I'm looking to get back into kiteboarding after a seven year hiatus - I had lessons back in 2010 and then spent a few years enjoying the sport before I became a parent and had too little time. The kids are now at school and I have flexibility with work so I could kite during the week if there's wind. I was hoping to pick it up earlier this year, but Covid-19 came along. Previously I owned a Cabrinha Switchblade 9m and Best Kahoona 11.5m which covered the wind conditions at my local spot in the UK (15 - 25 knots) for my weight (64 kg). I'm after a kite for twintip riding, mostly flat water but keen to try some strapless wave riding in the future.
I've collated the following list of kite brands selling direct based in Europe, detailing the price in EUR for a 9 metre kite and bar setup. Of these, Ventum and Takoon look to be the better options in my limited opinion.
- ORAO "W" Crossover
9m (€750) + HQ4 "One Bar"
(€329) = €1,079.00
- Gong Freewave
9m (€519) + Gong Bar
(€299) = €768.00
Includes 15% discount for combined kite and bar orders.
- Kauper Maverick 9m (€699) + Pintxo Bar
(€699) = €1,098.00
- KSP Phantom
8.5m (€595) + KSP Bar
(€280) = €875.00
- Spleene QX-II
9m (€876.33) + X-Bar 52
(€424.03) = €1,217.51
Includes 19.5% discount on bar when ordered with a kite.
- Storm Vortex 9m (€750) + Storm Bar
(€390) = €990.00
Includes €150 discount for combined kite and bar orders.
- Takoon Furia V2
9m (€829) + Sweet bar
(€349) = €1,178.00
- Ventum Xplore
9m (€795) + Tough V2 bar (€414) = €1,096.19
Includes €8.09 shipping and 10% discount (€120.90) for combined kite and bar orders.
The prices listed above are around €1,000 for the kite and bar setup, which compares favourably to the main kite brands. For comparison the Duotone Evo 9m (€1,439) + Trust Control bar (€538) = €1,977 which is almost double the price of a direct to consumer manufacturer. Is the additional cost worth it? Or should I find a discounted kite from one of the main brands, such as during an end of season sale or Black Friday discount? I've been looking at second hand kites for sale, but there aren't too many that are less than a few years old. I am more than happy to support the smaller kite brands and not concerned with resale value.
Any recommendations from the list above, other options to consider, or for any to avoid would be much appreciated. I imagine (and hope) the tech has improved somewhat from the 2010 era!