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  1. #1
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    OPINION:Motobecane Super Mirage and Mirage Sport Road bikes

    Hi everyone!

    I am just getting into cycling and looking for a decent road bike to get started with. As a student I have a very low budget, I will be using the bike to travel to and from campus (20km daily).


    I have also been looking at some new starter Motobecane road bikes both have Shimano Sora components. I have attached the following links to the specs on these two respective bikes. Any information anyone has on these bikes would be greatly appreciated.


    http://www.bikesdirect.com/products/...ane/super.html

    http://www.bikesdirect.com/products/...iragesport.htm

  2. #2
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    Go with the "Sport"

    Quote Originally Posted by choklit
    Hi everyone!

    I am just getting into cycling and looking for a decent road bike to get started with. As a student I have a very low budget, I will be using the bike to travel to and from campus (20km daily).


    I have also been looking at some new starter Motobecane road bikes both have Shimano Sora components. I have attached the following links to the specs on these two respective bikes. Any information anyone has on these bikes would be greatly appreciated.


    http://www.bikesdirect.com/products/...ane/super.html

    http://www.bikesdirect.com/products/...iragesport.htm

    One time while shopping at Cycle Spectrum (the retail version of Bikes Direct owned by the same guy) I was talking with the manager and he told me that one of the ways BD can sell the stuff so cheap is volume. To help with this they really only order 1 model Alum frame for the entire Moto line up. This means that the $395.00 Mirage Sport has the same exact frame as the top of the line Le Champion. Heck they sell just the frame in the team colors for the same price. Team Le Champion. The only difference is the fork.

    Historically all the BD stuff has issues with the paint peeling off but if you are using it as a daily commuter having look like crap is really an advantage. It's less likely to get stolen.

    I would avoid their steel frames. While it is true that upper end steel frames are great the BD steel frames are made of the same kind of steel by the same folks that make the Pacifica and other Discount store bikes. This means that the Super Mirage most likely weights +26 lbs and the older cheaper steel is prone to rusting. Sounds like yours will be left outside a lot.


    Glad I could help!
    Joined the other team in the name of the economy

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lifelover
    Historically all the BD stuff has issues with the paint peeling off but if you are using it as a daily commuter having look like crap is really an advantage. It's less likely to get stolen.
    No paint problems with my 2001 Motobecane Le Champion. I have no knowledge about their steel frames.

  4. #4
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    Um, I don't think "choklit" is sincerely asking questions.

  5. #5
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    I'll reserve judgement but....

    Motobecane went bust a long time ago, they were resurrected as MBK until recently. This Motobecane brand is nothing to do with the European marque that La Redoute's team rode in the early 80's. It's as far as I can see merely a name bought off the shelf for BD to market their more expensive models under. The frames are generic catalogue Taiwanese frames, costing no more than $100 at cost. They are trading on another company's heritage & sporting history FRAUDULENTLY. What if a US based company bought the rights to the name Iso Griffo and put the name on a sports style car made in Korea and marketed it using the heritage of the marques history?
    Looking at the steel framed bike in the link - no way is that a $900 bike ever. $500 tops. For less than $700 you can get an 06 Trek 1000 so if you look for a 05 model you'll get an infinitely better bike with alloy frame & carbon fork!

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by rcnute
    Um, I don't think "choklit" is sincerely asking questions.
    Unfortunately for legitimate users of this board, you are probably right.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by wsexson
    Unfortunately for legitimate users of this board, you are probably right.
    Might be right - could be more shill tactics, although I guess its not totally out of the realm of possibility.... I get tired of 2nd guessing.

    Ultimobici - that's one way of looking at it, although to be honest the original Motobecane bikes were nothing much to write home about either. There were one or two exceptions, but most of their bikes were average to below average compared with other bikes of the day. The current company's "generic" taiwanese frames are pretty sweet actually and I wouldn't mind picking up a couple on the cheap from ebay, ect..... And there is some debate that they are rebadged name brand frames. For instance the Immortal Force looks dead on like a Garneau, and the Le Champ appears to be a rebranded Fuji Team SL. I have the latter and the bikes frame geometry, component specs, fork are all identical to the Fuji. I've had my bike for coming up on a year now and have been pretty happy. I'm thinking of picking up another for the upcoming racing season as a crit bike.

    Another way to look at it is that they bought the Moto name, then are paying at least some homage to the company by maintaining the same models in the line. They had to do a bit of research for that. And lastly, if the original Motobecane was still around, don't you think they might be doing the same thing? Getting their frames from some place like Kinesis (a very reputable Taiwanese frame builder) instead of building them themselves? Perhaps the lack of effective business/manufacturing tactics like this lead to them going out of business in the first place......

  8. #8
    You're Not the Boss of Me
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    Setting aside the questions above about whether this is a shill posting for BD...


    There no reason in the world why a student should by either of these bikes as a commuter. A commuter bike should be a total beater, particularly with the high theft rate on campus. With the short distance you are riding, and presumably in an urban setting, I'd jump on Craig's List (or similar) for my area and find an old hardtail MTB.

