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New Shimano 105 R7100 groupset goes 12-speed, Di2 and disc brake only

The trickle-down tech has made it to 105 level, and it's bad news for fans of rim brakes and mechanical shifting. Read all about it here…

105 is often considered to be the working cyclist’s groupset thanks to a reputation of being reliable and more attainable than its big brothers Dura-Ace and Ultegra. Well, this year it’s 40 years old and to celebrate there’s a new generation R7100... but unfortunately for some, mechanical shifting and rim brakes aren’t invited to the party.

> Annoyed about new 105? Here's why Shimano (probably) doesn't care

The highly anticipated Shimano 105 R7100 groupset brings Di2 (Digital Integrated Intelligence) performance to the 105 line for the first time. There’s also 12-speed, wireless shifting and a price tag of £1,730.

Shimano 105 R7100 di2 Fairlight drivetrain

Here are the main changes in bullet-point format:

  • Third-tier groupset moves from 11-speed to 12-speed
  • It’s available with Di2 (electronic shifting) only
  • No rim brake model
  • Shifters can communicate wirelessly with the rest of the system (disc brake version only)
  • Features full-carbon tubeless disc brake wheels


Shimano 105 R7100 drivetrain upper chainring

Just as expected 105 has joined the 12-speed club, but retains the smallest size cassette cog of 11T which means that it is backwards compatible with current 11-speed freehub equipped wheels.

Shimano 105 R7100 di2 Fairlight crankset

By moving to a 12-speed cassette, Shimano says it has managed to provide both the high and low gearing that riders want, along with an intelligent progression of gear steps in between.

Shimano 105 R7100 di2 crankset

The new crankset is available in 50-34 and 52-36 varieties, features Hollowtech ii technology and is available in 165, 170, 172.5 and 175mm crank lengths. It is worth noting that Shimano says the 52-36 chainset will not be available immediately, but doesn’t specify what sort of time scale we’re looking at.

Shimano 105 R7100 di2 Fairlight rear mech

Those chainsets are paired to just two cassette options, one of which is available now, that being an 11-34T. There will also be an 11-36T option coming at a later date to provide a sub-1:1 gear combination for really steep slopes.

Shimano 105 R7100 di2 rear derailleur

The rear derailleur has a longer cage than on the more expensive models to cope with the larger range cassettes, and just like on those models this is where the brains of the system are housed. It’s also here that you will find the battery charging point as well as the wireless connection to Shimano’s STI shifters and other third-party devices (replacing the EW-WU111 wireless unit on previous-generation Di2).

> Shimano launches 12-speed Ultegra R8100 groupset

A reminder that both the front and the rear derailleur has a wired connection to the battery which we expect to last about 1,000km (625 miles) between charges.

Shimano 105 R7100 di2 Fairlight front mech

The front derailleur has a larger body than on the current generation Dura-Ace or Ultegra groupsets, and instead looks more like the previous generation R8000/R9100 design. This is likely to reduce costs, but we don't know for sure. 


The main news here is that the shifters can be set up wireless just like we’ve seen on other Shimano groupsets. This is a hybrid system, featuring a wireless cockpit paired with a wired connection between the single seat-tube-stored battery and the front and rear derailleurs. As expected, the R7100 system can be customised via Shimano’s E-TUBE PROJECT App on your smartphone, where you can alter the number of shifts per button actuation and utilise the Synchronised and Semi-Synchro shifting functionality.

Shimano 105 R7100 di2 cockpit

The new shifters look to be a similar shape to the current generation Dura-Ace and Ultegra varieties, with Shimano stating the new Shimano 105 dual control levers “feature unparalleled ergonomics and refinements following pro rider feedback, where a raised hood peak and new lever shape enhance comfort and control in every riding position.”

Braking is also claimed to be improved thanks to a lighter, smoother lever action and expanded braking control area.

Shimano 105 R7100 di2 Fairlight shifters

The levers utilise Shimano’s proprietary wireless integrated circuit that features high–security, fast processing speed and low power consumption. Shimano says that compared to other wireless platforms this gives users a significant decrease in interference probability, faster shift speeds and longer battery life. There are no published figures on battery life as of yet, but we do know that the shifters are powered by coin-style CR1632 batteries. We imagine the stats will be similar to Ultegra, which are expected to last 18 months to two years with typical use.


