As ever in the mtb arms race, shimano have managed to keep most of the new xtr group underwraps until very close to the release date...however, pictures and rumours are circulating.
The new brakes look extremely svelte, with a trail version and a race version - differences being the adjustments available, and hence the weight.
The shifter looks like it will mount neatly to the brake lever clamp. The crank has a different aesthetic from m970 and the tensioning mechanism seems to have reverted to the older style, as carried on the rest of the cranks. The mech is definitely less stylised (it always bothered me with m970 that the logo was incorporated so heavily into the structure) shifting across a similar range but increased number of cogs (10 speed, with availability of double or triples up front).
I think in the near future i see a xc race bike. Something that will take a suspension fork, or run rigid. It will run 1x9, or singlespeed. It will also hand me my ass, i'm certain. Hard to see past the cannondale hollowgram cranks and some xtr....we'll see.