Classified’s wireless electronic internal gear 2-speed Powershift rear hub makes the leap to 12 speeds with the addition of four new tightly-spaced SRAM-ready cassettes. Delivering all of the aero, straight chainline benefits of a 1x setup with the wide range and small gearing steps of a traditional road 2x drivetrain, the Classified Powershift system can now work with SRAM 12sp road & gravel drivetrains (and probably Campagnolo, too)!
Classified Powershift 2x hub is now 12-speed SRAM compatible
The innovative Classified Powershift system delivers incredibly fast wireless electronic shifts inside the rear hub, even under full power, to eliminate the front derailleur without compromising on gearing. But the trick of the planetary reduction gear inside the rear hub has always been that it was limited to proprietary Classified cassettes that fit around the oversized hub shell. Classified makes what seems to be premium, fast-shifting one-piece steel cassettes, but they’ve been limited to 11-speed compatibility with four cassettes available. (We’re testing a Rose GRX Di2 2×11 setup right now, keep an eye for a full review next month.)
Now four new 12-speed cassette options really open up the possibilities.
The four new 12-speed Classified cassettes are built just like the original 11sp variety, precisely machined in Europe from a single block of steel, and all share the same proprietary driver interface for the Powershift rear hub. That means all existing Powershift rear wheels can be upgraded to 12-speed simply by replacing the cassette.
Of course, it’s your own derailleur that shifts the chain across gears (while the 2x hub magic happens out of view inside the hub shell) so you’ll need a compatible 12-speed derailleur to make the switch. Classified only officially says that SRAM 12-speed shifting is compatible, but we’ve seen pretty good cross-compatibility between SRAM road & Campagnolo 12-speed cassettes, so you likely could go for an Italian drivetrain too, if you want.
While the electronic Powershift hub is shifted wirelessly, there isn’t direct integration (yet?) with SRAM eTap AXS shifter like there is with Di2 (Shimano shifters can plug directly into the Classified controller). But Classified provides their own sprint-style shifter button with every Powershift wheelset they sell that can be installed under the bar tape. So that means, you don’t even need an electronic shift derailleur.
Pretty much any modern 12mm thru-axle, flat mount disc brake, 11 or 12-speed derailleur equipped bike could be set up with a Classified Powershift system using one of their cassettes.
Classified Powershift 12-speed – Pricing, options & availability
The new 12-speed Classified cassettes will be available in 11-28, 11-30, 11-32 & 11-34 gear ratios. They are paired with a traditional big ring up front, while the hub provides a 69% reduction gear inside. Since the cassettes do not go down to a 10T cog, like premium SRAM 12sp drivetrains, you’ll want to stick with a more conventional big ring in most cases to get you ideal gear ratios. Think 50-53T chainrings for road riding, and 46-50T rings for gravel, as a starting point.
Pre-order a new Classified 12-speed cassette now for 199€ (a bit more than the 175€ price if the 11-speed), and you can expect them to ship out starting in August. Of course, you’ll still need a Classified Powershift equipped wheelset which will set you back another 2400€ if you want to build up your own hidden 2×12 bike.
European demo roadtrip
Classified is also in the process of dramatically ramping up their European production (90% of their system is manufactured in BeNeLux) and expanding their dealer service network in Europe. A couple of teams are driving around Europe this summer visiting bike shops to introduce them to the Powershift system in hopes of expanding from the current 60 shop network to a couple hundred by the end of the year. Bike shops can register their interest here to schedule a stop from the roving Classified van.