This section can be a lot shorter than usual as there’s just one option, and that’s hydraulic disc brakes. I’m sure the number of comments on this will make up for it…

Shimano 105 R7100 di2 Fairlight brakes

Once again there are some clear similarities between these and the more expensive Dura-Ace and Ultegra options, and Shimano says that it has a “revamped braking system that’s quieter, easier to maintain, and feels more controlled and powerful.” These also feature the 10% wider pad-to-rotor clearance to reduce the chances of rubbing and unwanted noise. Shimano says that home mechanics will also appreciate an improved and user-friendly bleed process that can be performed without removing the calliper from the frame.


Shimano 105 R7100 C32 C46 wheel hub

The theme of cheaper trickle-down technology continues with the new RS710 wheels, which bring carbon down to 105 level for the first time. There are two new wheelsets, those being the C32 designed for climbing and the C46 for all-around use. Both non-series wheels share some clear similarities with the C36 and C50 Dura-Ace and Ultegra wheel options, and are both 11 and 12-speed compatible and tubeless-ready.

Shimano 105 R7100 C32 wheel

The C32 features a 32mm rim height, 21mm internal rim width and a claimed weight of 1,502g.

Shimano 105 R7100 C46 wheel

The C46 is 46mm deep, has a 21mm internal rim width and a claimed weight of 1,610g.

Weights (Grams)

Here’s a breakdown of individual component weights compared to the more expensive Ultegra R8100 groupset, and Sram’s (quite literally) Rival groupset. (Groupsets are disc brake and electronic shifting versions)

>Review: Sram Rival Etap AXS groupset

Pricing and Availability

Groupset Component Shimano R7100 (105) Shimano R8100 (Ultegra) Sram Rival AXS HRD
 Rear derailleur 302  262  366 
 Front derailleur 142  116  182 
 Cassette (Smallest) 361  297  282 
 Chain 252  252  266 
 Crankset (170mm) 766  711  844 
 Bottom bracket Not specified  66 Not specified 
 Shifter (pair) 423 391  845 
 Brake calliper 282  282 Inc w/ shifter
 Brake hose 110 60 Inc w/ shifter
 Rotor (pair) 286 212  314 
 Cable 19 19  N/A 
 Battery  53 53  On mechs 
 Total 2,995g  2,716g  3,097g

Here are the prices for Shimano 105 R7100 individual components:

Groupset Component Price (GBP)
 R7100 double chainset £169.99 
 RS520 double chainset £119.99 
 Cassette (11-34T) £69.99 
 Cassette (11-36T) *Available later £84.99
 Front derailleur £149.99
 Rear derailleur £274.99
 STI shifters & brake set £349.99 
 SM-RT64 Deore rotors (per unit) £26.99 
 Front wheel (C32 or C46) £479.99 
 Rear wheel (C32 or C46) £519.99 
 E-Tube individual wires  From £24.99 
 E-Tube BB junction From £20.99 
 Battery £174.99 
 Charging cable  £44.99 
 Complete groupset £1,730 

The groupset price including RT64 brake rotors, CNM7100 chain with E-tube battery and wires will set you back £1,730, which is a £669 or ~28% saving compared to the 12-speed Ultegra R8100 groupset. That has an RRP of £2,399 and doesn’t include brake rotors.

Shimano says the groupset is available to purchase right now, however, we do expect this to be in limited numbers.

Are you sad to see the demise of rim brakes or mechanical groupsets? Let us know in the comments as well as your feelings on the new groupset…

Jamie has been riding bikes since a tender age but really caught the bug for racing and reviewing whilst studying towards a master's in Mechanical engineering at Swansea University. Having graduated, he decided he really quite liked working with bikes and is now a full-time addition to the team. When not writing about tech news or working on the Youtube channel, you can still find him racing local crits trying to cling on to his cat 2 licence...and missing every break going...

