Campagnolo has revived its old, Centaur groupset, modernized it and taken it up to 11 speed, bringing the fight directly to Shimano's 105 groupset
Campagnolo has been busy this year, it would seem. First we heard of its new disc brake groupsets and now it has revived one of its oldest groupsets: Centaur and takes the fight squarely to Shimano’s 105 groupset.
Centaur hasn’t merely been brought back to life, though. It has also been revamped, well and truly benefiting from trickle down technology. The groupset has been taken up to 11-speed, bringing it bang inline with the likes of Potenza, Chorus, Record and Super-Record.
Campagnolo has kept Centaur aluminium, and it’s still mechanical. However, its chainrings (either 50/34 or 52/36) have separate BCD diameters, meaning they bolt to the spider separately.
This makes them easy to swap out, but it does mean they’re not compatible with higher end groupset chain rings.
Campagnolo has given it a bit of bling, though, in the form of the high-end Ultra-Torque axle.
Meanwhile, the front derailleur takes Super Record’s cage design, including lever length, acquiring the same light feel to the upshifts.
Interestingly, Campagnolo has outmanoeuvred both SRAM and Shimano on the rear by giving Centaur’s rear mech the capacity to house a 32t sprocket, while shifting remains the same.
The brakes have also gone through a bit of a revamp, having had a general slimming down and becoming dual pivot. We got to try them, and the stopping power on tap is impressive.
Campagnolo has also always had a heavy focus on ergonomics, and the same is true with the new Centaur 11 speed groupset. That means the Ergopower levers and the same Powershift function are found on EPS level groupsets too. Unlike on Campagnolo’s higher end shifters, Centaur is limited to dropping one gear at a time.
Watch: Buyer’s guide to road bike groupsets
But we shouldn’t just focus on the groupset here as Campagnolo has also released updated Scirocco wheels.
They’ve got the same G3 spoke design as the rim brake Shamal and Bora wheels, although Scirocco has 21 spokes on the rear – that’s 14 spokes on the drive side and seven on the other.
They’ve been widened, too, and while even Campagnolo admit this is a little modern for them, it does create a great profile for 25mm and 28mm tyres, and does bring Campagnolo bang up-to-date.
The C17 rim also creates a decent profile for 25mm and 28mm tyres, bringing them on tend.
Campagnolo claims it has improved the structural integrity of its wheels, compared to those of its competitors. It says that the fact it has welded the junction with the rim rather than glued it gives much more strength.
The Italian company also reckons that the Mega G3 oversized flange on the rear wheel will increase torsional stiffness. It’s also the same free hub construction as found on the higher end wheelsets; albeit the Sciroccos are made out of aluminium.
Centaur is available in a dark colourway and a stunning polished silver finish that’ll be available later this year. Campagnolo reckons the new groupset will come in at the same price as Shimano 105.
The Centaur dark colour way will be available in May and cost £539, meanwhile the polished silver model will land in September and cost £571.
The Scirocco wheels will cost £299. The claimed weight for the full groupset, including a bottom bracket and chain is 2,471g.