Reported on BikeBiz.com previously, Haro dropped the 650B wheel size from its line. At the first UK showing of the 2011 line it seems “the UK doesn’t really ‘get’ 29ers either,” so they’re gone too, meaning Haro is again wholly focused on its freestyle roots.
“Unless your customers are all tall it’s quite difficult to sell 29ers in the UK. The concept isn’t really understood given the typical UK terrain and although the bikes did sell, the 26-inch wheel is where Haro’s focus will be on the MTB side going forwards,” explains Haro brand manager Adam Garner.
Moore Large has had a direct input into the big-wheeled line-up, with UK specific graphics on each, adding colour-coordinated saddles to each and a few subtle spec changes where braking is concerned. Hydraulic brakes now feature on the majority of mid-range Haro mountain bikes, with only one lower-priced mechanical set-up now in the range. This subtle change is something Garner believes helps the retailer ‘sell’ the bike to customers big on buzz words.
Reflected in its ramp-side presence at London’s Cycle Show, Haro and subsidiary brand Premium Products are very much focused on the BMX, race and jump markets this year. The six-bike Premium Products line, topped with Garret Reynolds’ ‘Deathtrap’ at £569.95, hits the key ‘best seller’ price points well and for the first time introduces a ‘brakeless’ model, dubbed the Broadway. This build comes boxed with brakes, though given the majority of 20-inch enthusiasts’ neglect for stopping power, the model is bound to be a big seller due to its clean, lug-free tubes.
The brand’s aftermarket component line has a few tidy additions too, including a super slim profile pedal with options for either a plastic or metal body, both compatible with the same axle and rolling on a bush bearing system. Also due by Christmas, the brand has a new crank, dubbed the ‘1948’, and compatible with all 48-spline bottom brackets.
On the race side of the Haro business, 15 year-old Dan Pullen has taken a place on the Olympic development team, giving the Derby distributor a new angle from which to market the line going forwards.
“We’ll be heavily involved with Mpora.com’s race BMX section when it launches later this year, marketing Haro’s race bikes to the masses,” said Garner. “The bikes themselves have a wealth of added value this year with more Sinz components specced, alloy stems and pivotal seat setups, though prices remain largely unchanged. There’s nine models in the 2011 range and we’ve introduced some clever hydroformed frames on some models carrying built in chain tensioners.”
With what was recently described to BikeBiz as a ‘huge growth sector’, it’s little surprise to see that Moore Large has expanded the budget Savage BMX product line. Offering seven different 25/9, colour co-ordinated wheel and sprocket packages, the firm has a few innovative ways to address the demand for colour-matched, custom builds. It’s not all necessarily ‘bread and butter’ stock though, there’s a few personalised touches in the line too, such as the ‘Smokey Joe’ grip, which has a swirled multicoloured design. The four colourways retail for just £5.99, to boot.
On Forme, off-road
The majority of retailers visiting Moore Large’s roadshows will have taken a keen interest in the progress of the relatively young, yet hugely successful Forme brand. Not to disappoint, brand manager Adam Biggs had laid on a spread of new builds, including a new off-road line beginning at an affordable £399 and topping out at the Cycle to Work friendly £999.99 price point, which the brand’s conception was largely based around.
So with the scheme still very much unsettled, thanks to late summer’s legislation re-jig, what does this mean for Forme?
“It’s not essential to sales, I feel,” said Biggs. “It seems to me that people are seeking to cycle regardless of incentives. That’s why the Forme range is designed to be as sellable as possible on the shop floor. The design work of the 2011 line focuses on key touch points and aesthetics in the right places, the things customers both uneducated and in the know will appreciate when differentiating one bike from another."
There’s plenty to attract retail customers to Forme – good point of sale support going forwards, healthy margins bordering on the 50 per cent mark on many models, a promise to only allow bricks and mortar stores access to the brand, and a diverse bike range – but what’s in it for the consumer?
Well aside from lifetime warranty on all Forme frames, Biggs has done plenty of research on the end-user and what turns them on in store. Women’s bikes are kitted out with what women want – a comfy saddle, ergo grips, forgiving tyres and mudguards.
The customer is also buying into a link-up between the brand and Marie Curie Cancer Care, with a portion of all sales going to the charity. In fact, a sale of the competition-ready, range-topping, £3,299 Zenith road bike, of which only 100 are being made, will return £100 to the charity.
Last year demand for Forme far outstripped supply, due to shortages on many other brands, though much thanks to being a ‘welcome change from the big players’. Moore Large has invested heavily in higher stock levels this year and the range has vastly broadened to include everything from city and trekking bikes, through cyclocross builds, to a new track-suited build due in stock early next year.
Moore Large: 01332 274200
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