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Why is it so hard to find higher end Giants

Old 04-26-17, 05:48 PM
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Bsgs87
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Why is it so hard to find higher end Giants

I have been trying to find a higher end Giant, Advanced Pro 1, to test ride and it seems like all the shops that are Giant dealers only have the lower end models or none. They all say they will order you one, but who wants to order a $3,200 bike without a test ride. Is there something really wrong with Giant? Reviews I have seen are very good and it is equipped the way I would like but this bothers me. Anyone have an answer?
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Old 04-26-17, 05:51 PM
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I don't know of many bike shops that will actually order a bike for you to test ride any more. For the most part, you have to call around bike shops and find one in your size to ride.
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Old 04-26-17, 05:58 PM
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I think one of the local bikes shops here carries several Giant models, but I'm not sure which ones. Some looked at least on the upper end.

Unfortunately, it would be difficult for a small Mom & Pop store to stock one of every size of every bike. And, perhaps more difficult when each year brings something new.

It might not have made a difference if a shop stocked 1970 or 1971 bikes, but get stuck with 2016, or even 2015 bikes, and they get shunned like the plague (or customers want huge discounts for NOS bikes).

I would expect big shops like Performance that have stores across the nation to have the ability to move bikes around. But even that isn't cheap, risks damage to the bikes, and takes time to pack, unpack, and configure.

Hopefully your shop will have something close for you to try out.
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Old 04-26-17, 06:02 PM
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I test rode an Advanced at my LBS, which was what they had to try out, and liked it a lot. From there I discussed the various Defy options with my LBS and they suggested the Advanced Pro 1. Ordered it from them and am extremely happy with the decision.
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Old 04-26-17, 06:07 PM
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It's hard to find many bikes in stock above the 105 level around here too. Sometimes Ultegra, but I haven't seen any electronic shifters or even mechanical Dura Ace. Mostly 105 and Tiagra. Sram is getting scarce at any level anymore.
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Old 04-26-17, 06:07 PM
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The owners of the LBS in my area that carried Giant recently retired and closed their shop. But, what I remember seeing on their floor from Giant were mostly low to mid level road bikes and hybrids. They carried other brands, like Bianchi and Litespeed, in the higher end.
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Old 04-26-17, 06:11 PM
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KenR, I also have a 2009 Specialized Roubaix Expert. How does your Giant compare to the Roubaix ride? Unfortunately I haven't been able to find any model Advanced to ride. Thanks!
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Old 04-26-17, 06:21 PM
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The information is also sorely lacking. I was in my (somewhat) LBS last week and saw a Giant Anyroad that interested me. But I wanted the upper level one with the carbon frame. No one knows anything about this bike. The Giant website even has incorrect and outdated specs for the 2017 model.

Ridiculous.
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Old 04-26-17, 06:41 PM
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Originally Posted by Bsgs87 View Post
I have been trying to find a higher end Giant, Advanced Pro 1, to test ride and it seems like all the shops that are Giant dealers only have the lower end models or none. They all say they will order you one, but who wants to order a $3,200 bike without a test ride. Is there something really wrong with Giant? Reviews I have seen are very good and it is equipped the way I would like but this bothers me. Anyone have an answer?
Nothing wrong with Giant. The bike shop doesn't want to be stuck with inventory that doesn't sell for a year or more.
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Old 04-26-17, 06:51 PM
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When I used to work for a distributor of high end bikes we kept a fleet of demo bikes for our retailers. Our demo bikes used top end frames and wheels, but lower end drivetrains. As long as the bike you try out has the frame you want on the bike you will buy and wheels comparable to the bike you want, lower end shifters and other drivetrain parts won't make a huge difference. If you can find the next lower end model to test, and you like it, you will like the bike you want even more
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Old 04-26-17, 07:29 PM
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Originally Posted by alcjphil View Post
As long as the bike you try out has the frame you want on the bike you will buy and wheels comparable to the bike you want, lower end shifters and other drivetrain parts won't make a huge difference. If you can find the next lower end model to test, and you like it, you will like the bike you want even more
Unless you realize you don't need to spend the big bucks to get the fancy components ;
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Old 04-26-17, 07:39 PM
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Originally Posted by CliffordK View Post
It might not have made a difference if a shop stocked 1970 or 1971 bikes, but get stuck with 2016, or even 2015 bikes, and they get shunned like the plague (or customers want huge discounts for NOS bikes).
This.