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Space Cowboy 1 | 2 years ago

The Good:

  1. New 105 shares parts compatibility with latest Dura Ace and Ultegra group sets
  2. Reduced numbers of SKUs - less parts to manufacture/stock such as one rear derailleur, no mechanical shifting or rim brakes parts to build or stock.
  3. Typically on the Road Group sets by Shimano shift more smoothly, quietly, and quickly than Sram road group sets. Shimano also has less issues shifting the front mech.
  4. Electronic option at this level makes many consumers happy they can get Di2 for a little less money than Ultegra.
  5. The new brakes with added clearance and the brakes are better than Sram brakes.
  6. It's still black which will color match most any bike.
  7. Still 24 MM cranksets

The Bad:

  1. The rear derailleur is also only part of a road bicycle that's designed to break off in a crash, but Shimano decided it was a good idea to put a largest portion of the groupset’s technology in the rear derailleur.
  2. Going di2 electronic only there is long delays on the manufacturing of chips and electronic components. Mechanical 105 was always easier to source than di2.
  3. Shimano priced a lot of people out of a traditionally affordable groupset & bike. You don't really get a light bike, when you get a 105 di2 bike anymore compared to a quality rim brake 105 mechanical bike from the past. Some of the added weight can be made up with modern aerodynamics and lighter wheels etc., but the bike will still be heavier.
  4. Built in obsolescence - at some point Shimano will stop making parts and it will be a challenge to find replacement parts for otherwise good used bikes. Example: Try and find 10 speed di2 parts when you have a problem on an older bike, especially if it's a di2 only frame. A di2 only frame with di2 2 by 10 speed bike is equivalent to an obsolete iPhone. The di2 11 speed won’t be far behind and there is a lot of that stuff out there – good luck finding parts for those in few years.
  5. No ten tooth option on the cassette - I get that some research shows a 10 tooth can be a less efficient, or not as durable, but most people that run 105 would not care about that. The would broaden the gear range. It's like you’re not taking full advantage of the benefits of adding a 12th cog like Sram and Campagnolo have.
  6. Not a huge issue, but it’s not 100% wireless - still needs a wire - seems to be years behind Sram at this point, but di2 would generally out perform the Sram options.
  7. No power meter option in the crank either
  8. Other than r7000 there is no higher end Shimano option to take older frames and rebuild them with new components from Shimano. Campagnolo will most likely fill this gap isntead. Suggestion – Shimano make non-series mechanical disc 12 speed components that could be used/mixed with dura ace, ultegra, and 105 for the traditionalists. (I could see Microshift making these and selling OEM to bike manufactures – they have done it before) Bring Tiagra to 11 speed and reduce the weight of the crankset and cassette (105 level) and leave it mechanical only with disc and caliper brake mechanical options. Shimano if you want to further reduce part numbers use the same shift levers and brake calipers for GRX and road groupsets. You could have grippy hood options for gravel and smoother for road. Most two piston brake calipers are the same anyways and a lot of road riders prefer the feel and ergonomics of the GRX levers.
  9. We finally standardized on disc wheelset axle spacing and got rid of most of the crappy/squeaky bottom bracket standards, so let’s go to work on standardizing 12 speed across the brands. Now Shimano, Sram, and Campagnolo are all doing their own thing on 12 speed and free hubs. Why can't these three companies just use one free hub (Srams which I feel is the best), the same cog spacing, and close enough tooth profiles when you could at least mix and match wheels, cassettes, and chains.
wtjs | 2 years ago
1 like

I have to stand up for Shimano here- 9-speed mechanical Sora is really good and pretty cheap. You can hardly blame Big S for taking money from people who are desperate to give it to them

longassballs | 2 years ago

Surely this is about frameset manufacturers desire to only produce one road frame design, that is electronic only, disc brake only, & fully internal cables with only space for 2 disc brake hoses?

Those consoling themselves with Tiagra & 7000 miss the point that from at least the big manufacturers there won't be a tier 2 cable actuated frame available

marmotte27 replied to longassballs | 2 years ago
1 like


Personally I've had no interest in road bikes these last 15 years, but this domain has been downhill all the way since the advent of carbon fibre.

HiFi | 2 years ago

Mechanical Campagnolo Centaur (2,484 g / £600) is 500g lighter. Yes, half a kilo !!!

And £1000 cheaper.

