Why We Like The XTR BL-M9100 Disc Brake
When Shimano launched its all-new 12-speed groupset, we would be lying if we said we weren't eager to see every little piece of the puzzle. Sure, we're excited about the cassette, and all-new derailleur system, but we also wanted to see what race-ready improvements came to other components, like the XTR BLM-9100 Disc Brakes. Aligning with the XTR 9000 Race of years past, the M9100 Disc Brakes bring a clean, minimalist approach to your cockpit, both in its sleek, frill-free aesthetic, and in its featherweight class that lands in at 26-grams lighter than its predecessor — all without reducing XTR's next-level stopping power.
Shimano made some major changes when it comes to the cockpit side of this brakeset, both in the construction, and positioning of the brake levers. They use a new magnesium master cylinder to shed grams, and feature I-Spec EV that moves the clamp inward from the previous I-SPEC design so that the new master cylinder contacts the bar. This extra point of contact boosts rigidity, improving braking power for better control when you're in over your head coming into a hairpin corner. In addition to the new I-Spec configuration, Shimano employs a new brake lever shape with ergonomics in mind, to comfortably allow dual-finger braking for seamless operation. Shimano claims that the new brake design offers a whopping 10% increase in stiffness above M9000, even under high-temperature conditions.
You may have also spotted Shimano's M9120 Brakeset on our site, and you might be wondering where the M9100 falls in comparison. If we're comparing to years past, the M9100 falls in line with the Race model, while the M9120 is more similar to the Trail model. This means that while the M9120 packs in just about ever feature, like Servo Wave adjustment, and free-stroke adjust, the M9100 opts for a clean, feathery, minimalist design. While you can still adjust your levers with a tool in your shop or home garage, the M9100 isn't designed for adjustment on the go, allowing for major weight savings. In the back, the M9100 uses the lighter 2-piston system that offers more than enough stopping power for your XC rig, while the beefier M9120 opts for 4-piston system that's needed for stopping heavier enduro rigs. Both have been optimized for Shimano's newest IceTec Freeza rotors to drop heat as quickly as possible, even at high speeds.
- Cream-of-the-crop brakes for dominating XC race day
- Reduces input lag by 30% compared to M9000
- 1-piece aluminum caliper sheds weight, but not power
- Claims 10% boost in stiffness above M9000, even at high temp
- Magnesium master cylinder and carbon levers shed weight
- 2-pistons offer speedy stopping power under pressure
- Compatible with I-Spec EV for improved rigidity and braking response