Unlike the cheapest, supplied-on-bikes Elixir models, the R gets the same TaperBore inline reservoir design as the top-end brakes. Crucially, there’s no rotating bite point adjuster at the far end, which removes most of the bleeding and reliability problems of the family.
The ﬂip-ﬂop design makes it easy to swap over, and it gets the same Matchmaker shifter clamp sharing options as more expensive brakes too. The lever is reach adjustable and has a unique dislocation feature to reduce the chances of crash damage. There is potential for misalignment when setting up the cup-and-cone brake mount but the pads are easy to remove and replace.
While it’s not outstanding on the dyno, the unique lever sweep geometry gives the Elixir R a great feel under your ﬁngers on the trail. There’s loads of progressive, predictable modulation and a 185mm rotor is enough for all but the most aggressive riders.