First Look: 2021 BMC Twostroke XC Hardtails - Modern Geo & Reasonably Priced

Aug 6, 2020
by Mike Kazimer  


The Olympics may have been postponed, but that hasn't stopped a bumper crop of new cross-country bikes from being released this season. BMC's Twostroke is the latest addition to the field, a bike that's billed as “a new school hardtail with race-proven roots.”

The new school portion of the equation comes from the bike's geometry numbers – it has a 67° head tube angle with a 100mm fork, a 75° seat tube angle, and a 465mm reach on a size large. Those numbers may not look that wild if you're used to starting at enduro bike geometry charts, but they're very progressive for a cross-country hardtail, where head angles in the 69° – 70° range are still common
Details

Frame: carbon or aluminum options
Wheel Size: 29"
Fork Travel: 100mm
Head Tube Angle: 67°
Seat tube angle: 75°
Chainstay length: 425mm
Sizes: S, M, L, XL
Price: Aluminum: $1,199 - $1,599; Carbon: $2,199 - $4,299
More info: bmc-switzerland.com

The tubes of the carbon Twostroke were designed with comfort in mind – the thin seat stays and the D-shaped seat tube are meant to provide extra compliance in rough terrain. None of the complete models come with a dropper post, but there is a shim that makes it possible to run a round 27.2mm seatpost. Claimed weight for a size medium carbon frame is 1037 grams.

Other frame details include room for two water bottles, an integrated chainguide, and an integrated fork stopper to prevent the fork crown or brake levers from smacking into the frame during a crash. There's also a PF92 bottom bracket, and 12x148mm rear hub spacing.

Twostroke 01 One: RockShox SID Select fork, SRAM GX / X1 drivetrain, SRAM Level TLM brakes. Claimed weight: 20.6 lb (9.33 kg). $4,299 USD.


The flattened seatstays and D-shaped seattube were designed to create a more comfortable ride.
Sorry, mid-race barspins aren't possible - an integrated fork stopped helps protect the downtube in the event of a crash.

Twostroke 01 Two: RockShox Reba RL fork, SRAM GX drivetrain, SRAM Level TL brakes. $3,299 USD.
Twostroke 01 Three: RockShox Recon Silver fork, SRAM NX / GX drivetrins, Shimano Deore brakes. $2,699 USD.


Geometry


Twostroke AL One: RockShox Recon RL fork, SRAM NX/SX 12-speed drivetrain, Shimano Deore brakes. $1,599 USD.
Twostroke AL Two: RockShox Judy TK fork, Shimano Deore 12-speed drivetrain, Shimano MT200 brakes. $1,199 USD.

Along with the four carbon models, BMC also introduced two aluminum models that both come in well under $2,000. Given the rapid growth of high school XC racing in the US, these could be good options for newcomers to the sport. The cost savings of going with aluminum over carbon does come with a weight penalty - a size medium alloy frame weighs a claimed 1850 grams. However, the aluminum frames do use a round, 31.6mm seat tube, which opens up a wider range of dropper post options compared to the carbon models.



Photos: Jérémie Reuiller / BMC


109 Comments

  • 93 0
 Looks fast standing still! Stunning looking frame.
  • 16 0
 I’m far from an XC guy but that really is a good looking bike.
  • 9 0
 @nyhc00: Yup and Claimed weight: 20.6 lb. Now we are talking.
  • 7 0
 Agreed. Makes me look forward to wearing bibs and rocking a hardtail as a middle aged Dad.
  • 48 0
 That is a very good looking bike...with non-BMC looking prices! Well done!!!
  • 28 1
 I think the prices are wrong, the NX / SX is more than the Deore bike? Why would anyone pay more for that stuff?
  • 12 0
 Those are the prices on bmcs website also. I agree I'd take the deore all day.
  • 15 0
 NX/SX has Recon Fork better than the Judy on the deore build
NX/SX has deore brake better than the MT200 on the deore build
Those upgrades cost money
  • 3 2
 @1llumA: So you pay more for better brake/fork and end up with a shit drive train. Easy fix with microshift, but still another $180 on top of that.
  • 3 1
 Because SRAM has ads with brahs shredding it! Its sick! Brap Brap!

