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Canyon vs Rose vs Planet X, 2 bikes, 3 shops 4 orders

captainwheezycaptainwheezy Posts: 30
edited May 2015 in Road buying advice
This is just a bit of a record of my experiences of buying 2 bikes and dealings with 3 of the big direct to customer bike builders. Hopefully it will be useful to someone else thinking of buying a bike from one of these retailers.

After 9 years of riding my first road bike (Specialized Allez), I figured it was time to treat myself to something lighter, newer and shinier, so I set about reading all I could on this and various other sites.
I scoured the traditional local bike shops (I work in Sheffield so a few to choose from), and the big online retailers and eventually narrowed my choice down to something from either Canyon, Rose or Planet X since they offered much more for my budget of around £1500.

Having read the tales of woe regarding Canyons customer service, I was a bit apprehensive so they went to the bottom of the list.
Next up was Planet X. I went to their Sheffield showroom to have a look at the bikes in the flesh but really wanted something with a Shimano groupset and now they seem to only do SRAM or Campag, so discounted them despite the bikes being very nice (also read the horror stories about their customer service).
Finally, Rose. The forums seem to be full of praise for their customer service and the bikes look good value, but I just couldn't get past the look of the integrated seat clamp on the carbon bikes which to my eye looked a bit pants. Maybe its just the photo's but to me it just looks a bit meh.

Eventually I decided to take the risk with Canyon and order an Endurace CF 8.0. The bike was shown on the website as being in stock so I was hopeful I wouldn't have to wait too long and on the evening of 14th April I bit the bullet and clicked buy. I got a confirmation immediately, followed by another confirmation on the 16th detailing the bike and specifying a shipping date of week 17 (20th - 26th April). On the 20th I got another email in the morning to let me know the bike was being assembled, and another one in the afternoon saying it had been shipped and giving the tracking details. The bike arrived in tact on 22nd April and I'm well happy with it.

At this point my wife was getting a tad envious of my new lightweight steed and eventually I cracked and suggested that we get her a new bike as well. This would be her first road bike, she's been riding a rather heavy and basic Claude Butler hybrid for about 7 years.
Initially we considered also getting another Endurace, however she's a bit short and the VCLS 2.0 seatpost couldn't be inserted far enough to make it fit her (We're both vertically challenged so were able to confirm this on my XS sized Endurace). We could of course change the seatpost but this would result in having to then sell on the expensive VCLS 2 seatpost. Canyon wouldn't swap it for something else (confirmed via email).
In the end after some deliberation, we both came to the conclusion also that it was a bit too much to spend given that she doesn't ride as often as me anyway.

So, we again looked to Rose and found a lightweight alloy bike in the right size, a womens specific Rose PRO SL-200 showing as being available and in stock on their website so I ordered one on Mon 4th May. We got an immediate confirmation email and then nothing until an email on the Friday 8th with an attachment saying everything I'd ordered was sold out. Pants. Not impressed that it had taken them all week to inform me :x .
I checked their website again and indeed, it was now showing the bike as being sold out in that colour scheme but available and in stock in another, so I placed another order immediately for the same bike in the other colour scheme.
On 12th May I got an email confirming the order and giving an estimated (non binding) build date of 1st July!!! Not at all happy at this point with the prospect of having to wait almost 2 months for something advertised as being in stock so emailed them back to cancel. :evil:

On 13th May we went back to the Planet X store and were able to get her sat on a turbo traner on a womens specific build of their Pro Carbon bike with SRAM Rival 22 groupset. It could be made to fit with a shorter stem (which they will fit as part of the build together with narrower handlebars) and the seatpost at its maximum insertion so we placed an order there and then. The sales guy told us there was currently about a 12 day build queue and we opted to collect from the store which could be done a day after the build (provided the build wasn't on a Friday). We got an immediate confirmation email and then a couple of days later an email specifying a build date of 21st.
Got an email in the morning of the 20th saying the bike had now been built and was on its way to the Sheffield store, then another one in the evening saying it had arrived and was ready for collection.
Went to collect it the next day and its spot on, wifey is very happy with it!

Canyon - Ordered 14th April, Delivered 22nd April
Rose - Order one - website lied, bike sold out.
Rose - Order two - Ordered 8th May told in stock bike would be built 1st July - Cancelled order
Planet X - Ordered 13th May, collected 21st May


  • GrillGrill Posts: 5,610
    You could repeat this process a dozen times and never get the same result. Luck of the draw with all 3 of these companies.
    English Cycles V3 | Cervelo P5 | Cervelo T4 | Trek Domane Koppenberg
  • supermurph09supermurph09 Posts: 2,471
    Grill wrote:
    You could repeat this process a dozen times and never get the same result. Luck of the draw with all 3 of these companies.

    I'd agree with Grill here, I own 2 Canyons both orders were done with no fuss and great service from Canyon, the advice I got from them was great. Planet X is a store used a lot by my club mates and indeed the service I have had from them in the past for wheels and accessories has also been great. A club mate has a Rose and he has nothing but good words for them.

    A forum like this is more likely to have complaints than praise, I guess that's the world some people live in. I guess you're unlikely to use Rose in the future, that doesn't make them a bad company but they didn't provide you with the service you expected. I work in customer service, I know the lengths we go to to keep our customers happy, yes we fail them sometimes but how you handle that fail that counts to try and keep the customer. Rose imo, should probably have done something to sweeten your deal.
  • I agree with both of you, I just thought it worth posting since I saw very few negative posts regarding Rose but plenty regarding Canyon & Planet X.

    I'll still consider Rose for parts that I'm not in a hurry for but I do think they should get their act together a bit when it comes to the speed of processing the order. Almost 5 full working days to respond with a rather cryptic* sold out email really annoyed me.

    * The email consisted of a message in German with a pdf attachment in English which stated "The following items are sold out", followed by a list of everything on my order (Bike, bottle cage, cardboard box for the bike to be shipped in).
  • tangled_metaltangled_metal Posts: 4,021
    I was very impressed with the service from PX earlier this year and the bike is nice too. Didn't have anywhere near your budget though so got the Tiagra London Road. Turned up as ordered with the stem and other changes made. i had to call twice over the order after the changes made had somehow wiped the parts from the build. I mean a bike without bars, stem and cranks was not good but 15 minutes call and all sorted. Another call to get the price corrected as they had charged extra for something.

    All in all a pleasant experience but at the time I had to make the calls I was fearing I was going to have the same experience as so many I have read about online. I don't have any complaints and would recommend them to anyone provided the bike or items meet their needs. I am also questioning some of the negative stories too. Perhaps some are too ready to hit the panic button and claim the service is bad although I accept that all companies give poor service at some point. No-one is perfect and companies are made by the people working there.
  • rickeverettrickeverett Posts: 988
    I ordered a Planet X RT-90 with some chages on 29th April and it was with me on the morning of the 6th May.
    Service and comms was excellent and the bike - even better!
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