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348 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
I just can’t get excited about the looks of bikes anymore. I dig loud colors and there are so few bikes anymore that are (in my opinion) fun to look at. When I bought my 2012 ex8 there were 2 color options. Black and a matte titanium/red/white. After seeing the latter in person I was obsessed. Always got complements on the trail. The last bike trek made that excited me from an esthetic point of view was the 2015 Remedy in that awesome Gulf racing livery.

I’m bringing this up just to see if it’s just me or bikes have in fact gotten boring to look at. I mean, the tech is phenomenal I get that. But I want to enjoy looking at the thing too. Am I alone here?


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chasing simplicity
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1,271 Posts
Well you can order a custom paint job via Trek’s Project One and get pretty much as crazy amd loud as you want.
 

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Ian Limburg
*Custom* 2016 Rocky Mountain Thunderbolt 770 MSL
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108 Posts
I agree bike colors have gotten dull. I got my current bike painted glow-in-the-dark neon green to make up for it though 🤪😆
 

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BOOM goes the dynamite!
Occasionally Cranky
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4,864 Posts
I'd rather someone compliment my riding vs. how the bike looks. That being said, I have painted a frame before...not sure I'd do it to a new bike though unless the colors were too loud. ;)
 

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Resident Gear Head
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613 Posts
I agree. Some of the colors are just plain ugly lately. It seems to be either black on black or some fugly dune/tan/light green color. Ew. I think the colors went a bit too wild and neon 5 or 6 years ago (I'm looking at you Santa Cruz) and now they have swung the other way. Lol at the cost of Trek Project One. At least Orbea My O doesn't change thousands extra for a custom paint job like Trek does.
 

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As oppose to the color scheme on Intense? I found that to be a bit much.

Basically manufacturers need to find the least offensive colors that get the sale. What is considered least offensive can be interpreted differently. Is sort of like how many bright burnt orange bmw sells vs the boring aluminum grey they can sell. There will always be a small market for something, and best to either do custom colors with Trek/ Orbea, or head over to Jeff at Intense, who might be the next color artist.
 

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I think their whole philosophy around color schemes is sort of messed up.

I was looking at a Top Fuel for a year or so. I never bought it, but I was close on the 2020 9.8 model. I noticed it had a price range, from 5500-6000 dollars. The all black and the black to teal fade models were 5500 dollars, and the red one was 500 extra. Drove me nuts. The red looked the best, and they have to put paint on the bike anyway... I would understand if it was more difficult to paint it red, but it was just one color like the black model. The fade option needed two paint colors and obviously needed more steps to paint than the black and red single colors, so why wasn't the fade option the more expensive one?

Project One. Absurd. They make it sound like you can spec the bike the way you want it, but the it's just an extra grand for custom paint.
 

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monster member
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953 Posts
Yep, agreed. And mostly, I'm sick of the matt fad. I would love navy blue or forest green, which certainly isn't loud, but all the bikes have been doing matt and they look like ass. Just like matt cars always look like ass. My new bike is matt gray and it sucks. Looks lame, and it doesn't clean well, it's not satisfying to wax it... it just sucks. Sick of the matt thing that's been going on for like 5 years or longer. (I mean the entire bike industry... road and mtb, all brands.)

But I recently went into a Trek shop, and finally some colors seem to be coming back. Like their xc full-suspension and some others that I forget because I'm not shopping, but I did make it a point to tell them that I loved seeing some color come back to their bikes.
 

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Stealth bomber grey/black works for me. ;)
 

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I agree...I think the colors went a bit too wild and neon 5 or 6 years ago (I'm looking at you Santa Cruz) and now they have swung the other way. Lol at the cost of Trek Project One. At least Orbea My O doesn't change thousands extra for a custom paint job like Trek does.
Which is funny bc SC kinda went the other way now: the ugly white Tallboy is only bested by the even uglier matte brown color they were using. This is the first year in a while that SC’s colors haven’t been...questionable.

I agree on MyO. What a great setup. P1 sucks. and The whole “more $$$ for certain standard colors” is garbage. I can see Charging more for that blue/white Segfredo colors bc there’s some extra there...but really $500 to make a bike blue and red...c’mon Trek.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
I agree. Some of the colors are just plain ugly lately. It seems to be either black on black or some fugly dune/tan/light green color. Ew. I think the colors went a bit too wild and neon 5 or 6 years ago (I'm looking at you Santa Cruz) and now they have swung the other way. Lol at the cost of Trek Project One. At least Orbea My O doesn't change thousands extra for a custom paint job like Trek does.
It’s funny you bring up SC.. I was totally into those colors! This is why it’s probably a good idea to offer 3 or 4 color options from black to Santa Cruz. Right now I’m like.. ehh. Not feeling it.


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Loud tyres save lives
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537 Posts
When I was looking into buying my 2016 Stache one of the most common complaints was the bright purple colour the Stache 7 was offered in and people preferred the darker coloured Stache 9. I don't mind the bright purple and it does look better in real life compared to the photos but if I was given the choice of frame colour I'd have gone for the darker one and there seems a good few others who think the same.
 

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slow
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6,870 Posts
I usually prefer understated or even boring so less attention paid to the bike. Lower threat of theft is just one of the benefits of a boring / subtle finish. A couple of my bikes are bare titanium and one is clear coated carbon. I have two painted bikes. One is a boring light green and the other is a metallic turd color.
 

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Project 1 or Intense.. Trek is going for volume. i could do without all the M&M shell pastel monochrome stuff coming from Ibis, Transition, and Santa Cruz (and Evil) to be honest. THAT stuff is way played out IMO.
 

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I just spent several months deciding which new bike to buy and I too was turned off by all the drab colors. My old hardtail was mostly yellow with black and red highlights complete with red Michelin Hot S tires, red pedals and a red fork on it, I loved it. The whole subdued matte black/grey/tan/etc thing is old and tired. It turned my off to YT even though they are nice bikes.

I ended up buying a 2021 Fuel EX 8 and I love the metallic flecked, glossy black to red fade with silver lettering. It's awesome in the sunlight. I probably would have still bought it if it was painted lame, but I'm really happy it wasn't.
 
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