In the various communications sent from Campagnolo to cyclists worldwide the term "continuous innovation" is repeated time and time again.
This is so because this phrase is at the heart of everything that Campagnolo does. Not only does the company search for entirely new solutions, such as electronic shifting, but a great deal of energy and resources are spent towards innovating and further improving existing technologies
While the EPS electronic transmission certainly receives a great deal of attention due to its technological nature, the mechanical transmission is nowhere near obsolete.
In making one step closer towards the ultimate goal of mechanical shifting perfection, Campagnolo is proud to present the newest evolution in mechanical shifting excellence
The completely new Campagnolo Super Record
groupsets represent significant leaps in terms of not only performance but also design, longevity and compatibility.
Campagnolo does not seek to produce an electronic groupset that outperforms the mechanical version, or produce a mechanical version that claims to be superior to the electronic counterpart.
Campagnolo rather prefers to offer a heightened performance and quality standard in both electronic and mechanic formats.
Campagnolo doesn't believe on imposing any system on athletes and feels that whether an athlete chooses to use mechanical or electronic shifting in his quest for victory they should feel confident that they are riding with Campagnolo quality and performance
Having already brought forth the fantastic EPS electronic transmission Campagnolo engineers were tasked with finding new solutions to improve what was already heralded as industry leading mechanical shifting.
The first step of this long and difficult process of improving performance of a drivetrain that athletes the world over had come to respect for its durability and performance came in the form of the SC-14 program.
The SC-14, or Squadre Corsa 2014, project brought forth several improvements that were developed especially for Campagnolo sponsored professional athletes who preferred to compete with mechanical drivetrains.
The limited run of the Super Record RS groupset made the SC-14 project's improvements available to both professional and amateur athletes alike. This SC-14 technology was to serve as the first step in improving the Super Record, Record and Chorus transmissions as the project's design found itself applied to all three groupsets.
With fantastic and invaluable feedback from both professional riders as well as amateurs, the Campagnolo engineering staff were able to build even further upon these modifications and focus on other areas of the transmission to improve upon.
The new Super Record, Record and Chorus groupsets feature an all new front derailleur with the inner cage that uses the SC-14 / Super Record RS form. However, the Super Record RS used an aluminum version as its prototype status made a carbon version more difficult to produce in the short term.
The Super Record version of the new mechanical groupsets uses a one piece carbon derailleur outer cage that reduces weight while still maintaining the same rigidity and functionality.
The new derailleur design uses a longer arm to increase leverage, requiring less hand movement and thus facilitates up-shifting to the larger chainring. The rear derailleur has also changed dramatically and offers significant performance enhancements thanks to its revolutionary new design. Campagnolo engineers sought to create a more efficient and better performing rear derailleur and in doing so completely redesigned this component both inside and out.
The new design is stiffer, smoother and functions even better than its predecessor, a significant achievement to say the least. The new form of the external pieces allow the rear derailleur to move at a different angle and the new internal design will pull the chain closer to the cassette. This translates into better power transfer, more secure grip, better chain/cassette interface and a longer life for consumable components. The chain will now grip more teeth and as a result disperse energy across a larger surface area, increasing the life of the cassette and lengthening the lifespan of the chain as well.
By allowing the derailleur to work closer to the cassette in every position the athlete can now take advantage of perfect alignment between cassette and rear derailleur in any given gear.
The new internal structure of the rear derailleur also makes for easier shifting on the higher end of the cassette as it eliminates any resistance that could be encountered when moving the chain onto the 25, 27 or 29 cog. In short, the athlete will enjoy the exact same performance with an 11-29 cassette as he or she would with an 11-23. A new transmission calls for new commands to control this new, more efficient drivetrain. Campagnolo engineers worked diligently to develop a new internal functionality and index pattern without altering the highly lauded ergonomic design of the Ergopower commands. 2 clicks will now downshift from large to small chainring with a 3rd click for adjusting trim when using more extreme gears.
This new design keeps the derailleur cage in a preventative position that avoids any possibility of chain dropping in addition to making for faster, more intuitive actuation of the drivetrain. The new system uses 3 clicks for upshifting without the need for an additional click for trim as the new SC-14 design allows for shifting across the entire cassette without any interference between chain and derailleur cage. The "one lever-one action" system remains as does the Ultra-Shift system, the only available mechanical shifting system that allows for multiple downshifts (up to three gears at a time in upshifting and 5 in downshifting). This heightened performance and functionality comes along with improvements to what is arguably the most comfortable and ergonomic command on the market as well.
While difficult to improve upon the fantastic feel of the Ergopower command, the internal side of the unit has been modified in such a way that it adapts itself even more closely to the wide array of handlebars available thus conferring greater comfort and control. Newly designed hoods in hypoallergenic silicone with differentiated density design along with internal groves and structure to provide additional comfort where needed and more solid grip elsewhere. While the Ergopower commands seem to be very similar to previous versions the new crankset makes it clear to even the untrained eye just how different this new groupset is. The completely redesigned crankset represents increased rigidity as well as fresh and cutting edge aesthetics.
The new version uses a 4 arm spider design which makes for one single crankarm for all chainring options thanks to its unified bolt pattern. Gone are the days of having a dedicated bolt pattern for standard chainrings and another for compact rings. No longer will changing from traditional to compact, or vice versa, translate into the obligatory purchase of a completely new crankset. The new bolt pattern allows for all 3 chainring standards 53/39, 52/36 and 50/34 to be built upon the same crankset. Changing between compact and standard is now as easy as changing 8 bolts and two chainrings. While the new 4-arm bolt pattern makes for a much more practical design that offers the cyclist a more versatile component, the Campy Tech Lab was dedicated primarily on increasing performance characteristics.
The new design incorporates a 8 bolt pattern with a spider arm design that not only holds the chainring in place by way of the bolt but also supports the chainring and in doing so, increases system rigidity. In addition to completely redesigning the spider, Campagnolo engineers dedicated a great deal of energy towards a completely new crankarm that is a great deal stiffer than previous versions. Add this new highly rigid crankarm to the new four-arm spider design and you have a complete crankset that not only excels at transferring power more than any previous version but one that is also more versatile with respect to gearing.
This new version of Campagnolo performance cranksets will be available in 170, 172,5 and 175 crankarm legths as well as in all three chainring configurations 50/34, 52/36 and 53/39 . Upon developing this new interpretation of the mechanical drivetrain Campagnolo set about testing various versions both in the lab as well as in the field atop amateurs, semi-pros, veterans and several World Tour athletes. With each modification scrutinized and critiqued Campagnolo engineers were able to further develop these ideas into what would eventually evolve into the groupsets that have been seen in numerous spy shots at prestigious races of the highest caliber.
Feedback has been overwhelmingly positive and with the seal of approval coming from the Campy Tech Lab as well as top professional athletes, these new groupsets are now worthy of bearing the Campagnolo name.
The new 2015 mechanical Campagnolo groupsets will be available from October 2014