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La Sportiva Miura VS

Posted: Wed Aug 12, 2009 11:55 am
by mattb595
Watching Adam Ondra send it in his Miura VS got me thinking....if i had a pair of those i could climb better! :lol: But Sadly when checking with most local suppliers and La Sportiva agent they said the Miura VS is far from being available in SA and posibly wont be coming here :? this made me sad i checked out in the states you can import them for about R1500 for the shoes and another 400 for postage but it would be great to get them locally!

Any one know where i could get a pair?

Re: La Sportiva Miura VS

Posted: Wed Aug 12, 2009 12:16 pm
by micky
hehe dont get me started on the all gear we dont get in SA. Just spend a weekend in Rocklands and see what all the internationals are sporting and you soon realize that not only do we not get a fraction of the cool kit they do, but the we also only get a limited selection of the stock that is brought in. To make things worse in my case its usually the stuff i want that doesnt get shipped in :cry:

Re: La Sportiva Miura VS

Posted: Wed Aug 12, 2009 1:50 pm
by mullet
Awesome shoe. I got a pair a few months ago.
I've had them long enough to notice that there is one drawback design flaw. The bottom buckle for the velcro strapping is positioned so that with time and some toe hooking, jamming, smearing it will and does wear through the strap. This can easily be sorted with a bit of nifty needlework though.

I also spent weeks trying to find out where I could get them and why they are not available locally.
I tried loads of American online stores only to realise that none of them export to South Africa due to some import/export restrictions dictated by La Sportiva.
I contacted La Sportiva directly and they told me that they don't plan to make the VS available in South Africa any time in the future either.
The UK turned out to have no such problems. I was able to find a pair on many online stores including They also stocked the widest range of sizes (at the time). Keep an eye on exchange rates and you should be able to get a pair for just under R2000 including shipping and import duties.

Re: La Sportiva Miura VS

Posted: Thu Aug 13, 2009 7:05 am
by mattb595
I know it’s really hey micky you look at and you see what they have to offer in terms of black diamond la sportiva and loads of other makes there cams are so cheap when buying in sets and they have awesome little starter packs! It makes me really sad. I know that most of the stuff is marketed for the US and that’s why we pay so much for gear and have limited picking but I mean we not that much of a third world country are we? Next thing you’ll know Zimbabwe will be getting black diamond gear cheaper than us! :lol:

Thanks mullet for the link will def go check it out they are sweet looking shoes and hope they get to me on time! What size did you get i have only one pair of sportivas the mantis and they a size 9 but have streched a little! should i go for a eight?

Re: La Sportiva Miura VS

Posted: Thu Aug 13, 2009 9:29 am
by robertbreyer
i have written about this before in defense of the local retailers and importers.
(being a local retailer and importer myself).
the biggest issue we face in south africa is the size of the market. i just came back from the OUTDOOR trade show in germany. to put things in perspective: i estimate there are less than 5,000 climbers in all of SA. in Germany there are 10,000,0000. that's a 10 with six zeroes. so one suburb of a city like Munich has more climbers than all of South Africa combined. so yes there are thousands of items not available in SA. but i am sure that what the SA climbing community needs and wants is in fact available. that's the nature of capitalism: if it will sell someone will surely try to import it and make a buck.

so lets see where the rubber meets the road and do a bit of comparison shopping:
breadth: No, many La Sportiva shoes are not available in SA. but the Solution, the Testarossa, the Mantis and the Scorpion are. But take a look at how many cars Fiat makes in Italy and you will see that only a fraction of all their models actually make it to our shores. But shit in our shop we havent sold a Testarossa in months because it's just so damn expensive. R2,000 for a pair of shoes is just a bit crazy in my opinion. Plus you have to wonder if Micky would actually climb any better with a pair of Miura VS. The other day Marijus told me he flashed a 7A+ boulder problem in his Evolv approach shoes. So either Evolv approach shoes are really really good or just maybe he has talent. I suspect the latter and am sure Adam Ondra would climb just as well with a pair of LaSportiva Solution or Testarossa. Or if you believe the former then you too can climb like Chris Sharma, still not too shabby :)

price: fact is that price sells in South Africa like nothing else. we sell literally only one high-priced LaSportiva Solution or Testarossa R2,000 shoe for every hundred Mantis or Scorpion. The latter two are actually LaSportiva models brought out just for price-sensitive markets like SA. These two aren't even sold in Western Europe or the USA, they are made cheap in Asia, not Italy, purely for cheapskates like us in South Africa! FYI, the Beal Edlinger, SA's best-selling rope, is also one of those products sold primarily in price-sensitive markets.

