New Dura-Ace: the Geek Goes Squee

New Dura-Ace: the Geek Goes Squee

This fall Shimano will introduce a new iteration of Dura-Ace, catalogued broadly as 9100. We first heard rumblings of the new group a month or so ago when there was a flap over some early coverage of the new group. Shimano had been (as they usually are), trying to keep the group secret.

Honestly, I was shocked to hear that they were nearing production on a new group only four years after the release of 9000. It used to be Shimano went six years between iterations of Dura-Ace, but they rather messed that up with the half-baked 7900 group. Here we are, four years following the introduction of 9000 with a fresh take on what Shimano thinks makes for a group worthy of the world’s best pros.

There will be four configurations. Two will offer mechanical shifting—one each with rim brakes and hydraulic discs. There will also be two with Di2—one each with rim brakes and hydraulic discs. Our bet is that the Di2 with rim brakes will be the stepchild of the bunch while the mechanical shifting with hydraulic discs will be the hero of the bunch, offering the best mix of value and performance. Ergonomics on the levers looks to be stellar.

Here’s a high-level look at what the group offers:

  • There will be four versions of the group: mechanical with rim calipers (9100), mechanical with disc brakes (9120), Di2 with rim calipers (9150) and Di2 with hydraulic disc brakes (9170).
  • The drivetrain is still 2×11.
  • There were be five different rim brakes: front and rear dual-pivot calipers, front direct-mount, rear direct-mount and BB direct-mount.
  • Both the dual-pivot calipers and direct-mount mechanical brakes will accommodate up to a 28mm-wide tire.
  • New rotors are said to reduce heat by 30 percent.
  • The rear derailleur borrows its low profile from the Shadow platform to smooth shifting and reduce the likelihood of damage in the event of a crash.
  • Cassettes will come in the following configurations: 11-25, 12-25, 11-28, 12-28 and 11-30 (new); note that there are no more combinations ending in 21 or 23. Commence ground shaking.
  • The Di2 shifters now have a more discernible click for more positive shift feedback.
  • Syncro shift mode makes its way from XTR to Dura-Ace. You can also program shifting on the fly.
  • Mechanical shifters now have a shorter shift throw and revised shift mechanisms for even lighter shift action. Rear downshifting is said to require 24 percent less force, while rear upshifting and front downshifting enjoys a 14 percent reduction in stroke.
  • Rotors will come in 140 and 160mm diameters
  • There will be a version of the crank offered with a power meter, measured accurate to +/- 2 percent.
  • The crank will be available from 165 to 180mm in 2.5mm increments. Only the 170, 172.5 and 175mm cranks will come with chainrings.
  • Chainrings will be offered in three configurations: 50/34, 52/36 and 53/39.
  • The power meter will communicate by both ANT+ and Bluetooth.
  • The new 9100 mechanical group weighs exactly the same (2007 grams) as the 9000 mechanical group, so we’re told.
  • The 9150 (Di2 with rim brakes) is said to weigh 2051g, which is 29g less than current 9070 Di2.
  • Pricing: 9100 will be $2029.92; 9120 will go for $2354.90; 9150 will fetch a rather significant $3046.85; and 9170 will pull a whopping $3137.90.
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  1. Josh Moser

    I love RKP and with all due respect, the pictures of the front derailleurs are mislabeled ‘rear’ derailleurs.

    1. Author

      For some reason it seems to be bouncing some (but not all) of my changes despite my efforts. This may be why we haven’t used the photo gallery feature much.

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