Bags of attitude but more pumped-up trail bike than enduro rig
Need to know
- Redesigned around 27.5in wheels, rather than 29in
- Trailcrew name points to shorter stems, fatter tyres and bigger rotors for a more aggressive attitude
- 150mm travel at both ends with a twin-link APS suspension and swanky Cane Creek DB InLine Airshock
- Carbon/alloy frame gets slacker angles and more
BMC’s Speedfox usually has 29in wheels and comes tuned for all-out pace across a variety of terrain.
Going fast isn’t everything though, and there are two new ‘Trailcrew’ versions that aim to inject fun into every berm and trail feature and shed some of that Swiss seriousness.
With 27.5in wheels, shorter chainstays, extra suspension travel and lower/slacker geometry, the ‘Trailcrew’ tag brings a fresh attitude to the Speedfox.
This pricier, carbon front-triangle SF02 model reinforces the image change with a max-power 200mm front rotor, bash guard, grippy 2.4in Onza tyres and a ripe-for-tweaking Cane Creek Inline Airshock.
The frame shares BMC’s familiar short, twin-link APS suspension design, but is tuned for a livelier feel that sacrifices some pedal-stiffening anti-squat in favour of more grip and fluidity.
Getting to the top of the fun stuff, the SF02 rides light with a zip and eagerness, but the plusher suspension means flicking the stabilising Climb Switch is recommended. This helps keep the back end from sagging too much on steeper pitches.
The 150mm-travel bike has the playfulness BMC aimed for in spades; it’s very manoeuvrable and fast, but can feel a little too active when cranking really hard along flowy singletrack with the recommended shock settings.
Pushing hard, flex from the own-brand 750mm carbon handlebar, and a step back in terms of high-speed damping composure from the cheaper Pike RC fork (we’re used to the RCT3 version) took the edge off performance.
But with two Bottomless Tokens fitted to the fork and a wider, stiffer bar bolted on, I was soon having a real blast bombing steep and loamy local tracks.
Even while braking, rear suspension tracking and traction over repeated hits proved great, and the low bottom bracket let me really chuck the bike in and out of the corners.
BMC’s slack geometry and 150mm travel points to an Alpine-ready rig, but the 27.5in Speedfox wouldn’t be my first choice for a tough week in the mountains.
Essentially, it’s a pumped-up trail bike rather than a full-on enduro rig, and compared with some burly 160mm bikes, it feels just a bit more twangy and unsettled on the roughest terrain.
Still, that doesn’t take any shine off how much fun it generates and how much I enjoyed razzing it around the woods.