The bankrupt Schwinn/GT was acquired by Pacific Cycles of the US in September. Now, two months on, Hot Wheels of Bournemouth – distributor of Pacific’s Mongoose bikes – has been appointed the UK distributor for GT, handling the IBD side of the business.
Russell Merry of Hot Wheels said the plan was to bring “new life” to GT, and he told bikebiz.co.uk that one of the key benefits of the brand was always the strong dealer network. Another, said Merry, was GT’s innovations:
"GT bicycles have benefited from excellent design since the birth of the brand and Hot Wheels and Pacific can now build on this history to take GT forward," said Merry.
"While it’s extremely unfortunate that the bankruptcy process resulted in the disruption of the supply chain, it is the intention to quickly restore the network of independent GT dealers."
Hot Wheels will begin re-establishing the flow of GT bicycles from Asia for the 2003 model year in June 2002. Financial constraints prevented the former company – of which the UK-based European arm was the first to fold – from receiving shipments since Spring of this year.
Hot Wheels has distributed Mongoose since 1989. Mongoose was recently voted number one brand by the readers of Ride UK BMX magazine for the fourth year in a row. GT was voted third in the same reader poll.
Merry said: “We have an excellent relationship with Pacific that has come about through their acquisition of Mongoose. We believe that we will be able to quickly restore the GT brand to its rightful place as one of the most desirable brands, in all categories, within the UK market.”