Kaius 01: BMC’s New Gravel Performance Racing Bike

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Having ridden and tested many BMC road bikes over the years, I admit that when I got the release on this bike my heart got a little bit happier. Even though I’m coming off a really bad injury sustained in a race earlier this summer, this changed my mindset from “I’ll probably never race again” to “when can I get on this bike.”

With the launch of Kaius 01, BMC introduces its first-ever gravel performance racing bike that unlocks speed across all surfaces, built with what the brand is calling an unprecedented carbon layup and gravel-specific geometry that ensures “the perfect balance of stiffness, lightweight, and compliance for optimal traction on loose surfaces, front-end stability, and unmatched climbing prowess.”

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Harnessing the precision and performance of BMC’s renowned road technologies, Kaius, the Swiss brand says, tunes into the “gravel wavelength” to access unbound speed, and Kaius 01 is a racing machine designed to withstand the demands of unhindered gravel riding. If that’s not enough to get me back on the bike, then I don’t know what is. “Kaius is an ultra-lightweight gravel bike built to go fast when the terrain gets rough,” said Conrad Glassey, Head of Product Management at BMC.

 

The Perfect Gravel-Racing Bike?

What makes a perfect gravel bike? Kaius 01 arrives with what the brand says is the perfect combination of weight, stiffness, compliance, and aerodynamics.

Teaming unmatched climbing capabilities with sprint-winning power transfer and the requisite strength for peace of mind against stone strikes, Kaius 01 opens the full spectrum of what is possible on every surface a rider encounters.

An unprecedented premium carbon layup uses high-module fibers to provide stiffness, keep the weight low and balance out the added weight required to achieve compliance and robustness. This pushes overall weight to a minimum and power transfer to a maximum. Frame areas exposed to rocks and shocks, such as the lower face of the downtube, feature protection to give riders peace of mind when pushing over bone-rattling surfaces.

The result is a gravel-specific racing bike whose compliance sits in the middle range of BMC’s Tuned Compliance Concept Race Technology.

Race-ready Gravel Geometry

Kaius 01 was built with one purpose: to be fast on gravel roads. That is why BMC produced a gravel-specific frame with a longer reach shifting the front wheel forward to improve stability and increase traction. With the shorter stem providing responsive handling, Kaius 01 sports a progressive and race­ tuned geometry for an ever-evolving riding style.

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Stefan Christ, Head of R&D at BMC gives insight into the processes that led to fusing the two worlds of road racing and gravel riding: “We tuned Kaius to the gravel wavelength to harness the precision and performance of our leading road technologies whilst ensuring front-end stability at speed and high traction on loose surfaces.”

Integrated Functionality

Adding proven performance and welcome usability, Kaius 01 uses BMC’s proprietary lightweight ICS cockpit systems.

The all-new ICS Carbon Aero Cockpit is used on Kaius 01 ONE to match the performance of BMC’s race machines with a reduced frontal section. The 360 mm top width at the hoods allows for an efficient aerodynamic position, while the 12,5° flare and the 420 mm width at the drops provide great control at high speeds. Kaius 01 TWO and THREE feature BMC’s own ICS2, their advanced stem system where the cables are fully integrated. ICS2 additionally provides a high level of adjustability and WorldTour performance.

Arriving at the highest level of integrated functionality, Kaius 01 features BMC’s Aerocore design, an evolved solution that integrates the bottle cages into the frame to optimize aerodynamic performance.

Lightweight and Versatile

Being a gravel-race bike, Kaius 01 is not only stiff and compliant, but also lightweight. The module clocks in at a mere 1.785 kg, with a frame weighing only 910 g, the fork 400 g, the seat post 160 g, and the cockpit 315 g.

Kaius 01 comes with all a rider would expect from a high-end gravel race bike. Versatile by design, it can fit 1x and 2x drivetrains, tires up to 44 mm, a dropper post, our new MTT Suspension Stem, and top tube bolt-on bags.

“Whether across scorched Spanish deserts or horizon less American gravel, Kaius is your trusted guide on every journey you choose,” David Heine, Head of Marketing at BMC.

Sizes, Availability, and Prices

Kaius 01 is available in six sizes (47, 51, 54, 56, 58 and 61) and three models. Kaius ONE, TWO and THREE, available from September 2022, cost 11’499 (11’999 USD), 8’499 (8’999 USD) and 5’499 (5’999 USD) euros respectively.