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HELP! LeMond or Motobecane? I'm a new rider looking.....(18 posts)

HELP! LeMond or Motobecane? I'm a new rider looking.....newrider
Mar 18, 2003 11:15 AM
to buy a bike. I'm a female who will be using the bike for recreation/fitness purposes. I probably won't be racing. I'm getting ready to do America's Most Beautiful Bike Ride in Lake Tahoe. I'm torn between the LeMond Alpe D'Huez and the Motobecane Grand Sprint. The Motobecane has Ultegra components and an aluminum frame and the LeMond has 105 components and a cromoly steel frame. They both seem really nice. Any tips??
A couple of questions..Dave Hickey
Mar 18, 2003 11:20 AM
Look beyond the 105 vs Ultegra.
1. Who makes the wheels?
2. Who makes the stem, seatpost and saddle?
3. Lemond is owed by Trek and has a warranty. Does the Motobecane?
Thanks Dave.... in response to a couple of questions....newrider
Mar 18, 2003 11:30 AM
Motobecane Grand Sprint.....
Wheels: Neuvation paired spoke deep section aero wheel set
M-Wings competition bar, stem and seat post.
Warranty - will replace parts/frame forever

LeMond Alpe D'Huez.....
Wheels: Matrix Aurora Shimano Tiagra
Stem: TTT The
Seat Post: Alloy Microadjust
Saddle - CRZ + Road

I'm confused!!
Are the costs similar? If the Lemond is cheaper,Spunout
Mar 18, 2003 11:36 AM
go with the Lemond. If they are the same price, go with the Lemond! Admitted, I'm a biased Lemond rider.
Are the costs similar? If the Lemond is cheaper,newrider
Mar 18, 2003 11:39 AM
The LeMond is about $50.00 more than the Motobecane.
Are the costs similar? If the Lemond is cheaper,newrider
Mar 18, 2003 11:41 AM
The LeMond is about $50.00 more than the Motobecane.
Fit is the first factor, followed by frame fabrication...Spunout
Mar 18, 2003 11:22 AM
The Lemond may fit different than the MBK, but discuss this with the retailer (a qualified fitter, hopefully).

The Lemond gives you a better frame (steel may be more compliant, comfortable) with good components. The Motobecane gives you an upgrade on the components with a more common (inexpensive) frame fabrication. Some may say Aluminum rides harsh. I think it might have more to do with the wheels.
check the fit.....cdale02
Mar 18, 2003 11:40 AM
In either case, as a new rider, you should buy the bike at a reputable shop to get a proper fit.

Lemond's are known for having a slightly longer top tube with a more relaxed geometry. Typically, females have longer legs and a shorter torso compared to a males of the same height. To get a proper fit on the Lemond, you will probably need a shorter than stock stem.

A good shop should be able to set you up on either bike properly.

I have now experience with the new Motobecanes, but I have ridden some Lemonds and they have a very nice ride.

Good luck.
re: HELP! LeMond or Motobecane? I'm a new rider looking.....raboboy
Mar 18, 2003 11:48 AM
take them both out for a ride (half hour at least). see what one feels better.
Go For Steel and the better fit...zmarke
Mar 18, 2003 12:17 PM
I do not mean to sound sexist but it seems that most (not all) women will do better with a steel frame since they usually purchase frames in smaller sizes. Alumnium is very stiff and harsh riding especially in smaller sizes.

I would also consider fit to be the most important factor. Women tend to have longer legs and shorter torsos which means you want a top tube that is shorter than the industry norm. Lemonds tend to be longer than the industry norm although they may now have a "women specific" designed bike. I am not bashing Lemonds becasue I almost bought one myself, I just got a great deal on a Fuji 853 steel frame instead.

The Motobecane brand is an American Company that bought the French name but has the bikes made abroad. Maybe I am not being fair but I would stay away from Motobecane since this new iteration of the brand is an unproven new company.

Anyway, my wife, has a steel Bianchi which she got specifically becasue it was steel and had a shorter top tube than most other production bikes. This past weekend I was amazed (actually laughing) because 2 other couples that were on a club ride with us had similar setups, the men had Lemonds for longer top tubes and the women both had Bianchi's.

As for components, and this is an opinion, why spend the money on Dura-Ace or Ultegra when 105s will last as long and are not any heavier that anyone but a professional racer would notice...or care for that matter.
Women Specific Lemonds...zmarke
Mar 18, 2003 12:25 PM
I wish these were made a few years ago. My wife would have got one of these over the Bianchi. Her Bianchi is great but the Lemond is even better.

