Shimano’s new Ultegra R8000 groupset offers many of the same features and updates as its shiny big brother, Dura-Ace R9100. Thanks to UK distributor Madison, we’ve got our hands on a complete groupset for an exclusive first look.
Ultegra is Shimano’s second-tier groupset, and it’s the one that many of us buy. We’d all love to have Dura-Ace because of course, it’s the best, but in the real world where butlers need paying and pools need cleaning, Ultegra offers 95% of the functionality for significantly less cash.
R8000 is the mechanical shifting, rim brake version, and it’s the one that will be available to the public first. The R8020, R8050 and R8070 variants with discs and/or Di2 will follow in the coming months.
We’ll be bringing you a full Ultegra R8000 review as soon as we can arm-twist someone into lending us a groupset for long enough to bolt it to a bike.
Matthew Loveridge (formerly Allen) is an experienced mechanic and an expert on bike tech who appreciates practical, beautifully-engineered things. Originally a roadie, he likes bikes and kit of every stripe, and he's tested a huge variety of both over the years for BikeRadar, Cycling Plus and others. For a long time Matthew's heart belonged to the Scott Addict, but he's currently enjoying Specialized's sublime Roubaix Expert and having a torrid affair with a Giant Trance e-MTB. At 174cm tall and 53kg, he looks like he should be better at cycling than he actually is, and he's ok with that.