Shimano just makes stuff that works, who wants that?
  • 3 0
 I imagine the one reason Deore 6100 is being beat our right now on "budget" builds is that there's still an abundance of Shimano 9/10/11 speed freehubs out there which current gen SX and NX is compatible with. I'm speculating of course.
  • 1 0
 Agreed. I just ordered the Deore AL version. Given I prefer Deore over NX anyway, the $400 savings can be put to much better use (fork, wheels, etc). Do wish they would have put the Deore brakeset on the Deore bike though.
  • 2 0
 @1llumA: For $1200 USD, I'll throw any fork I want on it...
  • 1 0
 @1llumA: very true, but $400 seems a bit much for a worse drivetrain, better but still dirt cheap brakes and a better but still cheap fork. No problem though, I'd just sell the brakes and fork, buy a good set of brakes and fork and still have money left while having better components.
  • 18 0
 With the exception of the silly seat post sizing on the carbon frame, this actually has me interested. Not only for Xc, but far better option for a gravel bike for around my local dirt roads and much better for the trails. Spot on geo numbers for modern XC.
  • 4 0
 This with a Jones bar would make a great gravel / trail bike. I run that setup on an old El Mariachi and it is pretty awesome.
  • 2 0
 I also have to give them props for putting DT 1700 wheels on their $4k bike. I’m so tired of seeing the trash 1900 wheels on $5-6k bikes. The step up to the DT ratchet hubs is a bigger deal to me as a consumer than most product managers realize.
  • 1 0
 Yeah, and the new 1700 wheels are actually the former 1501 as the 1900 was the 1700. Both ratchet hubs!
Reason is, dt brings in a 1500 carbon wheel and everything else is "pushed up"...
  • 1 0
 @Allwaeg: good to know, I missed that news. The old 1900s were a lame product to carry the DT logo.
  • 1 0
 @whambat: So the new 1900's are decent?
  • 1 0
 @rlane4osu: if what @allwaeg said is true. But, I haven’t found that news after looking and DT’s websites still lists 3-pawls for the hubs, but that might be for next year’s product that he’s seen. The old 1700’s were good, if that’s what the 1900s become, that would be good news.
  • 23 5
 Slap a longer fork and an angle adjusting headset and BOOM hard core hardtail.
  • 8 0
 Imagine this thing with a 120mm fork and 65* hta. That'd be so much fun.
  • 4 0
 @hardtailparty: would the frame be laid up in a way that could handle that though?
  • 1 3
 How do you run a dropper post in that silly seat tube? Epic fail BMC!
  • 6 1
 @headshot: read before you post. they provide a shim for droppers.
  • 2 0
 @fabwizard: Only 27.2mm droppers, not exactly a wide choice of good posts.
  • 2 0
 @Inertiaman: KS, PNW, Transx , crank bros, thompson, xfusion, gravity, DT swiss, Bike Yoke, to name a few.
  • 1 1
 @Inertiaman: forgot Easton.
  • 1 0
 @davemays: That's the big question. I'll bet it'd be fine for 90% of the riders out there, but people could definitely break them. I'd love a bike like this with 120mm travel and a 65* hta, that's built to withstand the rigors of regular trail riding. It doesn't have to be carbon, just compliant.
  • 1 0
 @fabwizard: ooh ya, like a 27 2 dropper. Still an epic fail on an otherwise well designed bike.
  • 1 0
 @fabwizard: Your list is a bit of an exaggeration.
Bike Yoke doesn't even offer a 27.2
Gravity Dropper . . . no longer made, but do you really think someone would run a 1997 dropper post in this frame?
Thomson . . . their 27.2 is external only
X-fusion doesn't offer 27.2 in the Manic; the HiLo is no longer made (and sucked anyway); the Manic Gravel is 50mm only
Easton's AX is only 50mm drop
Crank Bros and KS categorically suck in my experience.

Which leaves us w/ PNW/TransX (same thing) and DT.
Like I said, not a *wide* choice.
  • 6 0
 This is the 3rd really modern BMC release after gravel, kids ... now XCs with rideable geometry.... It almost makes you want to do XC Good Job
  • 4 0
 They also have a downcountry “XC converted to 120mm” bike now Smile
us-en.bmc-switzerland.com/models/mountain/fourstroke-lt.html

