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Five cool things coming soon from Shimano, Mason, Endura, Lazer, and Craft Cadence

Take a look at some of the coolest products we have in for review on right now, including Shimano‘s new 12-speed Ultegra 8100 Di2 groupset

There‘s a crazy number of exciting products out there being pushed to their limits by our reviewers at the moment, and here are some of the highlights that you can expect to see on in the coming days and weeks…

Shimano Ultegra R8170 Di2 Disc Groupset 


2022 Shimano Ultegra groupset overall - 1

You can’t have missed the launch of Shimano’s Ultegra R8100 groupset last year; unveiled on the same day as the top-level Dura-Ace 9200, the second-tier offering is now 12-speed and Di2 (electronic shifting) only. The shifters on the disc brake version communicate wirelessly with the rest of the system.

Shimano launches 12-speed Ultegra R8100 groupset that’s Di2 only 

Shimano Ultegra R8100 has been in short supply but our man Liam Cahill has had it on his bike for the past couple of months and is all set to give his verdict. Stay tuned to for the review. It might land as early as this Thursday (19 May 2022).

Mason Definition Chorus 


2022 Mason Definition Chorus.jpg

The last time we reviewed Mason’s Definition aluminium all-road bike, Stu Kerton called it “a superb machine, crafted with attention-to-detail to give a ride sensation that almost defies logic”. Wow!

Read our review of the Mason Definition Ultegra Hydro 

Whereas that model was built up with a Shimano Ultegra groupset, a new model has just arrived with Campagnolo’s 12-speed Chorus components. Quite a few brands have made the switch to Campag lately; it’s high-quality kit, of course, and it also has the distinct advantage of being available, whereas Shimano components are generally harder to get.

Our review bike is also specced with Hunt carbon wheels and Schwalbe Pro One tyres in a 30mm width. 

We’re excited to find out whether the Definition performs as well in this build as it did last time.

Endura Xtract Bibshort II


The Xtract Bibshort II is the most inexpensive bib short in Endura’s range and we’re interested in finding out how they compare with some of the pricier options. The FS260-Pro (£89.99) got a nine out of 10 review last year, for example, and Endura offers many other high-quality options. 

The Xtract Bibshort II features a seam-free inside leg and raw-edged hem bands with silicone print grippers to hold them in place.

The 400-Series pad has gel inserts to keep you comfortable and a maximum thickness of 15mm.

Lazer Vento KinetiCore Helmet


Lazer unveiled its KinetiCore technology at the end of March, a system that uses controlled crumple zones that are designed to protect your brain damage in the case of rotational impacts – so it’s the brand’s proprietary answer to MIPS, essentially.

All you need to know about MIPS 

Lazer says that KinetiCore is the first tech on the market that does this while being directly integrated into the EPS (expanded polystyrene) of the helmet itself.

MIPS killer? Lazer launches ‘world’s first fully integrated rotational-impact technology’ for bike helmets

Lazer is initially including KinetiCore in six helmets, only two of them designed for sport-style road riding. The Strada KinetiCore Helmet is the more affordable of these at £99.99, while the Vento is an aero model that’s still reasonably lightweight (290g)

Craft Cadence Roll Top Waterproof Backpack 21 Litres


The Craft Cadence Metro Pannier Backpack got an impressive eight out of 10 review on recently, Steve Williams describing it as “waterproof, well made and very usable luggage that's great for carting around”.

Check out our Craft Cadence Metro Pannier Backpack review

The Craft Cadence Roll Top Waterproof Backpack is seamlessly constructed from the same material – 600D polyester with a TPU (thermoplastic polyurethane) coating – but it’s designed to be worn on your back only, rather than as a dual pannier/backpack system.

Craft Cadence boasts that the Roll Top Waterproof Backpack features a tech sleeve with eight compartments, two front zipped pockets and external storage for a D-lock/U-lock.

It sounds promising but we’ll have to wait for the review from Nick Ball for all the details.

