Is Specialized Overpriced or Overrated? (FACTS You Should Consider)

Is-Specialized-Bike-Overpriced

Specialized offers some of the most expensive bikes on the market. While they do go on sale on occasion, even their sale price is going to be more expensive than 99% of bikes from competing manufacturers.

This has resulted in a lot of people wondering whether Specialized bikes are overpriced.

Some people say yes, other people believe that the price of these bikes is more than justified. 

Here, we want to take a look at some of the reasons as to why some people find Specialized bikes overrated, and some of the reasons why some people believe they are getting real ‘bang for their buck’ with these bikes.

Specialized Bicycles Are Quality Bikes

We don’t think there is a single serious cyclist out there that would deny that Specialized make quality bicycles.

They may not necessarily enjoy riding on them, but even they would agree that Specialized bikes have been loaded with a plethora of features and that it is a bicycle designed to last for a long, long time with the minimum of upgrades.

Read also: Is Specialized a Good Brand // Should I Buy A Specialized Bike?

A ton of money is poured into the research and development of Specialized bicycles.

Many of their bikes offer features that you would struggle to find on other bikes.

This includes electronic gear shifting systems, designed to make switching between gears much smoother.

The design team for Specialized S-Bikes has clearly outdone themselves with their products. S-Bikes are designed to be some of the fastest bikes on the road.

Related reading: Are Touring Bikes Fast? (The TRUTH)

These bikes have precision gear shifting, lightweight frames, and spike valve technology designed to make turning corners so much smoother, while maintaining speed.

This is before you even consider the quality materials that have gone into the build of these bikes.

Now, we are not saying that Specialized bikes are ‘unbreakable’, but these are bikes that are going to last a good, long while.

Many Specialized bike owners have been using the same bike (with a spot of maintenance here and there) for decades.

Basically, if you want something of a high quality like this, you are going to need to pay for it. No other company seems to be putting the same amount of cash into research and development that Specialized is.

This is a company that is pretty much a market leader in the industry. The high costs that they charge allow them to continue to innovate.

That being said, once you start to get the lower end of the market for Specialized bikes, it becomes harder and harder to justify the price.

This is because the company focuses most of its efforts on the upper end of the market. The cheaper bikes are pretty much the same as the cheap bikes from other reputable companies.

Specialized just charges a little bit more because they have slapped their brand name on it.

Honestly, unless you are buying a cheaper bike from Specialized, we do not feel that their bikes are overpriced or overrated. At least not in terms of product quality.

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? Purchase: You can purchase this Fizik R5 Road Cycling Shoe – Carbon Reinforced today! Just follow the links to Amazon where you can see current pricing.

Garmin Edge 520 Plus, Gps Cycling

? Purchase: You can purchase this Garmin Edge 520 Plus, Gps Cycling today! Just follow the links to Amazon where you can see current pricing.

Trek VS Specialized: Which One Is Better? 

There are some kings among bike brands, and Trek and Specialized are both among them.

It might be a difficult choice between the two when shopping for a bike.

Especially as both brands offer quality builds and comparable pricing, and each produces bikes for all skill levels, ages, and riding types.

However, there are some minor differences worth noting. 

The Trek brand stands apart in the following ways:

?Offers customizable bikes

? Most well-known for road bikes

? Wider variety of bike choices

Specialized differentiates itself in these ways:

? Better components for entry-level bikes

? Most well-known for mountain bikes

? More expensive than Trek

Trek vs Specialized: So, which one is better? An experienced rider looking for a complete custom ride will prefer Trek’s options, whereas a new beginner wanting to get the most bang for their buck will enjoy the offerings from Specialized. 

Trek and Specialized bikes stand together on the same podium. The question truly should be, which one is better for you? In that case, it becomes your prerogative to decide.

Precision Made Components (S-Works Frameset)

Yes. We covered the quality of components already, but we do want to look at this in a little bit more depth.

