I ride with a regular group that counts quite a few women among its number. Almost all of the (with only one exception that I can think of) ride the men’s version of the bike (generally Santa Cruz vs. Juliana). I couldn’t figure out why, especially lately, when the paint and graphics are so much nicer on the Juliana versions. I asked one of the women, who is currently in the market for a new Santa Cruz, why she wasn’t shopping the equivalent Juliana.
The answer: resale value, pure and simple. If she bought the Juliana, it would be harder to sell due to the smaller market when she wanted to move to a new bike, and she’d get usually get less. She liked the Juliana for the reasons I mentioned, but not enough to override the resale issue. I heard agreement from others too.
My group is still a small overall sample, and perhaps the fact that they ride and talk together frequently influences them to think similarly on this topic, but it’s a viewpoint worth being part of the conversation.