So I'm a huge fan of Craigslist. It offers access to all sorts of goodies and services for purchase unhindered by the often inflated prices (at least with bikes) of online auction sites and untainted by corporate financing and unnecessary bells and whistles. Craigslist's simple and straightforward, almost cartoon-like, presentation provides hours of entertainment filled with humor, excitement, and intrigue. I find myself on this website almost every day on my lunch break scrolling through the bike postings looking for bikes I need, bikes I don't need, or bikes I suggest to friends so that they might go to a good home. While Craiglist is most often a peaceful, amiable place, several posts yesterday brought new emotions into our midst; deceit and betrayal, what fun!
I first came across this post:
JEEP Willy's Mountain bike - $170 (Thompson,CT)
Reply to: firstname.lastname@example.org Date: 2008-06-10, 1:01PM EDT Jeep quality,18 sp. heavy duty susp. just like the one's listed on ebay for $1200-1500. equip. the same just a dif color. new cond. only $170.obo
WOW!!! A Jeep mountain bike. Jeep is the All-American transportation mode and they make bikes!! Im sold. And look at this, not only do Jeeps go for about 20-60k, supposedly their mountain bikes sell for a paltry $1200-$1500 on Ebay, and this one can be had for $170. what a deal. Skeptical, however, you may be and for good reason. Not because Jeep is not what it once was (now owned by the failing Chrysler and in the crossover business) but because of this post listed the next day.....
Do your online research BEFORE you buy a bike off craigslist
Reply to: email@example.com
Date: 2008-06-11, 2:16PM EDT
Why pay more for a bike that is USED, when you can get it for the same price NEW?
OHHH!!! Burned. So much for the $1200-$1500 retail value. I'd hate to be the guy that would have to squelch the excitement of a friend who made this purchase thinking it was the deal of the century. I'd hate to be the OP on this one. Thats a little hubris for you.
Today's lesson, the Jeep bike on Craigslist is no more of a killer deal than that GMC Denali road bike you keep seeing popping up on Ebay.