I tested eTap for myself this weekend, riding round the park, some climbing and then the London Etape event on the Sunday. The bike I was trialing didn't have the right saddle for me, as I could tell after only a couple of hours on the Etape, but SRAM eTap was revelatory.
I usually ride Shimano Ultegra mechanical, and have always considered it be fit for purpose. Clean, precise shifting, good looks and fits my budget. I have always got the idea of electronic groupsets, but never seen them as something for me. Partly down to budget I suppose, but also some sense of not wanting to overly complicate my cycling in a technological way.
However, having ridden eTap for a while I can now say that it's on my wishlist.
Firstly, let me just say that there's a simple childlike joy to electronic shifting. You get the "how cool is that?!" factor as you use it. The quick reactivity, the whir of the motor... With it's lack of cabling, eTap also looks fantastic. Personally, I particualrly enjoyed both the look and feel of the shifters. Very pleasing to use and feel good in the hand.
Having used both Campag and Shimano in the past I know that it can be difficult to adapt to small changes in how groupsets operate. Not so with eTap. The reimagined shifting controls are completely intuitive after the first 5 minutes. I found the shifting to be precise and consistent, even under pressure. It was so enjoyable to use that I sometimes found myself shifting just for the hell of it!
Pre-ride I charged the batteries, and nothing could have been simpler. The battery units slot on and off the mechs with ease. It's more like charging a USB light than having to plug your bike in as you do with Di2. I think that separation made a difference to my thoughts on complicating my riding somehow.
So, SRAM Red eTap. It looks super clean, feels good in the hand, works beautifully. Count me in.
We currently have good stock of eTap available for custom builds and upgrades. Contact us to learn more.
You can read more about SRAM eTap HERE .