One of my dad’s first bikes was a Raleigh. He had purchased it with the money he saved up from his paper route and from doing lawn jobs.
When he left for college, his dad traded the bike with him for a down payment on a VW Beetle.
So it stayed with the family for quite awhile.
If you don’t have that kind of heritage with the Raleigh brand, you might not have the same emotional connection. For today’s shopper, it is one of those models that you find online, but that don’t find in many stores.
Which comes across as suspicious.
The Accell brand bought out the Raleigh brand name (alongside other brands such as Diamondback). This new corporation uses their massive joint buying power to negotiate better deals on bike manufacturers.
In a cut-throat industry that relies heavily on overseas products, this kind of purchasing power is essential.
However, the savvy shopper will often notice very similar bike configurations inside the Accell family of bikes. There is nothing wrong with that, but it does seem as though the Diamondback line has a more robust marketing budget.
Accordingly, it is more likely that you run across one of the other models than it is that you will see a Raleigh.
Direct To Consumer Focus
Local bike shops are being pressured only to carry one brand at a time. Similar to how you have car dealers who are dedicated to being
the “Subaru” or “Volkswagen” dealer, these shops are pressured into carrying solely “trek” or “specialized.”
In decades past, brands like Raleigh could slip into these shops as an alternative offering and pick up some sales from customers who wanted to break the mold.
Now, they are being forced to get creative.
The internet is offering more options for brand exposure, and the Accel group has embraced that by providing their models direct to the consumer. Not only can this provide a better price point by eliminating the “middle-man,” it means that you can work directly with the manufacturer on warranty issues.
The downside is that this model makes it difficult to test drive the bike and you’ll still need to create a relationship with your local bike shop to get your repairs done.
The good news is that this is a high-end brand that any local bike shop can work on.
While I rarely see complaints about the manufacturer’s quality, it is always good to research the brand’s warranty policies.
Most of the frames come with a generous lifetime warranty. Compared to the 5 to 7-year warranty many of the models.
There are differing warranties n the components. Most of those components are covered under the manufacturer’s warranty. In my experience, those last for right around one year on most components
Keep in mind that frame warranty work typically requires you to ship the bike back. Shipping costs can run anywhere from $50 to $120 depending on your carrier and the distance.
The good news is that warranties are rarely needed on these bikes.