Since I started racing the Over the Hump series, I've been on the lookout for a good hardtail with decent components. I saw a 2011 Motobecane Fly Pro on CL for $700 and i just had to check it out. The guy had ridden it 3 times total and the bike looked brand new! I didn't even haggle and paid the guy his 7 bills.
Anyhow, I've replaced the stem and handlebars with carbon fiber bits, put SB8s front and rear and replaced the seat with a Forte Pro SL. With XT SPD pedals, it now weighs in at 24 lbs. I have taken the bike for two rides now, and the first ride was basically a refresher on why I love riding my FS Trance on bumpy singletrack. My second ride however, this bike showed how well it climbs! I was leaving my buddy with his Tallboy in the dust. The 36 tooth cog gave me that extra gear that I can drop to for those ultra steep sections. At the end of my ride, I hit a Strava segment (.2 miles, 90 ft, avg 10.3% grade) that I held the KOM for, and lowered it by another 3 seconds.
I've gotten used to the bumpiness of the ride now, and I can tell this is going to be an awesome bike.
Bike Setup: Stock plus:
Forte CTR handlebars, Ergon grips, XT SPD Pedals, FSA OS99 CSI 100mm stem, Avid Elixir brakes, Small Block 8 tires, Forte Pro SL saddle.
a All Mountain Rider
Date Reviewed: March 17, 2012
Strengths: General component set
Weaknesses: Grips, Tires are for a race day / dry course only. Handlebars are narrow, personal preference.
Overall, great. I knew getting into this bike that it was made over seas, but i liked the component build enough that i could toss the frame and grab another down the road if i wanted too. I used to race XC in the mid late 90's, and really this bike has held up well through a summer/fall of off-road thrashing. No frame issues (few rock chips on paint underside, not concerned i keep my bikes clean). I ran this thing probably 50 days last summer without issue, slapped the rear deraileur somewhat hard on a rock, bent the cage a bit, man handled it back into position and its still rocking n rolling. Seriously, i dont care that its not a brand name, decent geometry and frame build, cant go wrong.
You could race this thing, and i'm thinking of getting back into some local XC races.
People complain that so-and-so's frames are made overseas in regards to quality... well, nobody complains that their iphones are made overseas... It rides true, didnt break on me, held up to a summer of riding so far, and i suspect another at least, probably 5 more. Great value.
Similar Products Used: Other MTN bikes since the mid 90's
Bike Setup: Stock, except for grips and clipless pedals
a Weekend Warrior
from Burnsville, MN
Date Reviewed: October 14, 2011
Strengths: Light Weight
Weaknesses: Cheap foam grips
After much research and hand-wringing, I decided to take the plunge and buy the 2011 Fly Pro. The prospect of buying a bike sight unseen definitely gave me pause. I did a lot of research, and the comments on Motobecanes and Bikes Direct were predominantly positive. Ordering was hassle-free, and the bike arrived at my door after only 4 days in great condition. Setup was easy; if you are reasonably handy with tools, you should have no problems.
Initial impressions were very positive. Components are exactly as indicated on the Website, and the frame looks really well made. The thing is crazy light. I took it to a bike shop and had it weighed; 22.5 pounds with the pedals added, so the 21.9# claim on the Website is legit. The mechanic commented that it was a really nice setup. Only change made was to swap out the foam handgrips, which as noted by many others, are really cheap.
I have now ridden the bike 4 times on a variety of singletrack trails, and I could not be happier. I expected to like the bike, but I absolutely love it. It goes without saying that a light bike will make you ride faster, which is undeniably true. It accelerates like mad, and it just floats through rock gardens and other obstacles. Very stable through the rough stuff and in the turns, although the narrow bars make the steering feel a little twitchy. May just need to get used to a new geometry. Where the lightweight aspect really shines is the wheels. They spin up so quickly that if you start to stall out negotiating some obstacles, goose the cranks and you are immediately moving forward again. Shifting is crisp and responsive, and the SID fork soaks up the bumps.
Many people have commented on the tires. They are indeed thin and light, and may not be sufficient for heavier folks or heavy-duty bashing. That said, I am 150 pounds, and running them at about 40 PSI and they are great. Grip is much better than I would have expected from the sparse knobs and they absorb the bumps acceptably well.
Lots of people turn their noses up at a “no-name” bike. Good for them. They can preen all they want on their expensive, name-brand bike. I don’t have any need to impress other people, I just want a great bike. I know I got a sweet ride for a lot less than the label fanatics paid for theirs. Of course, I must add the standard disclaimer: I am not a Bikes Direct shill, and have no agenda other than to add an unbiased opinion.
If you are thinking of getting a Motobecane or buying from Bikes Direct, I would highly recommend both.
Strengths: Ultra light weight, fast acceleration, excellent components for price, rigid frame, nimble on turns from short handlebar and 26" wheels
Weaknesses: -Stock tire tubes were like paper. Nice for packing along a lightweight spare though.
