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Campagnolo Launches New Centaur Aluminum 11-speed Group + Test Report

by Tim Lefebvre
Centaur Press Launch  ©  Campagnolo
May 10, 2017 (Canary Islands, Spain) – Campagnolo’s new Centaur aluminum 11-speed gruppo was another big highlight at their Press Launch in the Canary Islands that saw journalists from across the globe converge to see and test first hand the legendary brand’s newest innovations and Pedal was stoked to be on board.

Hot new Centaur group performs  ©  Campagnolo

Designed to take the place of the Veloce ten-speed, the new Centaur has an affordable price-tag yet delivers an immense bang for the buck. Taking aim at Shimano’s 105, the aluminum 11-speed group is similar in design to the Super Record with the difference being in the materials used and hence the weight. This new gruppo was a blast to ride read performance – see our test report below.

Crankset  ©  Campagnolo

A four-arm spider design with either a 52/36 or 50/34 combination. A universal crankset means interchanging chainrings is possible. An ultra-torque axle is featured marking the first time aluminum will be used for this component.

Ergopower  ©  Campagnolo

Ergopower levers  ©  Campagnolo
ErgoPower Levers
With a new power-shifting mechanism, the levers have the same great ergonomics for comfort, with water drainage issues addressed. There is one lever and one action which makes for a confusion-free system and as well there is a new EPS-style downshift button on the inside of the lever.

Front derailleur  ©  Campagnolo
Front Derailleur
A longer rod design with an adapted design and function, the front derailleur now needs less force to engage the shift to make a change

Rear derailleur  ©  Campagnolo

Rear Derailleur
An increase in versatility is due to a new trajectory angle which also means the chain is kept closer to the cogs. Compatible to 32 teeth, the new rear derailleur is claimed to be 15 grams lighter than the long cage version of competitors. Made out of reinforced technopolymer construction it boasts an upper pulley wheel with longer teeth and a lower pulley wheel with shorter teeth allowing for extreme crossover and less friction.

Rear derailleur

The chain is designed for both Potenza and Centaur groupsets and is compatible with Campy’s upper tier groupsets as well. The cassettes have one triple with eight single cogs and come in 11-29, 11-32 and 12-32 ratios.

Claimed to be 50 grams lighter than the competition, the same immense braking power has been harnessed for this brake set.

Brakes  ©  Campagnolo

Test Report
The Centaur groupset comes in at 2,454 grams and will be available by the end of May in both a black or silver finish. For our distinguished media group the new gruppo was mounted on white Sarto frames for us to test on the amazing roads of Gran Canaria, Spain.

Centaur test ride  ©  Campagnolo

We boarded our new machines and rolled out along the coast as a group of excited, and for the moment cohesive unit. As we settled in shifting was crisp with a lively and uniquely familiar feel to the levers.

 ©  Campagnolo
Smooth and decisive is the best way to describe the Centaur’s action as Campagnolo has nailed it with no friction evident under any circumstance. A long 7-kilometer climb put the gears under pressure and the shifting was a pleasure once your brain dialed in how the mechanism worked.

 ©  Campagnolo
The feel of the drivetrain is impressive with the cranks combining with the cassette and chain to deliver a feeling of competence and excellence. Again smooth and silky thanks to an aluminum core and great bearings.

 ©  Campagnolo
The real surprise were the brakes as we collectively raced downhill into some nice hairpin turns. The power of the brakes, brake pads and lack of force needed on the levers is impressive overall. Grabbing a full mitt of lever at high speeds enabled you to enjoy the turns, knowing there was more if you needed it.

 ©  Campagnolo
Overall the groupset performed extremely well under pressure with nice aesthetics to complement any frameset. Durability and competence are two things I look for in a gruppo and the Centaur did not disappoint.

The SRP is expected to be in the $900-1,000 range with delivery rolling out in May.

Campagnolo Centaur press release here.

Centaur weights  ©  Campagnolo

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