Don’t you love the idea of taking your motorcycle out of the city boundaries, on the open highway to let it breathe easy and do countless miles? If you haven’t done that yet, you should really consider doing it sometime. It is hard to match the feeling you get when you head out for an adventure on motorcycle. Some people like to ride solo while some prefer riding in groups. Now before you start packing your bags, you need to make sure your motorcycle is ready to go along. Apart from the usual checks like suspension, engine oil and electronics, it is also very important to have the right set of tyres. The stock tyres you get on your motorcycle are all rounders. They can handle a lot of things but they don’t excel at any of them. While they can handle small highway trips easily, you might need different set of tyres to do more than that. Here we guide you on how to figure out what tyre you will need for your next ride.
Figure out the kind of grip you need
Before you set out looking for new tyres to put on your motorcycle, it is important to figure out what kind of grip you need- Dry, Wet tarmac, Dirt, Slush, Gravel? Obviously not all of your route will be slush or wet so we will be looking at dual purpose tyres that are biased towards their other role as well along with decent tarmac characteristics rather than specialised tyres which won’t make sense anywhere else. High performance tyres don’t have lot of tread so they are not able to tackle wet surfaces or loose surfaces easily. For these surfaces the tyres need to have deep tread pattern or buttons. Dual purpose tyres have these buttons placed closely so that they offer decent grip on tarmac as well.
Tubeless or tube type
This one is simple. It your motorcycle has got alloy wheels, you can go ahead with tubeless tyres. Just make sure the alloy wheels are in good state otherwise they won’t be able to retain the air and you will find yourself running on low pressure often. Tubeless tyres don’t lose air quickly in event of a puncture and can be fixed easily. If they aren’t in a good state or your motorcycle has got spoke rims, go for tube type tyres. If you planning to go off road, tube type tyres on spoke wheels are recommended as alloy wheels can crack.
It is also advisable not to alter the size of the tyre as it could alter the handling and dynamics of the motorcycle. And just in case you are planning to do that, at least you need to make sure that the new tyre can fit in without any troubles. The worst thing you can do is alter the swingarm or suspension in any way.
The compound of a tyre makes a huge difference in how it performs. Hard tyres don’t provide very impressive grip on tarmac but last longer and are less prone to punctures. Soft tyres provide excellent grip on dry tarmac but wear out quickly and are prone to punctures. So you need to keep these factors in mind as well.
We have listed some popular tyres here to make things simple for you:
- MRF Zapper C- Medium/ Hard tyre with decent grip in dry and wet conditions.
- MRF Zapper Vyde- Soft compound tyre for excellent road grip. The tread pattern helps with the wet grip as well.
- Ceat Vertigo- Hard compound tyre with button pattern. Average dry and wet grip. Decent performance off road.
- Michelin Pilot Sporty- Soft compound tyre with good dry grip. Not very good on wet and loose surfaces
- Michelin Sirac- Hard compound tyre with decent performance off road but hasn’t got very long life
- TVS Tyres- Hard compound tyres with poor dry grip and average wet grip but offer long life.