My fiancee just bought a new road bike in January. It was a 2014 model, but component-wise identical to the 2016s still at regular price in every way except the paint scheme. The 2014 even came with matching bottle cages and seatbag that the 2016 didn't, and she got it for half MSRP.

That wasn't even a high end bike, but as soon as the new ones come out, people don't want old. Couple that with how often high end bikes sell compared to low end bikes, and the simple cost difference to the dealer, I can't blame them.

Same reason I have never seen a bike from Trek's touring line in any of the chain LBS Trek shops by me. Too risky. Their closeout shop is filled with higher end bikes at decent discounts, that still don't move.
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Old 04-26-17, 08:02 PM
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We have a local shop that carries Giant and Canondale and it did seem like they have more high-end Canondales on the floor last time I was there. But I think their business model is more directed to "average" rider (they also have large fishing and tennis departments so more like a "general" sporting goods store).

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Old 04-26-17, 08:15 PM
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Originally Posted by CliffordK View Post
Unless you realize you don't need to spend the big bucks to get the fancy components ;
That is valid. What we wanted to point out to prospective customers was that wheels and frames were the most important parts that comprise a high end bike. A good friend of mine had an incident on his otherwise Dura Ace bike a few years ago. His jacket fell out of his rear jersey pocket and was sucked into his chain destroying his Dura Ace rear derailleur. He couldn't find a replacement so the bike shop installed a 105 replacement. Since he couldn't feel any difference between the replacement and the original, he simply rode on for several years.
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Old 04-26-17, 11:40 PM
  #15  
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Sadly most of the customers come in for the crappy bikes. They want garbage and they are willing to overpay for that garbage so long as it seems cheap to them. I would love to stock higher end bikes in the shop but when much of your customer base is looking for low-end hybrids and won't listen to your advice...what are you going to do?

Giant is not that exciting and they aren't great to dealers especially with their new weblink program that basically cuts shops out of the deal and we have to build the bike for free and deal with the customer. Granted though bikes are usually the worst margins for a shop so you can sell someone on accessories and such but the fact we see very little if anything from those e-sales but have to do a bunch of work that we don't always have time for is horrible.
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Old 04-26-17, 11:58 PM
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Here in Australia Giant seems to be opening a lot of their own stores. Just going through the dealers list on their site and most of them seem to be Giant shops. Not sure what the situation is in the US.
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Old 04-27-17, 06:22 AM
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OP - I work in a shop that sells Specialized and Giant. Most of our customers who are interested in Giants are motivated by the lower price rather than performance. We sell few high-end Giants, though the ones we've sold have been excellent. Giant is very much a sleeper in the high-end market.

The comments above concerning the cost/benefit analysis of carrying high-end bikes in stock are accurate - it's a lot of outlay for a relatively low chance of sale. Most of our customers who want high-end bikes know what they want and are comfortable ordering without a test ride.
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Old 04-27-17, 06:40 AM
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If your profile location is correct and you're still in HI, I'd say that's a huge part of it. Hell, LBSs are wary of ordering/being stuck with higher-end stock when they're in the middle of the lower 48 - I can only imagine the increased reluctance when they're operating in a place with additional logistical challenges like HI.

I think that Giant does some really cool stuff, and I think that the value of test rides are over-estimated, but if you don't know your desired geometry well enough to make a decision sight-unseen, I'd move on to another brand with better local support.
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Old 04-27-17, 07:53 AM
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Originally Posted by WhyFi View Post
If your profile location is correct and you're still in HI, I'd say that's a huge part of it. Hell, LBSs are wary of ordering/being stuck with higher-end stock when they're in the middle of the lower 48 - I can only imagine the increased reluctance when they're operating in a place with additional logistical challenges like HI.

