I am going to buy a road bike, and my budget is about 1300$.

And I'm faced dilemma: 1) new 2015 (next year) road bike, for example Merida (aluminum frame, shimano 105, carbon fork) 2) used 2009-2010 road bike, for example Bianchi (carbon all, system fsa, ultegra 6600, mavic rims).

By photos it seems that the old bike is in a very good state (without scratches, etc), new supplies (chain, cassete, brake pads)

So, if we assume, that the state of bike is good indeed (attentive care, etc), then, is it worth buying 5-year bike? Technologies progress nowadays, so difference in 4-5 years is a huge gap, or it's OK?

  • 2
    If it is significant to you, a 2015 105 bike will be 11-speed, 6600 is "only" 10-speed - but its probably unimportant for most of us. Also as you replace 6600 parts you can go to 6700 on a piecemeal basis. Definitely try and test the bike for smoothness. But I agree with @Arne, you're taking a chance with a used carbon frame - you just don't know what its been through.
    – PeteH
    Jun 27, 2014 at 8:38
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    Can get some great values in used bikes and don't limit yourself to this one. Tomorrow you may find a 2013 Merida for $800. You find people that bought a bike and never road it.
    – paparazzo
    Jun 27, 2014 at 12:07
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    It's worth noting that it's often quite attractive to buy "last year's model" new, at a shop that has it in stock (or close relations to a wholesaler who does). Often you will see more than 50% reduction vs list price, and 30% or so vs the normal "discounted" price. Jun 27, 2014 at 18:06
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    Good point Daniel. It's also worth knowing that if you're thinking ahead, there is a definite time of year when you will get better deals on new bikes. That time is just before the new stock arrives, when the shops give deals on their current bikes in order to make room for the new stock. In the northern hemisphere, this is generally the winter months (but avoiding christmas). The longer you wait, most likely the better the deal, but the less selection you'll have.
    – PeteH
    Jun 27, 2014 at 19:13

1 Answer 1


In bicycles, the technological advance is not as fast as you might think. This is due to the UCI, which blocks a lot of new technologies or is slow to allow them in races. So I think as long as the older bike is in good shape, there won't be much difference. Maybe it's a nine-speed instead of the modern ten or eleven, but that doesn't really make a difference, especially not if you're not going to ride pro.

That said, be careful about carbon frames and parts. They might be damaged from falling over, crashing or similar, without the damage being obvious. Look for (deep) scratches in the paint job, hairline cracks (especially around joints), discoloration or deformation.


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