I'm tentatively looking for a new roadbike. My current one (a Santa Cruz Roadster) is a 12 year old frame with 10 year old wheels & groupset, and it's all a bit tired. I'm in 2 minds as to whether to upgrade the SC with new gruppo & wheels or to splurge on something new.
Problem is, I have no idea what's what and how modern stuff fits, rides and handles. To that end I've been wanting to try lots of different stuff. Only I can't. Ultimately I'd be looking to buy fairly high end, and very few shops seem to carry even the basic spec versions of the top framesets, let alone in a medium. (surely, by definition the average size bloke = medium, so why is all the shop stock at the ends of the fit spectrum??)
I'm interested in stuff like the C'dale Synapse Hi-Mod. Giant Defy Advanced & TCR Advanced, Trek Madone & Domane 6 Series, plus a few other outside choices. I've just been round all the shops in Sheff and no-one has anything even vaguely close for me to have a sit on. They all seem to stock maybe 1 bike over £2k... (The exception being the very nice chap at La Bicicletta, but he's tiny a tiny shop and very specialist, so I can understand him not holding oodles of stock)
Initially all I want to do is have a 10 minute ride up & down the street on the right frame in the right size to see if it excites me or not, so getting the shop to order in a demo bike, when at the moment I have no intention of buying until I've ridden a few different things is a bit cheeky. Once I've whittled the choices down, *then* I'll want to demo something for a day that's as close to the version I'd actually buy as possible.
Basically, I can't understand how a bricks'n'mortar shop can hope to sell something that it doesn't actually hold in stock!
(...and lets not get me started on spending £3k+ on a bike with an average wheelset and own brand finishing kit, or £2.5k on a frameset that doesn't even come with any suspension - how is a Synapse Himod F&F only £100 cheaper than a Nomad carbon??)