The brand new SRAM Apex is designed for the core rider that wishes one thing easy and intuitive, however totally featured. It’s for roadies that wish to attempt gravel, or mountain bikers that need a drop bar bike, with gearing and choices to suit each kind of rider.
It’s now 1×12 solely, dropping the entrance derailleur and including a cog, making it SRAM’s first 12-speed DoubleTap mechanical street group (lastly!). And there’s a wi-fi AXS group, too, letting you utilize batteries, or not, and select between 11-44 XPLR gravel gearing or 11-50 Eagle mountain bike gearing.
Apex 1×12 Gearing
SRAM’s XPLR gravel teams have a cassette that sits between street and mountain bike vary, with 10-44 cassettes, giving groadies the nearer gear steps they like for drop bar bikes, however with the mandatory vary for off-road exploration.
Eagle riders, nonetheless, need all of the vary and may wish to pack extra stuff and want the simplest gear they will for larger, bolder adventures. For them, the 10-50 and 10-52 cassettes work.
For the brand new Apex teams, the one key distinction is the cassette matches on a normal HG freehub physique, utilizing an 11-tooth small cog for each XPLR (11-44) and Eagle (11-50) cassettes:
- XPLR 11-44: 11-12-13-15-17-19-21-24-28-32-38-44
- EAGLE 11-50: 11-13-15-17-19-22-25-28-32-36-42-50
Shared Components & Variations
The great thing about the brand new teams are that nearly each half is interchangeable with their different teams. Any XPLR cassette, crank, or (AXS) derailleur might be subbed in for different XPLR components.
Mainly, something from the brand new Apex XPLR group is suitable with any of their XPLR components. The Apex XPLR AXS derailleurs will shift the 10-44, 11-44, and the smaller 10-36 street cassette, however the Apex Mechanical will solely shift the ten/11-44 cassettes.
And any of the Apex Eagle components are suitable with different Eagle components (besides T-Sort), and each AXS & mechanical variations work with the bigger 10-52 cassettes, too. So, you might improve the crankset or cassette (or each) and nonetheless have a 1×12 mechanical group, solely lighter.
The entire Apex derailleurs have Cage Lock and a spring-loaded clutch (not the hydraulic Orbit damper from the street teams), and AXS derailleurs get their Overload Clutch that decouples the shifting motor within the occasion of an influence, then resets robotically.
The Apex Crankset is basically the identical as Rival, however with new graphics and end, together with the aftermarket direct mount alloy chainring. For OE, you could discover a new metal chainring, too. There’s even a spindle-based energy meter choice, identical because the Rival group.
It comes solely with the longer spindle to suit each street and MTB backside bracket requirements. It’s designed round a 47.5mm chainline, which gives extra tire clearance than the narrower 45mm chainline accessible on larger efficiency street teams.
New Apex FlatTop chain is similar because the others, however with out the Nickel-Chrome end.
The brakes are all Flat Mount now, too, and so they’re principally a Flat Mount model of their Degree MTB brakes. It makes use of the identical pads as their different street brakes, however doesn’t get the Bleeding Edge bleed ports just like the higher-end stuff.
There’s additionally an Apex flat bar brake lever, which might pair with any of their Eagle 12-speed mountain bike shifters, mechanical or AXS relying on which derailleur you select.
The brand new brake levers are broad, with a flatter radius offering a much bigger space to your finger to drag on.
In comparison with Rival, the Apex brake lever is stamped, not solid, the derailleur pulleys have bushings moderately bearings, and the cassettes begin at 11 moderately than 10. And Apex isn’t as shiny.
Apex AXS Wi-fi Particulars
The XPLR derailleur makes use of the identical spring clutch chain administration because the Rival derailleur for each AXS and mechanical variations, just like their mountain bike derailleurs, however with no Cage Lock. These will use the usual street Flattop chain.
