Crawling up mud-slicked trails. Bombing down stone and stump-riddled runs. When it's all about traction and blasting through any kind of trail debris, turn to the Continental Mountain King II ProTection Tires for your 29ers. Made by the company that continually pushes the envelope in terms of what we can expect from a top-notch tire, you can feel confident that this heavy-duty mountain bike tire, one of the favorites of Richie Schley, will work for you in the worst conditions and yet roll nicely once you break through to the fire roads. For many years, the Continental Mountain King tires have been all about the soft and loose-grip type of riding. What is so special about this version is that the folks at Conti have made a particular effort to give it a much more rounded performance level. They realized that most of us are riding in a variety of surface conditions every day, and so they took a look at how they could give the Mountain King better reactions when cornering on hardpack or rolling over fire roads. Consequently, this version features beefed-up shoulder lugs and more space toward the center lugs to lower rolling resistance and improve cornering. Continental included their Protection technology with these tires, so you can enjoy the benefit of the smooth yet grippy treads as well as enhanced puncture protection (hence the name). Conti added an additional layer that encircles the tire to guard against punctures; unlike puncture-resistant troughs in other brands' tires, this protection reaches wall-to-wall to resist damage all the way around. Continental has been careful to ensure that the added layer does not harden the feel and reduce the level of dampening comfort it can provide. One reason that is possible is because Continental heavily relies on its proprietary Black Chili rubber compound to help the tire be all things to all conditions. It has succeeded in making the tires grippier, tougher and lighter on their treads. Essentially, the Continental engineers in Germany refined their synthetic rubbers with nano-particles to create a compound that reacts to surface objects more quickly, improving grip. These particles also form a tighter bond to improve compound strength, lengthening tread life and reducing the chances that lugs will rip and tear. Compared to Continental's earlier-generation tire compound, Black Chili tires offer 20% less rolling resistance and 30% more grip, yet also manage to improve tread life by 5%.The Continental Mountain King II Protection 29in Tire is tubeless-ready and Continental recommends the use of their RevoSealant to protect against the odd mini-puncture.
Strengths: Rolls very fast, has a particularly predictable behavior under braking conditions and cornering, despite its "high roller" design. Nice graphics and beefy volume for a trail/am 29er
Weaknesses: Expensive. Continental is a big name in both automotive and aviation areas. You gotta pay the brand.
Had these 3 and half months now, no issues. Real abuse, deliberated missuse, leaving bike under sunlight all day long several times, no sidewall cracking or anything. This thing feels like floating over rocks and roots. It does the job amazingly, however price is an issue, especially overseas europe
Weaknesses: No transition knobs so it tends to wash a bit on rock faces and while cornering
I had great hope for these tires and for the most part they've done what I wanted.Tires are the 2.4's. They actually measure out to 2.3" so I was surprised at the volume, Conty's are usually smallish.These are BIG tires tall and fat, actually bigger than my Rampage.
I'm 200 lbs and riding a Rumblefish so I wanted something that could take a beating and yet still spin better than my Fire pro's which are a great tire just a bit small in volume and slow. I'm riding in CT so mix of rocks mud and hardpack.
Overall I like the tire, running it tubeless at about 24psi. Great traction climbing and braking, very predictable, good cornering in dirt.
I have found though in the 2 months I've been using these that they are a pretty good front tire,good braking, tracks well and doesn't do anything unpredictable. I have found though that as a rear tire they aren't quiet up to the task. They have great traction climbing but cornering or riding on rocks wet or dry they wash out sometimes. If you look at the tread pattern it's very open and sheds mud fairly well but that same openness makes the tire rely on the sticky compound instead of transition knobs. I've played quite a bit with pressures and am comfortable at 24 but they still wash in back. It's not terrible but at times it can be a little humbling. The other night riding one particularly nasty rock infested trail all I heard was non stop pinging from the rear tire as the side lugs slid from on rock to the other. I still made it out just fine but it was rather noisy.I think my weight is overpowering the lugs.
I'm curious about the Trail Kings which have much larger lugs and look like they would be better for cornering, but they also weigh a bit more as well.