While the shape and purpose of drivetrains and cycling groupsets haven’t changed much in 100 years, the quality, efficiency, and functionality has improved a great deal.
And when one of the major manufacturers creates a new top-of-the-line cycling groupset, the technology eventually trickles down to the less expensive groups.
A Tiagra groupset today would be lighter with crisper shifting than 2000-era Dura Ace components, for example, because of the trickle down technology.
A cycling groupset consists of the shifters, crank, cassette, chain, derailleurs, and brakes.
The British site road.cc has done a review of the 2016 offerings from Shimano, SRAM, and Campagnolo, the three major bike part manufacturers. Many other part makers are making inroads into the market as well.
We’re bringing you this as a way to help you understand how the different groups from different companies are, well, different.
The biggest differences between the top and lower-end groupsets is that the top of the line groupset is lighter, more durable, and has more precise shifting and braking. The top groups also usually have more gears.
The biggest difference between SRAM and Shimano and Campagnolo is the shifting technology:
- Shimano uses the brake lever to shift up and the shift lever to shift down.
- SRAM uses a double-click technology where you push the shift lever a little to shift down, and push it further to shift up.
- Campagnolo uses a thumb button to shift down and a shift lever to shift up.
All of these parts are available at Ben’s Cycle, plus we have the expertise to install them correctly and maintain them for many years’ worth of use.
Shimano Cycling Groupset
Japanese manufacturer Shimano, the top producer of bicycle drivetrains and groups, continues to improve its product line for 2016.
“If you want high performance without the hefty price tag of Dura-Ace, then Ultegra is probably the pick of the range. Since the 6800 update, the gap between the two has been narrowed, and it shouldn’t be overlooked too quickly if you want high performance and decent weight components. It’s a favourite with amateur racers because the weight penalty is minimal, especially if built onto a decent carbon fibre frame, and the performance is nearly identical.”
Here again is the link to the full article.
SRAM Cycling Groupset
SRAM is an American company based out of Chicago, and a relatively new player in the drivetrain market. But what they’ve missed in history, they’ve more than made up for in innovation and quality. SRAM built road components after dominating the mountain bike side of the market for many years.
SRAM‘s two big innovations of the year are the 1x road groups and the new wireless shifting system, the first of its kind.
“We’d say that Force is pretty much a direct competitor to Shimano’s Ultegra groupset, and like Ultegra it’s an excellent system. It’s lighter than Ultegra 6800 and the real-world cost is higher. Even so, SRAM’s second-tier groupset is a great choice for the privateer racer, or anyone building or buying a lightweight bike for fast riding.”
Campagnolo Cycling Groupset
“Chorus EPS operates in the same way as Super Record EPS and Record EPS, and Campagnolo says that the shifting performance is identical.
“Its extremely powerful motors are capable of producing levels of torque without rival in electronic shifting which guarantee precise and effective shifting no matter the conditions or circumstances,” says Campagnolo.”