SRAM XX Press Release Decoded: Top Secret Mountain Bike Group will be 2 x 10

SRAM’s recent press release about its top secret XX component group, scheduled to be released in Summer of 2009, may have had a coded message embedded in the text. is infamous for its cyber-warehouse internet spying operations, where hundreds of low-paid workers search international websites hoping to decode passwords in search of industrial and entertainment industry information. We stumbled upon a random message in Mandarin with a Red SRAM logo and the letters: XX. The crude translation read:


SRAM Fortune cookie: Latin XX = Ten Ten. 10 + 10 = 2 x 10. SRAM XX = Two by Ten drive mechanism. Is the fortune out of the cookie?


We contacted SRAM about the message and the response was, “NO COMMENT,” in plain English.


It makes sense for SRAM to follow up on the success of its Force and Red road ensembles with a SRAM-branded mountain bike group. SRAM’s holdings have the makings of a phenomenal start. With RockShox suspension, Truvativ components, Avid brakes and SRAM’s drivetrain expertise already in place, it is a wonder why there hasn’t been a red-logo mountain bike group around already. 
Julien Absalon poses with his SRAM 2 x 10? Orbea Alma hardtail


Multi-time World, World Cup, and Olympic Champion Julien Absalon has been using a SRAM 2 X 9 (or 2 x 10 if you believe the rumors), with modified twist shifters, a Force road racing front derailleur, Truvativ Noir carbon crankset and two slightly unusual items: a hybrid-looking X.0 rear derailleur and a custom-machined titanium cassette. The cassette may be a Ti version of the one-piece Red cassette with larger cogs.
All but the smallest three cogs of SRAM’s Red road cassette are machined from one piece of alloy steel–it is the second lightestss made. Does Absalon have a BlackBox Ti version?

The Ti-Cage Red front derailleur easily handles a two-chainring mountain bike crankset


SRAM’s Doubletap 10, ten-speed thumb-shifters have been flying under the mountain bike radar for almost two years. The action of Doubletap is far easier: a touch releases cable, and a longer push takes up cable, for up to three shifts. Test the action using SRAM’s Doubletap road levers and you will agree that it is a superior shifting system when compared to the two-lever shifters that we presently use.
SRAM’s Doubletap 10, ten-speed handlebar shifters are already in production


Certainly, the important pieces are in place, in raw form, at least. All SRAM needs to do is fine-tune the ensemble and paint two red X’s on the components. Expect to see some 2 x 10 action on SRAM-sponsored racing bikes during the off season. If you do, take some pics and we’ll post them here?with your name, of course?on the SRAM Wall of Fame.


Contact: Detective Richard Cunningham at