Shimano 105/Tiagra Mix
http://www.lemondbikes.com/bikes/bikes_women_tourmalet.html

Shimano Ultegra
http://www.lemondbikes.com/bikes/bikes_women_zurich.html
Did they just come out with these this year?Kristin
Mar 18, 2003 12:50 PM
I am so glad that more WSD's are being made--I feel my off the rack options expanding.
Definitely available last year already (nm)kenyee
Mar 19, 2003 7:07 AM
nm
Be careful. I bought my bike based on info I received hereKristin
Mar 18, 2003 12:47 PM
I love this board, but my head is still spinning from all the crazy, contradictory info I've received on this board and in bike shops accross Chicagoland. God bless you if you can get two fit experts to agree on how a rider should fit on a bike. I'm two years into this and still don't understand it.

Couple questions:
Have you test ridden these bikes?
Where do you live?
Have you found a bike shop you feel you can trust?

My tips:
*Find a good shop. Ask on this board, ask friends who ride, etc.
*Don't worry too much about the science of bike "fit" unless you got 1800 on your SAT's and can do brain surgery. Get the shop to allow you to take a 4 mile test ride and go by feel. If you do pick a frame that doesn't fit, you'll have more fun on the journey. I obsessed about fit and still didn't pick the best bike. The fact is that picking the right bike is something to look forward to in the future--like 5 years down the road. For now, find someone you feel you can trust and make your best guess.
*Take online advice with a grain of salt.
*If someone named LoneFrontRanger replies to you, take her advice. She got 1800 on her SAT's and can do brain surgery. ;-)
Lemond + fit + long test rides... I'm biased !MrDan
Mar 18, 2003 12:52 PM
You're just starting out... the Lemond's have a very good track record, and the Huez is a very nice bike for someone starting out. The most important thing is FIT! Does the LBS seem to take fit seriously, or do they just put a bike under you and say "that looks right". If I had to guess, the Motobecane and the Lemond aren't being sold by the same LBS's ...? I think if you ride each bike for an hour or more (on different days), you'll find the answer. You are laying down the cash, they have to let you ride! LBS's vary greatly... I don't own a Lemond, but have ridden a few... they are good solid bikes.

Just my biased opinion...
These bikes will fit differentlyMel Erickson
Mar 18, 2003 1:23 PM
LeMonds have longer top tubes than most and so do the Motobecanes in the smaller sizes. Motobecane sizing is curious because their top tubes start out pretty long in the smaller sizes, square up in the middle sizes and get short in the larger sizes, all in comparison to the seat tube. LeMonds are more consistent, although they also exhibit the same trend, just not as pronounced a change as the Motobecanes. Motobecanes come in 5 sizes and LeMonds come in 8 (in the models you've selected). You will have a better chance getting a good fit with a LeMond. LeMonds also have women specific frames, although their geometry is not alot different from the regular frame (the 53cm size has the same top tube and seat tube but slightly different seat tube and head tube angles) but they do come in one size smaller (45). The main difference between the LeMond women specific bikes and regular LeMonds are the seats, bars and cranks (wider seat, narrower bar, shorter crank arm). The LeMonds are made by a company, Trek, that is the leader in the industry by number of bikes produced. They have been around and will be around for a long time. Motobecanes, in their current form, are new with an unproven track record.

Now that I've bored you let me say this. Ride both bikes after they've been set up properly for you. Ride them for an hour each. Which do you like better? Don't worry about the component differences (105 vs Ultegra), there's not that much difference. The Motobecane may or may not be a good buy, I'm just a little bit leery of a fairly new company in todays bicycle industry. Proven manufacturers (Schwinn and GT for example) have gone bankrupt. How much is a lifetime warranty worth if the company goes bankrupt in a couple of years? It's not really as long as you own the bike but the lifetime of the company. Trek stands a MUCH better chance of being around to honor their warranty. If the price and fit are equal, and even if the price is in favor of the Motobecane, I'd go with LeMond. Don't buy either bike if they don't fit.
re: HELP! LeMond or Motobecane? I'm a new rider looking.....cycleaddict
Mar 18, 2003 1:32 PM
Buy the steel bike!
Buy it from your local bike shop. You'll be glad you did.
Thanks for all the input!! I bought my bike!!newrider
Mar 18, 2003 4:45 PM
I ended up buying the Lemond (2003). I was weary about the Motobecane as well and after riding them both today, the Lemond was a much more comfortable fit. Thanks for everyone's help!