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August 19, 2015 – The incredible 2015 launch season continues with news that Rotor’s long anticipated and teased groupset will be a reality. Called Rotor Uno (no, it will shift two front rings) it will be the first fully hydraulic group on the market – with braking and shifting actuated hydraulically.
Rotor simply teased the group today, with all the details to be released at next week’s Eurobike show. Why a complete group from Rotor? Due to Shimano’s current domination of the pro peloton and insistence that teams run complete Shimano groups, Rotor was forced to buy at retail complete groups for any team riding Rotor cranks. Rather than spend all that money buying components, why not spend it on developing a complete Rotor group?
“Our initial idea was to improve upon existing shifting systems; we knew that our system was a small step forward with its increased precision compared with other cable-actuated systems but we still suffered the same disadvantages of those systems, like friction, devolving inconsistent force over time, and other inconveniences,” said Pablo Carrasco, co-founder and chief innovation officer for Rotor. “We knew that disc brakes for road were about to become a reality and we challenged ourselves to further the concept and apply hydraulics to actuate shifting as well.”
While hydraulic shifting may seem like a new idea, Rotor is quick to point out that cars, airplanes and construction equipment all use hydraulic systems for reliability and consistent performance. Rotor has partnered with a hydraulic braking expert, Magura, to handle braking.
Using hydraulic fluid to shift the derailleurs is not the group’s only innovation. Instead of housing the indexing mechanism in the shift lever hoods, the mechanism is built into the derailleur. This is likely the reason for the smooth, low friction action Rotor claims at the levers. Hydraulic shifting also means circuitous cable routing and frayed or dirty cables cannot affect shift performance.
Look for news from the floor of Eurobike soon, with more detailed photos, weights and video footage.