The BMC Speedfox AMP ONE was designed to be a fast eMTB for every kind of riding. It’s been given large wheels, firm suspension and a high-quality frame. Looking for a good time, we took it to the Alps, down flowing trails and through the city. Was it as much fun as we hoped?

BMC Speedfox AMP ONE | 130/130 mm (f/r) | 21.23 kg | € 9,499

BMC’s mission with the Speedfox was to build a light eMTB. To that end, the BMC Speedfox AMP ONE features a full carbon frame. By doing so, the Swiss brand was able to reduce the weight of the € 9,499 bike to 21.23 kg, despite the internal Shimano battery. The angular and clean looking 130 mm travel bike convinced us with clever details such as the sag indicator, sophisticated internal cable routing and the securely integrated speed sensor. The 29″ wheels and geometry of the BMC Speedfox AMP ONE is designed to offer maximum fun on the trails and also be a faithful companion on long rides.

The BMC Speedfox AMP ONE in detail

Old-school meets high-tech seems to be the theme of the spec on the BMC Speedfox AMP ONE. We had no complaints about the excellent Shimano Di2 drivetrain, powerful XT brakes with 200 mm rotors front and back and the Shimano STEPS E8000 motor and integrated battery. BMC’s in-house cockpit, however, with a 70 mm stem and 750 mm carbon bar doesn’t match up with modern trail bike expectations.

Fork RockShox Pike RC 130 mm
Shock FOX Float DPS 130 mm
Brakes Shimano XT 200/200
Drivetrain Shimano XT Di2
Battery Shimano 500 Wh
Motor Shimano STEPS E8000
Seatpost KS Lev Integra 125 mm
Handlebar BMC MFB 01 Carbon 750 mm
Stem BMC MSM 02 70 mm
Wheels DT Swiss HX1501
Tires Maxxis Forekaster 2,35″
Weight 21.23 kg
Price € 9,499

Stopping power
Thanks to 200 mm rotors, the Shimano XT packs a hefty punch
Low rolling resistance = low grip
The fast rolling MAXXIS Forekaster lacks cornering and braking grip. Thanks to the motor, efficiency isn’t as important on an eMTB. Grippy tyres are more confidence inspiring and more comfortable.
Too narrow, too long
The long stem and the narrow handlebar are outdated and limit the Speedfox AMP in its potential
Fast, faster, Di2
The electronic shifting of Shimano XT Di2 is super fast and precise
Suitable for long rides
Thanks to the integrated battery, there is space for a water bottle in the front triangle

In contrast to the frame of the Speedfox AMP ONE, the DT Swiss HX 1501 Spline ONE wheelset features aluminium rims, for improved durability. The wheels are fitted with low profile 2.35″ wide MAXXIS Forekaster tyres, which have limited versatility for use on anything more demanding than gravel roads. We also expected more from the Speedfox’s dropper seatpost – more travel that is. With a stroke of just 125 mm, tall riders won’t be able to lower the saddle far enough when descending. Setting up the suspension is done in no time, thanks to the user-friendly SAG indicators integrated on the fork and rear linkage. The RockShox PIKE and the FOX FLOAT DPS shock both offer a firm 130 mm of travel.

The geometry of the BMC Speedfox AMP ONE

Size S M L
Seat tube 400 mm 440 mm 480 mm
Top tube 572 mm 619 mm 648 mm
Head tube 92 mm 103 mm 118 mm
Head angle 66° 66° 66°
Seat angle 74° 74° 74°
Chainstays 450 mm 450 mm 450 mm
TBB Drop 35 mm 35 mm 35 mm
Wheelbase 1159 mm 1202 mm 1233 mm
Reach 401 mm 445 mm 472 mm
Stack 598 mm 605 mm 618 mm
Helmet POC Tectal | Glasses Smith Attack Max | Jersey 100% Airmatic | Shorts 100% Airmatic | Shoes Shimano AM9

