Cannondale Lifetime Warranty ? – No 5 years, maybe.

Re: Cannondale Lifetime Warranty ? – No 5 years, maybe.

Postby Nobody » Fri Nov 02, 2012 2:32 pm

Comedian wrote:So is what we're saying here that these companies will warrant their frames for a lifetime as long as you don't use them?
It appears that way for Cannondale AU at least. From what was said above, Trek looks to be honoring their warranties well.

For me it's better to buy a bike that's unlikely to need a warranty, rather than something more fragile (or fatigue prone) that I have to be concerned about a warranty for.
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by BNA » Fri Nov 02, 2012 5:07 pm

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Re: Cannondale Lifetime Warranty ? – No 5 years, maybe.

Postby queequeg » Fri Nov 02, 2012 5:07 pm

Nobody wrote:
queequeg wrote:The same bike for a recreational rider would last a lifetime.
I suppose it comes down to how you define a recreational rider. If you mean someone who rides around the park once a month with the kids, then yes. However there are many on here that would be classed as recreational (people who don't race or commute) that would easily ride more than 6000 Km a year.


I am thinking bigger numbers than just those here on the forums. Out of the 1 million + bikes sold per year in aus, what proportion would do even close to 5,000km per year? How about globally? I am sure someone has figured out the exact numbers and decided it is cheaper to build 1 million bikes to a lower spec and replace 1% of them than it is to build 1 million bikes to a higher spec and replace none of them.
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Re: Cannondale Lifetime Warranty ? – No 5 years, maybe.

Postby Nobody » Fri Nov 02, 2012 6:20 pm

You are probably correct. We don't represent the average, but your bike probably didn't represent the average bike either. The average bike would probably be a BSO or a bottom of the range hybrid by numbers sold. I heard somewhere the average BSO does 160Km in it's life.
According to the article below on page 3, the average bike does 197Km a year in AU, but the average cyclist's bike does 624 Km a year in AU. On page 4 it says the average bike life if 6.5 years. So that is 4056 Km for a cyclist's bike's life in AU. Assuming your bike is a cyclist's bike, then you are still doing more than twice the average cyclist's bike lifespan per year. So you still have a point.
http://grapevine.net.au/~mccluskeyarund ... ycling.pdf
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Re: Cannondale Lifetime Warranty ? – No 5 years, maybe.

Postby Comedian » Fri Nov 02, 2012 6:40 pm

queequeg wrote:
Nobody wrote:
queequeg wrote:The same bike for a recreational rider would last a lifetime.
I suppose it comes down to how you define a recreational rider. If you mean someone who rides around the park once a month with the kids, then yes. However there are many on here that would be classed as recreational (people who don't race or commute) that would easily ride more than 6000 Km a year.


I am thinking bigger numbers than just those here on the forums. Out of the 1 million + bikes sold per year in aus, what proportion would do even close to 5,000km per year? How about globally? I am sure someone has figured out the exact numbers and decided it is cheaper to build 1 million bikes to a lower spec and replace 1% of them than it is to build 1 million bikes to a higher spec and replace none of them.


I would agree with that statement at the lower end of the spectrum. I always believed the native environment for a department store bike was hung on the wall of a garage. However I think as you go up in price I think the percentages would be somewhat larger. I would think probably 30-40% of all the people I've met in Brisbanes road scene would do more than 5k a year. Whether that was concentrated on one bike may well be another issue but certainly in the upper price points (say... 3k and above) I think the numbers over 5k would be more like 20% ... certainly in the first few years. Of course, that's just a guess. :)
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Re: Cannondale Lifetime Warranty ? – No 5 years, maybe.

