BikeRadar were recently invited to the launch of two 29er mountain bikes from VooDoo. We were pleased to discover what look like two solid value trail bikes – the Bizango and Aizan – at prices that won't intimidate beginners.
These bikes will be important because they'll effectively be debuting the 29er wheel size to the non-enthusiast. The brief was clear – design and spec a 29er to be sold at the cheapest price possible; a bike that can be offered to the mainsteam yet still work for seasoned riders.
Both the Bizango and Aizan are 120mm aluminium hardtails, with the former retailing at £599 and the latter at just £449.99. The frames have been designed by legendary MTB Hall of Famer Joe Murray, with angles and sizing shared across both models. The Bizango even gets adjustable chainstays, offering riders the option to tweak handling by altering the wheelbase length.
VooDoo Aizan – £449.99
Halfords have prioritised sensibly with the spec of both bikes, with cash being concentrated on the fork, wheels and drivetrain. The most basic bike still gets a lockout-equipped 120mm Suntour XCR suspension fork, a full Shimano Alivio transmission, Tektro hydraulic discs and even Continental tyres.
VooDoo Bizango – £599.99
Spend £150 more and you'll get an air-sprung 15mm thru-axle fork from Suntour, an upgraded crankset and Deore rear mech, Shimano hydraulic discs and Maxxis Ardent tyres. The wheels are own-brand offerings, as is most of the finishing kit.
Both the Bizango and Aizan will be available in 18in and 20in sizes, with 16in models possibly being brought in at a later date. We've spent some trail time on the Bizango and first impressions were good. We've since secured ourselves a test bike, so keep your eyes peeled for a full review on BikeRadar soon.
UK retailers Halfords have the challenge of selling bikes across a range of price points to customers from all backgrounds, and they do this by offering lots of brands, from budget to premium. VooDoo fit into this equation by sitting above the likes of Apollo and Carrera but below Boardman.
What is always going to be important is the level of knowledge on the shop floor – customers are going to need reassurance that 29ers are here to stay and that spares will be available, and to understand why they would want to choose a 29er over a 26in-wheeled bike. If Halfords get this right these bikes could well bring 29ers to the masses in the UK.
Both the Aizan and Bizango are available now from the Halfords website, or in selected stores.