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The Most Prestigious MTB Brands

  • Canyon

    Votes: 2 1.7%
  • Commencal

    Votes: 2 1.7%
  • Diamondback

    Votes: 3 2.6%
  • Evil

    Votes: 22 19.1%
  • Fezzari

    Votes: 4 3.5%
  • Giant

    Votes: 5 4.3%
  • GT

    Votes: 3 2.6%
  • Guerilla Gravity

    Votes: 9 7.8%
  • Ibis

    Votes: 51 44.3%
  • Intense

    Votes: 16 13.9%
  • Motobecane

    Votes: 4 3.5%
  • Pivot

    Votes: 37 32.2%
  • Rocky Mountain

    Votes: 10 8.7%
  • Santa Cruz

    Votes: 45 39.1%
  • Specialized

    Votes: 15 13.0%
  • Trek

    Votes: 8 7.0%
  • Yeti

    Votes: 58 50.4%
  • YT

    Votes: 2 1.7%
  • Cannondale

    Votes: 5 4.3%
  • Other, specify in comments

    Votes: 14 12.2%
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
If I had to gauge brand perception (the reality may or may not align with perception), I'd say the following brands are the most prestigious:

Ibis
Yeti
Santa Cruz
Pivot
Evil
Rocky Mountain

I would list the following as "honorable mentions"

Specialized
Guerilla Gravity
Canyon

Which companies are your picks? I've set up the poll to allow multiple picks. Poll closes in 30 days.
 

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12,954 Posts
Many of the companies that make their own frames in house are something I would love to get. Chumba, Moots, 44, etc. Nothing wrong with Asian made bikes though.

Guerrilla Gravity has done some impressive stuff lately.
 

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well mannered lout
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Eriksen, Jones, Moots, Seven, and Indy Fab. make my list. Tom Ritchey bikes never lose their cool.

edit...anything torched by FTW is desirable.
 

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Elitest thrill junkie
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39,528 Posts
I don't think SC belongs in that group. Back in the day, for sure, they were a small manufacturer making quality bikes. These days, they still make quality bikes, but their scale is so much more that I think they are more on part with the large manufacturers than the small "prestigious" brands. I don't equate prestige to how good the bike actually is, just to a sense of how the company is perceived and small batch high quality, especially if it's on-site, is more where I go with this.
 

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high pivot witchcraft
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6,238 Posts
I understand Forbidden made less than 100 frames. Prestigious? Maybe. Maybe not.

But with the low volume, high cost and unique high single pivot idler pulley drivetrain design, reverse SWAT box, and impeccable fit and finish, arguably niche.
 

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For Prestigious it needs to be something more than the brand itself. So the brand must have accomplished something of significance, or the brand supplies the bikes to someone of significance.

So, did Elvis or the Royal Family, Chuck Norris, or Oprah ride a particular brand? Or maybe the Hells Angels or the Pope endorse a brand? Or maybe Steve McQueen was buried with his mountain bike?

The bass player from Guns N Roses was/is an avid mountain biker. Very interesting guy, heard him discuss it years ago on the Jim Rome show and he credited it with helping overcome addiction.

The mountain bike brand of GNR—That’s what I would call Prestigious.


Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk
 

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WillWorkForTrail
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4,989 Posts
I think you have to look at this as something people could come at from a lot of angles. What is Prestigious? How do you define it? Because to me, I’m thinking about companies that act with honor and stand behind their product, and make a solid product. Which means the list of companies I come up with might not look like what you come up with if your idea of Prestigious is bike companies that make bikes that cause people to stop on the trail and exclaim “Oh man, sweet ride dude!”
 

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you left out the best bikes


sad survey
 

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How do you define a bike as prestigious?

pres·tig·ious
/preˈstējəs,preˈstijəs/
adjective
inspiring respect and admiration; having high status


The list of bikes provided is basically a most popular, or well known list. So, for me, there are a couple of brands missing if I were to use "inspiring respect and admiration" as a measure, as defined above. Having said that, I'd have to say, for now anyway, that Whyte needs to be on the list. But, to be inspiring or commanding respect can be a very personal observation. In my experience with Whyte, I was most admired with them after considering a lot of other brands. And their attention to detail any to me as a customer gained my respect more than other brand experiences. There... I used the definition's buzz words to justify my response.

As for "high status"... not sure how to measure a bike for that.
 
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Self Appointed Judge&Jury
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Ridiculousness, so many that have already been listed that have no place on a list like this. It's subjective anyway, why bother going there.

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...anything torched by FTW is desirable.
Agreed. I'm lucky enough to have a few (and maybe another coming soon).
It's a toss up between those and my Wraiths as far as coolness/"prestige" goes.

I don't find the same level of special-ness with other bikes I have, including Turner, Ibis, Intense, Spec, etc etc. They're all pretty run-of-the-mill comparatively.
 
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