Postby queequeg » Fri Nov 02, 2012 7:40 pm

Nobody wrote:You are probably correct. We don't represent the average, but your bike probably didn't represent the average bike either. The average bike would probably be a BSO or a bottom of the range hybrid by numbers sold. I heard somewhere the average BSO does 160Km in it's life.
According to the article below on page 3, the average bike does 197Km a year in AU, but the average cyclist's bike does 624 Km a year in AU. On page 4 it says the average bike life if 6.5 years. So that is 4056 Km for a cyclist's bike's life in AU. Assuming your bike is a cyclist's bike, then you are still doing more than twice the average cyclist's bike lifespan per year. So you still have a point.
http://grapevine.net.au/~mccluskeyarund ... ycling.pdf


The bike I broke (twice) was a Trek 7.5FX, which was the 3rd from the bottom model at the time. It shared the same frame as the two lower models though. It was sold as a fitness/recreation/commuting bike, but you would not do long rides on it on a regular basis, although I did a few 100km rides on it (and it was tough!). For a $900 complete bike you can't really complain.
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Re: Cannondale Lifetime Warranty ? – No 5 years, maybe.

Postby ironhanglider » Tue Nov 06, 2012 2:31 pm

Cameron's friend wrote:
From: xxxx
Sent: Sunday, 4 November 2012 3:32 PM
To: [email protected] '
Cc: 'Cameron
Subject: Disappointed customer about his tandem

Hi xxxx

I believe you are the man to speak to when somebody is not satisfied with the support they have received. Please read below and come back to me with what you believe to be a fair solution to my problem. I would just like to say at this stage I am still a Cannondale rider on my single and I have had 3 frames replaced under warranty and never once has anyone mentioned that you do not have a lifetime guarantee on the frame.

I bought my RT1000 tandem in 2001 in South Africa where as I am sure you know there is lots of tandem riding and racing and Cannondale was the only frame worth riding. When I bought the bike one of the factors I considered was the Lifetime Warranty offered by Cannondale and the reputation the company had for honouring that warranty. Due to circumstances my bike was had not been used for the last 4 years, and I intended to lend it to a vision impaired friend John for an event. When it was being serviced prior to riding a crack was noticed in the right chain stay next to the bridge. I can only conclude that the crack had actually occurred in 2009 or earlier and I can remember at its last service in 2008 complaining that there was a creaking noise from the bottom bracket. It is obvious now that the creaking noise was in fact the frame not the bottom bracket but I did not ride the tandem again so did not think about the creak again. I am sure I could get a report from the local bicycle shop who worked on it confirming I had a problem as early as 2008. Naturally I sought to claim for the frame to be replaced under warranty since this is a major failure.

Now that I find that the warranty claim was rejected and I am naturally disappointed. The words used in the rejection have been taken directly from the 2012 warranty and policy documents and state that this is a fatigue failure and is therefore not covered by the terms of the warranty. However this is not my understanding of the warranty that I bought as part of the purchase of this bike. I have now done a little research to try and locate the wording of the warranty from 2001 but have not located it yet.

Cannondale's warranty used to be so good that it was included in the catalogues as a selling point. Cannondale bikes had a 100% guarantee. In 1985 the brochure directly addressed the possibility of fatigue and gave this reassurance "We have taken this fatigue factor into account, and have designed our frames to stand up to a lifetime of use. Like all Cannondale products our bicycles are covered with a 100% guarantee." Clearly at one time Cannondale was capable of designing frames to last a lifetime of use.

I note that the warranty has been watered down over time, by 1996 the Warranty statement had become "All other frames are warranted against defects in materials and workmanship for as long as the original purchaser owns them."
This is the most recent warranty statement prior to 2001 that I have found so far and it matches my understanding of the warranty that I purchased.

I would submit that workmanship of producing the frame includes the act of designing a bike to withstand a lifetime of use, as well as the processes of manufacture such as ensuring proper heat treatment etc. which are intended to limit the chances of failure. I would also submit that if the bike was designed properly, and manufactured properly and has still failed then it can only be a fault of the material. I believe that this failure should all be covered by the terms of the warranty that I purchased.

Whilst I understand that the ownership of Cannondale may have changed in recent years, the current owners purchased both the assets and liabilities of the original company. This being one of the liabilities. To have the claim rejected based on 2012 policy is not right or just.

