Today Shimano unveiled the worst kept secret in the bike industry this year – a new 12-speed groupset! Not only in their highest tier Dura Ace, but also Ultegra. This is a little different to the usual Shimano game plan of Dura Ace first, then Ultegra a year or two later.
If you were after new 12-speed Di2, you’re in luck! The Shimano 12-speed cassettes will even fit on the current 11-speed hubs! Hooray for backwards compatibility! But if you were after a new high end mechanical groupset, well that’s another story…
Shimano’s new Dura Ace AND Ultegra groupsets are Di2 only! No mechanical.
You read that right. Shimano will not produce 12-speed Dura Ace or Ultegra in mechanical, it’s all “semi-wireless” Di2 electronic shifting. The current generation of Dura Ace and Ultegra mechanical 11-speed will be produced for a while, but who knows how long complete high end 11-speed mechanical groupsets will be around for. While 105 is still 11-speed for now, I’d expect that to change to 12-speed in two years or thereabouts.
They key takeaway? If at some point you were planning on building or upgrading a bike to Dura Ace or Ultegra mechanical (especially with rim brakes) you’d better buy the groupset sooner rather than later!
I wonder if I could fit semi-wireless 12-speed Di2 to my old school Trek 5200? 😎