Shimano brings back four-piston XT brakes

They're back! Shimano has released a four-piston version of its venerable XT brake, marking the first time the workhorse groupset has offered such a spec since the early part of the 2000s.

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The caliper is known as the M8020, it's designed to complement both the bigger-travel bikes that are so popular these days, as well as offering more stopping power for heavier e-mtbs.

It's essentially a rebadged version of the company's Zee caliper teamed with the current M8000 lever; this is a hack that many riders have already done over the years, particularly with the company's big-dollar four-piston Saint downhill caliper.

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From experience, this nets a brake that has a softer feel at the lever than the two-piston version, but with a greater spread of power. It's best to team it with at least a 180mm rotor, or even a 203mm rotor if your frame and fork can cop it.

Shimano claims the new stopper adds a 20 per cent increase in braking power for your hard-earned dollar. We're still awaiting for confirmation from Shimano Australia, but we understand the Australian RRP of a brake and caliper set is around the $230 per end mark, and that the first shipment has come and gone.

We've ordered a front set from our favourite supplier for the office Optic, and we'll let you know how they go in the next issue of the mag.

Bicycling Australia

"You can bring any bike .... So long as it's made from steel, has downtube shifters, and an '86 model or older." That was the general jist of the eighth annual Noosa Strada Bianche, an inspiring event held in the glorious environs on the weekend of August 11 & 12.

In this fascinating article Bicycling Australia contributor Stephanie Constand details the rise and rise of young German sprinter Pascal Ackermann ... a rider sure to be going shoulder to shoulder with Australia's Caleb Ewan over the next few years.

Now less than two weeks away, more than 1100 riders are expected on the start line of the Noosa Classic, Bicycling Australia's first Gran Fondo Cycling event for the Sunshine State of Queensland.