Why does giant use KMC chains with Shimano?

Inz

New Member
Jan 31, 2023
11
19
Ireland
Like the title says, I’m trying to understand why Giant outfits many e-bikes with KMC e12 chains when paired with Shimano cassettes, derailleurs etc.

My understanding these chains are not getting the benefit of Hyperglide or Hyperglide+.

So I can’t understand why Giant would fit these as standard. Maybe I’m missing something, so I wanted to open a discussion about it.

Edit: another thread for reference KMC e12 Turbo and Hyperglide+ (relevant for Wild FS users)

Cheers
 

Rubinstein

Well-known member
Apr 7, 2022
404
531
kent
Simple answer would be cost. Nothing wrong with KMC chains, my original trance one lasted 1200km. Having said that I did replace it with an xt one which has done 3500km and still going. As for mixing drive trains I don’t see a problem here as long as the parts are compatible. From stock the trance had deore cassette, kmc chain and a praxis chain ring, all worked great. It’s now running sram axs on a xtr cassette with a shimano chain and still on the stock praxis chain ring, very nice. I here what you say on matching components but it’s not always possible when it’s time to replace. As for when the bike is new I think giant represent some of the best value for money bikes out there, but this can be reflected in some of the components fitted as stock.
 

Inz

New Member
Jan 31, 2023
11
19
Ireland
Simple answer would be cost. Nothing wrong with KMC chains, my original trance one lasted 1200km. Having said that I did replace it with an xt one which has done 3500km and still going. As for mixing drive trains I don’t see a problem here as long as the parts are compatible. From stock the trance had deore cassette, kmc chain and a praxis chain ring, all worked great. It’s now running sram axs on a xtr cassette with a shimano chain and still on the stock praxis chain ring, very nice. I hear what you say on matching components but it’s not always possible when it’s time to replace. As for when the bike is new I think giant represent some of the best value for money bikes out there, but this can be reflected in some of the components fitted as stock.
Thanks for the advice. I do agree the components largely work well together. But I wonder how much of a difference does it make having a Shimano chain that is purpose designed for Hyperglide. Would it even be noticeable to the average rider.
 

big_scot_nanny

Active member
Subscriber
Nov 23, 2022
82
107
Scotland
Thanks for the advice. I do agree the components largely work well together. But I wonder how much of a difference does it make having a Shimano chain that is purpose designed for Hyperglide. Would it even be noticeable to the average rider.
I happily use SRAM chains with Shimano drivetrain with no issues. And vice versa. KMC chain with my Reign was noticeably less smooth than a SRAM chain however, and it only lasted 500km before being stretched and replaced.
 

Jurassic

Active member
Subscriber
Jul 22, 2022
220
234
Helensburgh, Scotland.
It's just cost saving I think. I've replaced my KMC with a Shimano XTR and the difference in shift quality is really noticeable (it's way smoother and faster with the Shimano chain on). I've used KMC chains on my other bikes in the past and they've been fine but I'm now of the opinion that it's worth paying a bit more for an XTR chain to maximise the shifting performance. If that doesn't bother you then I'd imagine the KMC will give decent service at the cost of slightly clunkier shifting. From what I've read high end SRAM chains (XX1 and X01) are the best option if longevity is your priority with XTR being in third place (and significantly better than XT and lower).
 
  • Like
Reactions: Inz

Inz

New Member
Jan 31, 2023
11
19
Ireland
It's just cost saving I think. I've replaced my KMC with a Shimano XTR and the difference in shift quality is really noticeable (it's way smoother and faster with the Shimano chain on). I've used KMC chains on my other bikes in the past and they've been fine but I'm now of the opinion that it's worth paying a bit more for an XTR chain to maximise the shifting performance. If that doesn't bother you then I'd imagine the KMC will give decent service at the cost of slightly clunkier shifting. From what I've read high end SRAM chains (XX1 and X01) are the best option if longevity is your priority with XTR being in third place (and significantly better than XT and lower).
Thanks @Jurassic, that’s just what I was looking for. I’m of the opinion that as riders we‘re shifting gears a hell of lot, so paying an extra 20 bucks for noticeably smoother shifting seems like a no brainer to me. Thanks for the info!

/edit: price check.. XTR chain is only 10 bucks more on Amazon
 

BeBiker

Active member
Aug 26, 2020
663
404
Belgium
...My understanding these chains are not getting the benefit of Hyperglide or Hyperglide+.
What exactly are the benefits of Hyperglide or Hyperglide+ ?

Apart from marketing speak and possible incompatibility issues, nobody was able to tell me the difference between a 10sp Hyperglide and a 10sp Deore M6000 Shadow+ with a HG500 or KMC.
 
Last edited:

SwampNut

Well-known member
Oct 26, 2022
296
350
Peoria, AZ USA
I'm actually just now talking to a riding/bike wrenching buddy and he said to note that we're talking about the KMC turbo EPT, and not the cheap ones that apparently they make. I'm not familiar with their line, just the one I upgraded to.
 
Feb 6, 2023
130
46
Uk
If various videos on YouTube are to be believed it’s because Kmc make Shimano chains so there in lies the penny pinching mentality of fulfilment managers asking for a cheaper product. As Kmc alkedged go
Last last longer and shift better
 

SwampNut

Well-known member
Oct 26, 2022
296
350
Peoria, AZ USA
I don't know whether KMC makes Shimano chains, but the one I got was visibly different in design compared to the stock Shimano chain.
 

Bones

E*POWAH Master
Subscriber
Apr 3, 2020
754
992
Harrogate
The xtr chains are made by shimano as far as I am aware.
I personally am an X01 chain fan. I have just fitted a deore 12s cassette and an X01 chain on my bike mainly because of how long it lasts. I got 3k miles from an SLX cassette. The first 1k was with changing chains at 500 miles. And the last 2k from one X01 chain that got very little maintenance is 5* in my book 👍
 

Jurassic

Active member
Subscriber
Jul 22, 2022
220
234
Helensburgh, Scotland.
I believe Bones is right, the cheaper (XT and below) Shimano chains are lower quality and not particularly good. If you do a bit of Google research there's plenty of info about the best shifting/longest lasting MTB chains. For longevity the high end SRAM chains are the best closely followed by XTR. The SRAM chains work fine with Shimano cassettes and mechs and last the best but if you have a decent Shimano drivetrain and want the best shifting XTR is the way to go. I've avoided Shimano chains for ages (ever since they started using those stupid break-off joining pins years ago) but the XTR that I've put on my eeb shifts noticeably better with my XT cassette and mech than the KMC that was OEM on my bike.
 

MB1

Member
Dec 28, 2019
35
30
Cumbria
Ok not commenting on th overall quality of any manufacturer, but I’ve always used KMC chains on shimano and SRAM systems without any issues or noticeable differences other than KMC e-bike specific chain does appear to last longer.
 

Chuggz

Member
Dec 13, 2019
104
83
Australia
Thanks for the advice. I do agree the components largely work well together. But I wonder how much of a difference does it make having a Shimano chain that is purpose designed for Hyperglide. Would it even be noticeable to the average rider.
A shimano xt chain will miles better!
I did this as soon as I got my bike as the kmc shifted like shite
 

EnduroDad2k

Active member
Aug 19, 2021
46
192
Oakland, CA US
I also broke the stock KMC chain rather quickly and replaced with XT. the shifting is noticeably smoother and so far it’s lasted about 4x longer, and still going.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Inz

EMTB Forums

Since 2018

The World's largest electric mountain bike community.

522K
Messages
25,721
Members
Join Our Community

Latest articles


Top