When did GT become 'uncool' ok perhaps not uncool but less popular..

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  • When did GT become 'uncool' ok perhaps not uncool but less popular..
  • Jimalmighty
    Member

    Press release from Cycling Sports Group (Owners of GT) today says that Halfords will not be doing GT from 01 January 2011.
    See link: http://www.bikebiz.com/news/32500/GT-to-cease-with-Halfords

    That is a step in the right direction for sure, rumour has it there is a new Zaskar carbon frame out next year, that'll be nice if so.

    manitou
    Member

    That GT looks really small… too small judging by the seat post

    My first MTB was a 1990 Tequesta. GT was a cool company back then, with their splatter paint jobs, anodised Zaskars and high profile BMX and MTB teams.

    Seemed to lose their way after Rich Long died and Gary Turner sold the company off to Pacific(?) or whoever it was that bought GT.

    Some of their new stuff looks OK actually, but like most bike companies that start off being owned/run by riders but end up being consumed by corporates they're not really a brand/company with much soul nowadays.

    rootes1
    Member

    My first MTB was a 1990 Tequesta. GT was a cool company back then, with their splatter paint jobs, anodised Zaskars and high profile BMX and MTB teams.

    one like this (not mine…):

    me too! my first GT – from Dave Mellor Cycles seem to remember it had terrible chainsuck..

    it got replaced with a suntour equiped zaskar

    JonR
    Member

    GT went wrong when they got bought out by someone (was it Schwinn) stopped making their bikes in America and started spewing cheap far east mass market rubbish in to Halfords. The triple triangle is fantastic though and stiffens up the feel of a bike whilst in the saddle to the point that you feel you know the surface you are going over a bit too well.

    gearfreak
    Member

    Jut heard they won't be in halfords for much longer, could be a renaisance for the brand?

    theflatboy
    Member

    JonR – Member
    The triple triangle is fantastic though and stiffens up the feel of a bike whilst in the saddle to the point that you feel you know the surface you are going over a bit too well.

    i'm probably about as far from an engineer as you can get, but my brain can't comprehend how that could be the case. surely the strongest and stiffest place for the seat stays to join the front triangle would be the normal spot on the back of the seat tube, not only that but it also means the seat stays are shorter than the gt design? 😕

    The triple triangle is fantastic though and stiffens up the feel of a bike whilst in the saddle to the point that you feel you know the surface you are going over a bit too well.

    A bit like the steel/ali debate, it was designed to give longer seatstays that would absorb more trail buzz and transfter it to the top tube not the seatpost. But like the steel/ali debate its probably marketing bullpoop.

    rootes1
    Member

    triple triangle…

    to quote GT from back in the day…

    "triangles are strong, right?, normal bikes have two, GT has three! more is better, stronger, cooler, rad er, gnarlier, more grrrrr!"

    doh we need to fit a u brake so your heels clear…

    'groove tube cable routing is the best' – but only for the way hans ray says it on GT promo videos…

    bongo136
    Member

    I tottaly agree with you, and like someone else said i think its because of halfords selling them. and to be honest the majority of there bikes are not the best spec. I use to love my zaskar though 😀

    frank4short
    Member

    I have to say i find it hilarious all of you folk talking about Halfords ruining the GT brand. I worked in a bike shop in Chamonix 10 years ago that sold about 10-20 GTs a week. Starting point for the bikes we stocked was probably about £500 and up. So we were dealing with a lot of relatively high end bikes. Basically the GTs were junk. We were constantly replacing derailleur hangers (in excess of 10 a week if my memory serves me correctly), bearings & finicky bits on the i-drives. Dealt with anywhere between 1 and 3 broken frames a week. They were simply appalling bikes that were badly designed & badly made.

    I know back in the annals of history GT made a lot of iconic & great mountainbikes that all ended around 1998 i reckon. That was as a result of the quality of the bikes they were building, nothing else. Plus the triple triangle was a marketing gimmic no more, no less. Now maybe they're trying to change that now but it's really too little & far too late. So for all you folk that reckon it's halfords that ruined GT, think again.

    Frankenstein
    Member

    When GT went bust they were never the same again.
    Always wanted an Easton Zaskar 6062 race whippet.
    Halfords have used the name on their own brand and now
    have lost that. Carbon Zaskar sounds good but without race
    wins it won't be a true Zaskar. Still a nice bike though.

