Bicycle Tyres

Why are Bicycle Tyres so expensive. A Tubeless bike tyre cost $100+, and lasts maybe a few 000s kms. An average Tubeless saloon car tyre lasts 50,000 and costs about the same.

Is this a rip off?


Yes they are way overpriced for what you get.
Aim to buy several tyres when on special to reduce the cost. Often good quality tyres can be found on clearance special at greatly reduced prices at the various online cycle stores. Local bike shops don’t generally have those sort of deals.

There are plenty of tubeless tyres available for under $100 even when not on special.

Tubeless tyres are lucky to last a few hundred km around here, the sharp shale the council uses in our road slices them (and our car tyres) up very quickly. I’ve given up trying to run tubeless after a few attempts - I spent vastly more time patching and pumping up tyres than when running tubed, which I have reverted to.


Perhaps I misunderstand the point of Choice Community.

For me the main purpose is communicating with association staff, of making them aware of consumer topics and their issues.

With every single product there are ways of searching for discounts, buying bulk, getting on e-mail lists and waiting for a special for your particular product, buying online, which usually means buying abroad, as Aussie companies don’t yet seem to get, online buying is very price conscious, etc.

MTB tyres have used Tubeless technology for a number of years and their tyre prices are falling. Road bike tyres are not in the same position.

My main point is that the recommended prices for bike tyres are extremely high, and hence is this something Choice should be doing something about?


Your posting on this site does help. The posts are read and the information is used to further the aims of Choice. Many times the outcomes are not rapidly evident, but Choice put great value on what is posted.

The reason for the Community is much more than just making Choice aware of issues or having the contact with their staff. It allows the community to benefit from the perspectives, advice, input, responses of many interested users including that of industry representatives.

The About page offers this insight into why we have the Community:

“CHOICE.Community is a new forum for Australian consumers. With your help, we hope to create a place for all Australians to get help with the products and services we use every day, and to have their voices heard so that we can have fair, just and safe markets for all.”

I sincerely hope you continue to post whether on a matter that is of concern to you or as a comment to what others have posted and I hope you find value in what others may be able to offer in response.


Hi @longinthetooth, CHOICE staff are reading the test requests posted to the forum, and we often discuss consumer issues or offer consumer rights advice here. The volume of posts means that we can’t always reply to everyone directly, but please feel free to tag me or get in touch any time you have a point to raise :+1:


Just buy them online from the UK or USA, that’s what I do, several pairs at a time and with a work colleague so the freight is free, about a third of the cost locally. The local shops are extremely expensive to pay for there exorbitant rent/lease. Rant over.


@omy005aw the purpose of raising this with our Australian Consumer Association is that this is what we are having to do. That we appear to being ripped off in our own country.

The comments on this thread could apply to just about any aspect of sport and recreation, that the Australian supply chain has massive mark ups. Is the issue every step in the supply chain, foreign suppliers, Australian wholesalers, retail outlets, shop rentals?


Thank you, am guessing we tag by putting an @ in front of the the individuals user name @BrendanMays


It’s the manufactures and Australian wholesalers doing deals to prevent others from selling in our market.

I’ve been buy online bike parts for years from overseas but in the last few years it’s becoming increasingly difficult to get certain brands delivered to Australia.

The SRAM brand is one, I was building up a couple of bikes and ordered complete group-sets from the UK at about half the going price in Aus. A few months later I duplicated my order only to have it rejected. I emailed the UK site and asked what was going on, as I’d spent thousands of dollars over the years with them. The reply I got back was the manufacture asked them not to ship to Aus any more or they (UK site) would not be able to sell that brand anymore. And “they understood my frustration, but that’s the way it is”. I tried several other sites and as soon as you set the delivery to Aus that brand was no longer “available”. I ended up going via eBay and amazon (amazon au is rubbish though).

I then notice that Aus bike store 99bikes (one of the biggest in our market) has SRAM available, but very expensive, previously not available unless a special order. So I’m guessing 99bikes went to SRAM and said, we want exclusive rights to your products and we’ll buy $$$$ amount but you have to stop overseas stores from shipping to Aus?

Don’t get me started on local wholesalers not letting bike shops send new bikes interstate, that’s another story altogether.

End of rant.


I notice that Wiggle AU (owner of CRC UK, but still based in the UK) doesn’t stock SRAM either.

I started buying most of my more expensive bike parts- frames, drivetrain, brakes etc in US initially, then UK 20 years ago, the price differential is just insane. Even relatively inexpensive items like tubes are often 3-5X more expensive here! Buy one in Oz, or a 5 pack from OS included with a larger order, so you get free freight.


They stock that brand, just not for us! Change delivery to UK and it miraculously appears (and with cheap prices!).

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Is this what is meant by Geo blocking? I have had similar experiences to @omy005aw and @gordon, ie, buying parts to build bikes from start and also upgrading. What was straight forward a few years ago is almost impossible.

I am about to build a hard tail MTB bike, Ti frame, but getting the components is proving really difficult.

There is a very informative website that reviews bikes tyres for performance, but getting the tyres is another matter! Lower pressures and tubeless seems the way to go for MTB and road. Although roadies are so stuck in their ways getting them to change is another matter.

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Not quite, more like Geo fencing, you can see through a fence but you cannot get to it. Geo blocked, you don’t even know its there. Just another type of “Australia tax”, because they can.


Two simple observations or questions for Choice staff and the experts here.

Q1. Is there an issue in Australia with consumer law? The law applies to the relationship between consumer and the seller. The law does not adequately regulate or address issues arising from agreements between overseas suppliers, importers and distributors within Australia. Importantly there is little evidence or transparency of the agreements and deals struck between these other parties.

Q2. Do free trade agreements between Australia and other nations extend to consumer level access to suppliers OS? Or is this just a fantasy even Disney and Pixar would be hard pressed to illuminate?

There are many other products which appear to suffer a similar fate. Need a filter for your ride on mower? Perhaps a pump for your John Deere or Ford New Holland?

The circumstances extend far beyond bicycle tyres which appear to have gold threads woven into the fabric reinforcement. Although they are still slightly better value per gram than saffron!

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