It is truly unbelievable! As little as one year ago, not only were the end customers confused, but also the entire industry: 26”, 27.5”, OR 29”? Which wheel size should work out? Which size would be accepted by the customers? Good question!
Transalpes, a small but exquisite Swiss bike maker, created the BM650B even before the 27.5” boom started. A 160 mm enduro, running on 650B wheels: nice call, considering it was last year. We tested a high-end version of the BM650B (individual module principle) and completely forgot about all the discussions about wheel sizes.
In the end, it is about the riding characteristics and not about artificial categorization on the basis of wheel sizes. We rather devoted ourselves to questions like: ready to race, Alpencross, or Sunday enduro? For what kind of biker is the Transalpes the best choice?
Every single Transalpes is designed according to customers’ wishes in the manufacturer’s headquarters near Zurich. We ordered a light, durable, and fast bike.
Said and done:
Stefan Gruber supplied us with our desired bike in a light raw finish. The chassis was equipped with a RockShox Pike at the front and Monarch Plus shock at the rear. On top of that, it had a SRAM XX1 drivetrain, a 150mm KindShock LEV telescopic seatpost, and a wide KORE cockpit.
A special treat was the handmade wheels with NoTubes ZTR Crest rims (immediately changed to tubeless) and Acros hubs. With this spec, the scale stops at 12.1 kg (excluding pedals).
Hit the trails:
With a central, slightly stretched seating position we are off to the trails. The BM650B surprises with its incredible light-footedness on uphills. Thanks to the 442mm chainstays in combination with the slightly stretched seating position and a steep seating angle of 74°, the bike rewards us with a very ergonomic and efficient pedaling position. Also, the front wheel sticks to the ground even on steep ascents. The chassis reacts quite calmly to pedaling.
To sum up, the Transalpes is an all-round enduro bike, just as anyone would desire: no frills and simply reduced to what is actually important! The light but functional equipment, in combination with the potent chassis, ensures loads of riding fun on both uphills and downhills. Thanks to the well-balanced geometry, it does well even on demanding crossings of the Alps – true to its name of Transalpes!
Price: CHF 6890.- weight: 12,1 kg (excluding pedals) More Info: www.transalpes.ch
Read more stories in our ENDURO issues – free & digital, of course!
Words: Robin Schmitt | Photos: Axel Brunst