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Posted by Derek Flack / Posted on May 2, 2011

Cyclemotive TorontoCyclemotive is one of those bike stores where you get a bit of everything. Affiliated with the older Cycle Shoppe on Queen West, this larger space around the corner on Bathurst allows for a more diverse range of products than is offered at its commuter-oriented "older brother." What that means, more than anything else, is that Cyclemotive is a good place for those looking for entry to mid-level road bikes, high performance hybrid/city bikes, and accessories and parts galore.

Cyclemotive TorontoAs is the case with a lot of general-purpose shops, the price range of bikes on offer is extremely wide, in this case spanning $400 to $10,000. When asked what the so-called sweet spot is, manager Jab Hassanali tells me that the bulk of sales are in the $1000 to $2000 zone, which is what it'll cost you to get into a performance oriented road bike or a 105-equipped performance hybrid. The difference between these two types of bikes is essentially one of geometry and set-up. The road bike will put you in a more aggressive position (with a flatter back) and feature drop handlebars (of course), while the hybrid makes things easier on the back with a slacker head tube angle and flat bars.

Argon 18Cyclemotive also carries mountain bikes (in regular and 29" models), though they top out at a higher price when one gets into rear suspension (say $3500). A small selection of single speeds, fixed gears, and Electra bikes can also be found around the shop, but are more the specialty at the Cycle Shoppe. Nevertheless, based on a look around the floor, one would be hard-pressed to find a major type of bike not available here (excluding those of the folding and cargo variety).

Shimano CranksBrand wise, the three that occupy the most rack space are Giant, Argon 18, and Scott. Of these, I'm most impressed by the supply of Argons they have. This is a Quebec-based manufacture on the rise in the road community (in much the same way that Cervelo was seven or eight years ago), and as far a bang for your buck goes, it's hard to compete when looking for your first high-end road bike. Rounding out their stable are offerings from Masi, Redline, SC Racing and Raleigh.

Cyclemotive TorontoAs is to be expected, the shop does custom fittings for all of its bikes that will be ridden with clipless pedals (if you're feet are moving around a lot, there's no point in refining your fit). They use the Juteau Cantin system, which is well respected and vastly superior to the fly-by-the-seat-of-your-pants business that some stores call a custom fit. This is a big deal if you're dropping more than a grand on a bike, so it's a plus in my books when a store takes its fitting skills seriously. Also noteworthy is the fact that the store offers three years worth of full tune-ups with every bike purchase.

Cyclemotive TorontoThe clothing selection isn't particularly vast at Cyclemotive, but all the important stuff is covered with Louis Garneau taking the honours as chief supplier of spandex. Accessories are another story. Even though Hassanali tells me they've yet to receive a bunch of spring/summer stock, it's clear that this is a strong suit — with everything from Zipp wheels to wire baskets to be found scatter around the sales floor or hanging from the ceiling.

I've only been to Cyclemotive a few times, but in each case I've been impressed by how friendly the staff were. This is a solid all-arounder that should be very attractive to downtown residents looking for one shop to service their needs.


Who the store caters to: Everyone, but particularly riders looking to get into performance bikes

Bike price range: $400-$10,000+, most bikes range between $1000 and $2000.

Service capabilities: Everything, hydraulic brake work

The tune-up: For $49 you get complete external adjustment of the bike (bikes, gears, bolts) and a safety check. For $175 you can have your bike stripped to the frame and rebuilt.



Kevin / May 2, 2011 at 07:34 pm
Minor correction, the brand is Argon-18, rather than Aragon. Solid shop, I've been pleased by the service they've done on my bike.
Daniel / May 2, 2011 at 09:09 pm
I have not bought a bike there, but I did enter a couple of weeks ago and they took the time to educate me on a proper commuter bike. Great shop!
Jenn / May 5, 2011 at 12:30 am
Nice shop. Really took the time to educate me and did a great fitting on my new road bike. Two thumbs up.
andrew / May 12, 2011 at 03:55 pm
bought a bike there recently and was super impressed with the service and the wealth of knowledge from the staff. The place is great
rachel / May 20, 2011 at 05:49 pm
not impressed. they have excellent bikes i'm sure, but i went in there to get my biked tuned up and the 49 dollar tune up doesn't include anything- not even a bolt for my back rack or putting my chain back on. apparently anything you would expect to get done is an extra 45 dollars. soooo not worth it. since when did getting rid of my car to ride my bike become the same cost as keeping my car? i could get my oil changed, tires rotated and car washed for less!
rachel / May 20, 2011 at 05:50 pm
ps brought it up the street and got it done for 15 ;)
Emily / May 22, 2011 at 12:08 pm
Rachel, I have to say that I have been riding my bike in Toronto For few years now and I have NEVER seen a full tune up, clean up, grease up, and extra parts for less than 100.00.

If you got a tune up done for 15, I strongly question the quality of the job they did. 100.00, maybe 200 for needed parts per year on a bike is not the same cost as a car.