But they completely screwed up the Speedfox... (kept the old geo and removed the synced dropper post...)
  • 6 0
 no joke the local high school mtb teams here have 60+ kids in each one! This is a perfect bike for a teenage racer.
  • 6 1
 The AL two is a steal. Id take deore 12 spd over NX, and unless they changed the lineup, the 2018 Judy I has was way better than a recon.
  • 3 0
 the AL even has smart seat post sizing and a threaded BB
  • 2 0
 Unfortunately the carbon version looks much better IMO. I think it has to do with the straight vs. bent seat tube.
  • 7 0
 That is a Klein-esque downtube.
  • 5 1
 It doth bring a tear to mine eye.
  • 1 0
 As long as it doesn't come with the Klein-esqeu dumping of paints and chemicals into local rivers!
  • 6 0
 This is the first XC hardtail I've been interested in in a LONG time. Bravo BMC
  • 2 0
 I like the way XC is going. Four years ago, when I was getting to know my then new aggro ht with long reach and 66 deg head angle, I realised it climbed better than my old school XC ht, in fact it did everything better. I then thought, why not make XC bikes like this, and have them perform both going up and down? It looks like I wasn't the only one. Very nice that BMC, except for the uncommon seat tube profile. I know racers never use more than 100mm of drop (which is the longest you'll find in 27.2), but limiting dropper compatibility will be a hindrance for many.
  • 2 0
 Also, I know the joke has been made a few times but I'm seriously considering replacing my gravel bike with the lower end AL version. I prefer Deore over NX and that leaves me $$ for a decent wheelset and/or a rigid carbon fork down the line.

Would this geo be suitable given I ride lots of dirt/gravel and occasionally hit my local trails?
  • 2 0
 Xc bikes make great gravel bikes (hell almost all ultra endurance races have tons of gravel roads), but the only issue can be running out of gearing on flats and downhills.
  • 1 0
 @whambat: Good to know! Spinning out is rarely an issue for me these days as most my rides are averaging under 15mph (don't laugh too hard!). Guess I could always add a few teeth to the front chainring if necessary.
  • 1 0
 @rlane4osu: 15mph avg on gravel ain’t bad. With a light hardtail, sacrificing the low range gearing for some top end can be a worthy sacrifice. But, there is also something to be said for spinning high cadences on the flats,
  • 1 0
 Gravel Bike = Roadie version of a hard tail mtb. (shakes head).
Gearing can be fixed with the appropriate ring for your legs.
Go for it!
  • 7 2
 Any review comparison to KTM two stroke?
  • 1 0
 Well the KTM is gas and this two stoke I believe is ultra light energy powered with nano tech so it is smaller.
  • 3 0
 This looks awesome. Stoked to see companies coming to the table recently with entry level aluminium bikes featuring up to date geometry.
  • 3 0
 Does anyone know what's the tyre clearance, and maximum chainring clearance? It's annoying that they omitted that information seemingly everywhere.
  • 2 0
 Tire clearance is 58mm, Max chainring is 38 round / 36 oval
  • 3 0
 Can we now please have an aluminum frame with Giant XTC Al weight and the BMC Twostroke Al geometry? I want those bikes to make a baby.
  • 1 0
 Blimey, never considered a BMC before but these look sweet, would need to get a dropper obviously and maybe angleset and bingo you got a right little ripper , prices look good for the al versions, what 's the biggest tyres to can fit tho....
  • 1 0
 @mikekazimer Thanks for another great review on a cool bike! Can you please do a review on Marin Bobcat Trail? It also has HTA 67, STA 74.5, reach 465 on large size. I am waiting patiently for my LBS in Calgary to get it in stock. It's a "budget" hardtail and I want it for a winter snow commuter and for bombing in-city single track during summers!
  • 2 0
 '-shaped seattube were designed to create a more comfortable ride.' - it like we invented new standard to make all standards obsolete
  • 6 0
 In fairness it does actually work, but I don't know anybody who wouldn't want a dropper post, especially on a hardtail
  • 2 0
 Frame includes an insert which makes it dropper-compatible, according to manufacturer website
  • 1 0
 @mnorris122: after breaking 2 carbon aero seat posts (both would slip with carbon paste with proper torque) on my road bike and Giant having no stock left, I will never purchase a non round seat post ever again!!
  • 4 0
 Nice flatbar gravel bike!
  • 3 0
 Can they design any more stress concentrations into the seatstay to seat/toptube junction?
  • 1 0
 @mikekazimer The horror of it - BMC Stole the Trek Knock Block idea and the Bars stop short of the top tube... LoL! Wait, Canyon has that also on the Lux. I can't believe people are still buying these bikes!
  • 2 0
 Interesting they moved away from the elastomer softtail they had been doing on the TE01. It lives on in the URS and city bike, but dropped here. Too expensive?
  • 5 6
 I came close to buying bmc's new gravel bike and didn't for the same reason I'd never buy this bike: bad design choices that can go wrong during off-road abuse. Press fit BB on a frame designed in 2020? Ok maybe I can ride with earplugs like Gwin.
But that D-shaped seatpost is a deal breaker. Compliance is great but I'm running a dropper and I'll be damned if I have to run a plastic shim to run a 27mm dropper post. That's just double stupid.

