custom Giant Anthem X 29er mountain bike with Di2 electronic shifting

From the same shop that sent over the limited edition Rabobank road bike pics earlier this week comes a custom Giant Anthem X 29er with Dura-Ace Di2 electronic shifting.

The rear derailleur has a custom pulley cage with relocated upper jockey wheel, and shifting is handled by Shimano’s remote pods.

custom Giant Anthem X 29er mountain bike with Di2 electronic shifting from Edens Cycles bike shop

While the improved wiring system on the Ultegra Di2 would make for a cleaner install, there aren’t any remote shifter pods available for that group yet. As such, Eden’s used Shimano’s standard remote shifters to handle gear changes. Here’s their words on it:

Designed and implemented by Matt LaPrade of Eden Bicycles, this is your local shop’s version of a Di2 MTB. The bike is a 2011 Giant Anthem X29er 1 retrofitted with XTR m980 and Dura-ace Di2. The pulley cage was custom cut out of 2014 aluminum to offset the upper pulley in order to clear the 36t XTR cassette. Some design features are wired in, waterproof shifter connecters, and the rear cage has multiple settings for the spring tension. The shifters are shimano satellite shifters. On the way are custom ENVE wheels. We built this bike as an engineering exercise and for customers to test ride.

custom Giant Anthem X 29er mountain bike with Di2 electronic shifting from Edens Cycles bike shop

custom Giant Anthem X 29er mountain bike with Di2 electronic shifting from Edens Cycles bike shop

custom Giant Anthem X 29er mountain bike with Di2 electronic shifting from Edens Cycles bike shop


  1. Hey Ron,

    You should ride it before passing judgment. The Di2 long cage adds some elements that are really attractive: 1) for those that use triples, we can now put you on a compact with a wide range cassette to achieve the same gearing; 2) absolutely no more chain suck because of the precision of Di2 shifting; 3) pretty much a maintenance free drivetrain – no cables to snap and fray and stretch.

  2. While I was in France for the MTB national Champs this past July, one of the Lapierre team had the Di2 set up on a couple of their 26inch bikes for XC. It was pretty interesting but I don’t think they used it for the race as it was a mudfest

  3. Let’s face it. We all need to put the keyboards down, and ride 1000 more hours each to require this technology. Bike techology > what we actually need.

  4. I have had enough time now with ultegra di2, i believe i could easliy do this with the ultegra system. I know the derailleur mods will work, I just need to cut open the wires to see what im working with

  5. At MTB Nationals this year, one of the Shimano guys had Di2 on his Stevens mountain bike and was allowing people to ride it. It was the best shifting I have ever experienced on a mountain bike. I can’t wait until this technology makes its way to mountain bikes… and gets cheaper.

  6. Why the insistence on long cage derailleurs, the length of the cage has nothing to do with the rear cassette, it is only for taking up slack on the difference of front chain ring size and rear cog spread. Grr.

    I will take Ui2 or Di2 this moment for my MTB, when the price comes down…

  7. Love the innovative thinking. Let’s put that to work though on a light weight, durable, smooth shifting, internally geared hub and crankset. I want to get the dangly stuff off my bike. Fortunately haven’t damaged a rear derailleur beyond repair yet, but have replaced countless derailleur hangers. That being said, I can hardly wait to get this on my mtb as the next to best thing.

  8. Why are you burning calories hating? If ever there is a place for electronic shifting, it’s wet and muddy MTB. Have fun bleeding your rear hydraulic derailleur (although it’s a cool concept). There is nothing wrong with bike technology exceeding what we actually need. If bikes never got any better than what we needed at the time, we would still be riding full rigid. Innovation has brought us, full suspension, hydraulic disc brakes, 29er (like it or lump it), etc.

  9. No hate, just skepticism.

    @Steve: Huh? Of course suspension forks belong on mt. bikes. I’m not sure how that equates to high-tech shifting systems.

    @Dan: I would like to try it, but your points aren’t convincing. 1) You can achieve the same thing with any long cage derailleur. How does a servo help? 2) Chain suck isn’t caused by imprecise shifting, it’s caused by dirt and wear. 3) Cables are pretty low maintenance, and they’re not the only maintenance a drivetrain requires. And you’ll have a hard time convincing me that the electronic components won’t also need attention–though it probably won’t be maintenance, it will be (expensive) replacement.

    @Bike Rider: I love innovation, and I agree wholeheartedly with your point. I just don’t believe this technology will hold up to the abuses of mountain biking.

    Of course, the first time I saw a prototype Camelbak, I said, “Yeah, right, a plastic bag full of water that you have to carry on your back–no one is going to wear that.”

    Happy Trails,

  10. A friend has had Di2 on an ASR-SLc for nearly 2 years now, it’s still working perfectly. He’s raced it dozens of times, and one of his team riders raced it in several Elite XC races here in the UK, in some dismal conditions. Still perfect…

  11. I’m puzzled as to why this is being labeled “innovative” as K-Edge did this last year. And compared to the Ki2 machined and anodized alu cage that thing looks like it was made in an ez bake oven. I’ve been running the Ki2 drivetrain for about 6 months and it’s flawless.

What do you think?