    Premier Icon Northwind
    Subscriber

    TBH I don't see this as a step forward for GT, it'll just mean more expensive, uncompetitive GTs in LBSs. Halfords will just get a long travel Carrera HT and full suss out to fill the gaps or step up the Voodoo visibility so it's probably going to be good for the consumer but it's almost certainly going to lead to less GTs on the trails. The brand snobs will be delighted no doubt but that's about all.

    JonR – Member

    "GT went wrong when they got bought out by someone (was it Schwinn) stopped making their bikes in America and started spewing cheap far east mass market rubbish in to Halfords"

    What a load of rubbish, the Idrive 5 Halfords sell is exactly the same as the one everyone else sold for instance. The Aggressor frame isn't identical to the Avalanche but it's still a perfectly good frame, the Aggressor Elite was a fantastic bit of kit for a grand. And the spec of an equivalent price Halfords GT is miles better than that of a non-halfords GT, though the frames tend to be a bit heavier.

    rootes1
    Member

    yer back in the day GT was cool…

    see…

    christ that is 20 years ago… pre SPD!

    rudedog
    Member

    nice jockey cap 😉

    do you think you had enough standover clearance on that bike? The top tube is barely above your knee! 😀

    Premier Icon muddydwarf
    Subscriber

    I bought an '01 Zaskar Race frame from my local Halfords in '02 i think.
    Lovely frame, fast, responsive & bloomin' stiff to the point i needed a suss seatpost!
    Spent around £1600 building it up & only sold it to fund a full-suss.

    Saw a chap on one at the CRC Grassington marathon round & instantly wanted mine back!

    walleater
    Member

    I see Dave sold you the wrong size 😉
    I'm sure the Zaskar was biggerer?

    rootes1
    Member

    Hi will? Yer tequesta too small, but still good, and yer zaskar bigger until stolen,……and then the snappandfails were biggerer still!! Si

    peachos
    Member

    Interested in the idea that an idrive pedals like an 8 inch bike, but absorbs bumps like a 6 inch bike. WHy do you think this is the case?

    I had a 1999 I-Drive XCR2000 and loved it, didn't suffer overly with bob, for a 1999 bike and went throguh stuff pretty well. When I got back into biking a couple of years ago I was surprised that no one was riding GT anymore.

    Jimalmighty
    Member

    The suspension was pretty regressive and thus it dumped through its last part of the shock, in short.
    This has been addressed by GT and they now come with a custom tune on the rear shock, not that they have particularly shouted about it, so any new rides will feel normal.
    As for Halfords, the bikes that they produced and stuck a GT badge on were not bad at all and the spec was great. Yes they had a cheaper frame but the overall bikes were OK. I believe that GT coming out of Halfords is definitely a step in the right direction and shows, in my opinion, that they are starting to climb out of where they have been for so long.

    As for the Zaskar, it has won every discipline it needed too and should remain in the mountain biking hall of fame forever.The current guise is ace and the reviews back that up.

    Premier Icon deadkenny
    Subscriber

    FYI – The i-drive models (at least) in Halfords were not Halfords produced with a GT sticker on it. They are GT frames and Halfords fit components on them that meet the price they want to sell them at. Frankly if you look at what they crammed on for just under £1k I can’t see they’d have made much money on them. Stuff like the recon & fox shocks, juicy brakes, shadow mech, leaves little money left for the frame, bars, wheels and so on.

    The only negative thing I find with the i-drive is just the less cool image and massive depreciation (tip – sell the components rather than the bike, you’ll make more money!). Performs great, the i-drive is “different” compared to stuff these days but I find it’s got amazing grip, and the bike is good for upgrades.

    samuri
    Member

    The year they bought out the first prod i-drive bike (xcr?).

    +++1!

    Bloody awful thing.

    Premier Icon PeteG55
    Subscriber

    eeerrr is it uncool to like this then?
    http://www.gtbicycles.com/bikes/mountain/freeride/2011-distortion-2-0-gray
    I like the thinking, the geo looks reasonable, spec is good. Ideal trail centre bike?

    compositepro
    Member

    When it went wrong 1996 there’s a lot of history there……I drive didn’t kill GT …..the thing is lots of things from…dare I say it back in the day were cool triple triangle might have been bollocks but when the sport and designs were new anything went.everything was cool I was reading a post today where someone was slating the orange 5 for being old and out of date…I think brant stepped up to defend the brand and true they have been in the sport a long time but how long can you exist on old reputation.

