Massive Shimano Anouncement – Dura-Ace, Ultegra, Di2, Wireless, Wheels, power meters – Full Details

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Huge Shimano Dura-Ace & Ultegra Announcements: All The Details

Now we know why Shimano components have been in short supply for the last year. They’ve been making 2 whole new groupsets for us that will be available in October 2021 (Dura-Ace), November 2021 (Ultegra), Q1.2022 (Power Meters).

After 8 years in development, Shimano has finally announced their move to semi-wireless, 12-speed on the road.

That’s just the headline and there are MANY more significant product details that follow as a result ranging from new gearing options to a brand new Shimano-branded power meter for Ultegra.

Q: What’s New

A: Lots! Let’s take them one at a time

Shimano R9200 Groupset

The R9200 groupset now only shifts with Di2, previously the R9100 had a manual gear change option.

  • Shifting Speed – Di2 shifting speed was previously configurable via the E-Tube app. Shimano is now claiming further improvements to shifting times: 58% from the rear derailleur and 45% from the front.
  • Wireless or Wired Di2 – There are fully wired and part-wireless Di2 options. Note that the new Di2 wires are smaller than the previous ones and are incompatible without the use of a step-down adapter.
  • Battery location(s) -There is a seatpost battery connected by smaller wires to each derailleur and each lever contains a CR1632 battery that lasts for over 1.5 years.
  • Charging – The new battery charge port is part of the rear derailleur (RD-R9250) and as a result, it’s easily accessible and can be charged without the need for a port or charging unit elsewhere on the bike. The front derailleur (FD-R9250) is powered from the same battery as the rear.
  • There is only one rear derailleur for each groupset…there are no longer medium/long cage options
  • Redesigned shifters – The ST-R9270 hydraulic levers for disk brakes have several subtle ergonomic changes that help ride position and the Di2 levers within that also have minor changes to make changing gears easier whilst wearing gloves. Plus we see a small LED to indicate coin cell battery status.
  • Satellite shifters – These are still supported as wired-only options. There are sprint shifters (SW-R801-S) or climbing shifters (SW-R801-T). Interestingly, where previously frames were modified to accommodate charging ports, newer handlebars like the PRO Vibe Evo bar are designed to integrate satellite shifters.

  • 12-Speed Hyperglide+ rear Cassette – If you look closely at the teeth on modern cassettes they are unusually shaped, this is not for aesthetics as each shape affects the speed and quality of shift. Hyperglide+ sees these shapes revised for the new 12-speed cassette which covers 11-30T and 11-34T. It is claimed that shifting whilst under load is improved.
  • A new, larger Dura-Ace 54-40T front ring is available for the front and support also exists for 3rd party rings with sizes to 50-55T
  • There is still the option for a power meter on the cranks (FC-R9200 and FC-R9200P) and those cranks range from 160 to 177.5 mm and with a Q-factor of 148 mm. The R9200P supports ANT+ and BLE with 1.5% accuracy and 300+ hours of ride time – available early 2022.
  • The 12-Speed chain is the same as the existing 12-Speed MTB version
  • The current E-Tube 4.0.4 app handles the upgraded components.

There’s more…

Dura-Ace also sees improvements to disc brakes for Gravel riding, maintenance and noise.

Finally, there are 3 new wheelsets ranging from the light C36 (WH-R9270-C36-TL) to the all-rounder C50 (WH-R9270-C50-TL) through to the specialised sprint option of the C60 (WH-R9270-C60-HR-TL). These optimise lightness, rigidity and aeroness as appropriate for each model. There are carbon rim brake or disk brake options with Tubeless for each. However, these wheelsets ONLY support Shimano 12 speed setups.

Shimano Ultegra R8100 Groupset

R8100 is the groupset that most riders will choose and the options appear very similar to those in Dura-Ace. These are specific points of clarification:

  • Ultegra components tend to be a tiny bit heavier. For example, the DURA-ACE R9200 front and rear derailleurs weigh 96g and 215g respectively, versus ULTEGRA R8100 weights of 116g and 262g, resulting in a combined 67g difference.
  • For the first time, Ultegra now comes with a power meter option in the FC-R8100-P cranks.
  • There are also new Ultegra-level wheelsets that are backwards compatible with 11 speed but which are ONLY for disk brakes.
  • Shimano says, “ULTEGRA cassettes come with a new spline fitting pattern, which is also backwards compatible to Shimano 11-speed freehub bodies, meaning that new ULTEGRA R8100 components can be used on the previous Shimano 11-speed wheels.

 

Opinion & Thoughts

This was an upgrade that was expected and most of the high-level details leaked earlier in the year.

It’s interesting that Ultegra gets a power meter for the first time and we will probably see a 12-Speed roll down to the 105 series within a year. Wired Di2 won’t roll down to 105, as I strongly suspect that we will never see another new mechanical Ultegra or Dura-Ace groupset meaning that 105 is differentiated from lower groupsets as Shimano’s top-end mechanical option.

Clearly, Shimano wants us to move to disc brakes but the pro’s still want and get the rim brake option. Sure discs are better but they’re also more expensive to buy and harder to maintain.

New & Existing Part Numbers used in the Dura-Ace groupset (excluding wires)

 

 

 

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9 thoughts on “Massive Shimano Anouncement – Dura-Ace, Ultegra, Di2, Wireless, Wheels, power meters – Full Details

  1. What I didn’t find:
    Will it be possible to use rim brakes?
    Im looking for a way to replace my Ultegra 11S with DI2, but can’t fit a Batterie in my seat post.

    1. hi
      rim brakes – yes
      CORRECTION: existing 11s – the new setup has a battery in the frame. you will 2x new ultegra front/rear derailleurs, 1x wire to join the two, and 2x new shifters,a new battery and a cable to join it. your existing cassettes and chainrings should be compatible. I’m essentially doing the same thing as you so i’m asking for clarification but i think it’s ok. the only issue i foresee is: can the 12 speed rear derailleur have its stop limits set for 11 speed (must be true) but then can it be programmed to shift in 11speed increments rather than 12speed increments….again i believe it DOES do this.

      1. the battery is in the seat post.
        FD and RD connect to this battery with the new cables.
        only calbes to the shifters are not needed but you can use them and get longer battery life.

  2. I found some sets.
    It will be around 1000€ for both STIs, the 12s cassette and front and rear derailleur.

    Seems ok. If we can use the 11s cassette, we will save only a few bucks. Best use case for the cassette would be on the Kickr.

    1. yes but once you start mixing 11speed and 12speed cassettes you will probably need to change a profile in the Di2 settings to switch between the two
      you should try and stay with as much of your 11speed components as you can but get the new 12speed shifters/derailleurs that support it
      it’s complicated as it looks like only the DuraAce shifters will bake to rims.
      I’m finding out exactly what’s needed as a minimum

      1. Ultegra Shifters will be available for Rimbrakes. At least they say so on their website. Saw them in a shop yesterday but can’t find them again (dorgot wich shop, was shopping for something else).
        The nam is ST-R8150 for rim brake and 8170 for disc brakes

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