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Was speaking to a LBS owner in NC this weekend.

He said that he heard a rumor that the last Klein rolled off the line in October and heard nothing about a 2007 Klein lineup. (too early in 2006 maybe?)

Any truth to this? I would hate to see them fade away.
 

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ServerMonkey said:
Any truth to this? I would hate to see them fade away.
That already happened when they were bought by Trek and all production was moved to Wisconsin.
 

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ServerMonkey said:
Was speaking to a LBS owner in NC this weekend.

He said that he heard a rumor that the last Klein rolled off the line in October and heard nothing about a 2007 Klein lineup. (too early in 2006 maybe?)

Any truth to this? I would hate to see them fade away.
Klein has already faded away. Their big sale/market was building lightweight aluminium frames. Over the past 5-7 years, Aluminium has gone from being the material of choice for higher end bikes, to the last material of choice as TI, Carbon, and Steel have had come on strong (or come back strongly as it may be). Trek neatly divided the market between their lines on the $1000+ plus bike market, Trek has built the Carbon bikes, Klein the Aluminium, and LeMond building Steel and TI. Guess who has suffered as their market has erroded.

As far as Trek killing Klein, that is a bunch of bull. Klein was in deep financial trouble when he sold to Trek. Had Trek not bought Klein they would have died in 1999. People like to idolize the old Klein bikes (I always liked Kleins and have had two, a pre-trek and a post trek), but forget all the proprietary parts, the frames breaking, the stiff ride, etc. Trek fixed a lot of those issues.
 

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Sad But True

I have to defend my KLeins all the time. I have 3 and have gotten rid of another. There was a great article on a site called No Ones Listening RIP Klein, but when i went to check it a few minutes ago only part of the article appeared.

As CDMC said Klein was hurting when TREK stepped on them, OPPS i mean stepped in. Apparently something happend in the late 90's when KLEIN couldnt fill orders due to soemthing they hadnt developed yet, but advertised that it was ready. Again all in the above mentioned article. Klein had some sucess in Racing as Recent as early as 2 years ago with JITTERY JOE and Cesar beating Lance on Jitter Joe KLein at the Tour Georgia Mountain Stage. Then that was it no more Klein racing support by the order of TREK! Klein also was the Gerlosteiner (spelling) bike in the maybe 2002 tour. The US Postal Masters rode them and so did the USA team OFTO. I dont know, very sad i love them. I have 2 Q Pro Carbons and one Attitude and look on Ebay every day for a pre TREK Klein and KLein merchandise, jerseys etc. No dobt about it the bike draws attention every place I take it. Email me or message me if anyone is interested. Basically Klein offers 3 bikes, 1 road, 1 hardtail, and the suspension road bike. They cant be around much longer. I also understand they are hurting over the developemnt and patent rights of there full suspension rig!

Goo thread!
 

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Har said:
Apparently something happend in the late 90's when KLEIN couldnt fill orders due to soemthing they hadnt developed yet, but advertised that it was ready.
Klein ran into problems with the EPA. I seem to recall the citations were eventually overturned but by that time it was too late and the company had already been forced to sell out the Trek. If they were still independent then they could be doing what Cannondale is and transitioning to a carbon frame maker, although I think Cannondale's fabrication is all done in Taiwan or China.

It was a sad day when Klein sold out to Trek. I have my original Klein frame sans components hanging on a wall.
 

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RIP Klein - Here Is The Article

http://no.oneslistening.com/193

===========================

There has been a lot of speculation recently that Klein, known for their beautiful bicycle frames and paint techniques, may be nearing the end.

While I’ve never been one to fan the fire when it comes to rumors, I fear this one is likely true. Klein has been on the way out for years. The company was suffering substantial financial woes when Trek purchased them in 2002. It’s unclear whether Trek is committed to maintaining the Klein’s 33 year legacy or if they purchased the company for it’s ZR9000 alloy. Pointing the blame really isn’t productive, and regardless it seems obvious that Klein will likely stop making bicycles in the near future.

Absent in the 2006 bicycle lineup is the Palomino, once a symbol of Klein’s innovative thinking. In 2003, Klein introduced the Palomino, the much anticipated full-suspension addition to the Klein mountain bike line. Bragging a “mono-link” rear suspension system, the Palomino looked like it might bring the struggling company back to the surface.