-Tires are thin(1.85) but are working for what I use them for right now which is mostly asphalt, grass and some hard dirt.
I researched hard for this bike and nothing seemed to come close for what you get with this bike company. My next bike will be a FS by Motobecane, maybe titanium and/or maybe a 29". They have a lifetime customer in me. This bike accelerates like a cat on fire. It's not as cushy as my old FS but this bike just moves so nice and quick. It probably won't handle a fierce wreck from jumping or crazy DH but for fairly level trails, I can't see doing better than this for the money. It is nice that the bike is all black, very stealthy looking and not gaudy. No need on this for big name stickers on the side to display how you paid for an overpriced bike. The awesome components tell otherwise though. I cannot be happier with the bike so far. Since I bought it, I've taken it out almost every night. After some more training I figure I can start to enter some local races and this bike seems the right ticket for XC. I am 5'10" w/shoes and 155-160 lbs. I bought the 16" frame although an 18" would probably have worked also. The 16" frame fits me perfect and I also get the little more standover room by going with the smaller frame. That sizing issue was the only thing that could have been an issue with buying online. In the end, I picked the exact size I needed so all ends well. The company seems to back it's product so that also made the decision to go Motobecane easier also.
2009 Fly Pro:
If you want a very fast and light hardtail for a reasonable price the Fly Pro should be on your short list. The frame is very stiff and the bike accelerates like no other MTB I have ever ridden. The stock wheelset and crankset are a bit on the heavy side and the stock handlebar is very short. With Stans notubes I found the stock tires running at moderate pressures to be pretty grippy for their weight.
Strengths: 21.9lb Very Light!!! Great price with tons of good components
Weaknesses: so far haven't have any
Loaded with good components with the price that you can't buy it with a brand named bike. I weighted! as the site say 21.9lb. is real deal!
They ship fast, I got it within 5 business days after order placed. The bike comes in 90% assembled. all I have to do is setup the brake, put on the wheels and handlebar on. last the 30 mins work!
I ride with the setting comes with the bike without any problem. this bike FLY....
The best part on this bike!
1- Very light
2- Avid Elixir CR Brakes
3- ROCKSHOX SID
4- 3x10 Shimano SLX DynaSys
5- Vuelta XRP Pro SL wheels
The only disappointment is the brake levers. On the website sound like they comes with the carbon levers, but actually comes with the gray aluminum. But that's not a big deal.
I have this bike for about 3 months, I put about 100 miles on it so far. Up to date, no complain. I have also change the Selle Italia max Flite, WCS 4-Axis Carbon Stem and SuperLogic Carbon handlebar to light up the bike more, well the saddle didn't save weight. Carbon seat post will be next.
The Kenda Klimax Lite tires is good but may wont out fast!
Some people complain the Elixir CR brake squeal, I don't have any squeal!
Over all this is one amazing bike with a good price! Much beater than my old Gary Fisher!
a Weekend Warrior
from buffalo NY
Date Reviewed: March 5, 2011
Strengths: Price, components, looks great, and light,could be lighter than my Marin cro moly road bike (Marin verona )
Weaknesses: For me, a bigger chain ring would have been nice. Otherwise nothing.
What a Beauty. I ordered the black 2011 and was thinkin I made a mistake because on the site and the black has silver letters and thinkin the polished may have been better. The frame came straight black and red. It looks great with everything on it. I know looks aren't everything but they help. I have only about 3 minutes of riding time on it because I'm waiting for spring to break but I am confident that this bike is top notch. I have been lurking around waiting to pull the trigger on a durable city rider for many years. My old cannondale was great. It was stolen and I still look at every passing bike thinking I may find it. I am sooooo happy with this purchase that I think I will finally stop looking.
As of late I have been commuting on a cro-moly marin verona road bike. Without putting them on scales, I think they might be about the same weight. I finally have the exact bike I have wanted. I waited a long time but I must thank Motobecane. This means the world to me.I will update after some time riding the "pig"
Similar Products Used: 1984 Norco, Late 80's Bridgestone, early 90's Cannondale m700 w/ recalled pepperoni fork. (favorite bike til now.)
Bike Setup: stock.
a Cross Country Rider
from Raleigh NC USA
Date Reviewed: February 22, 2011
Strengths: Weight! Price! Ride! Amazing components and amazing bike. I bought this for myself and got my wife a Fantom Comp. The SID performs better than I could expect and the bike glides through the single track.
Weaknesses: Bikes direct posted that the fork was a 2011 SID. The fork came without any of the 2011 changes (cable guide etc.) No big deal. They have since changed the website so that it does not say 2011 SID RLT. Still an amazing fork and Bike for the money. If anyone has hesitations about buying a bike from here, don't let that worry you. You will get a great ride! And there customer service is easier to deal with than many of the review you will read. Sounds like I work for them but I am actually just very excited I got such a dang good deal on an amazing bike.