Mat has been in cycling media since 1996, on titles including BikeRadar, Total Bike, Total Mountain Bike, What Mountain Bike and Mountain Biking UK, and he has been editor of 220 Triathlon and Cycling Plus. Mat has been technical editor for over a decade, testing bikes, fettling the latest kit, and trying out the most up-to-the-minute clothing. He has won his category in Ironman UK 70.3 and finished on the podium in both marathons he has run. Mat is a Cambridge graduate who did a post-grad in magazine journalism, and he is a winner of the Cycling Media Award for Specialist Online Writer. Now over 50, he's riding road and gravel bikes most days for fun and fitness rather than training for competitions.

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Mathemagician | 2 years ago

Those Lazer helmets are a weird fit...every helmet I've ever worn I'm a medium (head circumference 57.5cm). I used to have a Lazer Blade helmet- medium. My wife also had a Lazer helmet a few years back for a short while, but it was a small and was still too big for her. I bought the new Lazer Strada Kineticore online a couple of days ago- again in a medium. While it fits, it's very snug and I haven't ridden it for a long distance yet so don't know if I'll just overheat/feel too cramped in it. Handed it to my wife to try on- who again, was too small for her old Lazer in small- and it fits her perfectly, but if she were to go by measurement alone she'd maybe think a size small might be too big. No idea why their fit has changed so much. 

beryl666 | 2 years ago

If the Aluminum is thin enough to absorb buzz how long before it fatigues? Seems like a substance that never should have been used to build bilkes. 

KRSL64 | 2 years ago
1 like

I have a Mason Definition 2 and I can assure the staff at Road CC that the frame, fork would perform absolutely identically if it had Shimano Claris or Dura Ace on it.  You are actually testing the Chorus groupset & wheels here, not the frame/fork because any differences can only be contributed to the groupset.

FTR, this bike defies belief, it has no right to be as good as it is and be made from aluminium.  Head and shoulders above the Trek, BH, Merida and Orbea carbon bikes I've owned.  The only short coming is being metal it's heavier but I'm no light weight climber so 600g more than the Merida Scultura rim brake bike I had is of no real consequence.

Be interested to see the test report and how Chorus fairs.


mdavidford | 2 years ago


designed to protect your brain damage

But how do they know where my brain damage is to start with?

Richard D | 2 years ago

FWIW, pretty much all of my cycling kit is either by Endura or Torm.  Can't fault it.

themuffle | 2 years ago

Those Endura shorts are seriously ugly. Do they not follow colour/styling trends? I really want to buy British but compare these to Maap/Rapha. I mean there's no comparison. I just looked through their website - Endura you need to emply some new, young designers, it's 2022 not 1993. And, yes they are not the only ones.....

Sredlums replied to themuffle | 2 years ago
1 like

I honestly don't see the problem. I checked out their website and it's just like most other brands: I like some of their stuff, some is 'meh' and some is ugly - to me.

Their designs often have quite a lot of colour and there are a lot of motivs. You don't seem to like that, and that's fine, but you don't seem to accept that other people actually like that. I happen to find most MAAP designs butt-ugly, and most of Rapha's stuff is stylish, but pretty damn boring too.

Why noy embrace that different brands cater to different people, with different styles? I for one am happy that not all brands follow the boring, bland, risk-less design trend. It might come as a shock, but there's probably a reason that Endura are not the only ones with '1993' designs… it's because the bold retro nineties look is fun, and pretty popular.

taberesc replied to themuffle | 2 years ago
1 like

For £57.99 I'd rather get something that looks crap but is comfortable and lasts rather than looking well but falls apart after 5 rides. I've had Rapha bibs that cost twice the price where all the threads have come loose after a month or two.

herewardthefake replied to taberesc | 2 years ago

Did you use the Rapha repair service? I've always found them to be excellent at solving quality issues. Grippers went on a pair of bibs in just over a year and they gave me a full refund.

taberesc replied to herewardthefake | 2 years ago

Definitely agree that their customer service is good...and to be fair, their kit quality has improved drastically also. I still only buy their stuff when it's on sale though  3

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