Chipps spent Friday afternoon in the Midlands for this breaking news…
Completely revamped SHIMANO ALFINE 11-speed internal geared hub. Sporty and fashionable cycling will be brought to a whole new dimension with SHIMANO’s new ALFINE 11-speed internal geared hub. This hub gear will offer three more gears at a lighter weight than the current 8-speed version (SG-S501)! The components are simple, yet beautiful and highly reliable.
This upgrade will further enhance the use of internal hub gear bicycles into the sports market.
Besides more gears and smaller steps in between the gears, the new ALFINE SG-S700 offers also a wider gear ratio of 409 % (compared to 306% for the 8-speed version). This hub gear will run super smooth thanks to the use of a completely new helical gear system. Helical gears feature an angled teeth profile that engage more gradually compared to spur (or straight-cut) profiles, resulting in a more smooth and quiet shift. This hub gear also features an improved durability by the use of an oil lubricant instead of grease.
Besides this new internal geared hub, Shimano will also offer a new ALFINE RAPIDFIRE PLUS shifter SL-S700 that operates in exactly the same direction as the top-level SHIMANO MTB groups. It has been designed using the latest shifter technologies: Instant Release technology: super fast and direct gear changing. Multi Release technology: allows multiple shifts with one lever stroke. Two-Way Release: Allows the index finger lever to be operated in two directions resulting in the same shift action (push-pull and push-push). SG-S700 and SL-S700 will be available in silver only.
These new products can be combined with the current ALFINE components such as disc brake calipers and disc brake levers, cranksets, chain tensioner and hub dynamo.
These stylish components will offer many new possibilities in the development of sporty and fashionable bikes for quality and design-minded consumers.
Availability in the market: September 2010
Chipps had a car-park test of the new Alfine and reckons “More gears, a wider range (409% vs 306% (vs 524% for Rohloff) and a shifter that works the other way round. The gear change is very smooth – though you do still need to ease off a tiny amount if you’re really stomping on the pedals) and the rest of the components work well too. They’ve changed the old greased, straight cut gear internals to a more synchomesh style gearbox, running in oil. I have high hopes for this new Alfine. Start looking for it on bikes from about September onwards…”