Posted by Editor on 04/14/16
Shimano has announced the long-expected XT version of their Di2 electronic mountain bike drivetrain. Shimano brought their electronic technology to mountain biking last year, with XTR Di2 [see Shimano XTR Di2 Review], and it was a given that it would trickle down to XT. XT will introduce the new E-Tube wireless connectivity for set and customization (more on that below). Availability will be late summer.
XT Di2 will use much of the same technology as XTR, at a more affordable price. XT and XTR parts will be interchangeable, and the XT Di2 drivetrain will also work with XT mechanical components. It will work with either 1x11 or 2x11 setups. Shimano keeps the same naming protocol as XTR (M9000 and M9050), so mechanical XT will be M8000, and XT Di2 will be M8050.
The E-Tube digital platform is analogous to how the auto manufacturers are integrating their entertainment systems with mobile operating systems, such as Apple and Android. You (or your mechanic) will be able set up and customize shifting patterns (such as using one shifter to control both front and rear shifting), digitally adjust derailleurs, integration with shock systems (the new Fox iRD fork) and display data on a range of cycle computers (such as Garmin, Magellan and Wahoo).
E-Tube includes integrated ANT private and Bluetooth connectivity, via the SC-MT800 Information Display. Utilizing wireless communication, riders can now set up, customize and monitor their Di2 system using Shimano's expanded E-tube software via a smart phone or tablet computer. From the System Information Display, riders can monitor important information such as battery level and toggle performance functions, as well charge the system. XTR Di2 is upgradable to E-Tube.
To use this functionality, XT Di2 has a new battery (DN110). It is the same size and shape as existing batteries, so upgrading XTR Di2 would be fairly simple with a new battery and the display unit.
Canadian pricing is not available at this time.
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