IB13: Michelin Continues to Come To Grips With Enduro, Offers Two New Tires for 2014
Acknowledging the need for better mountain bike tires, Michelin has been on a slow roll out this year of a number of new tires – many geared towards Enduro. While Enduro may be an infamous industry buzz word, when tires are marketed towards Enduro, riders of trail and AM benefit from the technology. Designed to be much lighter than the typical DH tire but still burly and grippy enough to work in a variety of hard charging conditions, “Enduro” tires turn out to be great options for your average mountain biker who likes to push it on the descents.
They’re also great for actually racing Enduro as well. Check out the new Wild Rock’R² Advanced Reinforced and the production Wild MUD Advanced Reinforced after the break.
As the burliest tire in the Michelin Enduro line up, the Wild Rock’R² Advanced Reinforced is built specifically for super aggressive, hard packed, rocky terrain and is the result of 2.5 years of tire research with Fabien Barel. The tire aims to offer the best combination of braking and drive grip with alternating longitudinal and latitudinal center tread blocks. Large lateral lugs offer great cornering traction, and siping across the tread face increases block mobility.
The Wild Rock’R² uses Michelin’s Gum-X compound which features a 55a durometer in the center for durability and softer 53a on the cornering knobs primarily for the rear tire, while a Magi-X rubber compound is available for the front which is a super soft 50a durometer for maximum grip. Wild Rock’R²s are offered only in 2.35″ width, but are available for 26, 27.5, and 29″ wheels.
Any of the Michelin Advanced Reinforced tires use the same base architecture with a high density breaker and a 33 TPI carcass for an extremely durable tire. The tires are also all tubeless ready.
We’ve seen the Wild Mud Advanced Reinforced a few times in prototype form, but the production tire is finally here. The Mud includes two unique tread technologies that make it stand out – twisted lug design and easy cut lugs. In addition to widely spaced, tall knobs, the twisted lug pattern helps the tire shed mud better than a standard tread block. As the blocks hit the ground, the design makes them twist shedding off caked on mud. The other bit is definitely more racing focused as privateer racers or race mechanics if you’re good enough, are known to cut down rain spikes based on the conditions. The new patent pending cuttable tread pattern places the upper knob on a little shelf that makes cutting the knobs to the same height extremely easy and much faster.
Michelin Wild Mud Advanced Reinforced will be offered in 2.25″ width only in 26 and 29″ for the time being. Since the tires are designed for muddy conditions they are only offered in the softer Magi-X compound front and rear.
Look for the Wild Rock’R² Advanced Reinforced to hit stores in March, with the Mud arriving earlier in January.