Shimano seem too happy to pile on the pounds (lbs & £); lose-lose for shimano buyers.

thisisnotaspoon replied to HiFi | 2 years ago
1 like

Except centaur doesn't have a disc option? So the cheapest comparable groupset is Chorus, which costs ~£1600 for the mechanical version. Which is bonkers.

Kinda moot though I guess as there can't be much demand for new groupsets with old specs? I've got a mechanical/rim groupset so I wouldn't buy a new one. Whereas people buying new bikes want new stuff.

HiFi replied to thisisnotaspoon | 2 years ago
1 like

As I said, lose-lose for shimano buyers.

Steve K | 2 years ago

One thing I like is that they are using the extra cog to give a really low gear option.  Or at least I did until I saw the price differential between the 11-34 (still a pretty low gear ratio) and the 11-36.

leipreachan | 2 years ago

A weird question, maybe.. But is the new 105 may work with 11sp cassette?

PoorInRichfield | 2 years ago

I think this is great news as electronic shifting is a game-changer.  The only concern I have is that the 105 group was the somewhat affordable race level groupset for a long time and now it's quite pricy.  I had hoped that "economies of scale" and competition from SRAM would've driven the price of electronic group sets down to a more afforadable level, but so far that hasn't happened.

Secret_squirrel replied to PoorInRichfield | 2 years ago
1 like

As a DI2 user I dont get your game changer comment.  Is the extra snicker snack of an electronic change deeply satisfying - yes.  Is syncro modes handy -yes? 

Is it any better than a well set up mechanical - arguably no.  Is the marginal gain of never having to adjust for cable stretch completely negated by having the extra failure point of a battery?  Arguably yes.

In short DI2/AXS is a luxury most people dont need but if it floats your boat and you WANT it - pay the extra, but dont kid yourself its essential.

I get far more usable benefits out of the servo wave, altered pivot points and grx hoods than I do out of the DI2 bits of my set up.

Simmo72 replied to PoorInRichfield | 2 years ago
1 like

Except it isn't. Di2 didn't transform shifting. Shimano shifting was already excellent with a cable. Lazy? Yes. Expensive? Yes. Heavy? Yes. Foolproof shifting? No. Causes you to get a bank loan when you fall off drive side and smash a shifter and mech? Yes.

105 was always about reliability and affordability. A rear mech costing £50...not hundreds. It just sucks. And let's not forget we have a finite resource of precious metals....and we wasting it on allowing some fat bloke to ride their bike up a hill slowly shifting into their 34 36 with a light press of their pudgy finger. Shimano can swivel on my fishing rod.

Hirsute | 2 years ago

I assume the front chain wheel and crank di2 version are no different from a mechanical one.

Just checking my options for when my ultegra fails !

kil0ran replied to Hirsute | 2 years ago

Well, hopefully the won't randomly fall apart like Ultegra 6800 ones but yeah, chain wheels and cranks are interchangeable as long as they're the right speed. In time you'll see retailers selling part groups with just the shifters and mechs, battery, and wire

TheBillder replied to kil0ran | 2 years ago
1 like
kil0ran wrote:

... chain wheels and cranks are interchangeable as long as they're the right speed.

I'm running a mid 90s chainset (originally had a 6 speed freewheel) with a 10 speed chain and cassette and it all works very well. I might be wrong but I'm not convinced matching matters at all.

Bobonabike | 2 years ago

Other places are reporting that 11spd mechanical 105 is continuing?

OnYerBike replied to Bobonabike | 2 years ago
0 likes's other article mentions "Shimano 105 R7000 will continue to be produced and sold for some time."  So the existing stuff will continue to be made (for now) but isn't being updated at all as part of the new generation. 

Carior | 2 years ago

So quick but (at least from my persepctive) quite interesting/ important question - the Dura-ace and Ultegra shifters have the hood button which can be set up for various functions but, most usefully I found, for allowing you to switch pages on your Garmin (I find it endlessly annoying that this doesn't seem to be possible with eTap). 

There was some discussion as to whether 105 Di2 would have this button or if it would be ditched for cost savings/ to keep some premium in Ultegra and Dura-ace - any insight?

ejocs replied to Carior | 2 years ago

Shhh, you'll confuse the people who insist the only difference between mechanical and electronic is the cable.

