BOULDER, CO (BRAIN) — Wholesale sales to bike shops climbed by 6 percent during the first nine months of the year, while unit shipments were up 3 percent, according to Bicycle Product Suppliers Association’s September report.
Despite the overall good news, 26-inch mountain bikes sales are dropping like a proverbial stone, losing $35 million in sales so far this year. By category, 26-inch full-suspension sales are down $15 million and front-suspension sales are down $20 million.
On the bright side, mountain bikes' larger wheelsize, 29ers, did $45 million more in sales this year than last, and 29er full-suspension bikes outsold 26-inch full-suspension by $20 million. The contention that 26-inch full-suspension will remain a viable category seems to be untenable, especially noting the category is down 63 percent in sales so far this year.
Pavement bikes still dominate the picture; hybrid and road bikes sales topped $500 million, whereas sales of mountain bikes of all wheel sizes hit only $271 million. So far 700c wheel bikes are 57 percent of total sales.