Beautiful Bicycle - A Gearhead's BMC URS LT Gravel Bike

Written by Alvin Holbrook, on April 29, 2022

It isn't often that one sees something as intriguing as this custom BMC URS LT gravel bike. This latest Beautiful Bicycle seems to have all the buzz words: a gravel bike with Shimano Dura-Ace electronic shifting and suspension. But there's more than that: this is perhaps the first Dura-Ace R9200 one-by drivetrain fitted to a bike. It is almost assuredly the first one fitted to a gravel bike, and will be one of a few to a bike with full suspension. And add the new Classified Powershift virtual front derailleur? We think this is a bike that might just be one-of-one.

2022 BMC URS LT Classified Dura Ace 9200 1x gravel bike

The BMC URS LT is the logical next step in the BMC URS line. We were greatly impressed by the original URS, a gravel bike whose progressive, MTB-leaning geometry offered a completely different take on what a gravel bike is. It had a short stem like a mountain bike, and combined with a long front-center, its design blurred the lines between a gravel bike and a cross-country mountain bike. And while it used to be a truly unique offering, there are more and more bikes released that blur the lines even more.

If those lines weren’t already blurry, BMC’s new URS LT complicates things even more. An integrated suspension fork joins the unique gravel bike option found here. BMC went through great lengths to offer a suspension-corrected fork on the original URS, allowing something like the new Rockshox Rudy XPLR fork or a Fox 32 Taper-Cast with 50mm travel. The BMC’s integrated suspension offers just 20mm of suspension, but includes a twistable lockout on top of the stem, not unlike the Specialized FutureShock system. Add in the 10mm “suspension” out back and you have a bike that feels like a mountain bike, at least on paper.

2022 BMC URS LT Classified Dura Ace 9200 1x gravel bike hi ride

It isn’t until you take a strong look at the bike that one begins to understand what’s going on here. 20mm suspension is even smaller when the fork’s 5mm sag is taken into account. That means that it is best suited to going fast over rough gravel and light singletrack, with its suspension system there to provide traction comfort through the chattery bits. It soaks up bumpy terrain in a way that a rigid gravel bike can’t and is a whole lot faster on the smooth stuff than a full-suspension bike. And if you’re into bicycle tech, you could see the outlines of what might very well be the future of gravel bikes. 

2022 BMC URS LT Classified Dura Ace 9200 1x gravel bike

The suspension aspect is just the start of this custom BMC URS LT. This bike features the latest Shimano Dura-Ace R9200 12-speed groupset, which is more a curated assortment than anything. This is the first 1x Dura-Ace 12s application we’ve seen anywhere, and certainly the first we’ve seen with an oval chainring. The Absolute Black oval chainring is paired to a SRAM Quarq power meter crank, which drives a Shimano M9100 12s chain. Paired with the wireless Dura-Ace shifters and Dura-Ace rear derailleur, this drivetrain shifts decisively and is about as smooth as one might expect. 

Perhaps the most interesting part of this bike is the Classified drivetrain. For all of the interesting tech of the URS LT, BMC couldn’t fit the short chainstays and big tire clearance without sacrificing a front derailleur mount. That makes the URS a 1x-only proposition. But what if you want the range and small gear jumps of a 2x drivetrain? Well, if you’re not using Campagnolo Ekar (our review HERE), you choose a Classified Powershift hub. 

2022 BMC URS LT Classified Dura Ace 9200 1x gravel bike

If you are unfamilar with Classified, we broke down the details in our Classified Powershift review. The gist of it is that there is a virtual front derailleur incorporated in the rear hub. It is controlled by a small button, here placed on the left side of the handlebar. And with the 11-34t cassette used here, you get small jumps between gears to keep pedaling rhythm and a lower climbing gear when the going gets tough. To make it work, this bike is paired to a Classified G3.0 wheelset, which despite the internally geared hub, weighs an impressive 1,375g, or similar to an ENVE G23 wheelset.

Here are the bike’s complete specifications:

Frameset BMC URS LT Frameset with Hi-Ride - size XL
Shifters Shimano Dura-Ace R9200
Derailleurs Shimano Dura-Ace R9200 RD w/ Classified Powershift virtual FD
Crankset SRAM Quarq DUB Carbon Crank w/ DZero Power Meter
Gearing 170mm crank, 48t Absolute Black Oval 1x chainring, 11-34t Classified cassette
Wheelset Classified G 3.0CL
Tires Rene Herse Hurricane Ridge - Dark Tan - 700c x 42mm
Brakes Shimano Dura-Ace R9200 calipers, Shimano XTR MT900 - F180mm, R160mm
Handlebar ENVE Gravel Handlebar - 42cm
Stem Ritchey WCS C220 - 120mm
Handlebar Tape ENVE Bar Tape - Black
Saddle WTB SL8
Seatpost URS 01 Carbon - D-Shaped
Accessories Arundel Mandible Oil Slick Cages - Matte, Road Togs - Carbon, Cush Core CX/Gravel Tire Inserts

Have any questions about the BMC URS LT gravel bike or want a custom one for yourself? Contact us any time or stop by the shop to learn more.

2022 BMC URS LT Classified Dura Ace 9200 1x gravel bike controller2022 BMC URS LT Classified Dura Ace 9200 1x gravel bike suspension2022 BMC URS LT Classified Dura Ace 9200 1x gravel bike fork2022 BMC URS LT Classified Dura Ace 9200 1x gravel bike chainring2022 BMC URS LT Classified Dura Ace 9200 1x gravel bike rear suspension2022 BMC URS LT Classified Dura Ace 9200 1x gravel bike classified2022 BMC URS LT Classified Dura Ace 9200 1x gravel bike side

Words by Alvin Holbrook, images by Cody Wignall.


    6 comments

    • Howard,
      sent you a pricing breakdown for the bike, but for reference, there are two versions – the Rival AXS build and the Force AXS build. That starts at $6300. Neither come with the Classified Powershift.

      Alvin - Contender Bicycles on

    • Joon,
      I sent you a message with a more thorough breakdown, but the URS LT complete bike starts at about $6300, a wheelset is about $3200, and another $475 for a cassette and thru axle.

      Ordering is pretty straightforward. I would point you toward Cody, who helped this client put this bike together. We’ll take care of the small details and make sure you get the bike exactly as you’d want it.

      Alvin - Contender Bicycles on

    • Hi Gary! What would you like to know about the Classified Powershift? This bike was a custom build but we could do something very similar if you’re interested! 

      Alvin - Contender Bicycles on

    • such a beautiful bike how much?

      HOWARD CORRIN on

    • What is the price range for this bike and how can we order? This bike seems KILLER. Thx.

      Joon Lee on

    Leave a comment

    Please note, comments must be approved before they are published