ERJ staff report (TP)
Clermont-Ferrand, France − Michelin have partnered with Fabien Barel, the highly successful French cyclist, to design a range of mountain bike tires specifically for the burgeoning enduro (off-road) market, reported Olly Forster for BikeRadar.
BikeRadar headed to TransProvence country with a view to spending two days testing the fruits of this partnership. Time and the riding conditions kept us on the Wild Rock’R2 tire, which is designed for more extreme terrain, but with four tires in the range, Michelin have created tires for all enduro eventualities. The tires will be available in April 2014 with US and UK prices to be confirmed.
The Wild Rock’R2 tire will be available in all three wheel sizes and is 2.35in (5.96cm) wide. It’s tubeless ready and available in either the Magi-X Series (for front tire use) or Gum-X Series (recommended for the rear) compounds. Magi-X is the tackier of the two and recommended to be used on the front, while Gum-X is a dual compound and better suited on the rear.
Next up is the aptly-named Wild Mud. It’s available in 650B (27.5in / 69.85cm) and 29in (73.66cm) options and has a mud slicing 2.25in (5.71cm) carcass. It features the stickier, slow-rebounding Magi-X compound. The Mud is a tire best suited to use as a front tire, ideally mated to a Rock’R2 at the rear. The lugs on the tread are designed to be cut down to decrease rolling resistance when needed.
The Wild Grip’R is Michelin’s mixed terrain tire. It's available in both the front-friendly and stickier Magi-X compound (650B/27.5in or 69.85cm only) and the Gum-X compound (all three wheel sizes), which is more suited to the rear.
Finally, for drier conditions, there’s the Wild Race’R. This is a rear-specific tire available in all wheel sizes, in the harder Gum-X compound only.
The range has a tire to suit the various conditions that present themselves in enduro competitions, but the big question remains: how will they fare on the kind of trails we regularly ride?
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