Cannondale look to have won the race to become the first manufacturer to offer a bike sporting Shimano's new Di2 electronic groupset.
The Limited Edition SuperSix Di2 will be available from March in the UK at an eye-watering £7499 so all you early adopters out there had better start saving now.
As well as full Dura Ace Di2 drivetrain (53-39 chainset pushing a 12-27 cassette) and brakes, spec highlights include Zipp 404 Clincher wheels on Zipp hubs, oh, and a high modulus carbon SuperSix frame. Finishing kit is FSA K-Force Carbon 'bars, Fi'zi:k Antares saddle on top of an FSA K-Force carbon seat post. Only available in white – which seems to be the colour of the moment. Sizes available: 48,50,52,54,56,58,60,63
Shimano's Di2 certainly caused a big stir when launched last summer, and it was fun to play with at Eurobike, however it is safe to say that not everyone is convinced by the need for an electronic system when Dura Ace 7900 is lighter, and while Di2 still uses wires…
According to Shimano the main for not making Di2 a wireless system was down to the battery. A wired system can run on a single lightweight yet powerful battery. The power needed for a wireless system is much higher. They’d have needed separate, much larger individual batteries for both the front and rear derailleur shifting duties for a wireless system – resulting in a much, much heavier system. Hence the decision for wired.
Plus anyone with experience of wireless internet access might quick like the dependable reassurance a good old cable, electronic or otherwise and those critics probably said the same about STI shifters.
Shimano’s revolutionary new electronic shifting on the Cannondale SuperSix Di2
is truly remarkable. It provides perfect, silent, silky-smooth shifts every time,
in any weather, under any load. Hit the button on the ergonomic shifters and
the computer does the rest -- timing the shift to perfectly coincide with the
shift ramps and pins, and then automatically adjusting the trim. No chatter, no
grinding, no hesitation, no thrown chains or missed shifts. Ever. There are no
cables to stretch or get gritty. The derailleur adjustment is incredibly easy and
can be done while riding.
The battery will last approximately 2000km of riding and will fully recharge in
1 1/2 hours. It is about 68 grams heavier than the standard 7900 (which
shares the crank, chain, cassette, BB, and brakes) but it seems a small price to
pay -- a few minutes of riding Di2 will make every other shifting system on the
planet feel clunky and obsolete.
Tony has been editing cycling magazines and websites since 1997 starting out as production editor and then deputy editor of Total Bike, acting editor of Total Mountain Bike and then seven years as editor of Cycling Plus. He launched his first cycling website - the Cycling Plus Forum at the turn of the century. In 2006 he left C+ to head up the launch team for Bike Radar which he edited until 2008, when he co-launched the multi-award winning road.cc - which he continues to edit today. His favourite ride is his ‘commute’ - which he does most days inc weekends and he’s been cycle-commuting since 1994. His favourite bikes are titanium and have disc brakes.