So close BMC, so close.
  • 6 0
 The AL models correct everything wrong with the carbon models. BSA BB, normal round 31.6mm seat tube. 28lbs in the lowest-end model. About the only thing I see that's disappointing is the tire clearance.
  • 1 0
 @PHeller: I wish they made Al versions of the URS then.
  • 2 0
 Bb92 are the longest lasting creak free bb’s I have ever had.
I have a D profile post on my road bike and its VERY good.
Its horses for courses...
  • 1 0
 The URS gravelbike comes with a shim and internal routing for a dropper. Ive been running one for 3 months and love it.
  • 1 0
 @Mtmw: you'll be fine, it's an alloy shim...
  • 2 0
 How many BMC dealers in the USA? I love their bikes but not having a legit dealer network is kind of a deal killer.
  • 2 0
 We've got one in Boise
  • 1 0
 @taletotell: Any in Canada?
  • 1 0
 @rezrov: Mostly road dealers but they will order MTBs if you want! There are a couple in Vancouver.
  • 1 0
 Can anyone tell me why SX/NX is on the higher build then Deore 12 speed. I'm a SRAM guy through and through, but I'd take Deore over any SX/NX Combo.
  • 1 0
 Looks like it's just a SX Chain and Shifter, so the important bits (RD, Cassette, and Crankset) are NX which is a little better I guess....still don't know if it was worth the $15 in savings to swap those for SX instead of a true NX drivetrain. I'd put Deore and NX on the same level. NX is lighter, but Deore probably shifts a lot better and uses Microspline which is a huge plus.
  • 3 2
 @bmied31: shifter is arguably more important than rd
  • 2 0
 Then you're not a SRAM guy through and through
  • 2 0
 @Civicowner: now when it comes to that shitty cable routing on the SX RD. Above that I agree.
  • 1 0
 @ceecee: How not...that's like saying a Shimano guy wouldn't take NX over Acera/Altus/Tourney or some low end Shimano. I have SRAM on my MTB (XX1 Eagle with GX Cassette) and Road (Force 1 Mechanical), but I know at that level/price point Deore is better then SX and performance wise close if not better then SX.
  • 1 1
 @bmied31: through, through, and through. Pick one
  • 1 0
 Slam that stem much? Laughing at the bike shop guys try to get this to fit most riders who only want a couple cm of drop to the bars. Full on roadie.
  • 1 3
 Spacers and extra steerer included. Risers exist. I'd like to see this with 20mm more wheelbase via HTA, a degree steeper STA, and a 130mm fork. Then it would be new school
  • 1 0
 Pretty much every stock promo image is a slammed stem and a seat height that suggests a 43" leg inseam lol. Drives me nuts! Looks cool but I'd like to see how much I have to play with.
  • 1 0
 Swap out the Judy for a rigid carbon fork and the AL 2 looks suspiciously like my next city bike. Wheelies all the way to the beer store!
  • 3 0
 Slacker head tube angle than many down country bikes! Love it!
  • 1 0
 Top tube seems a bit long on these, even for xc. Think that's due to the slacker head angle and steeper st angle? I'm tempted...
  • 2 0
 Wicked looking bikes, but I'm getting kinda bored with SRAM on every new bike...
  • 1 0
 Guessing because microspline is still relatively new?
  • 1 0
 I just ordered my Twostroke 01-Four... gonna strip it and build it up with my junk... including my Ocho Carbon! That;s gonna ride meeeeeean!
  • 2 0
 Welp, now I really want a badass hardtail. Thanks BMC.
  • 1 0
 all those sharp edges. full of filler on the inside. bet they're gross cut open.
  • 1 1
 BMC should have our spot on the chain stays for a baseball card to twap against the spokes. Braaaaaaaaap
  • 3 1
 I want one
  • 3 1
 okay, BMC is better
  • 2 1
 Grim Donut? Spur? Gives the peoples what they wants Pinkbike!!
  • 2 1
 Two strokes and I'm done.
  • 1 0
 once again, shame the AL are so low speced !
  • 1 0
 That is a very cool bike, and the bottom end AL one is nearly affordable!
  • 1 0
 "mid-race bar spins aren't possible." Pass!
  • 1 1
 Dropped post won't be compatible?
  • 1 0
 Gravel bike
  • 1 0
 That's no 2 smoker.
  • 1 0
 Beefy Meaty Crunchy
  • 1 0
 That bike is a BOMB !
Below threshold threads are hidden

Post a Comment



Copyright © 2000 - 2020. Pinkbike.com. All rights reserved.
dv56 0.020133
Mobile Version of Website