This is because a component comparison is one of the arguments people make for saying that Specialized bikes are overpriced or overrated.

We cannot agree with this.

Let’s take carbon frames, for instance. A lot of people look at Specialized bikes and see some of them have a carbon frame (S-Works Frameset). They then look at cheaper bikes on the market and see that they have carbon frames too.

S-works
S-Works

They then start to think about whether it is worth paying for a Specialized bike when other bikes offer similar features. Well, it is. Not all carbon frames are made to the same standard.

Some are heavier, others are not quite as aerodynamic. Some damage easily. Some have small imperfections in their design which can result in them not lasting as long. None of these are problems with Specialized bikes.

Related reading: How Much Weight Can a Bike Rack Hold? [Real FACTS]

When they say they have carbon frames, you can expect these frames to be better than the ones on 99.9% of other bikes out there.

The same goes for all of the other components that you will find in a Specialized bike.

All of them have been made to exacting standards.

These are not generic parts that have been haphazardly assembled into a bike. Even the smallest of components need to meet Specialized’s standards.

You have to pay for this way of designing products, but there is no denying that it results in an even better bike.

You Will Be Paying For The Brand

Specialized is a top bike manufacturer. If you ride a Specialized bike, people will look at you with awe.

When you buy a Specialized bike, you know what to expect. This is a quality product, fantastic customer support, and a stellar product warranty.

All of these ‘benefits’ of buying a Specialized bike is part of the brand image of the company.

It is a strong brand and Specialized can charge a premium price for their brand name.

We do believe that many people vastly overestimate just how much extra Specialized charges for their brand name, but we are not going to deny that the ‘premium’ is there.

Fantastic Customer Support and Warranty

The frames on Specialized bikes carry a lifetime warranty. Most of their components carry a five-year warranty. Even then, Specialized has been known to help out, even when the issue with the bike is not covered by the terms of their warranty.

Most warranty claims are dealt with pretty quickly, and Specialized can often point you in the direction of retailers in your local area that can help you out.

This is one of the ‘perks’ of working with Specialized. They have a network of service agents. Yes. Other bicycle manufacturers have this, but we have yet to see one that has a network as extensive as Specialized.

No matter where you live, there is a strong chance that there will be a specialized dealer nearby.

If that wasn’t enough, if part of the Specialized bike becomes damaged, and that part of the bike is not normally covered under warranty, Specialized claim that they can repair or replace for a discounted price.

You don’t get this with other bicycle manufacturers. If your warranty claim with them fails, you are left with no choice but to pay a massive sum of cash to get the problem dealt with or, in some cases, you have no choice but to buy a new bike.

In most people’s experience, the customer support team for Specialized is fantastic too. If you have any problems with your bicycle, they are going to be there to help you ‘for life’.

You genuinely feel as if they care about you as a customer, and there are so few companies out there that give that impression, so it is actually quite nice to feel valued as a customer for a change.

Due to their extensive product warranty and the lifetime customer support they provide, we do feel as though the high cost of their products is somewhat justified. 

Most people are more than happy to pay a little bit extra to feel as if somebody has got their back if there is a problem.

With Specialized, you know that once you are a customer with them, you are a customer for life.

Not all Bicycle Stores will Carry Specialized Bicycles

While there is a network of Specialized dealers out there, you will very quickly discover that not all bicycle stores will have Specialized bikes on sale, even though it is a popular brand.

There are a couple of reasons for this. Perhaps the main is that Specialized wants to retain a ‘premium image’ for their brand, and this means that they are pretty selective about which companies can sell their bikes.

While the limited availability does help to preserve the image of the company being a ‘premium’ company, it also helps to ensure that they only people offering Specialized bikes are people that can accurately explain what the benefits of Specialized bikes are.

This, no doubt, leads to higher sales.

In some cases, dealers have opted not to buy Specialized products. This is because if you work with the company, you have to start selling their entire ecosystem.

You can’t pick and choose which products are on sale. You have to sell their whole range. This is several bike models, plus countless pieces of merchandise.

