I betray no secrets when I say that I have a profound love of BH bikes. In fact, in previous articles, I’ve even gone so far as to get out my "purple crayon" and muse about how I pursued the exotic brand deep into the lands of Spain – long before it made it’s presence known here in the USA.
So, needless to say, when I had the chance to speak with BH’s North America Sales and Brand Manager, Gene DiMenna, about the updates to the 2015 road range, I busted out my sombrero and castanets – and was all ears.
The Ultralight EVO
Starting with their flagship frameset, which is now called the Ultralight EVO, I was explained how further developments to BH’s intricate Hollow Core Internal Molding Technology, succeeded in yielding a frame that was 50g or more lighter for 2015, while at the same time preserving the Ultralight’s glorious sense of balance and ride quality. I say glorious, because I’ve been riding one throughout the wilds of western Massachusetts all season – with much delight.
The Hollow Core Internal Molding Technology, partakes of a process that’s as technologically "highbrow" and advanced as it’s name implies. Try to visualize a frame that’s first laid-up almost in its entirety using a mandrel, before being placed into a final mold. Once it’s removed from the mold, an exact replica of the initial carbon lay-out emerges, but now in a finished form. If you can imagine, the final result, is a frame that possesses the same level of precise "fit and finish" internally as it does externally to the eye. Not only is this a marvel of fabrication genius, but it’s a mechanic’s dream when it come to building a bike, as the internal construction is devoid of any obstructions, or left-over "shmootz" that can effect internal routing; particularly when in comes to electronic groupsets.
Other updates to the Ultralight’s frame, involved a "tweaking" of the BB386 bottom bracket, wherein a slight change to the shape of the BB, has made it even more compatible with virtually any brand of crankset/power meter combination – regardless of how obscure it may be.
The super lightweight full carbon fork, tapered 1 1/8” to 1 1/2” headtube, asymmetrical chainstays and 27.2 seat post, all carry over for 2015 as well.
The G6 Pro
The G6 received the same Hollow Core molding treatment as it’s Ultralight sibling, to include "tweaks" to the BB386 bottom bracket as well. In addition, all of the things that have attributed to the G6’s initial success, like the integrated seatmast (now with a hidden battery compartment) and uniquely shaped, aerodynamic tube profiles, that have made it a popular choice for those capitalizing on the "aero" bike trend, have also been carried over to 2015.
However, the biggest upgrade to the G6, is the introduction of direct mount brakes.
For those who have been following the whole disc brake for road thing, keen observers have been quick to notice that direct mount brake technology has been gaining ground as well.
Indeed, while the benefits of disc brakes for road bikes have been the source of ongoing debate, those who have experienced the effects of direct mount brakes, say the increase in performance is dramatic.
If you’re unfamiliar with direct mount brakes, the premise is simple. By directly mounting the front and rear brakes to the fork and bottom bracket via a series of "bosses", makes for a far more stable and secure interface. Alignment, caliper articulation and brake modulation become all the more precise. It’s that simple.
BH accomplishes this with their G6, by mainly adding reinforcement to the fork and bottom area, with additional carbon fiber, which brings strength to these areas, without necessarily adding weight.
Considered to be BH’s great "all arounder", the Quartz has received a few worthy upgrades of it’s own for 2015 as well.
Those who revel in the "gravel" bike or Gran Fondo craze, will rejoice in the fact, that in addition to the Quartz’z laid-back "endurance" geometry, the 2015 model gets the disc brake treatment, along with electronic shifting capabilities for the European market as well.
However, the Quartz doesn’t get just a smattering of disc brakes, but it gets an impressive lay-out of brake cabling as well.
Aye, BH took no shortcuts when it came to designing the Quartz’s brake cable routing. Both the front and rear brake cables are routed entirely through the frame, which yields a very clean and effective setup, that’s as visually pleasing as it is mechanically.
The RX Team
Essentially, all of the features that have made the RX Team a cyclocross bike of acclaim, have been carried forth to 2015 as well.
The "marauders mud" will still get a choice of either traditional caliper brakes , or discs, along with choice of Shimano Ultegra and 105 groupsets, to include the option of Ultegra Di2.
Bring on the "barriers and beer" – it’s cyclocross season !
Special thanks to Gene DiMenna, for taking the time to share these product updates with me, and the rest of the folks at BH USA for continuing to provide excellent stewardship of the iconic Spanish for all us "yanks".
Gee, I just realized that I’m still wearing my castanets !
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