Trade show season is only about 6 weeks out, so the time is nigh for the rumor mill to start cranking. The first interesting tidbit we have to share is from the #1 bike industry behemoth, Shimano.
Shimano is starting to show off its new-for-2005 Ultegra 10 speed gruppo. Rather than paraphrasing, let me just go ahead and quote Harald Troost, press relations officer for Shimano Europe:
‘After the conspicuous revamp of the Shimano Dura-Ace components last year, it’s Ultegra’s turn now to get an extreme make-over. Ultegra has been remodeled into a completely new, high-end, road racing group set. It’s stiffer, more ergonomic and faster for even more pleasure on the road. And despite adding a tenth cog to the cassette, the new group is lighter than the previous nine-speed model.’
Unlike Dura-Ace 10-speed in 2004, Ultegra 10 will be available in double and triple configurations. You’ll also see a new Ultegra wheelset that looks a whole lot like the new Dura-Ace wheelset with its premium on lightness instead of extreme aerodynamics.
When will we see Ultegra-10? You’ll likely see as original equipment on complete bikes as early as October. It should be available for aftermarket sale not too long afterwards. Keep in mind, though, that the price increase from Ultegra-9 to Ultegra-10 will likely be rather breathtaking, so if your goal is high quality at a good savings, you should still take a long look at Ultegra-9 while it’s still available!