Shimano have unveiled their all new Ultegra 6700 road group, which replaces the current and SL versions.Ã‚Â The totally revised group benefits from trickle down tech and claims to improve performance, and it certainly looks sleeker with smoother, more aerodynamic shapes and a duotone silver finish. Ã‚Â According to Shimano, the performance should make hardcore racers happy, meaning it’ll work suitably well for most cyclists.
The new version drops 151g (5.3 oz) off the current regular group and 44g (1.56 oz) off the SL.The total group weight (for a double crankset) is 2301g. Ã‚Â If you’re moving up from regular Ultegra, that’s about a 1/3 lb improvement. Ã‚Â By comparison, though, the current Dura-Ace 7900 group weight is 2090g, so you’re saving in the neighborhood of 210g (7.4 oz)…that’s almost a half a pound less for D-A! Ã‚Â Unfortunately, we don’t have pricing yet, so we can’t tell you how they compare in grams per dollars.
There are lots of improvements to the group beyond weight savings, though, so read “more” for component pictures and details…
Full weights and comparison chart at bottom of post. Ã‚Â Click on any of the images to enlarge.
The Rear Derailleur (RD-6700) will be available with either a short or medium cage, capable of running up to 28T cassette for the short cage. Ã‚Â The medium cage is designed for a wider range and compatible with a triple ring crankset up front.
The Front Derailleur also comes in two versions…one for a Double (FD-6700) and one for a Triple (FD-6703). Ã‚Â They’ve redesigned with lighter spring tension for easier shifting and remodeled cage plates to reduce trimming requirements. Ã‚Â The inner link is wide with two pivots to improve rigidity.
The Hyperglide Cassette (CS-6700) is 10-speed and will offer five gear combos:
The Crankset, or “Chainset” if you’re British, uses the same Hollowglide construction as Dura-Ace with a hollow big ring that’s supposed to be lighter, stiffer and offer more precise shifting. Ã‚Â The Hollowtech II arms connect to a fixed axle that runs through an outboard BB, just like its big brother. Ã‚Â It’ll be available at launch in July with a Standard (53/39 or 52/39) and Compact (50/34), with a Triple (52/39/30) coming in September. Arm length options are 165 / 170 / 172.5 / 175. Let’s just hope a replacement outer ring doesn’t cost $450 like Dura-Ace!!! (WTF?)
Connecting all those parts and making you go is the new Chain (CN-6700) has perforated inner plates and can be joined using Shimano’s reusable connector link. Ã‚Â It’s a directional design, just like the new Dura-Ace, with the inner plates designed to work with the cassette’s ramps and the outer plates made to play nice with the chain rings. Ã‚Â It’s designed to have more contact with the gear teeth to improve power transfer.
The STI Dual Control Levers have a composite brake and shifter lever and improved ergonomics. Ã‚Â Notice how flat the tops of the hoods are. Ã‚Â They revised cable routing to carry the wires under the bar tape, and the levers now offer reach adjustment. Ã‚Â The brake lever pivot has been been repositioned closer to the bar to improve modulation and power, which should be most noticeable when riding on the hoods. Ã‚Â The cables have a PFTE inner coating for slick shifts.
The Brakes come with the Dura-Ace pad compound designed for “100%” better wet weather performance and “20%” dry weather performance. The arch pivot was moved to give them a more linear feel. Ã‚Â They have adjustable spring tension and toe-in, so you can set it how you want it, and the cable guides are redesigned to reduce friction and allow for a smoother looking installation, especially on compact frames. (“%” claims are from Shimano)
Interestingly, the standalone Hubs are pretty standard looking fare. Ã‚Â They use Shimano’s standard cup-and-cone bearing set up, which means they’ll be easy to service. Ã‚Â The rear, not shown, will have a steel freehub body and is compatible with 8, 9 and 10 speed cassettes. Ã‚Â Why is that interesting, because look at the hubs for the complete wheelset:
The complete wheels, which will be available in September (ie. Interbike), use much, much better looking hubs. Ã‚Â On top of that, they’ll be Road TubeLess compatible, or you can run regular clinchers on them. Ã‚Â Spokes are straight bladed, 16 front, 20 rear and have the same cassette compatibility as the standalone hubs. Ã‚Â Weight is 1652g (695g F / 957g R).
The Pedals (PD-6700) only appear to have cosmetic changes.