The Parts

At $799, the Apex group fills a new spot in the SRAM lineup at a price point just under SRAM's Rival Group, but it has a greater purpose in life than just filling a price point.

SRAM designed Apex as a triple killer by creating the first 10-speed 1132 road rear cassette, and mating it with their new double, compact 34-50 Apex aluminum crankset. When using the large 32-tooth cog in the rear cluster with the small 34-tooth chainring in front, the resulting gear ratio results in a low gear slightly lower than that found on a typical road triple. This is big news for seasoned triple riders because of the ease of shifting only two rings in front and a reduction in weight. But SRAM didn't forget their legions of fans riding the higher-end Red, Force and Rival groups, so they designed the new 207-gram Apex mid-length-cage rear derailleur, and the 301-gram 11-32 rear cassette to be compatible with those other groups.

The basis of Apex performance is yet another acronymic technology: WiFLi (Wider, Faster, Lighter), which refers to the drivetrain's wider gear range, faster shifting by virtue of two chainrings (versus the traditional triple) and upwards of a 274 gram weight savings over a triple. Facilitating the shifts are SRAM's proven Double Tap shifters and their 1:1 ratio Exact Actuation cable pull technology.

Although it seems to defeat the purpose of Apex's wide-ratio philosophy, you can also get Apex cogs in three tighter (11 -23,11 -26, 11 -28) gear spreads.

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