When is the best time to buy a new bike? Gravel bike with road tires?

I am in the market for a new gravel bike. I would like the bike to have a 11 speed groupset just like my current road bike (trek emonda alr 5-2019 model). I would like to know if I can fit road tires on a gravel bike, and what will I lose when road riding on a gravel bike with road tires compared to a road bike?

When is the best time to buy a new bike? I am living in Eastern Canada, and I got the emonda alr 5 while it was on a special offer from my local bike shop. It was $200 cheaper than the market price, and this was in May. Should I buy a new bike in December (at the end of the season?), or at the beginning of the season in late April/May?

From an european point of view: This season here, most stores are empty due to covid. It seems everybody starts cycling this year, because you couldn´t go anywhere except your home area. So discounts are rare, even at the bigger online shops. Best time to buy a bike before Covid was summer / during grand tours. That was the time everybody tried to get “the old stuff” out of stores before the new year bikes etc arrived. Don`t know if you are so GrandTours fixed in Canada. But if so and you can wait, wait till TdF next year.

And if you´re looking for a bike for Gravel / Road, take a look at the OPEN U.P. or (if money doesn´t matter) U.P.P.E.R. They can fit from road to MTB all tires. It´s one bike for all. All you need are three wheel sets and you have one pefect fit for all terrain.

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Now should be a good time for buying this years model. But Gravel bikes are a thing in 2020 and they are flying off the shelves. If you know what you want keep an eye on the (online) market and pounce when you see a good deal.

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Stock is in short supply pretty much everywhere at the moment, and that has 2 implications: poor choice and high prices (i.e. no discounts for new bikes, and premium prices on sites like eBay). This is especially true for bikes that are more ‘sensibly’ priced; from what I’ve seen there is still some availability at the top end of the market.

I think in the late Spring/early summer next year - assuming Covid has largely gone away and life is back to semi-normal - we will see a glut of lockdown-purchase bikes hit the 2nd hand market and there will be some real bargains to be had.

So at this point if I could wait, I would.


Indeed, I see that the demand for bikes overall is higher but I really don’t want to get a second-hand bike. I will continue to wait until late spring but will life return to semi-normal? That is very hard to predict.

As of right now, the outdoor season will come to an end soon. The demand for indoor trainers have been rising, but I don’t know about the demand for bikes.

Yeah, supply is super short seemingly everywhere for nearly everything. Not really seeing sales, mostly announcements about something being in stock. Many are forecasting not getting the supply chain back to normal until mid 2021 at best. And I would think that cycling, like many other sectors, will be re-evaluating their supply chains and stock, and looking for ways to reduce inventory. I think we saw that starting pre-covid, with some announcements of some companies getting out of the model year game.

All that to say, think you are right to wait a bit.

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Who knows? I can only suggest that’s my best guess, but I’m no expert and I have no crystal ball.

I think the point is is that there are almost no bikes! Stock is so low that there doesn’t have to be too much demand for it to outstrip supply. I’m quite good friends with the owner of a LBS; they cannot get Scott before next March, Cinelli before next May, or Bianchi before next August (!) Another shop has been put on alert by Giant that the do not have a date for the next batch of bikes but it will not be this year.

Just as an aside, I walked into a shop 2 weeks ago and bought an Elite suito off the shelf. I may just have got very lucky, but I’d rather be shopping for a trainer than a bike at the moment.

I actually think your best bet, if you really want a new bike now, is to go old school and get on the phone; ring round a few places (especially smaller places that don’t list stock on the web) and see what people have on the shop floor. Be prepared to travel, too. I do know a couple of people who got hold of bikes this way over the last few months. 1 had to pay a bit more than he wanted, and another had a 4 hour drive, but they got decent machines in the end.

Can you trade in for the new Domane? It’ll take wider tires. Works pretty well as a road bike too I hear.
As for tires: If you need something burlier than a 35c, keep the road bike and buy a HT MTB.

You can easily run road tires on a gravel bike. If you’re going to be swapping a lot, best to get a 2nd set of wheels.

The biggest difference with a gravel vs road bike is the gravel bike will generally be a more relaxed geo (slacker, taller stack), a little heavier, and maybe less aero depending on the road bike you’re comparing it to. The gearing will probably also be different.

I’ve ridden on the road on my Specialized Diverge, and it rides great. I’m not racing, however, so don’t need an aggressive geo, or snappy handling that comes with a steeper head tube angle.

Here’s a few other threads on Gravel vs Road bikes