    There’s been a few post on here recently one involving the uk style differing from the us and tbh there are more niche aspects to the sport now than there ever have been it used to be you jumped on a zaskar and did everything but progress is progress now we have a bike to go up a hill a bike to do the flat bit and a bike to get down the hill hey soon there will even be a bike just to do the car to the cafe ride

    In 10 years people will be saying bloody he’ll how did people ride with a head angle that slack. And yup you guessed it the darlings of the moment will be getting panned over on some forum

    Gt went kaboom when it became a shopping mall brand iirc I knew a few who went to set up felt

    samuri
    Member

    When I got back into biking a couple of years ago I was surprised that no one was riding GT anymore.

    They’d all bought i-drives, they’d all broke after 20 minutes, GT wouldn’t supply any spares so they all vowed never to buy GT again.

    angryratio
    Member

    I had an 05 zaskar.. i.e. a maxlight in disguise with a harsher ride.
    It’s all kinesis tubing anyway.

    Was lush to ride actually.

    zaskar96
    Member

    theflatboy – Member

    i’m probably about as far from an engineer as you can get, but my brain can’t comprehend how that could be the case. surely the strongest and stiffest place for the seat stays to join the front triangle would be the normal spot on the back of the seat tube, not only that but it also means the seat stays are shorter than the gt design?

    Theres a brace that joins the 2 seat stays together and also welded through 180 degress onto the back of the seat tube.

    loddrik
    Member

    My first ‘proper’ Mtb was an avalanche back in 1989, great bike at the time.

    Before that, at skateparks I’m the early 80s you’d occasionally see GT BMXs and would rightfully gawp as they were exotic and expensive. And Eddie Fiola rode a yellow one…

    Premier Icon deadkenny
    Subscriber

    They’d all bought i-drives, they’d all broke after 20 minutes, GT wouldn’t supply any spares so they all vowed never to buy GT again.

    And that’s the thing. Where did the assumption come from that they’d break easily? Just because Halfords sold them I bet.

    It’s crap. The last one they sold, the 09 XCR is rock solid. Hell, mine’s been chucked all over the place including flying down the side of trails (without a rider), hit trees, rocks, all kinds and not broken a thing.

    Anyway, if you did break anything the only spares you need are the frame (which is under a 2 year warranty) and bars (bars are standard, so you get a replacement that fits). All the rest of the bike is not made of GT components but well known, well supported brands (e.g. SRAM, Shimano, Fox, FSA).

    Thing is, Halfords had very little to do with the bike. At least not the XCR 09 model. The frame was from the GT factory (yes okay Taiwan). They specced components to get it to a cheap price and the bike was supplied to them and they stuck it in the shops. The only Halfords component on it is a small sticker saying it’s supplied to Halfords. Few people bought them as they were expensive compared to Halfords own brand junk.

    Thankfully for buyers of an i-drive from Halfords is Halfords are monkeys and don’t know anything about the bikes as they are not their bikes. They just know about selling their own Apollos, so you can buy the bike and they won’t mess about with it. Just don’t take it back there for a “free” service. DIY.

    They get good reviews too which are largely overlooked.

    The year they bought out the first prod i-drive bike (xcr?).

    Don’t know when that was, but they have changed a lot. The Halfords supplied i-drive XCR is still basically the same but the bugs and potential breaks (wishbone for example) have been fixed. They’re good bikes now and amazing value for money. You could almost just chuck the frame and it would still be a good deal on the components. Not that the frame is bad. The 6061 frame anchors the back wheel to the ground in a way that you won’t get any unexpected kick and bounce off roots and rocks but still absorb the bumps.

    But that’s just Halfords. Now they’ve been dumped and GT do loads of higher spec models across the range and the 2011 range are getting some respect. The “i-drive” name has been dropped but i-drive is still the suspension used.

    ziggy
    Member

    Holy thread resurrection Batman!