A few things I will end up changing are the handlebars (very skinny for weight reduction), Tires (many people have complained but I have not had any issues yet. Email me if you have questions. email@example.com
Awesome bike. Great Price. Amazing Ride. A little pissed about them not providing a 2011 SID as the site said. ALL in ALL I would buy from them again. Road Bike in the fall???
Similar Products Used: Schwinn HomeGrown, Trek 8500, Lightspeed
Bike Setup: XT rear. LX front and shifters. All stock so far.
a Weekend Warrior
from CT, USA
Date Reviewed: November 1, 2010
Strengths: Great components for the price
Easy build (even for a beginner wrench)
Weaknesses: Frame/fork a bit flexy-will it hold up? Who cares! Components by themselves worth the cost!
I rode a 90's edition Raleigh M60 for almost 15 years-time for an upgrade. With my budget at 1200 and less, I decided to stick with a quality hardtail and let my spine take the bumps. Anyhoo, what a difference 15 years of tech makes. Very quick on the switchbacks, as the SID Race does a great job taking the hits. Quick acceleration, and the Elixer CR's (once you get them dialed in) are amazing. I upgraded the tires to PR Fire XC (red to match the bike)-great tire. This bike is a great climber-if I were only 6 inches shorter (36" inseam and a high center of gravity makes hill climbing a bit tough at times). Awesome bike!
Strengths: Excellent value...price to quality components. Incredibly light and nimble. Love the Sid Race fork and the Avid Juicy 7s.
Weaknesses: Wheels, Tires and Seat. Note: I am a Clydesdale at appx 205#s.
This is a great machine for someone transitioning from a beginner / itermediate level of riding to a higher level. I ride XC and all mountain 3-4 days/week, and this bike has performed very well. The upgrades that I made to the bike are recommended, particularly for someone that is heavier and/or riding all mountain.
Service from Bikes Direct has been exceptional. On the procurement end, I had my bike in 4 days following a one-day diversion to ship the bike to my office instead of my house. On the warranty end, I did have a problem with the frame when the top bar broke at the weld to the head after 9 months of riding. A local distributor for Motobecane, Cycle Spectrum, handled the warranty claim, transferred my components to the new frame and did it all in about a week.
Similar Products Used: Raleigh M80, Specialized Stumpjumper
Bike Setup: Stock setup for the 2009 Fly Pro with the exception of the following: seat - WTB; wheel set - Mavic EX823 with XT hubs laced with straight 2.0 DT spokes; tires - Hutchinson UST Tubeless with the 2.3 Python on the front and the 2.0 Piranha on the back; Handlebars - SunLine graphite V-One OS riser bars; grips - Ergon GP1 SE.
a Cross Country Rider
from Jacksonville, FL
Date Reviewed: June 26, 2009
Strengths: Components, Weight, Price
Weaknesses: Had the following issue - shifter needed to be double-clicked to shift (both ways). The store I purchased from after a week of work on found the following issue - on 2009 XT Shadow is not compatible with Ultegra cassette. The other new bike in the store had exactly the same issue.
Replaced with Shimano XLS cassette - works perfect now.
Chain was changed "just in case" to Shimano too.
You can't find anything for this price with all it has.
With SID Race you will not find anything for twice this much.
Similar Products Used: 1999 Trek 930 (26 lbs unbreakable bike)
Bike Setup: All stock except:
Cane Creek Thud Buster seat post
Kenda Super Lite replaced with Velociraptors
Flat bar replaced with Riser.
Chain was changed to HG73
All these added 2-3 lbs to the bike but still have 26.5 as a whole.
Date Reviewed: May 3, 2009
i am a racer and a weekend warrior i have done 3 years worth of racing on this bike and had no problem with it i even raced the US nationals with it for the price you can find no better deal!!!!!!!!i have put thousands of miles on it this is just a good bike there is nothing else to it!
Bike Setup: the only thing i put on it were new grips and new tires
a Weekend Warrior
from dallas, tx
Date Reviewed: April 12, 2009
Strengths: Motobecane Fly XC - great price, awesome components, looks good(blue fork w/ white paint), very very light
Weaknesses: Tires - immediately need to be thrown in the garbage.
Handlebar - I like mine bent not staight
Great bike for the money with no problems. Must change out the tires if planning on riding the bike on trails.
I was at a LBS picking out tires and handle grips and the people working could not stop talking about how nice the fork and components were.
If you want a very light, fast, well functioning mountain bike that isn't going to put a hole in your wallet than check this bike out.
a Cross Country Rider
from Flint, MI, USA
Date Reviewed: April 8, 2009
Strengths: Light, Great components
Weaknesses: Hard seat
This bike is well worth the money. LBS thought I paid $3000-$4000 for this bike based on components. Bike is very light and fast. I've read about bikesdirect having bad customer service....But I have had nothing but excellent service from them. Bottom line....Don't be scared to buy this bike. I did alot of research and couldn't find any big name bikes that could come close to comparing to this price. It is as advertised. So what if it isn't a big name brand. If you want to throw you're money away on a name....it's your money.