On the same day that Shimano announced its new 12 (and 11 and 10) speed Deore groupset, it is also announcing a few more items, like bigger capacity batteries for its e-bike motors and, well, there are a few things that are particularly niche…
XTR for SuperBoost Bikes
SuperBoost Plus bikes, like those from Pivot and Salsa run wide, 157mm rear hubs and they accordingly need wider spaced chainlines. Shimano is filling the top end need for chainsets by today launching its new FC-M9130 chainset designed for bikes with 157mm rear hubs.
As Shimano says: To provide the perfect chain line for 157mm O.L.D. rear hubs Shimano is introducing a new front crank. The XTR FC-M9130-1 is a 1×12 lightweight, direct mount Hollowtech II crankset with Dynamic Chain Engagement+ chainrings for excellent chain engagement and retention. The FC-M9130-1 runs on a wider 56.5mm chain line meaning that it can accommodate wider tyres but has a relatively narrow Q-factor of 171mm. This is achieved by using the low-profile arms of the XTR FC-M9100 series, which gives riders the benefits of a wider chain line frame without affecting the biomechanics of pedaling.”
So even if you’re running a wider SuperBoost rear hub, you needn’t be pedalling like a cowboy, or having to settle for cheaper components. We know that Pivot bikes, the early champion of SuperBoost Plus is a regular Shimano collaborator, so there will be some happiness to hear that (though it was probably Pivot’s suggestion in the first place…)
Flat Mount XTR, XT, SLX and, er, why?
And then we come to the oddest release announced today. Shimano is offering XTR, XT and SLX level brakes in a flat-mount style. Flat mount is used in the road world and its been adopted as the universal way of fitting disc brakes to delicate road bikes. As all the hardware is in the brake and its bracket, there’s no need for (strippable…) threads in the frame and the bike frame can be made lighter.
Given that Shimano already serves the road world with Dura Ace, Ultegra, 105 and now GRX flat mount brakes, we’re not really sure where this has come from. Especially as no mountain bike manufacturer that we know of is currently making flat-mount frames. Perhaps Shimano knows something that we don’t (which is often the case) and perhaps the mountain bike race world is suddenly about to adopt flat mount brakes. Or maybe someone just ticked the wrong box on a spreadsheet?
In other news, Deore will get its own Microspline wheels and hubs. That’s something we can definitely see a use for…
As for the flat mount XTR? We’re sure that Shimano has the answer somewhere…