Shimano announces new 11-speed road wheels

OSAKA, Japan (BRAIN) — Shimano on Friday announced a batch of new products and product changes, including four new 11-speed-compatible road wheelsets, new dynamo hubs and updates to the Alfine, Nexus, Alivio and Tourney groups.

As is the company's longtime practice, Shimano shared information on the products with worldwide media, including BRAIN, several weeks ago, on condition that the information not be released until March 1 Osaka, Japan, time. Shimano did not release details on the new products' availability or pricing.

New wheels

Shimano has expanded its 11-speed road wheel lineup with four models, three of which are compatible with tubeless tires. Those three models have cup-and-cone hub bearings, wide-flange hub technology and "digital adjustment system" hubs. The digital adjustment system is a ratcheting bearing adjustment feature introduced on Shimano's higher-end hubs several years ago.

Two of the sets — the $1,300 WH-RS81-C35-TL and the $900 WH-RS81-C24-TL — are carbon, while the $500 RS610 model has an aluminum rim. The fourth new wheel is the $230 WH-RS010.

The RS81-C24 will be in warehouse in May, followed by the RS010 in June, the RS-81-C35 in July and the RS610 in October. 

New dynamo hubs

New 1.5-watt dyamo hubs in the Alfine, Nexus and XT groups are compliant with EU regulations and are improved over previous Shimano dynamo hubs. The new hubs areas much as 22 percent lighter and have 50 percent less rotational drag. The Alfine and XT models are Centerlock disc brake compatible.  The Alfine dynamo will retail for $1o0 and be available in September; the Nexus hubs also will be available in September; Shimano does not publish MSRP on Nexus products.

Alfine and Nexus updates

The Alfine group gets a new $250 8-speed internal gear hub and $40 Rapidfire flat-bar shifters. Nexus Inter-8 hubs are now offered in Shiny Silver and Matte Black finishes. Nexus’ new crank has a new shape and surface treatment. Nexus Inter-7 hubs receive mechanical refinements for increased responsiveness. The new Nexus parts will be available in September.

New Alivio and Tourney groups

The new Alivio M4000 9-speed group has new features borrowed from the company's higher-end groups. It has compact triple gearing, a new low-profile front derailleur that offers increased tire clearance, and a new rear derailleur with Shadow technology. The parts will be available in June or July.

The new Tourney TX800 8-speed group for entry-level off road bikes has mechanical disc brakes with Centerlock rotors and redesigned hubs for increased durability. The company said the Tourney group "is improved across the board." The new Tourney parts will be available in July.