But let's do some price comparison shopping:
La Sportiva Solution: $154.90 = R1,240. Sport Schuster in Munich: E124.95 = R1,437, minus 19% VAT = 1,207. Mountainmailorder: R2,011, minus 14% VAT = R1,764. of that a large chunk is is the 1/3 duty the importer in SA also pays to Pravin Gordham. so yes the R500 extra hurts.
Evolv Pontas: Mountainmailorder price R1,190 inclusive of R170 VAT for Pravin Gordham, so net price R1,043. $114.95 = R919.50. almost the same.

ropes: BlueWater Eliminator: Eliminator 10.2x60 price from Drifters in Jo'burg R1,900, minus VAT R1,634. price $200 or R1,600. amazing. R34 difference. and you can buy it today!
back to breadth of ropes available: i noticed that stocks 6 brands of ropes, Beal, BlueWater, Edelrid, Mammut, Maxim and PMI. we got three of those brands available in SA, not bad for a market that's equivalent to one suburb of a city like Munich.

but guys keep asking and if there really is enough demand for the Miura VS we will make it happen.

Re: La Sportiva Miura VS

Posted: Thu Aug 13, 2009 10:28 am
by pierre.joubert
Robert, I understand that as a retailer your analysis substracts the cost of 14% VAT, since this is not profit to your pocket. But as a consumer, subtracting the VAT from the price to compare makes no sense to me.

Re: La Sportiva Miura VS

Posted: Thu Aug 13, 2009 12:23 pm
by Dillon
Pierre, I think Robert has subtracted the vat for a more accurate comparison. If you buy those goods off the net internationally and ship them to yourself, you will more than likely have to pay the 14% vat when you pick them up from the post office.

Re: La Sportiva Miura VS

Posted: Thu Aug 13, 2009 12:37 pm
by XMod
Robert is working off net costs, even if you import you still have to pay shipping, then when your goods finally(! - at last!) arrive Mr. customs official has a very nasty surprise for you as you will have pay them a fat whack of duties and, yes, still pay VAT (including VAT on the duties! - go figure!). If the stuff was couriered (the only way a lot of mail-orders, paricularly US mail orders, will work - post offices lose shit) then the local courier hits you for an extra three hundred or so upon delivery - nice! It amost always works out more expensive to import your gear.

Ive imported quite a bit of Skateboarding kit which I couldnt get here and it usually works out to be a bit more than buying local, plus you wait (impatiently........) for your mouthwatering goodies to arrive. If you really have-to-have that particular piece of gear then mail order is one way (incidentally you will have less hassles buying from EU countries as they are in the same trade zone as us, USA is not, this is due to international trade agreements not some plot between La Sportiva [for example] and US retailers).

The best way to get special gear is to find someone who travels a lot to the big climbing countries who doesnt mind buying you the odd pair of shoes, throwing the box away and stuffing them in their suitcase. That way you can get what you want and avoid the dreaded customs man. - Better yet, buy locally and grow the local market, when the figures go up manufacturers are more likely to flow better gear. We may not be third world but we are an f-ing long way away from all the action (and money).

Re: La Sportiva Miura VS

Posted: Thu Aug 13, 2009 12:43 pm
by mullet
If I understand right, Robert seems to be making a good point, "buy local". But in the current market, the price of some climbing gear is roughly equivalent whether you buy online and pay import duties, or whether you buy from a local retailer (I got my VS' for R1900, including all duties and taxes. If you can deal with the 2-4week "wait and hope" period where you wonder if your purchase is lost in the mail, then you can happily buy what you want/need online.
XMod is also 100% right that if you have a buddy in the country you want gear from, it will be a lot cheaper to ask if they can buy you some things and bring them back for you!

mattb595, size is very real concern when buying "blind" as you do when making online purchases. I had only tried the Testarossas but checked on a number of webpages and forums what peoples opinions were when camparing different shoes and sizes. General opinion was that the VS should be bought a half size smaller than a standard Muira but I haven't noticed that. I went for the same size as my pair of 5.10's which is 1 size down on street shoes. All my shoes still fit :)

Re: La Sportiva Miura VS

Posted: Thu Aug 13, 2009 10:27 pm
by robertbreyer
New postPosted: Thu Aug 13, 2009 2:08 pm
Joined: Mon Mar 26, 2007 1:58 pm
Posts: 19
Post subject: La Sportiva - Katanas For Sale!!
PostPosted: Thu Aug 13, 2009 2:08 pm make: LA SPORTIVA - KATANA
price: R1000
condition: never been used - i bought the wrong size from oversees
size: 40.5
location: Durban
contact: Andrew at (andrew dot scott @ arup dot com)

Re: La Sportiva Miura VS

Posted: Thu Aug 13, 2009 11:32 pm
by mattb595
Ahh Rob i cant really argue with your post bro you hit all the right notes! I dont have anything against the local retailers and am one hundred persent behind local sellers. I buy most of my stuff locally and do alot of marketing to other climbers to buy from Seven Sumits and get along and climb with Mark,Dave,Jono Infact if i add up all of what my mates and i have bought loacally mine comes to about 19000.00 alone(one year) not to mention the 5 guys ive drawn into climbing the last year. Our point is simply certain things you have to go over seas market and yes this is because there is not a large demand for gear in SA as opposed to US or UK. We all kinda wish it could "well if you want that piece of gear yes we can get it for you at the overseas price and yes it will be here in 2 weeks or less" that all.