If you’ve been into cycling for a while, then you probably remember Nashbar bikes and how awesome Bike Nashbar was for buying discounted and cheap bikes and related gear.
In fact, the Nashbar Flar Bar road bike was one of my favorite and most recommended bikes for new cyclists for quite some time.
But you won’t find me recommending any Bike Nashbar bikes or gear today, or for a few years now actually.
Instead, I will tell you to actively avoid buying Bike Nashbar gear – unless you’re getting a used Nashbar bike from before 2018.
If you check out the Bike Nashbar website today, then you’ll find that logo that you remember and a working online store still selling bike gear. But all is not what it seems.
In fact, all those awesome deals and quality discounted Nashbar brand bikes are a thing of the past.
The short story is that Nashbar got bought by a big company, which pretty much ran them into the ground.
And, that company went bankrupt in 2018 and the Bike Nashbar site, trademark, logo, etc was all sold – yet no inventory was sold with it.
Nashbar History (Bike Nashbar)
Arni Nashbar, an Ohio-based advertising man, started Nashbar all the way back in 1974.
Though it wasn’t the only mail order bicycle company, it certainly grew to be one of the largest over the next decade.
Nashbar grew to be so successful that they started opening retail stores in the late 1980s. Those stores focused on repair, service, and discount services.
It was in the year 2000 that another of the original successful mail order bike brands bought Nashbar – Performance Bicycle.
But the good times didn’t last for the brand. They never do, do they?
After some years of financial distress, the Performance Bicycle company (including the Nashbar brand) was sold to Advanced Sports Enterprises (ASE) in 2016 (parent company of ASE is Advanced Sports International).
At the time, ASE/ASI also owned some other major bike brands, including Fuji and Kestrel.
This was when the Nashbar name was rebranded to Bike Nashbar.
But here’s where it gets worse. In November 2018, ASE ran out of money and filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy.
And in February 2019, AMain Sports and Hobbies (Amain.com Inc.) bought the website domains and trademarks for Nashbar and Performance Bike in the fire sale after ASE’s bankruptcy proceedings.
What they didn’t buy was any inventory to stock.
So, while the Nashbar website is running and selling cycling gear, it’s not the same stuff that was being sold under the Nashbar name.
And the new owners aren’t accepting any old gift cards or honoring VIP rewards, warranties or service agreements.
It’s really a shame that the old Nashbar is no more.
They had a great VIP rewards program that was awesome if you bought a lot of cycling gear.
And they had some of the best prices in the industry, usually cheaper than their competitors.
Plus, they made some damn good bikes back in the day.
They used to be a great place to shop for bikes, but now you’re better off with other retailers and bike brands.