BMC TE01 29 Complete Bike - $5,498.95

Team BMC is taking the backing and confidence of owner Andy Rihs and going after mountain biking's biggest podiums in 2013, by starting with a bolstered livery. At the heart of the team is two-time Olympic cross country gold medal winner Julien Absalon aboard the BMC TE01 29a thoroughbred, big-wheeled cross country race machine befitting the French national champion. Light, responsive, and maneuverable, the Team Elite takes full advantage of big wheels, while eliminating some of their inherent drawbacks. If you've been on the twenty-niner fence, now might be the time to climb down and hop on the BMC Team Elite TE29/SRAM X0 Complete Bike. Long wheelbases, toe overlap, janky geometries and a lack of parts once plagued the twenty-niner. Now that the dust has settled, parts are plentiful, geometries are dialed, and big-wheeled bikes are no longer the investment risk they once were. BMC took their time, investing heavily in both saddle-time and computer feedback to perfect the Team Elite's geometry. They settled on a 70 degree head angle and super-short 430mm chainstays. Because of this, you'll enjoy easy negotiation of tight switchbacks, stable handling around high-speed sweepers, and excellent traction when climbing. The heart of the Team Elite TE29 is its triple-butted, hydroformed alloy tubeset. BMC's iSC (integrated Skeleton Concept) optimizes weight savings, strength, and ride characteristics by using Finite Elements Method (FEM) computer technology. Every 6000 series aluminum tube is shaped to exacting standards; what you get is a frame that reacts to rider inputs like power application, steering, and braking with impeccable efficiency and precision. While aluminum carries the stigma of being a harsh ride, BMC's extra attention to tube shape results in a compliant ride that still takes full advantage of aluminum's positive traits. As a frame, the BMC Team Elite TE29/SRAM X0 Complete Bike sounds blissful, but that's just a part of the equation. - $5,498.95