I'm pretty new to biking and I have been looking at Giant's Roam line of bicycles, and noticed that the Roam 1 is more expensive than the Roam 2 and the Roam 2 is more expensive than the Roam 3.

Even the 2016 version of the Roam 2 is more expensive than the 2017 version of the Roam 2.

My question is why? Are they coasting off the name of a formerly-good bike and slowly decreasing the quality to lift profit margin? Or have they come up with better manufacturing methods and need less non-recurring engineering and advertising expense to be successful with the next version?

Long and short of it is I have a friend who swears by the Roam line. I want to get the newest, but don't want to buy a lemon.

  • 2
    It probably can be argued that the more expensive bikes have better components (and more gears), but mostly they want to offer several price points, so folks will pick a more expensive model to get "the best", or pick the next step down as "a better bargain", depending on how flush they're feeling and how much their ego needs the boost. – Daniel R Hicks May 3 '17 at 23:36

Just like cars, things change between model years. Sometimes they spec up the bikes and sometimes they spec them down even with the same model number. And sometimes its for profit margin reasons or to improve sales next to competitors.

In this case, for example, the main differences between the same bike in 2 model years are a slight geometry change, a different brand of brakes and a slightly bigger tire.

As for different model numbers, they have different quality levels of components. Think of it as buying a car, with the base package, or the mid level package or top level package. Typically, you'll get some nicer components (better fork/brakes/drivetrain/wheels), though in some brands, there are more pronounced differences than different components bolted on to the same frame (e.g. the low end ones are made of aluminum and the high end ones are made of carbon fiber).

Now, for the real way to select a bike: the model year doesn't really matter -- a lot of people have 30 year old bikes which ride great. A used bike is a good starting point for people so they get to know what they actually want before dropping a large sum of money. And the best way to decide on a bike is to ride it to make sure it fits well and you like it. You can talk to the bike shop to see what models would fit for your intended goals.

  • Also, a colleague pointed out the shock lockout on the more expensive model. – kmort May 4 '17 at 14:56
  • @kmort - both of the 2016 and 2017 have shock lockouts. It's written in the blurb but not on the spec sheet, but thats what HLO means for Suntour (hydraulic lockout). – Batman May 4 '17 at 18:50
  • Awesome. You just made my decision easy. Thanks for the help! – kmort May 4 '17 at 23:32

The Roam 2 2016 model is more expensive because they used a higher end brakes on it, the 2017 one they used the bottom line shimano m315, but I would suggest you to get the 2017 model as they have updated the frame geometry design, which is a lot better compared to the 2016 one.


The primary reason is.........

enter image description here

  • 1
    I like it Nate! – CardMechanic May 3 '17 at 17:22
  • 1
    Apparently not many else appreciated the humor : / – Nate W May 3 '17 at 23:36
  • 4
    There was humor?? – Daniel R Hicks May 3 '17 at 23:37
  • While humor is appreciated on the site, answers should have more detail. Which components? What is the difference between them? A short, one-line answer like this is likely to be downvoted, flagged for moderator intervention, and possibly deleted. – jimchristie May 4 '17 at 18:26
  • 2
    Don't worry. You made me laugh. :-) – kmort May 4 '17 at 23:31

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