BMC Teammachine a puncheur's delight
With the Teammachine, it’s clear BMC wanted to create a superbike. The bike’s stiffness and stability make it a straightaway rocket. Aerodynamic touches include dropped seat stays and an integrated cockpit. And the bike’s light weight and instantaneous pedaling response help it blast up long climbs.
There’s a lot to love about this bike beyond its sleek appearance. Its strengths lie in its top-notch pedaling response and surprising compliance, especially in the rear. With its long trail figure (63 millimeters), the Teammachine requires plenty of steering input, especially in high-speed, tight corners. While pure sprinters will certainly enjoy such stability, the Teammachine’s versatility seems like a perfect fit for rouleurs and puncheurs.
That long trail figure took us by surprise. Where most all-around bikes err toward ultra-responsive steering to accommodate fast, tight switchbacks and nervous peloton navigation, the Teammachine’s handling more closely resembles that of an aero bike. That’s a boon in sprints of course, but it also felt reassuring on high-speed straightaway descents.
The short 996-millimeter wheelbase, 410-millimeter chainstays, and 69-millimeter bottom bracket drop improve steering, though don’t expect the Teammachine to carve the inside line like an S-Works Tarmac. Still, the bike’s stability comes in handy when you’re climbing out of the saddle, with much of your body weight forward over the bars.
Despite the frame’s obvious stiffness — due in large part to what BMC calls Accelerated Composites Evolution (ACE), which is a prototyping method that led to asymmetric tube shapes throughout the frame — there’s some compliance in the rear. That’s likely a result of the D-shaped seatpost and the lowered seat stays, both of which allow some fore/aft flex. The combination excels at softening big hits. Compliance in the front end, on the other hand, is far less pronounced. Any vibration damping there is left to the carbon cockpit.
Building the Teammachine is best left to a pro mechanic. Cable routing through the head tube gets complicated, and the stem spacer system might leave you frustrated. Still, once it’s set up properly, you’re left with a sleek, clean cockpit that cuts down on turbulence. It also looks damn cool — and fast.
Perhaps most importantly, the cockpit offers plenty of adjustability, which is a leg up on other integrated systems we’ve tested.
Our test bike came with a top-of-the-line build that includes a Shimano Dura-Ace Di2 drivetrain and hydraulic disc brakes; DT Swiss ERC 1100 Dicut DB 35 wheels; and an integrated cockpit with a proprietary BMC stem and a comfortable 3T Ergonova Team handlebar. These are all befitting the $12,000 price tag. You can procure the Teammachine SLR02 Disc One for $5,000 or the SLR02 Disc Two for $4,000, if the price tag suiting a compact car keeps the SLR01 strictly in the realm of a dream.