I also wonder whether this was more than just some pithy attempt to save money by not standing behind your product but perhaps embarrassment due to not having any frames since Cannondale hasn't produced tandem frames since 2009. In the end all I would like, is to have a tandem that I could feel confident to ride again. After this experience I am not even concerned whether it happens to have Cannondale stickers on it or not. In any case I had heard that production was being moved to China and that new Cannondale tandems were likely to be seen again in 2013.

A friend of mine was so disappointed at the treatment of my claim from CSGA that he has posted his thoughts on the Australian Bicycles Network forum in a thread that has already attracted 500 views including several that have stated that they have re-considered the purchase of Cannondale bikes.

viewtopic.php?f=57&t=58044

I just wonder how many people about to purchase a new Cannondale would be aware that you do not actually offer a lifetime guarantee on the frame it is actually only 5 – 7 years.


Initial response (from Switzerland?):

From: xxx[mailto:[email protected]]
Sent: Monday, 5 November 2012 8:38 PM
To: xxxx
Subject: RE: Disappointed customer about his tandem

Hello xxxx,
I’m always delighted to hear from our passionate consumers and I’m sorry to hear the troubles you experience with your tandem. Cannondale has one of the highest testing and quality standard in the industry which is giving the brand the ability to extend the warranty to the lifetime of the product while competitors would only warranty their frames up to 2 or 3 years. This is not changed as a policy since Cannondale is producing bikes. It is true that an average aluminum frame lifetime is 7/8 years.
At a first glance, the statement from CSG Australia is correct. However, I can confirm you that after looking at all details for this issue to come back to you with a firm answer by Wednesday 7th.

Thanks,
xxxx

xxxx / Director, Global Technical Services / Gewerbestrasse 25
CH-4123 Allschwill CH / Office: +41 61 487 93 66 /
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Re: Cannondale Lifetime Warranty ? – No 5 years, maybe.

Postby kirky92au » Wed Nov 07, 2012 10:13 am

ironhanglider wrote:Cameron's friend wrote:
1996 the Warranty statement had become "All other frames are warranted against defects in materials and workmanship for as long as the original purchaser owns them."

Metal fatigue is not a defect in a material nor is it a defect in workmanship.
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Re: Cannondale Lifetime Warranty ? – No 5 years, maybe.

Postby Shred931 » Wed Nov 07, 2012 10:38 am

Lifetime frame warranties are worthless and are simply a marketing tool. How are you supposed to prove the difference between defects in materials and workmanship verses normal wear and tear?
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Re: Cannondale Lifetime Warranty ? – No 5 years, maybe.

Postby find_bruce » Wed Nov 07, 2012 12:14 pm

ironhanglider wrote:Cameron's friend wrote:
1996 the Warranty statement had become "All other frames are warranted against defects in materials and workmanship for as long as the original purchaser owns them."

kirky92au wrote:Metal fatigue is not a defect in a material nor is it a defect in workmanship.

That is not always correct. What is described as metal fatigue is the propagation of a crack over time and in aluminium alloys, the crack is often initiated at the interface between the metal and a surface impurity inclusion - ie a defect in material. It can also be initiated at a poor quality weld - a defect in workmanship.
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Re: Cannondale Lifetime Warranty ? – No 5 years, maybe.

Postby Nobody » Wed Nov 07, 2012 2:21 pm

find_bruce wrote:
ironhanglider wrote:Cameron's friend wrote:
1996 the Warranty statement had become "All other frames are warranted against defects in materials and workmanship for as long as the original purchaser owns them."

kirky92au wrote:Metal fatigue is not a defect in a material nor is it a defect in workmanship.

