WHICH CAR COMPANIES MAKE MOUNTAIN BIKES ?

@Uknown

 

DOES YOUR CAR MANUFACTURER MAKE A MOUNTAIN BIKE ?

Does your car brand make a mountain bike ? If you think of car manufacturers producing bicycles and mountain bikes as the novelty, you are wrong. Car companies have been involved in the production and branding bikes for over 15 years. Sadly, with the very occasional exception, when they offer one, they do it all wrong. 29 inches wheels with the skinny tires and the frame of a trail bike, carbon frame with the low-end suspension fork, or a mix of high and low-quality groupset components that does not make any sense. In many cases, all these nonsense comes or at least used to come at the price of top range mountain bikes produced by established players of the MTB industry.

But why ? I find it hard to believe that people selling the most advanced technology can’t figure out how to assemble a decent mountain bike that it’s worth its money. Is it ignorance ? Do car companies think that just because bikes don’t use as advanced technology as in cars, they can sell it to anyone with a relatively eye-catching design ? Maybe it’s arrogance. They know very well what sells and what markets to pitch, and they assume that by simply adding their logo, they will find the poor noobs who are going to fall for it. Whether this is the case or not, we all know the noobs who’ve bought a shitty product for their logo.

But, maybe I’m overthinking and the auto companies are laughing and offer their bicycles as another logo-branded add-on sale like key rings or baseball cups. Here’s by no means an incomplete list of car companies that have made mountain bikes.


 

MOUNTAIN BIKES FROM CAR BRANDS

 

ALFA ROMEO CROSS

Car Companies That Make Mountain Bikes - Alfa Romeo Mountain Bike

Designed by Alfa Romeo, Cross is a mountain bike that not only looks quick but also, with its price tag, makes an impression of a serious player in the mountain bike industry. The mix of groupsets ranging between Deore, Deore SLX and Deore XT is not really bad here. Still, the bike came out way overpriced when compared to legitimate mountain bike manufacturers, even if it was coming with a carbon frame. We could only hope that 3000 – 4000 Euros (depending on gizmos) would make this bike more reliable than its much more expensive car.


 

JEEP

Car Brands Mountain Bikes - Jeep Mountain Bike

Jeep is the car manufacturer that can boast the whole collection of glorified Walmart bikes. Looking at the spec this model probably belongs to that group, though for the £757.87 price tag you’d expect something better. Aluminium frame, 27.5″ wheels, Shimano Acera 8-speed Controls, Shimano Steff 24v Crankset are the best you can expect on this bike.


 

FORD RANGER

Ford Mountain Bike

EZ Fire shifters, Shimano EZ-Fire gears, Shimano TX35 rear derailleur and £300 price tag speak for themselves. Good for Sunday trip to London Hyde Park.


 

VOLVO

Volvo Mountain Bike

“Anyone who chooses the cross-country bike at Volvo will get an airbag and sigma lamp for free” :) On the serious note, it’s a Cannondale bike from the era when mountain bike racing was pulling some serious sponsorship money. Formed in 1994 Volvo Cannondale was one of the longest established and most successful MTB teams on the circuit. In 2003, automaker Volvo announced the end of its involvement in the Volvo-Cannondale racing team.


 

RENAULT

Car Manufacturers That Make Mountain Bikes - Renault MTB

Renault is another car company which decided to launch a small range of bicycles in addition to its car fleet. Amongst, we can find a mountain bike with 27-speed Shimano, adjustable suspension, aluminium frame, and 26-inch wheels with what it looks like plus tires. The release price was $ 16,350. Yes, it made me sweat at first too. But for some reason most available sources link it to Argentinian market and cost is shown in pesos, not US dollars :) (around £590).


 

PORSCHE RX

Porsche Mountain Bike

Equipped with a high-end carbon frame, hydraulic disc brakes, 27.5-inch wheels and groupset components of Shimano XT-XTR, in the eyes of Porsche, this bike can overcome anything in your way and navigate the toughest of trails with confidence. Whether it passes the practical test or not, it was released at the hefty price of € 4990. Still, it sounds reasonable compared to a jaw-dropping $10,612 price tag of the eye-popping yellow wheeler FS Evolution mountain bike released by Porsche in 2001. Porsches were never cheap.


 

MERCEDES TRAILBLAZER

AUTO BIKES - Mercedes Mountain Bike

In 2008, German car manufacturer Mercedes-Benz has launched a special edition lineup of bikes including aluminium All-Mountain MTB Trailblazer. According to the company, mountain bike features high-end quality parts from Fox Racing, SRAM, DT Swiss, Shimano, Avid and Fizik. Well, SRAM X7/X9 or Avid Elixir 5 hydraulic brakes are not really from the top shelf, although it would be wrong to label it as low quality. Price ? £2,955.


 

LAND ROVER VORBANOAT

Land Rover Mountain Bike

You might be surprised again but yes, car manufacturer Land Rover makes their own bike range. Apart from the bikes aimed at relative beginners, in the past, they’ve built a few specials for adventure race teams and a couple of decent carbon mountain bikes capable of tackling the occasional Sunday cross country event.