If you sell Specialized, you do not really have that much space to bring over brands into the mix.

Some dealers prefer a variety of bikes, rather than just focusing on one premium manufacturer.

The result of all of this is that you do have less of a choice on where to buy your Specialized bikes.

Since there will be less competition for the dealers, there is no incentive for them to reduce the price of the bike.

This can keep the Specialized bike price a little bit higher than competing brands that can be found just about everywhere. This is probably why a lot of people

That being said, Specialized do put their products on sale sometimes, and you can find a discount or two online on occasion too.

There are decent prices out there for Specialized bikes, but the lower number of dealers does keep the price for these bikes a little bit higher than their competitors.

However, once again, we do feel that this can be justified by the fact that they are quality bikes.

Specialized Stumpjumper: Worth Buying? 

The Specialized Stumpjumper is history in bike mode. Its ancestor is the original bike released from Specialized when the brand was founded.

Now in modern form, it still holds ground as one of the best mountain bikes you can buy. 

As the icon for Specialized since its conception, the design behind the Stumpjumper leaves nothing to spare.

The Stumpjumper comes in a variety of models, from competitive to professional levels. Here’s what they all have in common:

✔️ Full-suspension frames 

✔️ Progressive geometry for an aggressive rider posture

✔️ Hydraulic disc brakes

✔️ Quality components

✔️ SWAT door: in-frame storage for bike tools and water bladder 

✔️ Classic and elevated frame colors 

This one is for the serious trail dogs out there. In the middle range of Stumpjumpers is the Specialized Stumpjumper EVO Expert.

It’s a durable mountain beast with a carbon full-suspension frame, dropper seat post, 29” tires, and internal cable routing. It’s the perfect blend of top quality with affordability. 

Purchase: If you are interested in Specialized Stumpjumper then just follow the link to Specialized where you can see current pricing.

Specialized Diverge: Worth Buying? 

When you’re ready to rumble down the cross-country path, the Diverge is an excellent choice.

This gravel bike range by Specialized comes in competitive to professional ranges, offering multiple price points and a variety of top-notch components. 

A gravel bike is ideal for conditions from pavement to pebble trail.

Perfect for commuting, when you might need to cut across a field or hop off the shoulder of the road at a moment’s notice.

The geometry of this bike keeps you stable and grounded while providing plenty of speed and maneuverability. 

Specialized was mindful in designing the perfect rider’s cockpit for a progressive posture, more comfort, and better reliability when tackling technical trails. 

The different levels in the Diverge category range from aluminum to carbon frames and all feature high-quality components.

They all have great clearance, to open up capabilities and get up over trail debris with ease.

The Expert and higher levels even include the SWAT door internal storage system, so you don’t have to waste precious pocket space on bike tools!

Purchase: If you are interested in Specialized Diverge then just follow the link to Specialized where you can see current pricing.

Specialized Dolce: Worth Buying? 

This is one sweet ride. For the beginner woman road cyclists, this is the gold standard.

There’s no sugar coating it, the Dolce was made specifically for women, meaning that the geometry of the bike is spot on to compliment a woman’s needs. 

? With the Dolce, you’ll find a stable ride with supreme steering and control. Also to note, this bike is comfortable and a great introduction to road-style bike postures.

Shimano gears assure a buttery shifting experience and plenty of gear space to find the right spin. 

? This is such a great bike, plenty of Dolce riders keep their frames for many years, and upgrade the components when they need more power or speed.

But even as-is, the stock model is ready to log major miles and even get competitive in the race scene. 

? Whatever flavor of riding your prefer, be it leisurely glides, century rides, commuting, or triathlons, this is the bike to start it all. 

Purchase: If you are interested in Specialized Dolce then just follow the link to Specialized where you can see current pricing.

Specialized Riprock: Worth Buying? 

Saddle up, kiddos! The Riprock by Specialized is their toddler and child bike range.

