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Fun with toxic assets: Our Colnago Extreme Power reverse auction.

Those of you who follow Competitive Cyclist know that we sold Colnago bicycles for several years. We have great respect for the technology of their frames and for their awesome race heritage. For various reasons, though, we chose to part ways in summer 2008. We did a pretty good job of selling off our on-hand inventory, but we’re still in possession of one final Colnago: It’s a 2007-vintage Extreme Power. It’s size 58cm (c-t), the color is ST03 -- an attractive Red/White scheme. It comes with a Cane Creek S-3 headset, and a painted-to-match Colnago Star Carbon fork. It was built up as a complete bike once. It was never ridden, then disassembled. We don’t want to sell it through conventional means on the Competitive Cyclist website, because to do so will resurrect all of our Colnago marketing infrastructure on the site, and we don’t want that.

In the spirit of outgoing Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson, we’d like to do a reverse auction of this, our Italian Toxic Asset. Just like Wamu mortgage bundles, we have no earthly idea as to the real value of an ’07 Extreme Power. Based on what we’ve found on the web in places like Backcountry.com and the Velocipede Salon Classifieds, we sense that it’s significantly less than its original price of $5,199. How much less? We’ll let you decide.

Beginning 9am CST on Monday, January 26 our reverse auction will begin on a special Twitter page. The URL is http://twitter.com/ourtoxicasset. It will start at the current market price of $3,199. Every 15 minutes the price will drop by $100. Each price drop will be announced on Twitter -- every 15 minutes. If you’re interested in the frameset, once it hits the price you prefer, please call us at 888-276-7130. Like ownership to a foreclosed 200-home development in Stockton, CA -- first person with a pulse and a credit card gets it.

And let us anticipate our critics by stating the following: By ‘toxic asset’ are we being mean-spirited? Nay. It isn’t toxic because it’s a Colnago,. It’s toxic because we thought we sold out of these 4 months ago, but we found this one remaining unit here during our move. In retail dead inventory a.k.a. toxic assets are part of the territory. If you don’t have ‘em, you’re not really trying.

UPDATE: Sold at $2,399