Pioneer has just introduced their most affordable power meter option yet with a new way to use the single-leg sensor…on your own crank arms.
Originally, they sold the left or right sensor preinstalled on the crank arm, which meant you ended up with a spare after replacing the arm that was already on your bike. Now, they’re letting you simply send in your existing Shimano Dura-Ace, Ultegra or 105 11-speed crank arm and have their hi-def power meter sensor professionally installed for just $499.
That’s $130 less than the original cost for a non-drive Dura-Ace crank arm, and $60 off the Ultegra price. The 105 option is new, and brings their power measurement to an even lower overall system price point. Basically, the prior investment in the additional arm was simply returned as savings to the consumer…
Why the furious pace of price dropping and new options? Pioneer says When they started, there were only about three options. Now, by their count, there are fourteen ways you can add power measurement to your bike. But with most, you’re committing to a complete system of either spider/crank arm or specific hubs built into a wheel. All of those systems require a massive amount of inventory, particularly with the wide range of crank arms and lengths that a rider might need. So, bike shops were less likely to stock any of it.
Now, they can simply stock the universal Pioneer power meter retail box with all the parts. You simply place your crank in the box and then ship it to Pioneer for installation. Turnaround time is under a week for U.S. customers. They say if you overnight it to them on a Monday, you’ll typically have it back before the weekend. All installs are done in their California facility, where the arms are cleaned, prepped and units installed. Actual install process is typically under 48 hours, and they return it via two-day shipping.
And it’s not limited to the left side – they’re offering it on the drive side for just $80 more. And because the drive side unit doesn’t add any extra depth to the arm, it’s compatible with 100% of the frames out there. Either one can be “upgraded” to dual leg measurement later by simply buying the other side, and both will independently send their full resolution data (via ANT, not ANT+) to the Pioneer head unit if you want more detailed analysis of your pedal stroke.
For now, they’ll continue to offer a pre-assembled arm option, too, but they suspect the bring-your-own program will take over.