I think that Giant does some really cool stuff, and I think that the value of test rides are over-estimated, but if you don't know your desired geometry well enough to make a decision sight-unseen, I'd move on to another brand with better local support.
I hadn't even noticed that, but you are right. I imagine being a bike shop in Kona, what is the size of the high end road market? Not much. The population of the entire big island is fewer than 200,000 people, and of that, at least half the population lives in the Hilo area on the other side of the island. So Kona metro area is, maybe 40,000 or 50,000 people at most? By comparison, my area, Southeastern Wisconsin has about 1.5 Million people, which is still small, but not at small as Kona.

I am sure there is a small population of road cyclists who live in Kona, and no doubt a tourist trade but I suspect the tourist trade would focus on lower end rentals and sales, and those in the market for high end bicycles more often than not, know what they are looking for.

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Old 04-27-17, 09:02 AM
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Originally Posted by Bsgs87 View Post
KenR, I also have a 2009 Specialized Roubaix Expert. How does your Giant compare to the Roubaix ride? Unfortunately I haven't been able to find any model Advanced to ride. Thanks!
My 2005 Roubaix is a bit too long in the tooth to properly be compared to a new Giant Defy, even though it is carbon (crabon?) and similarly spec'd. But I test rode a 2017 roubaix last October. Didn't like the future shock front end. Much preferred the Giant. Just felt both smoother and snappier. But this is one of those YMMV things.
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Old 04-27-17, 07:23 PM
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Thanks

Want to thank all of you who responded to this post. We do have a great bike shop here in Kona, which also carries Specialized, Cannondale, Cervelo, and Felt. I bought my 2009 Specialized Roubaix here and they have always treated me real well. I just didn't know why they didn't have some Giants in the shop. Well, today I was just down the street getting a car repair so decided to go spend some more money at the bike shop. At least that is more fun. I noticed two Giant Defy's right away. Two large for me but I thought this could be a good sign. I spoke with Vern who I bought my last bike from and manages the shop. He said he had been getting a lot more inquires about Giant so he ordered a few. He had two in my size a few days ago but said he sold them both the same day they were put together. He did have one that is one size up from what I would normally take but he said he would have it put together so I could do a test ride in a few days. Not the same components I was thinking but should work just fine for a test ride. Who knows I might even change my mind and go with something different. My present bike is all ultegra and I have been very happy with it.
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Old 04-30-17, 10:25 PM
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Originally Posted by smarkinson View Post
Here in Australia Giant seems to be opening a lot of their own stores. Just going through the dealers list on their site and most of them seem to be Giant shops. Not sure what the situation is in the US.
Maybe Giant has better representation in Australia - there are a number of Giant stores in the Sydney metro area, with a pretty good selection.

I bought the Giant TCX Advanced Pro 2 a couple of months ago and am very happy with it, although the high bottom bracket takes a bit of getting used to - I had my saddle way too low to start with because it felt so high. It's now quite a stretch to touch the ground with my toes when stopped, but does allow me to keep pedalling around corners :-).

However, I had the same experience with my LBS (who had a lot of Giant inventory, but not the CX bikes). They said they could order one for me, but but I really wanted a test ride before parting with the cash. The LBS suggested I find another store with the bike I wanted in my size, but then I felt honour-bound to buy from that store after test riding two bikes and spending time asking questions. I feel bad for the original store, but ultimately, both stores want my business, and only one had the item I was after available to test.

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Old 04-30-17, 10:37 PM
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Originally Posted by johngwheeler View Post
Maybe Giant has better representation in Australia - there are a number of Giant stores in the Sydney metro area, with a pretty good selection.

I bought the Giant TCX Advanced Pro 2 a couple of months ago and am very happy with it, although the high bottom bracket takes a bit of getting used to - I had my saddle way too low to start with because it felt so high. It's now quite a stretch to touch the ground with my toes when stopped, but does allow me to keep pedalling around corners :-).

However, I had the same experience with my LBS (who had a lot of Giant inventory, but not the CX bikes). They said they could order one for me, but but I really wanted a test ride before parting with the cash. The LBS suggested I find another store with the bike I wanted in my size, but then I felt honour-bound to buy from that store after test riding two bikes and spending time asking questions. I feel bad for the original store, but ultimately, both stores want my business, and only one had the item I was after available to test.

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