Australian Mountain Bike - - Fast Track -

On 25th May, Shimano re­leased the full de­tails of their lat­est XTR group set. Each time XTR gets re­designed, we all go wild. So bright! So shiny! So new! But it has been a long time since Shimano’s lead­ing off-road group set was so new – for XTR M9100 Shimano started afresh and de­signed the group from the ground up. Here’s a look at the per­ti­nent de­tails – head to AMB­mag.com.au for more.

This is was wide as it gets

With a 10-51 12-speed cas­sette, Shimano have hit back with a 510% gear range with a sin­gle chain­ring sys­tem. There is also a 10-45 cas­sette.

Mi­cro Spline

To fa­cil­i­tate adding a 10t sprocket, Shimano cre­ated a new free­hub body. It’s also a lighter body than be­fore, and as of print­ing only avail­able on Shimano and DT Swiss hubs.

No more wheel sets

Recog­nis­ing that we all want dif­fer­ent rim ma­te­ri­als, weights and widths – Shimano just do XTR hubs in Boost and non-Boost, 28 and 32 hole, straight pull or J-bend. The hubs are also con­sid­er­ably lighter than be­fore.

Race or En­duro?

The R is for rac­ing, and the XTR Race parts are op­ti­mised for XCO, and the XTR En­duro parts are op­ti­mised for En­duro rac­ing, in­clud­ing 4-pot brakes.

2x isn’t dead

So with a 510% range with 1x, there is also a 2x op­tion with 28/38 chain rings us­ing the 10-45 cas­sette to de­liver a range well over 600%.

Di­rect mount chain rings

No more new bolt pat­terns, Shimano have gone di­rect mount with chain rings from 30-38t avail­able. They also save about 100g with the Race crank while the En­duro model is beefier.

Tune in to the trail

With the Mi­cro Spline free­hub comes a new hub en­gage­ment called Scy­lence. It is a su­per quiet drive ring en­gage­ment sys­tem that gets rid of pawls for en­gage­ment suited to the high loads of a wide range cas­sette. Along with a chain, cas­sette and chain ring tooth pro­file that re­duces clat­ter – lis­ten to your tyres, wind in the trees and sounds of the trail - not your free­wheel and shift­ing.

Feather touch shift­ing

With longer shift levers and up­dated ca­ble outer, Shimano claim a much lighter and faster shift. With a new brake clamp lo­ca­tion they also claim much stiffer brak­ing thanks to a lever clamp that braces against the bars. A new iSpecEV mount also al­lows far more range to po­si­tion the shifter ex­actly where you need it.

Ana­logue only

This it­er­a­tion of XTR has no Di2. For now. It’s not go­ing any­where on the road so we’re keep­ing our eyes peeled to see if any elec­tronic wiz­ardy comes back to the dirt. New frames like the Canyon Lux don’t have Di2 ports - but who’s to say wires are in­volved in the fu­ture?

Drop­per in­te­gra­tion

Drop­per posts are ev­ery­where, and Shimano have a neat lever that uses their new iSpecEV sys­tem to mount un­der the bar on the left, work­ing with any post that uses 7mm ca­ble pull.

There’s still 11 speed

That’s right, you can get an En­duro spe­cific 10-45 11-speed cas­sette which uses it’s own hub with wider flange spac­ing for a stiffer and stronger wheel. It’s very race and per­for­mance spe­cific. But that’s what XTR is for. We’ve heard this ex­tra flange width cre­ates a wheel with the stiff­ness of Su­per­boost within the 148x12mm stan­dard.

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