Why Go Wireless? The benefits of electronic shifting

Benefits of Electronic Shifting

Why go with wireless electronic shifting on your bike?

Effortless shifting, simple installation, user-friendly customization, and clean, cable-free cockpits have made electronic groupsets all the rage in higher end road, gravel, and mountain biking.

Electronic shifting is an excellent upgrade you can make to your current road, gravel, or mountain bike. Best part… we have a great selection of electronic groupsets in stock here at Bikes Palm Beach!

Easier shifting

Electronic groupsets utilize derailleur motors that do the work for you, instantly shifting gears at the push of a button. Multiple shifts can even be actuated by one click, allowing you to find the correct gear quicker, and with less movement and energy.

Why is saving the smallest bit of energy critical to so many riders? Because bikes are engineered so well now that performance gains have to be squeezed out of the tiniest details. By making the small act of shifting just a bit less physically or mentally demanding, an electronic drivetrain can allow riders to dedicate more focus and energy to other tasks.

To take this even further, electronic drivetrains also offer shift modes that remove the need for the rider to think about the front derailleur. The right shift paddle shifts to a harder gear and the left to an easier gear. The front derailleur shifts automatically at the right time for a seamless and simpler shifting experience, allowing the rider to focus on riding.

Photo from SRAM

More consistent shifting

Not only are electronic shifters easier to shift, but electronic groupsets also shift more consistently than mechanical groupsets. Small variables can change drivetrain performance during a ride, like cable tension, contamination, or hanger alignment to name a few. Any of those conditions can result in slow, harsh, or finicky shifting. But it’s essentially a non-issue with electronic drivetrains because they operate using a wireless signal, the shifting won’t ever be affected by these variables. Electronic drivetrains continue to perform even in the worst conditions, whether it be terrain or weather.

Less maintenance

Water, dirt, mud, and other contaminants are the most common sources of poor shift performance on drivetrains that rely on cables and housing. Ideally, cables and housing should be swapped out at least once or twice a year to maintain good shifting. However, since electronic drivetrains eliminate the need for cables and housing, they’re less maintenance than a mechanical drivetrain.

More performance data

GPS head units, heart rate monitors, and power meters are much more commonplace in the world of cycling nowadays. Data is essential for riders who are trying to maximize their performance or for those who simply enjoy the data-driven, quantifiable side of the sport. Electronic drivetrains allow you to gather even more data about your riding. Drivetrain data can help you understand what tooth counts are appropriate for your cassette, or what gearing you need for races, or how your fitness is changing.

You can also set up your electronic drivetrain to display current gearing on your head unit. That means, you can always see what gear you’re in with just a simple glance at your computer.

Selecting an electronic groupset

The classic debate: SRAM vs Shimano. Yes, there are other choices, but it usually comes down to these two mainstream options. Factor in the limited availability of bike parts (amongst other products across all industries), and you may have fewer options available, which might make for an easier decision.

I’ll let you in on a little secret. Since the beginning of the pandemic here at Bikes Palm Beach, we’ve been a bit more successful at sourcing SRAM groups.

Electronic groupsets for road

Shimano Dura-Ace Di2 and SRAM Red eTap AXS are undoubtedly the highest performing electronic drivetrains on the market. Increased demand and decreased supply has made them scarce in the United States, though.

Alternatively, the everyday rider will appreciate the quality and affordability of the SRAM Force eTap AXS or Shimano’s Ultegra Di2, with SRAM’s option being a bit more accessible to procure than Shimano’s.

Our current road & gravel pick: SRAM Rival eTap AXS

Photo from SRAM

The new SRAM Rival eTap AXS is a versatile groupset that we currently have readily available in stock. It can be outfitted for either road or gravel riding. This is our go-to recommendation for riders who are looking to upgrade their bike’s drivetrain from mechanical to electronic. SRAM Rival eTap AXS delivers intuitive wireless shifting, innovative gearing, integrated power measurement, AXS connectivity, and refined hydraulic disc brakes. It’s simple, clean design keeps it low on complexity, but rich with features.

Call or stop by today to get started with an electronic upgrade your current road or gravel bike or to customize your dream build with the SRAM Rival eTap AXS.

Our current trail pick: SRAM GX Eagle AXS

SRAM GX Eagle AXS upgrade kit
Photo from SRAM

SRAM GX Eagle AXS features proven wireless technology and the rugged durability of GX, it’s Eagle at its best. Featuring an expanded 520% gear range, seamless compatibility with the rest of the drivetrain, and the ability to customize your experience with the AXS app, GX Eagle AXS is a great entry point to going wireless on your mountain bike. 

Already rocking a mechanical SRAM Eagle groupset on your mountain bike? The SRAM GX Eagle AXS upgrade kit provides you with everything you need to make your existing Eagle drivetrain wireless. Backwards compatible with both SRAM’s original and expanded range Eagle Cassettes, the boundary to the next generation of shifting has never been more open. We have them in stock, too, so hurry in and get yours before they’re gone!

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Shannan

View posts by Shannan
Marketing Manager & Mountain Biker at Bikes Palm Beach in Juno Beach, Florida
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