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Wheels and Tyres

Bontrager XR Mud

The perfect trail bike winter mud tyre

The Bontrager XR Mud clears mud well and its low weight adds life to the bike once conditions get testing

There’s a whole lot of chat out there on wider tyres, with the latest 27.5 and 29 ‘Plus’ widths of 2.8 to 3 inch said to offer the year-round trail rider more grip, control and traction whatever the conditions. We’ve yet to spend a winter on these sizes but here at Dirt we really feel that a narrow, light, two inch mud tyre such as the Bontrager XR Mud is essential equipment on mid-travel trail bikes from October through April, dishing out plenty of bite in softer ground. Testing mud tyres is an ongoing business. Many riders really miss out on the hard charging capabilities of trail bike wet weather rubber.

It’s largely a class dominated by downhill casings with few lightweight and medium depth rubber available for riding that take you up and across as well as down. Bontrager’s XR Mud has always been our rubber of choice, especially on a 29er, enhancing the improved wet weather grip that this wheel size already gives, yet still rolling well on fire roads or when trails start to dry out.

For 2015 Bontrager made some subtle but important improvements to the XR Mud tyre. It now rolls better with a harder 62a compound on the centre tread, improved traction on the shoulder edge and a rounder profile. Cornering traction is now smoother and more predictable. A strong tubeless-ready 120TPI casing with a folding bead gives a supple ride quality yet doesn’t compromise the sidewall durability. The 29er tyre weighs in at a feathery 650g.

This Bontrager rubber clears mud well, and its low weight adds life to the bike once conditions gets testing. Sodden trail centre surfaces, as well as off-piste action in steep root filled forest slopes are no problem for the XR Mud.

 

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