There does seem to be a variation in brake effectiveness between bikes. The demo bike I rode seemed to have quite wooden brakes without much bite. Goes without saying that when I took delivery of mine and the brakes were, and are, bloody excellent, I couldn't believe it. So it might well be a delivery issue, as crap brakes would be obvious from the test ride. I know they have to bed in, but mine were good straight away so there's no reason why everyone's shouldn't be the same with some attention.