Now, the Palomino is no more. In truth, it’s been gone since 2005. All of the 2005 Palominos were, in fact, 2004 bikes with different paint schemes and slightly different parts. What actually happened remains to be known, but many unsubstantiated rumors suggest that the Klein designer who was in charge of the Palomino retired, and Trek/Klein had no intention of replacing him.

The Palomino didn’t save Klein, and at this point it doesn’t look like much will.

In fact, the whole Klein mountain bike line has been reduced to one frame, the Attitude. In all likelihood, the Attidude frames are held over from last year as well — just redone with different (but nowhere near revolutionary) paint schemes.

The unfortunate fact is that Klein’s no longer sell like they used to. While they continue to be popular among serious bikers with an eye for art and a desire for a competitive cycle, the product no longer moves like it once did. Throughout much of the 90s Klein had a niche in the aluminum frame market. They were one of the few companies manufacturing strong, lightweight, aluminum mountain bike frames. Now, most of the production methods and metal composites aren’t proprietary, and lightweight aluminum frames are the standard.

For a while, Klein’s major selling point has been the beauty of their frames. They are designed with gapless welds and internal cables, creating a smooth canvas for Klein’s amazing paint schemes. It’s hard to deny that Klein’s are beautiful frames (the current lineup discounted, in my opinion). Pretty frames just don’t sell bikes anymore.

Cyclists who used to spend thousands on aluminum Klein’s are now moving towards carbon and titanium frames, and the absence of a dual-suspension option knocks a whole group of consumers out of the Klein equation.

The days of the Klein mountain bike are over, and one can only hope that their road bike division keeps the tradition alive. With Trek at the helm, however, the future of Klein may be a foregone conclusion.

It looks like when I retire my 2001 Attitude (which will be soon), I’ll be looking toward Scott, and not Klein, for answers.

Edit: As far as the author knows, there have been no official statements from Trek or Klein indicating that Klein will be discontinued. Based on their new line-up and their performance last quarter, Klein will likely continue to make road frames but discontinue their mountain bike division. This observation, of course, is based upon speculation.
 

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It's all hindsight now of course, but it almost seems as if the Gary Klein v. Cannondale Corporation lawsuit moved Klein under a dark cloud. It's interesting to speculate about Klein's fortunes had it not lost that battle. BTW, I believe Gary Klein sold his company to Trek in 1995. Trek shortly thereafter put a lot of money into the Washington plant, but then moved it in 2002.
 

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Per Article Below - Moved in 2002, Bought in 1995

http://www.mbaction.com/detail.asp?id=413

==========================

KLEIN IS MOVED TO WATERLOO!--OCT 30

(Make sure to read the unnofficial response under the press release)

Klein Bicycle Corporation announced that it will move its manufacturing operations from Chehalis, Washington to Waterloo, Wisconsin in February of 2002. The move was part of an overall Klein strategy to make the product line more competitive, reduce lead times to better serve customers and prepare for an exciting 2003 product line manufactured in Waterloo.

While the move will mean a change of scenery, the characteristics that distinguish Klein's road and mountain line of bicycles, such as superior welds, internal cable routing and top-notch paint schemes, will remain. All Chehalis-based Klein employees will be offered similar positions with Trek while Klein founder and CEO Gary Klein will continue his duties of prototype development.

Klein Bicycle Corporation, founded in 1975 by Gary Klein, began as a small custom frame building operation in Northern California. Today, Klein Bicycles continues to manufacture high-performance frames and bicycles and has 18 patents on innovative design improvements. Klein Bicycles was purchased in 1995 by Waterloo, Wisconsin-based Trek Bicycle Corporation.


The Behind The Scenes Press Release
On the same day of the official release, we spoke to a Klein employee who said the news hit them like a bomb. "The Trek guys came in here, gave us the news, turned around and left," explained the employee. "One human resources person stayed behind to work out severance packages with us. I was not offered a job in Waterloo and to the best of my knowledge, not many of the employees here are interested in moving to Wisconsin. I can assure you that Klein is not going to be the same company as it was before the move. You have a lot of talented people here who are not making the move."

Trek spokesman, Mark McCubbin, was under the belief that contrary to the worker's claim, every Klein employee had been offered a position in Waterloo and severance packages were being offered to employees who agreed to work through the transition period. Mark was going to do some further research into the worker's claim and get back to MBA.
 

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besides Trek now has an AL line

so it is a redundancy. Kleins were the pricey Al and those have fallen out of market favor (unless your name is Merckx)
 
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