No... Campy has survived several turns in the market and I think they will continue to do so for many many years yet.
Also the writter is very Pro American products and although he does strike a good balance, he does seem to sway towards FSA, SRAM and I think this is partly due to his upbrining in Cali and from what I know rides a SRAM outfitted bike.
However it was a great read, maybe very insighful to those outside of the industry.
To add on this Campy Wheels are fabricated in Taiwan and then built in Italy
Campy has more under the hood than is mentioned in this article. They have patents and intellectual property covering everything from machining processes to casting, electronics and more. Their ability to fabricate the world's finest Alloy products is undisputed. I would love to see them simply consolidate their lines and get back to what made them the best choice in the first place. You could choose the 'best group ever' (Nuovo Record) or a slightly 'better than best group ever' (Super Record) That was it. Easy choice. And both worked flawless.
And I especially loved the fact that as a Dealer, we could simply drive to the factory, grab one of those Campy rolling trollies, and assisted by a very lovely 'Campy Girl' walk through the aisles and load up on everything we needed. And, if you were lucky, you'd get a chance to say Hi to Valentino! Anyone say Hi to Mr. Shimano or Mr. Bridgestone lately? That's what has always set Campagnolo apart from the rest - and will always continue to do so.
I had about six bikes at one time when I was racing in the 90s. On one of them I had Campagnolo C Record; the beautifully aero crankset, the hubs with alloy so finely polished you could see the blue sky in them, and the beautiful Delta brakes mentioned at the end of the article.
Incidentally, the writer is mixed up with that story about the Delta brakes. They are not made of steel, that's highly polished alloy, they have good modulation but worryingly LITTLE braking power. I've been afraid, very afraid on rainy days with those things. They can also be a headache to set up.
2 other bikes were with Dura-Ace (One a Look carbon KG96) and another with Suntour Superbe Pro. Those groups simply worked well and the newly introduced Dura ace STI shifters were an actual advantage over the top of a short climb for example where you could change gears up one by one out of the seat as the gradient reduced, pulling away from those with traditional down tube shifters.
So the Campag bike was for sunny Sunday group rides and less crucial races. Campagnolo didn't even have working index gears let alone STI or ERGO at that time. But I really enjoyed riding that Campag bike. And as I sold bikes and things broke, I ended up keeping that one. I just love it.
It's all I have now. I added 8sp Ergo levers back in about 98 and then 9sp in 2000, but the bottom bracket and headset bearings etc are all circa 1990. It really is quality, more than just "bike parts". My desire to get out on that bike for a ride is one thing that keeps me cycling. Viva Campagnolo!
Great article, thanks. I never knew that about Giant, how interesting. I always assumed they were an American company, which might say something for either my intelligence or their marketing ability.
I like how the process of making things seems to still be connected with creativity and how the workers are well paid, although they do have the cheap labour going in Romania. (That being said they are not on the Euro yet and from my experience of going to Bucharest a few years ago $14000 a year is not a bad wage at all, probably the equivilent to 4 million a year here on real terms)
Call me a hippie or commie or whatever, but manufacturing things and being an active living part of the manufacturing process I think is connected with being happy as a human being. I also wonder how America would be going at the moment if its manufacturing industry wasn't so hollowed out as more and more is starting to suggest that the wealth brought from Reagan-era reforms consists of a lot of dubious financial manipulation.
Anyway, I lucked out with a Campie set on the bike I have at the moment as it has been great; although I have had minimal experience with Shimano on a road bike level. When I buy another bike in a few years time, I will probably go with Campie again, just because of the reasons above.