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Move into complete builds ramps up Parlee’s business

Published September 19, 2017
Altum is Parlee’s stock bike line.

LAS VEGAS (BRAIN) — Parlee started out as a custom framebuilder, then added Asian-sourced stock sizes. But when the company added complete bike builds to its offerings, it hit a hot spot for dealers.

“We used to offer dealers an SBA build kit in a box, but ever since we added complete assembly at our factory, complete bike build sales are driving our business,” said Tom Rodi, Parlee’s sales and marketing director.

“We can now offer bikes from a $4,000 Asian-built Altum with a Shimano 105 build to a $20,000 Zero, which are custom-geometry bikes made to order in our Massachusetts factory with custom paint and with a totally custom build,” Rodi added.

Parlee’s bikes come in three model lines. Altum are stock bikes with stock graphics and stock builds. Altum LE are the same basic frames with custom paint whipped up in Parlee’s Massachusetts factory as well as custom bike builds. And the Z-Zero line is built entirely in Parlee’s factory with custom geometry, custom builds and custom graphics.

“The LE builds are quickly gaining sales for us. It’s not so much the ability to order the paint and graphics, but riders these days want the ability to spec’ every little part, especially at this price point,” he said.

Parlee’s expansion into complete bike builds also is winning the company international business and helping drive volume through the factory.

Like all else road, Parlee’s Asian-built Chebacco gravel bike is where the action is these days, and the $3,999 Ultegra Altum Disc with R8020 hydraulic brakes is a very popular build. 

“The Chebacco really took off for us lately and is what most dealers are interested in,” Rodi said. 

The Chebacco has a 12-millimeter thru-axle, flat-mount disc brakes and tire clearance up to 40 millimeters. Internal housing makes for a very clean frame and allows the rear caliper to be mounted within the rear triangle.

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