    If you really want a road bike, and really want to spend $300-$400, then hit the used market. You'll find some stuff from the mid-90s in that price range.

  9. #9
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    Or a Trek 7000 for $260. Not a bad bike at all for the money, more or less equivalent to a hardtail MTB with a fixed fork, and if you buy it new, you get tune ups and a warranty. Giant has a similar model around the same price.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by rcnute
    Um, I don't think "choklit" is sincerely asking questions.

    Dude you spend too much time on this site thinking up conspiracy theories, I am asking a legit question. I wanted to know if anyone had any freakin idea about these bikes, because I was interested. That is about as "sincere" as it gets. Aren't these forms free to ask others questions???

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by choklit
    Dude you spend too much time on this site thinking up conspiracy theories, I am asking a legit question. I wanted to know if anyone had any freakin idea about these bikes, because I was interested. That is about as "sincere" as it gets. Aren't these forms free to ask others questions???
    You have to understand where we're coming from. Bikesdirect has a habit of posting here as a first time poster asking questions about their products to generate interest in their site and their products. Though you are legit there have been dozens of post that fit that mold and your post on the surface looks like it could be a "shill" as well. We've been bitten quite a few times and that's why we're suspicious.

    Having said that. Even though I'm not crazy about their shilling I own two Motobecanes and like them very much.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by ravenmore
    You have to understand where we're coming from. Bikesdirect has a habit of posting here as a first time poster asking questions about their products to generate interest in their site and their products. Though you are legit there have been dozens of post that fit that mold and your post on the surface looks like it could be a "shill" as well. We've been bitten quite a few times and that's why we're suspicious.
    I am curious to know how everyone knows for certain that these questions aren't legit. Was there evidence found?

    FWIW BikesDirect has there ads freakin' everywhere, and since newbies see the ads, whats so strange about a newbie or not so newbie asking about what appears to be a good deal on a bike? I'd imagine for every legit shill for BD, here, everyone else has pissed off at least 2 people that weren't shills.

  13. #13
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    The few posts and the non-idiomatic English scream "shill" to me.

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by alienator
    I am curious to know how everyone knows for certain that these questions aren't legit. Was there evidence found?

    FWIW BikesDirect has there ads freakin' everywhere, and since newbies see the ads, whats so strange about a newbie or not so newbie asking about what appears to be a good deal on a bike? I'd imagine for every legit shill for BD, here, everyone else has pissed off at least 2 people that weren't shills.
    Well, if you look a few posts up, I was giving the OP the benefit of the doubt. I was simply explaining in the quote from me in your post why people here might be suspicious.

    I have seen some pretty suspicious posts that look like shills. Others look like geniune interests...sometimes its hard to discern. My approach is unless you're REAL sure its a shill then give them the benefit of the doubt. And most of the time its hard to be real sure.

    Sorry, didn't mean to give anyone a hard time.

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by rcnute
    The few posts and the non-idiomatic English scream "shill" to me.
    And exactly how many posts do you expect newbies to have? Is there something that is earned w/ more posts? Non-idiomatic English? Well, I hate to tell ya, some of the 'merican folks round these parts have real issues typing their thoughts in English.

    Do you have anything else other than irrational suspicions?

    You know you only have 112 posts, so it's not like you're the Ol' Man around here.

  16. #16
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    Sadly pathetic but true

    Whatever you want to call it, pathetic shills will always be a part of a free forum.
    And people will continue buy bikes from Walmart or Sams Club or (nice point ultimobici) BikesDirect or wherever.
    “The secret of life is honesty and fair dealing. If you can fake that, you've got it made.”
    -Groucho Marx

  17. #17
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    well - make no mistake while they're marketing is questionable their bikes are actually a pretty good deal. I wouldn't compare them to Walmart bikes. I've purchased 3 and own 2 (the other was gift). They're an excellent value for the money. People seem to get upset with Bikesdirect for a variety of reasons and start bashing their product even though they've never tried it.

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by ravenmore
    well - make no mistake while they're marketing is questionable their bikes are actually a pretty good deal. I wouldn't compare them to Walmart bikes. I've purchased 3 and own 2 (the other was gift). They're an excellent value for the money. People seem to get upset with Bikesdirect for a variety of reasons and start bashing their product even though they've never tried it.
    Frame Handmade Full Dura Forte Chromoly, Precision TIG welded with Rack and Fender brazeons
    Fork Full Dura Forte Chromoly Unicrown
    Derailleurs Shimano sora
    Shifters Shimano sora STI
    Brakes Shimano sora
    Hubs Alloy with 8 speed cassette
    Rims 700 x 20 Alloy 36H
    Crank Cyclone Alloy Triple 52/42/30T
    Saddle Velo racing with Kevelar side panels
    Seatpost Alloy micro-adjust
    Pedals Alloy quill with toeclips and straps
    Tires Maxxis 700 x 25 C
    Colors Jett Black Gloss
    Sizes 50 cm, 53 cm, 56 cm, 59 cm, 62 cm
    Compare this bike at $899.95, but bikesdirect.com offers
    it for only $349.95 including free UPS delivery to your door.