These bikes are super fun and host a quality that is leagues above the cheapo junk bikes you find at department stores. 

The following bikes make up the Riprock line: 

? Riprock Coaster 12: for ages 3-5 (coaster brake, with training wheels)

? Riprock Coaster 16: for ages 5-6 (coaster brake, with training wheels)

? Riprock Coaster 20: for ages 5-9 (coaster brake)

? Riprock 24: for ages 8-12 (mechanical disc brakes)

Each of the bikes in this lineup features lightweight aluminum frames, durable tires, and comfortable rides.

The brakes are easy to use and learn on and your little one will get plenty of stability and traction. 

The Riprock bikes are mountain-style models, so you can take them from driveway circles to trail trips with ease, knowing that you have a reliable ride for Junior.

Not only does Specialized cover the range of childhood in age and abilities, but their bikes are also supreme quality, so reselling them will be a piece of cake. 

Purchase: If you are interested in Specialized Riprock then just follow the link to Specialized where you can see current pricing.

Specialized Rockhopper: Worth Buying? 

The Rockhopper range is a stellar lineup of beginner-level bikes for teens and older.

The frame sizes will fit riders from heights of 4’10” up to 6’6”, so this model isn’t just for the school kids out there! It also makes a super affordable entry-level mountain bike for riders of any age.

? If you are shopping for your kid though, Specialized has got you covered.

Once your tiny tot has graduated through the ranges of the Specialized Riprocks, they are ready to level up to the Rockhopper. And there is quite the selection to choose from!

? The different choices of Rockhopper include girl-specific models (Little Bellas), sport bikes with 27.5” or 29” tires, and competition and expert bikes. 

? The components on the lower end models are excellent and only improve as the class levels up. At the top of the stack is the Rockhopper Expert 27.5”.

At an intermediate price, it comes shockingly outfitted and completely capable. 

Purchase: If you are interested in Specialized Rockhopper then just follow the link to Specialized where you can see current pricing.

Specialized Sirrus Bike: Worth Buying? 

Move aside cars, this road ride is a gladiator. The Specialized Sirrus will have you feeling like you are light as a cloud and quick as a ray of light.

At an incredibly accessible entry price, this bike model begins low and elevates to the highest Sirrus 6.0, a fierce fitness transporter. 

? Among the crew of Sirrus bikes is the Sirrus X, which features nice and chunky tires, allowing the rider to handle some serious pavement, ridges, cracks, rumble strips, and all.

This bike is lightweight and features hydraulic disc brakes for ultimate safety and control.

? This is a world-class commuter and fitness bike. It’s comfortable and equipped to handle rough paths and non-ideal (or ideal, depending on your opinion) weather.

The fame is ready to accommodate rack and fender mounts too so you can take on any commute. 

Purchase: If you are interested in Specialized Sirrus bike then just follow the link to Specialized where you can see current pricing.

Conclusion

Are Specialized bikes Overpriced or Overrated?

While there is no denying that Specialized bikes can be somewhat on the expensive side, it is a cost that can be justified.

Sure, they are probably not the right brand for everybody, but if you do pick up a Specialized bicycle, you can be sure that you will have spent your cash on something that will provide you with years and years of happy use.

You might also like:

Fizik R5 Road Cycling Shoe – Carbon Reinforced

? Purchase: You can purchase this Fizik R5 Road Cycling Shoe – Carbon Reinforced today! Just follow the links to Amazon where you can see current pricing.

Garmin Edge 520 Plus, Gps Cycling

? Purchase: You can purchase this Garmin Edge 520 Plus, Gps Cycling today! Just follow the links to Amazon where you can see current pricing.

References

https://support.specialized.com

https://www.icebike.org

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John Muranko

John is Founder and Senior Bike Editor at ProBikeCorner. John is a bike and travel addict who has cycled through 17+ countries and doesn't really have any plans of stopping. He´s passionate about helping others by creating technical resources, in-depth reviews and more…

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