BMC URS ONE Apex review

Sorted geometry is perfect for technical trail riding, but is still efficient enough for longer rides and trips

BMC URS ONE Apex review
(Image credit: Future)
Cycling Weekly Verdict

It might not be the best setup for bikepacking, without triple mounts on the front and the relatively steep gears. But for general having fun on the bike (which, let’s face it, is something we do far more often than bikepacking) the URS is pretty perfect. It’s efficient for covering ground, but it’s also very capaberable for the trails. For these kind of more peppy shorter rides, the harder than ideal gears aren’t so much of a problem and it’s just really fun to ride.

Reasons to buy
  • +

    Sorted geometry is a blast on the trails

  • +

    Still efficient for longer distance rides

Reasons to avoid
  • -

    Stock gearing is a little steep for bikepacking

  • -

    Lack of mounts on fork for extra carrying capacity

You can trust Cycling Weekly. Our team of experts put in hard miles testing cycling tech and will always share honest, unbiased advice to help you choose. Find out more about how we test.

The BMC URS ONE sits apart from most gravel bikes. It’s designed to be more capable on the trails than your typical gravel bike, but it hasn’t taken things so far as to become a Frankenstein-esque monstercross machine – essentially a mountain bike with drop handlebars.

This puts it in a kind of halfway house which relatively few brands have capitalised on – but one which ticks an awful lot of boxes. It’s well able to handle a blast around the woods, but it’s still efficient enough to comfortably be ridden long distances, hitting those two major demands in one fell swoop – and with just one bike. 

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Stefan Abram
Tech features editor

After winning the 2019 National Single-Speed Cross-Country Mountain Biking Championships and claiming the plushie unicorn (true story), Stefan swapped the flat-bars for drop-bars and has never looked back. 

Since then, he’s earnt his 2ⁿᵈ cat racing licence in his first season racing as a third, completed the South Downs Double in under 20 hours and Everested in under 12.

But his favourite rides are multiday bikepacking trips, with all the huge amount of cycling tech and long days spent exploring new roads and trails - as well as histories and cultures. Most recently, he’s spent two weeks riding from Budapest into the mountains of Slovakia

Height: 177cm

Weight: 67–69kg