In a move as reliable as clockwork, Shimano trickles down the same road racing tech developed first in their latest Dura-Ace, then Ultegra, now to the more affordable 105. Promising much of the performance of those more racing focused groupsets, 105 continues to be the value leader of Shimano’s road groups. You still won’t find Di2 at this level, but you get much of the same shifting and braking at a much more attainable pricepoint. The new 105 now gets its own disc brake components with an updated look, that once again comes in both stealthy black or more classic silver finishes.
Shimano 105 R7000 11 speed road bike groupset
While many of us may pine for a bike spec’ed with a Dura-Ace drivetrain, most bike build budgets stop quick with R9100’s cheapest group selling for over $2000. But at less than half of that you can get 105, and if you are willing to wait a couple of seasons, Shimano regularly trickles down much of their race-ready tech to what amounts to the entry-level of their top road components.
The new R7000 generation of 105 gets updates across the board, and a new look that is meant to follow in the footsteps of Dura-Ace and Ultegra. Shimano says that most 105 buyers aren’t necessarily looking to race, but want performance & reliability for all around road riding.
The biggest two changes to the new group are a more ergonomic set of hydraulic disc brake dual control levers, and the move to a Shadow rear derailleur with slightly wider gear ratios.
105 hydraulic dual control levers & flat mount disc brakes
The new 105 hydraulic levers will be a welcome departure for many from the previous RS-505 generation that 105 was assigned. While those older bulbous levers didn’t feel bad in the hand for most cyclists, the large lever bodies’ aesthetics were quite divisive. The ST-R7020 hydraulic dual control levers are said to take their more ergonomic shape directly from Ultegra’;s levers. They also offer the same updated reach adjustment as those levers to better fir a wide range of rider hand sizes.
Since the hydro levers are a bit bulkier than a rim brake version, Shimano also even offers a second, completely separate ST-R7025 version optimized for cyclists with even smaller hands than the standard reach adjust range. These smaller dual control levers angle their uniquely shaped lever blades closer to the bar, and out at a slightly wider angle to still allow space around the smaller levers for a rider’s fingers without interference in the drops.
The new flat mount calipers are not a huge departure from the previous non-series RS-505 calipers that had previously been grouped with 105. They do get a slightly slimmer profile that is said to drop a couple grams while retaining the same braking, but also opt for more simple brake pads without cooling fins. And of course now they get silver or black options and 105 branding to match the rest of the group.
The rotors themselves aren’t especially new – using the existing RT70 rotors from mountain SLX, that pair an alloy Centerlock carrier to a stainless steel/aluminum/stainless IceTech sandwiched braking surface. With R7000 though, a new 140mm version of the rotor has been added. Shimano also says the new rotors are “UCI-compliant” for not having 90° sharp edges on the outside of the rotor, although they don’t adopt the more closed cooing fins of the Dura-Ace and Ultegra variants.
105 rim brake dual control levers & brakes
Inside both the new rim brake (ST-R7000) and disc brake (ST-R7020/25) dual control levers, the shifting internals were updated for faster, lighter shifts and a shortened lever stroke.
Those pair to new rim brake calipers with improved performance, increased tire clearance, and the option for traditional single bolt mount or direct mount variants.
105 mechanical front & rear derailleurs
The 105 front derailleur was already quietly updated last summer with a new pivoting design that copied Dura-Ace R9100 in order to get rid of the long lever arm to improve tire clearance, especially on bikes with short chainstays & wider, gravel-friendly tires. That new compact design (which skipped over last summer’s Ultegra update) carries over to R7000, with its easy to use cable tension adjustment replacing a barrel adjuster.
The 105 rear derailleur moves to the low-profile Shadow design adapted from mountain bikes, already found on Dura-Ace & Ultegra. This design tucks the rear derailleur more out of harm’s way (~12mm more inside) in the event of a crash, and adds Direct Mount hanger compatability. The new derailleur comes in two different cage lengths to work with either 11-25 to 11-30 cassettes (short cage – SS) or 11-28 to 11-34 cassettes (long cage – GS) much like Ultegra R8000.
105 cranksets & cassettes
105 also joins the other top road groups in offering a middle crankset gearing option, as well as slightly moving the inner ring to make for smoother & quieter operation while cross chained. Now 105 buyers can pick from standard road 53/39, semi-compact 52/36, or compact road 50/34 chainring combinations.
On the cassette side, 105 adds a new CS-R7000 11-30T option to the previous 11-28, 11-32 & 12-25 options. And there’s a new budget 11-speed CS-HG700-11 cassette targeting road plus, gravel, cross & adventure riding with an 11-34T range.
Pricing & Availability
The new Shimano 105 R7000 components will be available starting in June 2018. The complete rim brake groupset is said to retail for $745/650€, with the disc brake group from $1130/890€.
USD pricing breakdown
ST-R7020 hydraulic disc brake dual control lever – $310 each (lever, caliper & hose)
ST-R7025 Small Hand hydraulic disc brake dual control lever – $315 each
BR-R7070 hydraulic disc brake calipers: front – $70, rear $65
RT70-SS 140mm rotors – $34 each
ST-R7000 rim brake dual control levers – $235 per pair
BR-R7000 standard rim brakes – $95 per pair
BR-R7010 direct mount brakes – $53-58 each
FD-R7000 front derailleur – $40
RD-R7000 rear derailleurs – $53-58
FC-R7000 crankset – $160
CS-R7000 cassettes: 12-25T, 11-28T, 11-30T, 11-32T – $51
CS-HG700 wide range cassette: $56
RS370 tubeless aluminum wheels
At the same time as the new budget road group, Shimano also has slipped out a new wider rim 700c, E-Thru axle, tubeless-ready, disc-specific WH-RS370-TL aluminum wheelset designed for 28-38mm tires. It has a claimed weight of 1900g for the pair and aretail price of 290€.