Merida Bikes; Anyone familiar with them?
I'm looking for an inexpensive hardtail to ride during the half year or more that I live in Mexico. I may do some off road riding but I am mainly interested in riding roads and would buy a road bike but the roads around where I live are so rough (cobblestone, potholes, etc.) that I might as well be off road and feel I would be more comfortable on wider tires and front suspension.
One LBS here can order just about anything but they seem to like Merida and the prices are acceptable. I could get Trek or Specialized but considering that the bike might get stolen and will definitely have a hard life here, I'm not sure I want to pay the premium (they are both more expensive here than in the States).
So, anyone have any experience with Merida? I have visited their website but there's currently a bug in the bike list section. I understand they are a Taiwan/German company. Any comments pro or con appreciated.
Inexpensive + Unknown = No
Shock 'N Awe Baby
I have not riden a Merida before, but I would not shy away from buying one if it was a better choice. Where I am now, a couple of LBS have a wide selection of them, and a very experienced rider/owner told me that they are comparable to the other brands depending on what level you buy. (I asked him the same question you did before I bought the bike I have now.)
Originally Posted by Oroluk Lagoon
As others have said before, all major manufacturers (Trek, Specialized, Merida) make crappy bikes as well as good bikes. SO you just have to discern if the one you are looking at is crap, or good. IF you are spending less than $300 US, then it is crap.. usually. If you are spending $300-500 you at entry level. So, depending on your needs, get what you can afford, and buy a lock.
Don't worry about Merida though, if you are buying in the price range I think you are, you will get just as good of a bike as a Trek or Specialized. Hopefully you will also get a better price. And I bet you won't have to wait for an order.
Merida produce frames for Specialized and Trek
Should be riding
I don't believe it has a presence in the states but seem more prevailent over seas (Europe for one). I don't know why they don't import them here. Perhaps it is because of the relationships it has building frames for other manufacturers. I have read comparisons with other well known brands, like you've mentioned, in european mags, but I certainly can't remember the results or what was said any longer. Anyway, I don't think I'd be afraid to purchase one.
Thanks to all. If I do get one I will try to post a photo and review--although it certainly would not be any kind of expert opinion. And 6fingered, (I thought Inigo Montoya killed you), you're right about not waiting for an order. He said he could have one here from Mexico city within two days. And if they do make frames for Trek and Specialized I could understand why they might not be marketed in the States.
For anyone who's interested, here's a link to the Merida website: http://www2.merida-bikes.com/
It turned out that the particular model of Merida that I was first shown in the catalog was not, as I had mistakenly assumed, a $350 bike, but a $3,500 full carbon bike! And even at entry level the Meridas were more expensive than the entry level Treks that were already available here so that I wouldn't have to wait. So we picked up a Trek 4300 for me and a Trek 3700 for my wife. We went on a nice 17 mile ride up into the hills above Puerto Vallarta yesterday and so far, we are satisfied.
The Meridas look like very nice, well-made bikes for anyone looking to purchase a bike outside of North America.
They're quite nice bikes, very reasonable price. Huge Taiwanese company. Quality varies with price as with most things.