That is not always correct. What is described as metal fatigue is the propagation of a crack over time and in aluminium alloys, the crack is often initiated at the interface between the metal and a surface impurity inclusion - ie a defect in material. It can also be initiated at a poor quality weld - a defect in workmanship.
Good example. Here's another one of poor quality welding.
viewtopic.php?f=34&t=51878

So are you saying that if the aluminium was pure and never welded it would never suffer from fatigue and crack? Although it would be better, I think it would still fail eventually.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fatigue_limit
Image
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Aluminium_alloy
An important structural limitation of aluminium alloys is their lower fatigue strength compared to steel. In controlled laboratory conditions, steels display a fatigue limit, which is the stress amplitude below which no failures occur - the metal does not continue to weaken with extended stress cycles. Aluminum alloys do not have this lower fatigue limit and will continue to weaken with continued stress cycles. Aluminium alloys are therefore sparsely used in parts that require high fatigue strength in the high cycle regime (more than 107 stress cycles).


You could easily argue this either way, but I think Kirky92au has a point which Cannondale is already using to dismiss "lifetime warranty" claims. I believe they should be disclosing that metal fatigue is not covered and their Al bikes are expected to last 7 to 8 years. Somehow I don't think they are going to though.
Last edited by Nobody on Wed Nov 07, 2012 2:36 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Cannondale Lifetime Warranty ? – No 5 years, maybe.

Postby kirky92au » Wed Nov 07, 2012 2:35 pm

find_bruce wrote:
ironhanglider wrote:Cameron's friend wrote:
1996 the Warranty statement had become "All other frames are warranted against defects in materials and workmanship for as long as the original purchaser owns them."

kirky92au wrote:Metal fatigue is not a defect in a material nor is it a defect in workmanship.

That is not always correct. What is described as metal fatigue is the propagation of a crack over time and in aluminium alloys, the crack is often initiated at the interface between the metal and a surface impurity inclusion - ie a defect in material. It can also be initiated at a poor quality weld - a defect in workmanship.

True, probably shouldn't of posted a sweeping statement, but good luck proving it was due to an impurity. Also true that dodgy workmanship can lead to it, but the area surrounding the crack isn't welded.

Nobody wrote:You could easily argue this either way, but I think Kirky92au has a point which Cannondale is already using to dismiss "lifetime warranty" claims. I believe they should be disclosing that metal fatigue is not covered and their Al bikes are expected to last 7 to 8 years. Somehow I don't think they are going to though.


Basically all their warranty covers you for is any gross over site made on there part, whether that is bad workmanship or bad materials, which is essentially what you already have guaranteed to you by the ACCC. I would also think 7 - 8 years is a reasonable "lifetime" of this product.
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Re: Cannondale Lifetime Warranty ? – No 5 years, maybe.

Postby find_bruce » Wed Nov 07, 2012 3:07 pm

Nobody wrote:So are you saying that if the aluminium was pure and never welded it would never suffer from fatigue and crack? Although it would be better, I think it would still fail eventually.

Nope I am not saying that - you are correct that all aluminium will eventually fatigue & yes the level of stress and number of cycles affect that. Lots of ways you can improve its lifespan (inc alloy composition, heat treatment, quality control, design etc) but the underlying property of the material remains.

Nobody wrote:You could easily argue this either way, but I think Kirky92au has a point which Cannondale is already using to dismiss "lifetime warranty" claims. I believe they should be disclosing that metal fatigue is not covered and their Al bikes are expected to last 7 to 8 years. Somehow I don't think they are going to though.

We are in furious agreement - if a manufacturer will only support a warranty for 7-8 years, they shouldnn't describe it as a lifetime warranty.

kirky92au wrote:True, probably shouldn't of posted a sweeping statement, but good luck proving it was due to an impurity. Also true that dodgy workmanship can lead to it, but the area surrounding the crack isn't welded.

Yep while it is theoretically possible to prove - as established by the investigations into aircraft failures, the cost would be outrageous. Not sure which crack you are referring to - I haven't seen any pics Cameron's friend's bike. If you are referring to my bike that I linked to (not a cannondale), my live in expert's opinion was that it started at the weld defect in the first pic.
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Re: Cannondale Lifetime Warranty ? – No 5 years, maybe.

Postby kirky92au » Wed Nov 07, 2012 3:33 pm

find_bruce wrote:
kirky92au wrote:True, probably shouldn't of posted a sweeping statement, but good luck proving it was due to an impurity. Also true that dodgy workmanship can lead to it, but the area surrounding the crack isn't welded.