Anyway, so far have been very happy with the service received from this shop.
Jonathan / May 23, 2011 at 09:56 am
These guys are seriously letting me down right now. Took my Giant cyclocross in there 7 weeks ago for a warranty issue on a (potentially) cracked fork and they're still telling me Giant in the US is "working on the problem." I understand that ultimately it's Giant's issue and Cyclemotive is just where I bought the bike but I don't get the feeling that I've got an advocate in the store right now.

They haven't been good at returning phone calls, giving me updates on the issue or giving me options. Thank goodness the spring weather sucked but it's been a great long weekend and no bike to ride.

So right now these guys get a big ol' F on customer service. I will not be shopping there again. Oh and don't get me started on Giant Bicycles - they're worse. I may just buy Canadian next time so it's easier to harass people when I've got a problem!
mike / May 24, 2011 at 04:37 pm
Went there on my lunch break to purchase a derailleur cable kit. They didn't carry the specific kit I was looking for but the mechanic said that he can cut me the correct lengths for my bike just as long as he knows the make/model/year. So I give them that info and I also indicate that I specifically need the housing to be 4mm. The mechanic goes to the back for a while and returns. I knew right away that the front derailleur housing was way short as my bike doesn't have any interuppted derailleur housing. I tell him that and he replies "Well that's what you're getting". EXCUSE ME? I tell him...You ask me what specifie bike I have and then you bring out the wrong lengths?? He replies "Well we don't carry that make of bike." ????? Why bother asking me what bike I have? Then I asked him to check the diameter of the housing. He pulls out a vernier caliper and meausures 5mm!! The whole time he was shaking his head like it's my fault. WTF!?
I just walked out and I don't plan on returning.

mechanic / May 26, 2011 at 05:22 am
Dear Mike,

My apologies. Correct, that expereince could've been much better! Thanks for visitg us on yor lunch break, we understand the value of your time, esp.then.

Thus the question of type of bike (MTB, road, cx etc.) Whch usu. Determines the cabling setup to know how to cut housing. You then told us the Brand/model/yr yourself(Specializd Epic MTB) but didn't tell us abt un-interrupted housing - whch you knew but didn't tell us - before I cut the $3.50/ft. housing to the usual interrrupted pieces for an MTB for you...whch you then revealed had to b one long, uninterrupted piece, not in pieces. :|

We do not recall "this is what you're getting" being said at all. That would've bn an unacceptable statement here a Cyclemotive. Sorry if u heard that or felt I was communicatg that.

*NB Secondly, Mike, you also required _white_ housing which was only available in 5mm.
Hence, all of our 4mm housing kits were suggested(shimano MTB, XTR, Dura-Ace, Yokozuna etc.)..to no avail to you, bc white was still desired. Amen to that bro n that's why we stock it! but agn, white was only available in 5mm.

Mike, my friend, let's move on...this time, bring the bike in question in-store and we'll have you + your bike comin out resolved, happy n lovin life again!

mechanic / May 26, 2011 at 05:49 am
John! Thanks for posting here before tellin us how you're feelin..??! I'm hurt.... but I can take it ;)

And yes everybody, John n I both talked it out yestrday (Wed May 26th) n he basically told me what was said here. We appreciate your candor John. And, we @ Cyclemotive have felt your pain.....and I shall be that Advocate, btwn you and the great company called Giant Bicycles Canada (except last week whn their internet servers were down, thus delaying your warranty. Crrntly faxing them instd)!

As per our phone conversation, all is back-on-track, Giant Canada's 'net is up n running, and yes, we'll be updating you live as they happen.

PS Generally, warranty claims take 4-6weeks on average. shipping+service costs may be incurred. But if its deemed a warranty replacement, you can get an all-new part/frame on-the-house. ;) Thanks to Giant's limited Lifetime Warranty for quality and workmanship and agnst manufacturer's defects.
mechanic / May 26, 2011 at 06:01 am
And thank you all for your sweet positive, encouraging comments!!! A-men to that, I say!

We LOVE you all! (You don't have to love us...but we will always love you.....Okay, maybe _I_ will always love y'all...Lord-willing, uhm, usually during business hours only, but not Sundays bc I'm usu.absent...well, except for ths Sunday to make-up for Sat day-off for wedding/receptn n boss wants me in etc etc etc...hmm, need a 'substitute' Sat. Stat!......did I say I love you guys?) :D

Peace out, Hogtown!
Ride On!
RP / June 7, 2011 at 04:17 pm
Please do NOT bring your business to this place. The repair guy in the back is completely rude and condeceding. Go ANYWHERE ELSE except this place.

I had dropped off my bike on a Friday for a hydraulic break repair. I also have Pins for the axels, to which I had to bring the key for. So the following Monday came in with the key, but the repair guy was SO RUDE, telling me that since I didn't have a piece of paper, I had to come back. That they were so ungodly busy, that he couldn't deduce which bike was mine (the gray giant rainier with PINS ON THE AXELS).

I think I'll spend my money at an operation where the repair guys has a BRAIN and can figure out problems, and not speak to people like they are neanderthals.
RP / June 7, 2011 at 04:37 pm
And @Mike, you're not the only one who had a terrible experience with that guy.

