides pretty good - and for that matter (except for the brakes feeling a little "spongy") everything else seems to be working great.
Anyway, to my real question: I was curious about where BD gets their frames, who designs their bikes, if these bikes are sold anywhere else under the same or different brand names, if the frames are just name brand frames that are obsolete and now re-branded, or what? What's the deal?