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The new integrated brake and gear levers have been totally redesigned. For a start, the brake levers are carbon to drop a few grams (the complete units are 40g lighter) and add more sex appeal. Then there’s the shape of the bracket body: you get a flatter top section with less of a scoop downwards when you’re on the hoods. We wouldn’t say they’re necessarily more comfortable, just different from before, and definitely more Campag-esque. The shift cable now runs internally underneath your bar tape – again like Campagnolo – which neatens up the front end. It’ll also please the aero-obsessed. You move down the cassette (changing up a gear) one sprocket at a time, the same as before, but whereas previously you could shift up the cassette a maximum of three sprockets at once, now there’s less of a sweep and the maximum is two. That means that instead of three pushes to get from the smallest sprocket to the largest, it now takes five. It’s rarely an issue but, still, a slight disadvantage. Those with smaller hands will appreciate the easy reach adjustment – you just take off the front cap and turn a screw to dial the levers right in – while hidden away underneath a titanium fixing band and bolt save a little weight.
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Dave is a founding father of road.cc, having previously worked on Cycling Plus and What Mountain Bike magazines back in the day. He also writes about e-bikes for our sister publication ebiketips. He's won three mountain bike bog snorkelling World Championships, and races at the back of the third cats.