Well it has been everywhere for the past few months . Rumour and covert pics were all over the net but this weekend we got the first official pics from madison ( the official shimano importer ) and here they are :
The chainset looks leaner and more aggressive . The chainrings are hollow and the weight has been reduced by 50g to 690g including bottom bracket . They are also saying that it is 20% stiffer than the current model which was supposed to be the stiffest mass production model on the market already .
The STI Levers have internal gear cable mounting and carbon levers . They are finally challenging campag in the looks department . Again they are 50g lighter at just 370g and are supposed be more comfortable to boot . The 20% better theme continues here with a claimed improved in shifting performance although only a computer could verify that one .
The flightdeck computer was never of great interest to me , until now . Shimano have been paying attention to polar and cat eye and have added a heart rate monitor aswell as an altimeter . It can be downloaded wirelessly to a pc and also looks better than before . Shimano aren’t saying this so I will , I think that it’s 20% better than before 🙂
The rear mech looks a lot better thanks to a carbon inner and outer guide plate . This also reduces weight ( although not by the magical 50g ) to just 166g which really is pretty light . It can also handle a bigger variance in cassette sprockets up to a 33t inner which means that it should work great with the new compact chainset .
The front mech has also been improved and shimano are now saying that you won’t need to trim it when up on the big ring any more . Time will tell . The weight is again down , to only 68g .
The brakes have also been revamped with , I quote ‘an enhanced brake arch proportion for increased linear response and more powerful yet controlled braking ‘ . Who comes up with this stuff ? . Basically they are better , work better and look better . Weight is again improved to just 287g , not to be too precise , and the pads have been improved to double the performance in the wet and guess how much of an improvement in the dry ? you’ve got it , a 20% improvement in dry conditions .
So to sum it all up , the new groupset is 180g lighter than before and works better ( 20% better possibly but I will confirm this as soon as I can get my hands on it ) It is showing up as being available in winter 2008 which probably means December . And now for the big question , how much ? well 1199 sterling is the RRP which would make it around 1580 euro on todays exchange rate .