Shimano Introduces New Ultegra R8000 Groupset
After teasing us with the new Ultegra components on BMC’s Teammachine bikes, Shimano has officially announced the release of the Ultegra R8000 series. This new generation of Ultegra, similar to Dura-Ace, features 11 speeds and offers a variety of shifting, braking, and gearing options. The R8000 series includes mechanical shifting with rim brakes or hydraulic disc brakes, as well as Di2 electronic shifting with rim brakes or hydraulic disc brakes. Additionally, there are updated dual control levers for Di2 Synchro Shift, rim brake setups.
New Dual Control Levers
Shimano has made improvements to the dual control levers for the Ultegra R8000 series. The standard levers have similar ergonomics, but there are noticeable differences between the mechanical and hydraulic variants. The R8020 lever has a rounded top and the same ergonomically shaped brake lever as the rest of the Ultegra kit. The R8050 Di2 rim brake levers have a more tactile click with each shift and are designed to work with Shimano’s customizable E-Tube setup. The R8070 Di2 hydraulic brake levers have a more narrow body and include expanded free stroke and reach adjust for better brake performance. The R8060 Di2 TT levers are designed specifically for time trial setups and feature a more sleek design.
New Derailleurs and Crankset
The Ultegra R8000 series also includes new derailleurs and a crankset. The rear derailleurs feature a low-profile Shadow design, similar to the Dura-Ace, which tucks the derailleur underneath the cassette for better protection. Both mechanical and Di2 rear derailleurs are offered in two different cage lengths to work with different cassette sizes. The front derailleur has been reshaped with a shorter arm to clear wider road tires. The new asymmetric crankset offers increased stiffness and comes in a variety of chain ring size options. The cassette options include six standard offerings and a wider range 11-34 cassette for gravel riding.
Overall, the Ultegra R8000 groupset brings top-tier technologies from Dura-Ace to a more affordable price point for consumers.