There is a while history of it:


All others, do NOT give that jerk your hard earned money. You don't need to be spoken to like child.
Joseph / June 13, 2011 at 04:17 pm
Great staff with good attitudes. I used to be a regular Duke's customer but I switched over to Cyclemotive after the old Duke's burned down. Even though Duke's has reopened, I'll be loyal to Cyclemotive as the service is hands down the best I've ever received in a bike shop. They did an excellent job fitting me on my Cannondale road bike prior to the RTCC.
Mike / June 22, 2011 at 10:56 pm

FYI the type of bike (MTB, road, cx etc.) will not determine the cable set up in today's bicycle market as there are just too many different set ups. Asking a customer what specific make/model WILL determine the required cable lengths, which is exactly what you asked me. So I assumed you knew, you being the "professional" and all. Again, why bother asking such a question then?

I stated the housing OD had to be 4mm from the beginning and you measured it after you cut it but I guess that's my fault too! Geez

Also, you did say "That's what you're getting." I could never misinterpret such words! You think by posting on here and denying such comments, people will think I misunderstood what you CLEARLY said to me? So no thanks on the invite to come back. Sorry dude, you really have no business dealing with people and you definitely do not represent the shop well.

Good luck,
RP / June 22, 2011 at 11:19 pm
Well said Mike!

I'm glad to know that I'm not the only one who experienced such pompous, douchebaggery. I hope to the powers above that this places gets what's going to them.

I repeat, to anybody reading this article and comments. Do NOT go to Cyclemotive. Bring your business to a place that will treat you like a human being.

Everybody works hard for their money. You do not deserve to be spoken to like you're a pathetic idiot.
Chadsh / June 28, 2011 at 01:40 pm
My very new Garneau bike under warranty is @ Cyclemotive for maintainance. So far customer service is not good at all. Who is the manager?
Dan. / August 5, 2011 at 12:04 pm
Very nice shop. Thanks for the great service guys.
Juarex / December 20, 2011 at 02:22 pm
Thanks "Cyclemotive". If you love bikes or have experience with bikes from an earlier age then you don't have to have a lot of details, unless needed when having a new bike at a starting time. I understand very well that my bike is like anything else that will need repair or upgrade. I ride my bike a lot, its like my need to every where i need to go unless i chose not to take it with me, with that being informed. What favors can i possible give my bike in return. I know how useful it is to have a bike so when coming on bike 'parts' or 'tuneups' i know that "Cyclemotive" can deliver satisfaction to meet me and my bike needs.
pj / March 27, 2012 at 08:22 pm
The fact that they are actively trying to kill off the many negative reviews right here speaks all you need to know.
It is supposed to be reviews from clients here, not answers from the shops.
They get a new set of 'mechanics' every spring. Just pull them in from Queen Street, so they can pay them minimum wage and replace'em as things start slowing down. Know cause talked to one of them.
Bunch of phonies out there. Steer clear and avoid at all cost.
V'ness / May 15, 2012 at 10:03 pm
I love Cyclemotive. They have always been super helpful and patient with my purchases. Also, tonight I swung by there well after closing and they came out to help me deal with a bike seat emergency. I will continue to to go there for all of my cycling needs.
Ed / June 15, 2012 at 03:51 pm
Over priced parts and service. I'm tired of coming in to this place to be lied to about the parts that are needed for my bike to simply get milked for every penny I have. These guys are dishonest and would rather squeeze as much out of you as they can then have you come back for reasonable honest work. Will not be going back!
paul / September 11, 2012 at 12:15 pm
These people have no interest in bicycles or cycling. especially so in road racing for competition. They don't know what the hell they are talking about. They see themselves as business sharks and Canadians are so gullible that they can make their quick buck by capitalizing on it. Achtung: Gypsies!
GL / October 27, 2012 at 01:16 pm
Bad pompous service!! Unhelpful, condescending spin doctors. You go there with an issue based on a recommendation they made and it becomse your ongoing pain! THEN, they charge you more to fix what was fine in the first place. This is an ongoing issue that takes up my time, energy and more money. Ridiculous!!! All you need to know folks....just look at all the bad reviews!!!!
Steve / October 27, 2012 at 04:23 pm
I beg to differ with many of these reviews. The staff at Cyclemotive have always been courteous, honest and knowledgeable. I know many of my colleagues from my office that shop here and they are all pleased with the incredible service they always recieve from this shop. Rememer folks, you cannot keep comparing prices from your local bike shop to MEC. MEC is a co-op and just like Wal-Mart, will kill all local businesses and disintegrate the Canadian economy.
Aaron / April 21, 2013 at 06:46 pm
Comments are very helpful here and explain why it's not a priority to special order a measly $100+ part. I could just as easily order it to the states next time I go, was just hoping for a sooner turnaround for a few extra bucks. Over the runaround.
avoidthisplace / January 19, 2014 at 09:32 am
These guys are horrible. They wanted to charge me $20 to put a new chain on because I provided the chain. Went to another bike shop down the street $5 and gave $5 tip.

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