(Alas, other sites are reporting that 105 Di2 ditches that button. Apparently--bizarrely--to double up on the batteries, leaving no extra room.)

ibr17xvii replied to Carior | 2 years ago

Carior wrote:

So quick but (at least from my persepctive) quite interesting/ important question - the Dura-ace and Ultegra shifters have the hood button which can be set up for various functions but, most usefully I found, for allowing you to switch pages on your Garmin (I find it endlessly annoying that this doesn't seem to be possible with eTap). 

There was some discussion as to whether 105 Di2 would have this button or if it would be ditched for cost savings/ to keep some premium in Ultegra and Dura-ace - any insight?


The 105 shifters don't have the button on the top I believe.

Sriracha | 2 years ago

Shifters can communicate wirelessly with the rest of the system (disc brake version only)

Thanks, I'll take the rim brake version then.


No rim brake model

Cyclist999 | 2 years ago

Shimano did bad not for 105 groupset seekers but also for itself. By eliminating the long lived simplest solution to braking being quality rim brakes and quality mechanical shifting from its range, it just entered in suicide mission. Nobody has to use neither di2 nor disc brakes. It just lots of fuss around when you are out of electricity, oil and noises... in the middle of your century ride. The industry just killed best quality per price being 105 rim brakes and mechanical gears 

Secret_squirrel replied to Cyclist999 | 2 years ago

I think you are over egging the pudding a bit.  Rim brake groupsets are still around. Ultegra R8000 rim brake kit is still readily available after a year of 12speed, and will probably continue to be for some time yet - let alone 105.  That's even without Tiagra going 11 speed and potentially keeping a rim brake model.

ejocs | 2 years ago

Seems the only reason to be bothered by this is if you're branding-conscious and don't want to be seen on Tiagra, which is by all accounts excellent and will almost certainly go to 11 speed soon. Shimano haven't put the brakes on the mechanical option, just shifted the labels around. (And remember there's still GRX, which I suspect will retain the mechanical option due to the unique use case.)

kil0ran replied to ejocs | 2 years ago

Yep, Tiagra 4700 is brilliant. Literally all that separates it from 105 and Ultegra is one cog and a few extra grammes. Unless you really, really need close ratios, which is likely only if you're actually racing, go with Tiagra.

I think where Tiagra suffered somewhat was that in the current generation it wasn't significantly cheaper than 105 (105 gets discounted more heavily) and so most people would adopt the "but it goes up to 11" mindset and pay a few extra quid

Woldsman | 2 years ago

I see Shimano have waited until noisy protest was made illegal before releasing this news, the bastards. 


Pedal those squares replied to Woldsman | 2 years ago

Why save the rim brake?  Perfect sence for the option where cost is key.   But if you can then disc all day long!

If you are young and light the rims maybe fine, but once you put on a few more pounds than even the bigest pro rider (Magnus Baxter the exception that proves the rule, who just broke loads of wheels), then disc is the only way to go.   

So an old git I am now faster and more confident on the bike due to disc brakes.

marmotte27 replied to Pedal those squares | 2 years ago
1 like

I have no problems braking on my loaded touring bike with cantilevers...

wtjs replied to marmotte27 | 2 years ago
1 like

I have no problems braking on my loaded touring bike with cantilevers...

And always have the latest and newest wheels- because you have to!

mark1a | 2 years ago

Sort of inevitable really once SRAM shipped Rival eTap AXS, making a 3rd tier electronic groupset. I guess "we" aren't Shimano's customers, the big manufacturers are, so I would imagine there was some commerical pressure to enable a Shimano equipped bike that ticks the "electronic shifting" box at a ~£3k price point (example Boardman SLR 9.4 with SRAM's 3rd tier at £2.7k).

I was just in the process of speccing up a new Ti frameset (for long distance rides), which I had every intention of building with 105 R7020 (hydraulic disc, 11 speed mechanical shifting). If I continue I hope that 11 speed stuff remains available for the foreseeable future.

If Shimano in time drop R7000/7020, I do hope that a future Tiagra 4800 goes 11 speed with backward compatibility with 5800/7000.


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