Yep while it is theoretically possible to prove - as established by the investigations into aircraft failures, the cost would be outrageous. Not sure which crack you are referring to - I haven't seen any pics Cameron's friend's bike. If you are referring to my bike that I linked to (not a cannondale), my live in expert's opinion was that it started at the weld defect in the first pic.

This crack :P
ironhanglider wrote: I was servicing the bike to make sure it was road-worthy and noticed a crack in the right chainstay next to the bridge.

I agree, there is a lot of ambiguity in the wording of the warranty. I find it best to go by the ACCC standards and anything on top of that is a bonus. I don't see Cannondale doing anything, there is nothing to show that there was a defect in the material or workmanship. Yea it sucks but the bike 11 years old. I would honestly hope that if the bike was < 8 years old they would do it no questions asked, but I think they have met their warranty and the warranty laws of the ACCC. If you actually read the warranty out of the owners manual it says:
Cannondale wrote:This limited warranty is not meant to suggest or imply that the bicyle cannot be broken or will last forever...

I myself bought a CAAD10 5 early this year :P
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Re: Cannondale Lifetime Warranty ? – No 5 years, maybe.

Postby ironhanglider » Thu Nov 08, 2012 9:14 am

kirky92au wrote:
find_bruce wrote:
kirky92au wrote:True, probably shouldn't of posted a sweeping statement, but good luck proving it was due to an impurity. Also true that dodgy workmanship can lead to it, but the area surrounding the crack isn't welded.

Yep while it is theoretically possible to prove - as established by the investigations into aircraft failures, the cost would be outrageous. Not sure which crack you are referring to - I haven't seen any pics Cameron's friend's bike. If you are referring to my bike that I linked to (not a cannondale), my live in expert's opinion was that it started at the weld defect in the first pic.

This crack :P
ironhanglider wrote: I was servicing the bike to make sure it was road-worthy and noticed a crack in the right chainstay next to the bridge.

I agree, there is a lot of ambiguity in the wording of the warranty. I find it best to go by the ACCC standards and anything on top of that is a bonus. I don't see Cannondale doing anything, there is nothing to show that there was a defect in the material or workmanship. Yea it sucks but the bike 11 years old. I would honestly hope that if the bike was < 8 years old they would do it no questions asked, but I think they have met their warranty and the warranty laws of the ACCC. If you actually read the warranty out of the owners manual it says:
Cannondale wrote:This limited warranty is not meant to suggest or imply that the bicyle cannot be broken or will last forever...

I myself bought a CAAD10 5 early this year :P


It is possible to design things in aluminium such that fatigue is not a factor. There are a great many riders out there with aluminium handlebars that have been in use for 30 years. Should they be scared?

The problem is kirky that your are referring to the terms of the 2012 warranty. My friend bought the 2001 warranty, and they have changed over time.

In 1985 Cannondale wrote "We have taken this fatigue factor into account, and have designed our frames to stand up to a lifetime of use. Like all Cannondale products our bicycles are covered with a 100% guarantee."


People who bought Cannondale frames in 1985 could and did get warranties for frame failure for everything up to and sometimes including disclosed crashes! It was a major selling point. I know people who bought Cannondales in the 1990s and 2000s almost solely because of the warranty, because there are always other bikes at any price point with similar equipment and handling.

The fact that Cannondale now write fatigue into their warranties is probably because some bean counters decided that the warranty scheme was costing them money. I'm no marketing person but I suspect that the current would also cost them sales too if others have better warranty support. Trek have earned a mention in this thread for honouring warranties, they also make good bikes at probably a similar price point.

The ray of hope is that CSG are considering this case and in their reply they highlighted that they were considering average life expectancy. I would still argue that the terms of the warranty that my friend bought was for the lifetime of the original owner, and that the materials and workmanship cover all possibilities.

