Every year it's a mad scramble to be the first website with pix of next year's Shimano kit. BikeBiz gets the same invite to the official media launch as the consumer mags, and is also gagged by the same non-disclosure agreements, but with 'underground' sites publishing OEM spec sheets, it's now very difficult for the wraps to kept on anymore. Here are a selection of 'offically sanctioned' sites with the Shimano news, and one underground one...

Saints be praised, Shimano to release DH/cliff-jumping gruppo



And here’s the one with the OEM manual:


Oh, and here’s one with Saint stuff and Dura Ace scoops


Does such rabid speculation about not-yet-available kit dent demand? Do enthusiast consumers hold back from buying this year’s kit because they know next year’s looks even better?

T’other day Bikemagic’s Mike Davis said:

"…in the twisted calendar of the bike industry those ’03 bikes just reaching the shops now are old news. They’re all busy speccing up next year’s stuff, and a lot of what they do depends on what Shimano have to offer."

Should the global bike industry start to think about a more sensible new model release pattern? Or will companies continue to delight in being the first to get next year’s bikes to market?

See the link below for one industry commentators take on this lemming-like lunacy…

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