The wait is almost over! Shimano XT rear derailleurs will get the highly noted Shimano Shadow Plus feature found on the newest generation XTR rear derailleurs. Shimano XTR Shadow Plus derailleurs feature “a switch at the pulley cage to enforce a heavier spring tension and activate a friction stabilizer to counteract the forces of up and down chain momentum in rough terrain.” In other words: it reduces chain slap, chain noise and the chain is less likely to fall off the chainrings. Why are we so excited? If you follow Shimano’s trends at all, the XT components are typically much easier on our wallets with the same built in quality that XTR offers.
Our inside sources say that Shimano will debut the XT Shadow Plus rear derailleurs at the 2012 Sea Otter Classic in April along with a completely new Shimano SLX component group. Shimano has set a new standard with the Shadow Plus feature that makes it difficult to live without. We can only wonder what SRAM will come up with next to counter this move.