The BMC Speedfox AMP ONE on the trail

Climbing with the BMC Speedfox AMP you’re seated in a somewhat stretched out position. The distribution of weight between the saddle and grips is nicely balanced so that you’ll remain comfortable even after several hours in the saddle. The Speedfox AMP ONE easily reaches the 25 km/h mark with only some pedal-bob. The platform of the FOX DPS shock effectively prevents bobbing without being too uncomfortable on long climbs up forest roads. Once you leave the forest roads and start climbing up single track, the Speedfox easily rolls over small roots and rocks, not least thanks to the 29″ wheels. The rear linkage also works effectively, ironing out the blows of larger obstacles and absorbing them without getting hung up. Although you would expect the long stem to keep enough weight on the front wheel, on steep climbs the BMC Speedfox still requires a lot of input from the rider to keep the front-end planted. Due to the 450 mm chainstays, when going up very steep trails a large portion of your body weight is placed on the rear wheel, while the front wheel is hardly weighted. Kissing the stem to load the front wheel, the powerful Shimano motor will help you conquer any summit at a blistering pace.

What year is it? The narrow and long cockpit of the BMC doesn’t meet our expectations of a modern trail bike.

So the BMC Speedfox AMP is a fast climber. But how does the bike descend? The rider is positioned quite low on the Speedfox AMP with a 35mm bottom bracket drop. Along with the bottom bracket, the motor and battery are also placed low in the frame. Because of its low centre of gravity and the freedom of movement it gives you, the Speedfox AMP almost corners all by itself, except for the 70 mm stem forcing the rider into such a stretched position. The stem does, however, help to keep the front wheel loaded on flat trails. In combination with the short chainstays, the Speedfox AMP feels very lively and playful on flowing trails. The 130mm rear travel provides a lot of feedback from the trail and offers enough pop for you to launch over obstacles and generate speed by pumping the bike. All in all, the suspension is quite firm and while it doesn’t offer a whole lot of comfort, it does provide sufficient reserves and support for harder impacts.

When things get steep and technical, the cockpit and the tyres limit the Speedfox AMP in its downhill potential. Too bad, because the Speedfox AMP is more than just an eMTB for flow-trails. Shod with more aggressive tyres, it is easily capable of handling steeper descents and more rutted and rooted challenges. If you dare to ride the Speedfox AMP in rougher terrain regardless, we advise keeping a firm grip on the handlebars. With enough speed, the 29″ wheels steamroll over roots and rocks, and the agility of the bike allows you to navigate around larger obstacles with ease.

Conlusion

Love it or leave it? Although the BMC Speedfox AMP ONE is sinfully expensive, the build isn’t exactly perfect. The cockpit and tyres do not meet our expectations of a trail bike and should be replaced immediately. So leave it, then? Those who are prepared to invest in a few upgrades for their Speedfox AMP ONE will love it. Once upgraded it will convince with its agile handling and potent suspension, being a faithful companion to all those who are looking for a fast bike to have fun on.

Strengths
  • agile handling
  • firm suspension with reserves
  • clean look
Weaknesses
  • cockpit too long and narrow
  • tyres lack grip and puncture protection

Update: BMC Speedfox AMP with alloy frames

BMC now offers two new models of the Speedfox AMP with a more affordable spec. The Speedfox AMP FOUR and FIVE feature an all-new aluminium frame and the Shimano Steps E7000 motor. Prices start at € 4,299 for the Speedfox AMP Five, the Speedfox AMP Four pictured below costs € 4,999.

For more info head to: bmc-switzerland.com


This article is from E-MOUNTAINBIKE issue #015

E-MOUNTAINBIKE Magazine is published in a digital app format in both English and German. Download the app for iOS or Android to read all articles on your tablet or smartphone. 100% free!

Words: Felix Stix Photos: Valentin Rühl

About the author

Felix Stix

My technical background has made me the informal workshop manager of E-MOUNTAINBIKE Magazine. Here I prepare the equipment and check the bikes before they’re handed over to our test crew. My nerdy articles and countless explanations are usually the result of me completely dismantling and reassembling a product…
When I ride my eMTB I love shredding on the toughest downhill trails where I push myself and the material to the limit - and beyond. And when I have to get back up to the top of the hill I usually go full "turbo" to stay fresh for the next descend.