If the warranty was written in 2001 as it is written now then we would be left with argueing that the bike has seen less than average use and so the life expectancy should be longer which is more tenuous.

I will try to get a photo up but my home internet will be offline till next week.

Cheers,

Cameron
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Re: Cannondale Lifetime Warranty ? – No 5 years, maybe.

Postby Nobody » Thu Nov 08, 2012 10:53 am

ironhanglider wrote:It is possible to design things in aluminium such that fatigue is not a factor. There are a great many riders out there with aluminium handlebars that have been in use for 30 years. Should they be scared?
If they hear a clicking or creaking sound they can't attribute to any other cause.
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Re: Cannondale Lifetime Warranty ? – No 5 years, maybe.

Postby ironhanglider » Thu Nov 15, 2012 8:59 pm

As promised here are a couple of photos of the crack in this instance.

Image

and

Image

I feel that there is a need to re-iterate the situation here.

The warranty that is being claimed (and not honoured) is the 2001 Cannondale warranty that makes no mention of fatigue.

The response so far from "Cycling Sports Group" (who are the new owners of Cannondale) is to regurgitate the Cycling Sports Group version of the warranty and also state that they believe that 5 years is the expected 'life' of a frame. The CSG warranty is not relevant because that is not what my friend considered and paid for when he bought his bike, he bought the Cannondale warranty. When CSG bought Cannondale they would have bought all the assets and liabilities of the business including the outstanding warranties.

Of course all this has come from the only assessment of the failure to be from the above photos, so I'm not sure how they can confidently say it is fatigue without a genuine examination.


As for the owners of new Cannondale bikes the news is even worse. Despite the disappointing 5 year life reassurance, the wording of the current warranty is worse.

It essentially says:

Riding your bike causes fatigue.
Fatigue is considered normal wear and tear.
Normal wear and tear is not covered at all.

It also includes a meaningless reference to lifetime of the owner which can only possibly apply to someone who buys a bike solely for the purpose of hanging on a wall.

Taken to its logical conclusion if a Cannondale is ridden any distance and fails, regardless of age it is not covered by warranty.

Clearly the answer is to buy Cannondales second hand or over the internet. That way you get exactly the same warranty as an original owner but only having to pay what it is worth.

Cheers,

Cameron
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Re: Cannondale Lifetime Warranty ? – No 5 years, maybe.

Postby warthog1 » Fri Nov 16, 2012 8:56 am

moved to other thread
Last edited by warthog1 on Fri Nov 16, 2012 9:02 am, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: Cannondale Lifetime Warranty ? – No 5 years, maybe.

Postby AUbicycles » Fri Nov 16, 2012 8:58 am

I have a new thread on the Cannondale Lifetime Warranty which references this specific case - however the Lifetime Warranty is misleading. It is used as a Unique Selling Proposition by Cannondale and is a contributing factor which may affect the decision of a buyer to purchase a Cannondale - however it seems that the warranty is invalid if you actually ride the bike.

Cannondale should drop the lifetime warranty - and stop selling bikes/frames with this as a feature. Until then it is important to get general information out there so that other potential buyers are aware of the details.
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Re: Cannondale Lifetime Warranty ? – No 5 years, maybe.

Postby Howzat » Fri Feb 22, 2013 10:40 pm

SpinninWheels wrote:If they want to be fair dinkum, state a 5, 7, 10 year whatever warranty and stick by it.

+1. This is how you represent a time-limited warranty. A lifetime warranty on the frame is something of value - and if they're not providing what they're selling, its ACCC time.
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Re: Cannondale Lifetime Warranty ? – No 5 years, maybe.

Postby rollin » Thu Apr 25, 2013 6:51 pm

Unfortunately cannondale is not the brand it was before they tried to manufacture dirt bikes and went broke, it's now owned by dorel a big multi national who only cares about money, also the Australian company was awesome up until about 3 years ago when they merged there Australian head office at warriewood with the mongoose- schwinn- gt importer and moved to stanmore.
90% of the cannondale crew flew the coop and left behind a bunch of clueless morons...
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