Shimano has unveiled a new e-bike groupset in its line-up, the SHIMANO STEPS E7000 groupset, designed to inspire mountain bikers to explore new grounds with up to 25km/h of assisted riding.
Where Shimano’s top tier e-MTB groupset, E8000, is designed to handle aggressive riding on rugged, difficult trails with extreme ascents, the new E7000 level is developed for more recreational mountain biking with its rider-tuned support and easy-to-use features.
Handlebar controls for SHIMANO STEPS E7000 include a left hand side switch to change support modes (scroll between Off, Eco, Trail, Boost and Walk Assist) and a symmetrical right hand side switch/shifter to take care of gear controls (Di2/mechanical). A handy feature for mountain bikers is the design of the left hand side switch that allows a neat combination with a thumb-operated remote seatpost lever. This comes in a clamp band design, compatible with all mountain bike set ups including Shimano’s new i-Spec EV standard for an even neater cockpit. The feeling of the button has changed too, giving you a distinctive easy-operation click and tactile feedback that you can easily feel through winter gloves.
All the metrics coming from the motor unit, the battery and SHIMANO’s Di2 system can be displayed on a new console unit (SC-E7000) with a highly visible display, giving riders important information such as support mode, riding speed, battery life and, for Di2 riders, gear choice.
The new SHIMANO STEPS wireless functionality also allows you to display all riding information on 3rd party devices such as your display units/GPS device or smart phone by using the new minimalistic EW-EN100 connector to transfer information.
For those in favour of an extremely minimal cockpit, you can also change system support modes and monitor the battery level with the LED lights and buttons on the EW-EN100 connector. You can also change support modes via the mode button on the Display Unit, which means you could even go so far as to completely remove the left-hand support mode switch for the cleanest set up.
Drive unit technology
Riding support comes from a powerful and responsive 60Nm drive unit to give assistance where and when you need it most. It also comes with the option to customize your riding performance depending on whether you’re looking for optimum acceleration or optimum battery conservation, or somewhere in between. Simply choose Explorer, Dynamic or Custom settings on the E-TUBE RIDE phone app and your drive unit’s usage characteristics will change automatically.
As well as this the E7000 drive unit comes with all the beneficial features of the E8000 drive unit. It pumps out up to 500-watts of peak power (nominal power output: 250W) to take you up to 25 km/h, all in dynamic response to how much support you need. The drive unit shape is neat and compact to maintain a narrow Q-factor and it’s one of the lightest e-bike drive units that’s specifically designed for MTB riding. What’s most unique about the drive unit is the intuitive and responsive riding support that’s completely in tune with your pedaling style.
The Drive Unit can operate in one of three support modes to offer different levels of assistance to suit different riding conditions. Choose Eco mode for the lightest assistance and low battery consumption riding, choose Trail mode for the best balance between responsive support and battery consumption, or choose Boost mode for powerful support, fast acceleration and rapid responsive support up to the maximum 25 km/h assistance level. The characteristics of these modes can also be adjusted between Explorer, Dynamic or Custom using Shimano’s easy-to-use E-TUBE RIDE smartphone app allowing e-MTB riders to fine tune support to focus on battery consumption or riding support level.
No matter what setting is chosen though you’ll receive an intuitive and powerful response via a torque sensor to judge your pedaling input. This makes the SHIMANO STEPS system feel more like you’re pedaling a smooth, controllable and dynamic feeling bike. And even if you are riding above support speed or riding with support turned off, thanks to Shimano’s low internal drag, the pedaling action is still smooth and comfortable with no added resistance from the inactive drive unit.
Natural riding feeling
The advanced electronic technology is not only in evidence in the drive unit but also in the drive train as well. Much like it’s E8000 bigger brother, the SHIMANO STEPS E7000 e-MTB components combine with Di2 drivetrains to provide a complete Shimano system and a natural riding feeling.
Where some e-MTB drive units position riders’ legs wider than normal mountain bikes, SHIMANO STEPS e-bikes offer you a natural and efficient position on the bike thanks to a slim drive unit and a typical MTB distance between the crank arms (Q-factor). Additionally, bike frame manufacturers benefit from the compact drive unit which makes it easy to design the best frame for the job to get nimble and responsive handling e-MTBs. It’s this attention to these essential riding details that sets SHIMANO STEPS apart.
The new SHIMANO STEPS E7000 components will hit the market in September/October with the E-TUBE RIDE smartphone app becoming available from Shimano’s E-TUBE site at the same time.