We were pleasantly surprised to be able to sit in in a presentation for the new Shimano Ultegra R8000 groupset yesterday, presented by Shimano Europe development managers during a trade event for cycling distributor i-ride.
We featured an in-depth guide to what you can expect from Ultegra R8000 earlier this month (see the link above), and at this presentation we picked up on some fresh murmurings that we didn't catch in our first scoop on the new group...
The R8000 caliper brakes can take up to 28mm tyres plus mudguards
The caliper version of Ultegra R8000 will take up to 28mm tyres plus mudgards, which will be welcome news for those who like to spec beefier tyres and some protection for winter or poor-weather riding. Shimano do say that any wider and you should use the disc version of the groupset, though.
All bikes with R8000 will have synchronised shifting compatibility: but you'll be able to update your Ultegra 6800 Di2 groupset to synchronised shifting by just buying the battery
If you don't want to splash out for the entire new groupset but still want the convenience of synchronised shifting, you can buy Shimano's BT-BN110 battery separate and in conjunction with Shimano's E-TUBE app, set up customised synchronised shifting on your current groupset. Synchro shifting allows you to pre-select the next chainset/ cassette combination the chain will move to when you press the button to upshift or downshift, even if that means moving both derailleurs.
The new cranks won't work with the old front derailleur, but the new front derailleur will work with old cranks
If you just wanted to upgrade the crankset on your Ultegra 6800 groupset... you won't be able to do so without replacing the front mech too, which will cost you at least another £50. Vice versa though, the new front mech is compatible with Ultegra 6800 cranks.
We attended this presentation during an industry event for i-ride distribution, who will be speccing a selection of their Orro 2018 bikes with the new Ultegra R8000 groupset. Check out orrobikes.com for more info.
After cobbling together a few hundred quid during his student days off the back of a hard winter selling hats (long story), Jack bought his first road bike at the age of 20 and has been hooked ever since. He was Staff Writer at 220 Triathlon magazine for two years before joining road.cc in 2017, and reports on all things tech as well as editing the road.cc live blog. He is also the news editor of our electric-powered sister site eBikeTips. Jack's preferred events are time trials, sportives, triathlons and pogo sticking (the latter being another long story), and on Sunday afternoons he can often be found on an M5 service station indulging in his favourite post-race meal of 20 chicken nuggets, a sausage roll, caramel shortbread and a large strawberry milkshake.