For those who wished to do a “mullet” drivetrain with a mountain bike cassette and derailleur, there’s a brand new X1 Eagle rear derailleur that’s just like GX however with totally different supplies, and it’ll be an OE-only choice. For those who wished to construct your individual, you’ll have to get a GX AXS derailleur and a normal Eagle chain (not the brand new T-Sort MTB Flattop chain).
Put one other manner, for those who purchase an entire bike with an Apex Eagle AXS construct, you’ll get this X1 derailleur. For those who’re shopping for an aftermarket “Apex Eagle” group so as to add to your current bike, you’ll get a GX AXS derailleur.
Shifters have the identical ergonomics as the most recent Drive and Rival teams, with a smaller hood circumference and easier-to-reach levers.
Apex Mechanical Particulars
Why did it take so lengthy for them to make a 12-speed mechanical street group? As a result of they wished to get the gearing and the small print proper, and ensure it was correctly positioned out there.
When their first 1×11 teams got here out and began getting used for the nascent gravel scene, folks had been pairing street shifters with mountain bike cassettes and cobbling stuff collectively. Now, with SRAM’s XPLR teams having dialed of their gearing and ideas, they’ve received two new derailleurs and an all-new shifter to provide the choices you need.
The shifters are paired with the identical hydraulic brake levers because the AXS group, however they click on by means of 12 cable-actuated gears. The hood and physique are formed the identical as the most recent Rival and Drive teams, designed for driving extra on the hoods.
They use an EAGLE 12-speed gear actuation inside, which suggests it really works with their remaining 12-speed mountain bike derailleurs (extra on that compatibility in a minute). The DoubleTap mechanism is pushed up larger into the “pommel” (that half on the entrance that sticks up), which they are saying provides you loads of leverage for simple shift actuation.
To make this work, they modified their GX mechanical derailleurs by including a barrel adjuster on the derailleur’s B-knuckle…as a result of SRAM’s mechanical mountain bike teams put the barrel adjuster on the shifter, not the derailleur. They usually made two variations of it, one for Eagle cassettes and one for XPLR cassettes.
For Eagle, it’s basically a GX mechanical MTB derailleur, however with the barrel adjuster. Because of this the brand new Apex mechanical shifters are suitable with GX, XO & XX1 mechanical derailleurs, too, so long as you add an inline barrel adjuster within the cable housing.
For XPLR, there’s a special pulley place and fin to regulate its cable pull ratio, as a result of the cog spacing and place on the 11-44 street/gravel cassette is totally different than the 11-50 Eagle Cassette.
Which suggests you may’t simply swap cassettes, you’ll have to swap derailleurs, too, if you wish to go between XPLR and Eagle. And doubtless chains to get the correct size.
Pricing & Availability
Apex AXS is on the market June 2023, anticipate it to point out up on bikes starting from $2,500 to $2800 with Apex AXS.
Crank lengths provided are 160/165/170/172.5/175mm. Chainrings are available 38-46 tooth counts, and OE components have a brand new metal chainring choice, aftermarket will get alloy chainrings.
Apex Mechanical follows in September. Anticipate it to point out up on bikes starting from $1,850 to $2,000 with Apex Mechanical.
Full group costs are (embody VAT for £/€):
- Apex AXS XPLR – $1,195 / £1262 / €1411
- Apex AXS Eagle – $1,294 / £1303 / €1460
- Apex AXS Flat Bar XPLR – $1,063 / £1099 / €1225
- Apex AXS Eagle Flat Bar – $1,162 / £1140 / €1274
- Apex mechanical XPLR – $987 / £1060 / €1176
- Apex mechanical Eagle – $971 / £1035 / €1149
- Apex mechanical XPLR Flat Bar – $696 / £730 / €811
- Apex mechanical Eagle Flat Bar – $680 / £705 / €784
Full group claimed weights are:
- Apex AXS XPLR – 2,890g
- Apex AXS Eagle – 3,181g
- Apex mechanical XPLR – 2,872g
- Apex mechanical Eagle – 3,062
Particular person components weights haven’t been introduced, however we now have teams on the best way for long run testing.