Merida Ride Lite 93, Defy 1, Synapse 5 or other?

starbuck Posts: 256
edited November 2012 in Road buying advice
I'm looking at getting a bike for sportives on my company's bike to work scheme and I have a budget of £1000 for the bike (I already have helmet and any other accessories I need so I can afford to spend the entire budget on the bike).

A couple of LBS have the cannondale synapse 5:

and the Giant Defy 1:

another bike shop has a Merida Ride Lite 93:

I haven't heard of Merida but the guys in the shop said that they make frames for companies like Specialized, Cannondale etc. They were also saying that they thought it unusual to have a full carbon fork on a bike that price as other bikes in that price range tend only to carbon legs, but that it is a really good spec bike for the price. They do have a full computerized fitting system (for £65) and if I got the bike from them, they would change anything on the bike for free (stem, cranks etc) for best fit (as long as the new part is the same cost as the one that comes on the bike).

I've also seen a couple of bikes online (a Sensa at Merlin which has Ultegra shifters and front/rear mech for less than £1k) and a planet X full carbon bike for £1k. I'm not sure about buying a bike online only because you don't get the service that you would at an LBS, and both of the online bikes would involve paying extra because of the bike to work scheme (planet X say 12% needs to be paid, Merlin have a max charge of £65 on sensa bikes).

Does anyone have any comments on the above bikes? Are there any others I should be looking at?
If I got the Synapse or the Defy, I could still go to the other bike shop and get the fitting done for £65 (although I'd then be liable for changing any parts if needed).


  • Can't help with the exact bikes you mention,but I have a Merida scultura and I love it.
    And if I'm correct,Merida are the second biggest bike manufacturer in the world(I think) .
    Not sure if they still do, but didn't they own about half of specialized not so long back?
    I wouldn't worry about the fact you haven't heard of them,they're big overseas apparently,but not so prevalent in uk.