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Morrison Becomes IXGO. BIKE&CO Launches a New Private Brand.

IXGO private brand of the German Bico bicycle dealer association

Not sporty enough. Not cool enough. Inappropriate name. When bicycle dealers talk like this about the bicycle brand of their own dealer association, something has to happen. And something has happened. The German dealer association Bico, whose own brand Morrison had to take such harsh words, has taken the judgement of its dealers to heart and this week introduced a completely new brand, IXGO.

“I like to compare a brand to a house,” said Bico managing director Georg Wagner during the presentation. “After a certain amount of time, it’s simply due for a renovation.” According to what he had on the table as the result of an extensive dealer survey, the respondents probably wanted more of a medium-scale rebuild. The design of Morrison bicycles was not reflecting current trends and was thus less and less in line with the tastes of the people who came to the bicycle shops. It was difficult for dealers to grasp and therefore difficult to communicate to customers what the brand stood for and what it wanted to express. The technically appealing concept was lacking the convincing appearance that was needed for sales.

Well-known orientation reinterpreted

Bico now counters such assessments with IXGO. In the brand name, the focus on the I is combined with the call to adventure in nature – the GO – by the X. For those who ride an IXGO, the journey is more the goal, arriving comes second at the earliest. It’s all about riding fun, which is allowed to cost sweat and dirty clothes. These motifs are intended to set the bike apart from the Falter brand more effectively than before.

IXGO private brand of the German Bico bicycle dealer association

This profile is basically aimed at what the Morrison brand stands for with its mountain, trekking and cross bikes. So where will it be positioned in the future? Clear answer: In the annals of Bico, rather sooner than later. This year you will still almost exclusively encounter Morrison in the shops. At the beginning of 2024, these models will gradually disappear and be replaced by IXGO models.

Will the magic work?

Officially, Bico classifies this as a further development. Viewed objectively, it will be a matter of cosmetic changes for the time being. Alexander Thusbass, for example, who supported the dealer association in creating IXGO with the agency Kiska, speaks of “drizzling design magic”. The very first starting point for the work was the outer appearance of the bicycles. Differences to the current range will be seen in other colours and small accents. The whole thing is supposed to look modest and restrained. On the full-suspension e-mountain bike Morrison Yurok, which will become the IXGO MXF-E, the current top tube with its small additional strut near the seat tube gives way to a continuous straight top tube. In addition, there are other tyres that also give the look of the bikes a different touch due to their proportions and partly coloured sidewalls.

Bico wants to establish an X as a feature of the brand to be recognised. This will later be seen on the bicycles as a 3D batch on the head tube. Small flags with the complete brand name on the brake cables as well as the seat stays, complete this approach.

Bikes for smart calculators

However, Bico wants to stick to the basic orientation. IXGO remains an private brand that is not intended to displace any well-known foreign brand from the range. It is sticking to the image of the price-performance winner. In other words, an option for people who value quality and price and who don’t care which brand name ends up adorning their bike.

Technically, nothing fundamental will change. The same applies to production. Like Morrison, the IXGO bicycles will be manufactured in Timisoara, Romania. Iko Sportartikel Handelsgesellschaft, Corratec’s parent company, owns a factory there. By all accounts, this did not always run smoothly last year. Quality control is a topic that the dealer association addresses both at the German headquarters in Verl and at the location in Romania. According to Georg Wagner, these measures are now beginning to show results.

Top tube with indication of key features on IXGO brand ebikes

Intended as a facilitation for dealers in sales : On the top tube, key features are mentioned next to the model name.

IXGO is already starting the 2024 season with a fairly broad range of ebikes. This ranges from e-mountain bikes and touring e-bikes to e-gravel bikes and e-bikes for children and young people:

  • E-MTB – Fully: MXF-E model series
  • E-MTB – Hardtail: MX-E model series
  • E-Touring – Fully: MTF-E model series
  • E-Touring – Hardtail: MT-E model series
  • E-Gravel: GX-E model series
  • Youth 26”: MX-E model series
  • Kids 20” to 24”: KX-E model series

Nothing specific is known

Unfortunately, Bico left questions about technical details largely open in the first presentation. In the image video, for example, an e-gravel bike appears that is obviously equipped with a Fazua drive. The question of whether the later series models would also feature Fazua’s Ride 60 was not answered by anyone during the online event. At this point, it seems that the decision about such a fundamental component should have been made already.

At the latest, it will be clear by the start of the Eurobike on 21 June 2023 in Frankfurt am Main. There, Bico plans to present the entire product range live to its members. Then there should also be information about the prices. As a basic guideline, the association has announced that the prices should be between five and 15 per cent below the RRP of the other brands.

Background: The power of the community

Under the auspices of German Bico Zweirad Marketing GmbH, the Bico dealer association, also known as Bike&Co, brings together almost 700 bicycle dealers under its umbrella in Germany. They order together, which ensures them favourable conditions. The second large association of dealers in Germany, the Zweirad-Einkaufs-Genossenschaft (ZEG), operates in a similar way. In the shops of Bico dealers, you will find bikes of the private brands Falter, Morrison and soon IXGO, in addition to established brands such as Stevens, Flyer, Winora, Raleigh and Scott.

Pictures: Bico Zweirad Marketing GmbH

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