    GTs can’t be that uncool as they sell more than all the niche brands put together in the UK, they do well in the sub £1k bracket, we sell loads every year.

    I drives from Halfords were the very early versions, they just had a licence to build certain models, not the latest generation. The main reason Dorel (GTs new owners, who also own Charge, Cannondale, Mongoose and others) wanted to stop erosion of the GT brand in the lower end of the market.

    It doesn’t help that the one bike they’re got that people might really really really want, other than the Fury DH Bat-bike is the Ruckus 7.1. Which you can get in America, but not here.

    user-removed
    Member

    My first full susser was a Halfords ’08 (I think) i-Drive. Its arrival coincided with my starting to ride with a youthful bunch of lads who were more into 4X, downhill and gnarly hucks.

    The i-Drive was perfect for all of that – at least it was for me and my limited skills / cahones, but it was horrible for xc riding. It just felt heavy and sluggish. I’ve since ridden newer, better (and far pricier) full sussers and the difference is like night and day.

    So my take on it is that it’s a great bike for chucking around, but notsogood for everyday stuff.

    Just for the record, it got pinched and I went back to a hardtail (Boarman Pro 🙂 )

    Premier Icon deadkenny
    Subscriber

    Chucking around is what I do. Yeah it’s too heavy for distance/race/enduro XC kind of stuff (personally I’m moving towards hard tails for that anyway). I’m a weekend warrior who likes to muck about on the trails and it’s ideal really. Copes nicely on DH too (Aston and Cwmcarn), and rocky trail centres like CYB it worked well on. Yes there are amazingly better bikes, but for someone starting out on full-suss and just mucking about it’s value for money. End of the day it’s just another bike. Ride it and have fun.

    warpcow
    Member

    Was the problem with early I-Drives not to do with the little dog-bone bit that connected the BB to the front triangle? I seem to remember a friend’s snapping and them reading later that it had happened to others. Warranty service was rubbish just for a little red anodised link too.

    It’s a shame since I used to love GT bikes, and still go a bit weak at the knees for an old LTS. Them sponsoring Subaru Rally while Colin MacRae was there didn’t hurt either. An old Karakoram was probably my 1st ‘proper’ mountain bike, bought second-hand of a mate’s dad. Looked exactly like this one, with the rear U-brake and everything:

    Unfortunately for me, he’d bought it in the US and the brakes were ‘backwards’, so the first time I tried to do an awesome skid I launched myself over the bars and broke my jaw. That was just the first time a doctor told me my helmet had saved my life 🙄

    Munqe-chick
    Member

    I got a ’99 XCR2000 as an insurance replacement for a stolen FSR, so had no vested interest in defending or liking it. It rode as well as the FSR or any other FS design I’ve ridden, the eccentric bearings were well sealed and never died, and the bike is still seeing regular action as a mates girlfriend’s bike. The only part with a rep for failing was the dog bone. GT went bust in 2001 due to financial mismanagement IIRC (no cash to pay bills) rather than poor product. which explains the lack of warranty/spares support (I bought a spare dog bone and bushes when I heard theyd gone into chapter 11).

    They were bought up (along with Schwinn) by Pacific who initially said they would concentrate on the low end of the market and only sell bikes up to the ~$300 mark, but thankfully someone there recognised the value and history of the GT brand and the profit to be had in higher end bikes. I understand the company who owns Pacific now owns Cannondale (who went bust through poor management in ~2003).

    Selling thru a chain like Halfords will always dent a brand’s niche/quality appeal with afficionados (and LBS’s who cant compete with a national chain, drop the brand and proceed to slag it off)- look at the decline of Kona’s reputation.

    Premier Icon Northwind
    Subscriber

    ziggy – Member

    “I drives from Halfords were the very early versions, they just had a licence to build certain models, not the latest generation.”

    Um, no, not at all. Their Idrive 6 elite” was built on the same frame as a current GT model- the Sanction I think- and the Idrive 5 XCR (which was what I had) was a current GT model up until its last year of sale (and had all of the up to date revisions like the revised dogbone). They never launched a bike based on the Sensor which was the successor to that Idrive but then, they stopped selling GT not so long after it was launched.

    rootes1
    Member

    not sure about the new ‘winged’ GT logo…

    but new carbon 9r Zaskars look v nice

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