The official UK launch of all the 2002 Shimano kit we’re allowed to talk
about (don’t ask it’s complicated) takes place later this week but here’s
some news we’ve scooped from US site Mountainbike.com.
We’re not sure what this means for the future of the ‘long in the grey tooth’
XTR groupset but the two new top line treats we’ve got wind of are both
numbered (M959) rather than named. Pulling what we can glean of the Shimano
code apart (last XTR level pedal was 858) this means it’s issue 9 of the top
end ‘5’ groupset. We’re not sure why the last letter tends to be the same as
the first, and we’re not going to spend all morning leafing through old
Shimano catalogues trying to crack the code. In fact let’s forget about the
whole numbers thing.
The M959 wheels use a disc specific rim, titanium rear axle and freehub body
and an aluminium front axle to cut the excess weight out of previous Shimano
The new 959 pedals are promised to be the most mud proof ever – a direct
challenge to TIME’s dominance in this area – and weigh only 344g. Best of all
they are compatible with all Shimano’s previous cleats, unlike their snobbish
M858 predecessors which immeadiately spat out any other sort of cheaper
Shimano cleat. Not content with simple design evolution Shimano have also
fitted a brand new flourine gas impregnated retention claw to minimise
release and entry resistance. Otherwise it’s the usual dual sided adjustable
tension set up.
Well, there’s two scoops from the States, but you’ll have to wait till
Cullen gets back on Monday for the rest.