The BMC Granfondo GF01 is not only comfortable, but also great fun to ride, with a pro-level frame giving a racy feel while still maintaining the compliance needed to ride all day over rough roads.
Great fun to ride
Ride could be plusher
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Originally designed for the cobbled classics, the BMC Granfondo GF01 is a thoroughbred-racing machine, with features designed to increase vertical compliance and comfort. The original frame was introduced in 2012 and has subsequently been updated with discs for the model you see here.
This is a great example of an endurance bike that is also great fun to ride, and we liked it so much that we gave it the runner up spot in the endurance bike category of the 2016 Cyling Weekly Bike of the Year awards.
The BMC Granfondo GF01 has same frame as used by the riders of BMC Racing over the cobbles of the Tour of Flanders and Paris-Roubaix. BMC employs its Tune Compliance Concept, or TCC for short, in conjunction with angled seatstays, saddle, and fork.
These features are all designed to improve comfort and absorb poor road surfaces. The BMC Granfondo GF01's geometry sits firmly in the middle between that of a sportive bike and out-and-out race machine.
The frame is completely compatible with mechanical and electronic groupsets. Should you wish to upgrade to electronic, it can be routed internally, with the external mechanical cable bosses removable. The hydraulic hoses are already fully internal with a clever through-headset spacer design.
The bike is equipped with a Shimano Ultegra mechanical groupset with hydraulic disc brakes. The wheels are disc brake specific DT-Swiss R24 Splines with 25mm Continental Grand Sport tyres.
Fizik Aliante R7 saddle with manganese rails. The cool thing about this bike, is that it is ready to go straight out the box. The wheels, finishing kit and groupset are all great bits that work perfectly with the frame. Refreshing when we see so many bikes given low quality bits to meet specific price points. One minor criticism is the handlebars, which at 44cm are noticeably wider than those normally specified on size 56cm bikes.
Transmission is a 50/34t compact chainset with an 11-32t cassette, which is perfect for steep inclines regardless of your ability.
The first thing to mention, is how much fun it is possible to have on the BMC Granfondo GF01. The brakes are absolutely superb and I spent a lot of the time deliberately pulling skids, even when I didn’t need to! I had no issues with cooking the 140mm rotors on British roads. I experimented fitting wider 28mm tyres too, which really did transform the bike, giving me superior stopping power, but also the ability to take on towpaths and bridalways.
The frames comfort features designed to help iron out the road do work, although it not as plush as a Trek Domane. Put down the power and this bike responds. Despite having the vertical compliance features, the girthy down tube and beefy bottom bracket result in a bike that you will be confident sprinting on.
The BMC Granfondo GF01 offers decent value when you consider it is a professional level frame set a complete Ultegra groupset and excellent quality disc specific carbon wheels.
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Oliver Bridgewood - no, Doctor Oliver Bridgewood - is a PhD Chemist who discovered a love of cycling. He enjoys racing time trials, hill climbs, road races and criteriums. During his time at Cycling Weekly, he worked predominantly within the tech team, also utilising his science background to produce insightful fitness articles, before moving to an entirely video-focused role heading up the Cycling Weekly YouTube channel, where his feature-length documentary 'Project 49' was his crowning glory.