Following in Dura-Ace's footsteps.
The second iteration of electronic Ultegra has officially arrived, and this time around the innovative system brings forth many notable Dura-Ace-esque refinements. Aside from the bump to 11-speed, updates to the shifters themselves include a slimmer profile that's more reminiscent of its Dura-Ace sibling, as well as reworked shift levers that are now positioned for easier access from the hoods. The surface texture is also more pronounced, which, in addition to the reworked paddle shapes, provides a more tactile feel for positive shifts from a variety of hand positions. And not to be left behind in the programmability department, the new shifters are also fully customizable through Shimano's E-tube software, meaning that various aspects of shifting are easily tuned to your preferences. It's safe to say the new Ultegra has learned a thing or two from its popular older brother.
The hoods of the Di2 6870 shifters now feature a smaller and slimmer shape compared to the Ultegra Di2 ST-6770 edition. Made from a dual-compound rubber composite, the low-volume hood design retains the slight perforated form of the originals, and makes lever accessibility easy. The lever blades and paddles have also received a sleek redesign. Their outward curve and feel is slightly more pronounced than in the prior generation, and make for a more positive interaction from either the hoods or drops. In terms of the shift buttons, Shimano has widened them and added more contrast in texture, creating an easily navigable shift interface. And when you're buried in the drops on long descents, you'll be happy to know that Shimano has continued to include 10mm of reach adjustment for the levers.
The shifting itself is where 6870 shines the brightest — this is where Shimano's "Rider-Tuned" philosophy really makes itself known. This is the title given to Shimano's campaign of providing you the best rider-experience of your life. The 6870 now enjoys the same fully programmable shifting experience as Dura-Ace 9070, which was only available as a firmware upgrade with the original 6770. This standard feature now enables you to select five different shifting speeds to the rear derailleur. And while this isn't a function that can't be performed on-the-fly, the option still creates a customizable ride quality that's specific to your riding style and requirements. Additionally, these shifters present the distinct ability for something that we've always been waiting for from Shimano — the ability to dump through the entire cassette with one shift movement. That's right, once programmed through the E-Tube software, one sustained motion will take you all of the way up or down the cassette.
Similar to 9070, Ultegra 6870 has eased your shifting options through the incorporation of cleaner, more minimal single-wire E-Tube connections. This way, the positioning of satellite shifters is wide open for either the drops or the top of the bars.
The Shimano Ultegra Di2 ST-6870 11-Speed Shifters are available in one size and in the color Grey. Each pair comes in at a claimed weight of 295g.
- Low-profile hoods
- Sleek, redesigned lever blades and paddles
- Wider shift buttons
- 10mm of reach
- E-Tube technology