    This bike comes 90% assembled.


    How this is good value eludes me. There isn't any way in hell that this retails at $900. That's $100+ more than a Trek 1000 which has the same running gear on an alloy frame and carbon fork. Also as I said earlier a 2005 model could be picked up for considerably less. Not to mention the $50? a LBS will charge to set it up safely (I've yet to see a MO bike set up properly ever). The bike they are talking about is worth $500 retail max. They are misrepresenting the saving to lure unsuspecting customers. Not honest in my book, unethical, possibly borderline illegal.

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by ultimobici
    [COLOR=Navy]The bike they are talking about is worth $500 retail max. They are misrepresenting the saving to lure unsuspecting customers. Not honest in my book, unethical, possibly borderline illegal.
    C'mon - that's a bit over the top and with the "borderline illegal" comment you're going a bit far yourself IMO. What this particular bike is worth is a matter of opinion. FWIW, I actually agree with you in this particular instance about this bike vs. a Trek. However, when you look at the other higher level models such as the Le Champ SL the Bikesdirect bikes are a heck of a value.

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by alienator
    And exactly how many posts do you expect newbies to have? Is there something that is earned w/ more posts? Non-idiomatic English? Well, I hate to tell ya, some of the 'merican folks round these parts have real issues typing their thoughts in English.

    Do you have anything else other than irrational suspicions?

    You know you only have 112 posts, so it's not like you're the Ol' Man around here.
    One sure way is too look at the posting habits of a suspected shill. Wait a month and look them up and see if there's any posting activity. Many haven't posted much except their initial bikesdirect thread. rreas, oicdn, maconward and littledog for example
    Last edited by covenant; 01-10-2006 at 09:39 AM.

  21. #21
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    Ravenmore, going back and fourth with the Moto haters is futile. While I agree that the shill tactic is tired and annoying, most of these guys posting trash abou Moto bikes have an unnatural (and unhealthy) hatred for the product, a product I'm sure they have no experience with. These guys would ostracize you if you rolled up to their group while on a ride and they know nothing about you or your riding abilities. But you could be a crap cyclist on an expensive bike and get instant acceptance.

  22. #22
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    Why are the bashers comparing the suggested retail price? Most retailers over state MSRP when having a sale to make it look like a better deal. All I look at is the bottom line. As for the Le Champion that's on sale for $1095, is it really that good of a deal? You can piece together an Ultegra group for about $650-$750. The Protocols go for about $300 on ebay. The frame and fork would probably fetch about $150 on ebay. All the rest is probably worth about $100. I was thinking of buying one just for the Ultegra and the wheels, but decided not to when I added up the parts.

    Bikesdirect.com say that they have this sale for roadbikereview every month and that it started last November. What were the last 2 sales?

  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by Red Sox Junkie
    Ravenmore, going back and fourth with the Moto haters is futile. While I agree that the shill tactic is tired and annoying, most of these guys posting trash abou Moto bikes have an unnatural (and unhealthy) hatred for the product, a product I'm sure they have no experience with. These guys would ostracize you if you rolled up to their group while on a ride and they know nothing about you or your riding abilities. But you could be a crap cyclist on an expensive bike and get instant acceptance.
    No doubt - I find it interesting how much passion the new Motobecane's are illiciting, be it love or hate. You don't see these debates over say, Treks, Scotts, or Felts, do you? ;)

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by covenant
    One sure way is too look at the posting habits of a suspected shill. Wait a month and look them up and see if there's any posting activity. Many haven't posted much except their initial bikesdirect thread. rreas, oicdn, maconward and littledog for example

    Maybe they're shills, or maybe they just got put off by the attitude, here. Again, no one here knows anything but conjecture re: any of these posts. And I suspect more than a few people derive some feeling of superiority re; this issue and these bikes when they scream "shill" or whatever.

    Objectivity has not gone out the window because it's never been in this room.

  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by vis8892
    Why are the bashers comparing the suggested retail price? Most retailers over state MSRP when having a sale to make it look like a better deal. All I look at is the bottom line. As for the Le Champion that's on sale for $1095, is it really that good of a deal? You can piece together an Ultegra group for about $650-$750. The Protocols go for about $300 on ebay. The frame and fork would probably fetch about $150 on ebay. All the rest is probably worth about $100. I was thinking of buying one just for the Ultegra and the wheels, but decided not to when I added up the parts.

    Bikesdirect.com say that they have this sale for roadbikereview every month and that it started last November. What were the last 2 sales?
    Actually I don't think that parts list is entirely accurate. For one thing, the current Le Champ comes with American Classic 420's. Another point is that the Moto Le Champ is a close, close relation to the Fuji Team SL, which DOES in fact sell for over $2k most of the time. 3rd - show me the prices for complete sub-16 pound Ultegra bikes, and I think you'll see that the Moto Le Champs are a pretty good deal.

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