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Bike Boom Bike Stock Update

Words by Cycles UK

on 21/07/2021 11:18:49

Fotos_Orbea Gain Carbon (8)

As you may know there had been a bike boom during the pandemic. Cycling has become an incredibly popular way to exercise during the lockdowns and more people are commuting to work, and getting around town, by bike to avoid public transport. As well as making us healthier as a population this also reduces air pollution and green house gas emissions, so is a bit of a win win all round.

The downside of the bike boom has been shortages of bikes with some customers struggling to get the bikes they wanted as demand spiked last spring and summer. We wanted to give you a quick update on what has happened over the last year or so and what the situation is now.

According to the Bicycles Association there was a 60% increase in bike sales during 2020 and this increase was replicated worldwide. With that level of extra demand most bikes in the UK sold out very quickly with £500 hybrids and mountain bikes being the first to run out. Most manufacturers work a year or two ahead so it was not possible to just build more bikes straight away as there were not the parts available. Most brands did quickly ramp up orders for the 2021 model year and brought forward bike launches to meet demand but there have been ongoing issues with the ports, container availability and shipping costs which have all created bottlenecks and delays.

To try and keep supply flowing in our stores we brought in more bikes from Europe, including whole new brands including such as Orbea, and we have changed the way that we order bikes so that we have a constant flow of bikes arriving into our stores every week.

Where are we now?

The first bikes to sell out were entry level hybrids and they are now pretty much back in stock, with brands like Trek currently having hundreds in warehouses in the UK and good stock in our stores of bikes such as the Trek FX and Trek Dual Sport. Entry level mountain bike stocks are now also pretty good with the Orbea MX range, Trek Marlins and Specialized Rockhoppers all available. Entry level road bikes are regularly arriving but are also selling very quickly, although we are expecting large deliveries of the Trek Domane and Orbea Avant bikes in August.

There are still some shortages on higher end carbon road bikes and full suspension mountain bikes. There are bikes available in these categories but not a huge amount of choice at the moment.

What happens next?

2022 model year bikes are already arriving and we will see this ramp up from September onwards. We have already placed orders for bike deliveries right through to December 2022 and we are now starting to get information on 2023 model year bikes from some suppliers. By ordering so far in advance we have the best chance of getting the bikes everyone wants.

The biggest barrier to bike supply at the moment seems to be groupsets (gears and brakes). There are plenty of frames and wheels available but not enough bits to go on them, especially on higher end bikes. This looks to be the case for at least the next 6 months and will continue to limit choice. The group set shortages are being caused by a mix of materials shortages, labour shortages and factories having to shut down due to COVID.

There will be bikes available but supply will be tight on certain models, so if you see the bike you want it’s best to jump right on it.