Land Rover Vorbanoat at nearly 28lb is not really the lightest carbon bike. With the carbon bike at this price, you can expect a big downgrade in the components. You will find most of these parts on the mountain bikes that cost half the price. It simply brings us to a conclusion that going for a carbon fibre at this price is nearly always a bad trade-off.

Saying this, Shimano Deore XT Shadow rear mech fitted on Vorbanoat is very much welcome. WTB SX24 rims are not bad either, and the 2in WTB NanoRaptor treads are very good grip choice, especially in the wet conditions. On top of that, this bike is nearly half the price for comparable spec on mountain bikes made by car manufacturers like Alfa Romeo or Porsche.


 

LAMBORGHINI

Lamborghini Mountain Bike

I couldn’t find too much about this bike spec but it wears jewellery like Shimano TX or Altus ST shift and brake levers, and it has a very interesting description regarding its spec:

Nothing is missing from the spec sheet as you’d expect with this legendary marque.

I’ll leave it here :)


 

HONDA RN01

Car Brands and Mountain Bikes - Honda Downhill Mountain Bike

No, it’s not a motorbike with the missing engine. As much as you might think of this bike as another meaningless, weird looking creation from the company that knows nothing about building mountain bikes, this is not the case here. With multiple Downhill Team World Cup wins, Honda RN01 was a mountain bike in a class of its own.

It also was one of the most mysterious and probably most expensive downhill bikes ever created. The original “RN01” technology (frame, suspension, gearbox) was designed utilizing off-road motorcycle technology. Its secrecy was kept to the point that when the bikes were not raced, the mechanics used to remove Honda’s gearbox so if they were stolen the gearboxes weren’t. This actually wasn’t such a bad idea since two of the team bikes were stolen, without gearboxes! One of them ended up on eBay and was later recovered.


 

HAMMER

Hammer MTB

I can say without any doubt, just by the look of it, that in terms of mountain biking hobby, HAMMER mountain bike is nothing but the meaningless accessory to US automaker GM’s popular SUV, the Hummer. If you have one and love it, don’t take it personally. It’s just a personal opinion based on an empty assumption. Sold for approx £230.


 

FERRARI

Car Companies Producing Mountain Bikes - Ferrari MTB

What happens when you stick Ferrari badge on the average hardtail ? SHIMANO: ALIVIO FD-M4000, R/Derailleur, RD-M4000, Shifting Levers SL-M4000R/L, tag price of £2,290, and the description including phrases like “state-of-the-art”, “a unique design which features the best components and systems currently available on the market”. I’m sorry, but isn’t it disgraceful that Ferrari is trying to sell a product for 3 times its true value ? Well, I guess the price of this Ferrari mountain bike is probably in the carbon frame and the logo they offer.


 

BMW

BMW Enduro Mountain Bike

I have to say I really like the look of the bike. BMW launched a few products on two wheels without an engine, including Cross Country hardtail, and the above BMW Enduro Mountain Bike originally priced at US$4,458. 2012 model has the aluminium frame, Fox 32 O/B trail fork with a travel of 140 mm (5.5 in), and the groupset components not lower than Shimano XT.

BMW also claims to develop especially adjustable angle stem that improves rider comfort and riding efficiency. Still, In 2012 you were able to buy similarly specked enduro bike from respectable bike manufacturers (Giant, Specialized) at nearly half the price. In 2017 the company launched BMW M Bike Limited Carbon Edition – RM6,995.


 

AUDI CROSS RS 2009

AUDI Mountain Bike

In 2009 Audi launched a Cross Pro RS aluminium mountain bike with the design which was described as “pioneering”. The bike was fitted with quality components like XTR/XT gearing from Shimano, a Manitou Minute suspension fork at the front and Manitou Swinger at the rear, hydraulic Magura Marta SL disc brakes with piston callipers and carbon pads.

Its alloy rims were at the time roughly 30 percent stronger than other conventional aluminium bike wheels. At 11,9 kg Cross Pro RS was also the lightest offering in the Quattro GmbH Audi bicycle range. Production of this mountain bike was limited to only 150 units, assuring significant exclusivity. This collectable item was priced at around £4000.


 

SUBARU XB

Subaru Mountain Bike

MTB sports fans already know that Subaru is not only known for its cars. Associated with different bike brands through its career, the Gary Fisher-Subaru racing team has also been successful on the Bike Racing scene including national and world Cross Country and Downhill events in Mountain Biking.

In 2009, the Japanese company launched its own brand of the 99 mountain bikes which were available only by order and were priced at about UDS 3.900. Traditionally, same as most car brands involved in bike production line, Subaru put the price tag on the bike that wasn’t really worth its chromoly steel hardtail frame.

For those interested in spec, Subaru equipped its XB mountain bike with: RockShox Reba Race Dual Air suspension fork, Deda Quattro stem, Deda Big Bar handlebar, Deda Metal Stick seat post, Michelin Country Rock 26 x 1.75 tyres, Mavic CrossRide wheels, Selle Italia C2 Gel Flow saddle and Shimano XT components (disc brakes, shifters, brakes, cassette, chain, crankset, derailleurs).
 



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