I am starting to put the clues together and am now convinced that Shimano has some big plans for new products. I first noticed this when I got my Bass Pro sales flier the other day and saw the Curado on sale for $40 off. This might not seem like a big deal, but know from experience that Shimano products are the same price everywhere you go (besides eBay). I used to work for Cabela's and know that what Shimano says to charge is what you are required to charge. I also read the post "Rumors about New Toys" on Rattletrap Rambling's blog about the possibility of some new reels and rods from Shimano. The picture of Dave Mercer seems to confirm it, and it looks like he is holding a rod that looks much like the Cumara, but may be a Crucial or Compre. It has split, EVA foam grips. I can't wait to see what they have in store for ICAST. I will be there and will be posting updates daily. Shimano, if you are reading this: get in touch with me and let me know what's up!
Dave Mercer with a mystery Shimano set-up
The good news about the new products is that the older models are going to be much cheaper. Tackle Warehouse has already started marking down several Shimano models (including the Curado, Citica, Chronarch, Stradic, Sustain, Stradic, Compre and Crucial)
I can't wait to see what's new from Shimano!