a person sitting on a bicycle: Brodie Bicycles co-owner Andrew Summers says the business sold all of its inventory ‘faster than I’ve ever seen it’ last spring. ‘We were all taken aback. We’re in the business of selling things and we had nothing to sell.’


© Francis Georgian
Brodie Bicycles co-owner Andrew Summers says the business sold all of its inventory ‘faster than I’ve ever seen it’ last spring. ‘We were all taken aback. We’re in the business of selling things and we had nothing to sell.’

Unprecedented interest in bicycles and biking is leading to a shortage of new and used bikes around Metro Vancouver.

At Brodie Bicycles , out of a shipment of almost 300 new bikes that arrived Wednesday, all but about eight of them are already pre-sold. The only ones left are really big and really small-sized bikes.

Brodie, a Vancouver-based bike company that supplies local retailers, is in the unusual situation of not having any bikes in its warehouse because of consumer demand.

Andrew Summers, one of the company’s four co-owners, said Brodie sold all of its inventory “faster than I’ve ever seen it” in the spring.

“Even six weeks ago, it was emptier than I’d ever seen it,” he said, referring to the company warehouse in Burnaby.

“We were all taken aback. We’re in the business of selling things and we had nothing to sell.”

Summers realizes that while many businesses are struggling during the pandemic, bicycle manufacturing and sales have been one of the bright spots in the economy.

“We’re very fortunate and grateful that we’re able to provide bicycles to those who want them and stay busy,” he said.

He said he’s seen a continued and growing interest in cycling in Metro Vancouver in recent years that’s translated into increased demand for bicycles.

COVID-19, he said, seems to have been the extra push to get even more people riding bikes. He said biking is an easy way to physically distance yourself while getting exercise and improving your mental health. For families with no cars or only one car, it can mean being able to do daily chores without taking transit.

“Bicycles are turning into an even greater tool for people to go about their daily lives,” he said.

Brodie has no inventory bikes under $1,000, one of the common price points for urban retail bikes. Consumers, he said, often look for bicycles priced between $800 and $1,400.



a person holding a sign posing for the camera:  BURNABY, BC, From left: Bruce Spicer and Andrew Summers, co-owners of Brodie Bicycles. Brodie Bicycles, a Vancouver-based bike company, expects to receive a 40-ft container with about 300 bikes………(Photo credit: Francis Georgian / Postmedia) , Vancouver. VancouvrReporter: , ( Francis Georgian / PNG staff [PNG Merlin Archive]


© Francis Georgian
BURNABY, BC, From left: Bruce Spicer and Andrew Summers, co-owners of Brodie Bicycles. Brodie Bicycles, a Vancouver-based bike company, expects to receive a 40-ft container with about 300 bikes………(Photo credit: Francis Georgian / Postmedia) , Vancouver. VancouvrReporter: , ( Francis Georgian / PNG staff [PNG Merlin Archive]


One of the bike shops that’s seen a dramatic increase in business is Sidesaddle at 3469 Commercial St. in East Vancouver.

Owner Andrea Smith said Sidesaddle usually takes a low-key approach to sales. When someone decides on a bicycle to buy, they encourage people to take a day “to sleep on it.” Not these days.

“It’s so crazy, and bikes are selling so fast, if you find one you genuinely like and you think it works, my advice would be buy it,” she said.

Smith said there can be as many as three people circling around the same bike in the store.

Sidesaddle focuses on bikes priced $1,500 and above; its sister store Central Valley Flat Fix  on bikes $1,500 and below.

“One of the questions we ask: How much of a hurry are you? If you have more time, you have more options,” she said.

“When you’re shopping in a bike boom, go easy on yourself.”

Rob Drummond, general manager of the Ride On chain of bike stores in Vancouver and Toronto, said the demand for new bicycles is a “once in a lifetime” kind of event across the country.

“East and west have shown the same demand,” he said. “It’s been a hectic season, there’s no denying that.”

It’s also been a challenge to find enough used bikes to refurbish and sell. In a recent flash sale at its Main Street store, Ride On sold out all 47 used bikes in five hours.

At its Kitsilano outlet on West Broadway , Ride On had 18 used bikes in a variety of types on sale Wednesday for between $250 and $350 (cruiser-style bikes sell for around $100).

He said Ride On sells four or five a day to people who use them as their sole means of transportation and to people who want a new bike but can’t find one in their size.

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