Weaknesses: High rolling resistance. Very soft, with rapid wear.
Don't buy these if you live in Colorado. The rocks and pulverized granite shred them quickly. I had to rotate the tires in less than two months of moderate riding, because the rear tire knobs where disintegrating. The tires were so soft when brand new, I managed to put them on without a tire iron. While rolling resistance isn't as much of a deal breaker for me, it is noticeable, and might inhibit others. On the upside, the traction is quite amazing. Considering the expense and shockingly rapid wear, I wouldn't buy them again.
Bike Setup: Frankenbike built around Titus Motolite frame.
Date Reviewed: June 30, 2013
Weaknesses: Weak Cornering
Loose fitting bead, does not stay on rim during side loaded landings
Difficult to impossible to inflate tubeless
26 x 2.25 mounted on Stans Flow
To be fair, perhaps I got a lemon of a tire. My experience with this tire has been horrid, and I'm not being dramatic. I bought this tire in a hurry from a local LBS on a Sunday morning, after shredding the sidewall on my usual tire of choice, Schwalbe Nobby Nic, the night before. Drove to the trailhead with plenty of time before my riding partner got there.
First Fail: Could not get the tire to inflate on a Stans Flow. I was frustrated and there was sealant everywhere by the time my partner showed up, and I threw a tube in and hit the trail.
Cornering, not so great. But I won't waste words on that, pretty well covered in other reviews.
Here's the kicker: This tire will not stay on the rim. The first time it came off, was during a 24hr race. Landed a jump over a road at high speed, a little side ways, and the entire side of the bead came off the rim. Lost position as I was on the side of the trail at 3am changing the tube.
Yesterday, same thing, landed a little sideways.... THE ENTIRE TIRE CAME OFF THE RIM. The tube was still inflated, wrapped around by rear triangle and brake like a wad of black intestines. The tire was crumpled and jammed near my seat tube, and the rim was naked.
Later on the same ride the sidewall bubbled.
I wouldn't even feel good giving this tire away free.
Date Reviewed: May 20, 2013
Strengths: grip in all conditions when on the front. fast and corners very well. best tire i have ever ridden in the front.
Weaknesses: none so far
This is a great front tire and one that wont let you down. Fast in all conditions and the price is pretty good as well. it has never done anything that would make me question this tire!
Date Reviewed: May 13, 2013
Strengths: I'm running a steel frame with a solid fork, no suspension, a HIGH ROLLER in the front and ARDENT in the back, and i really like it. Another reviewer has said it's not a front tire and i would agree with that since I am running this combo on dry loose pack. For me, this combo is great and the Ardent seems to climb pretty well with at times a little slip, but that could be my riding technique. Good XC tire though in the front.
Weaknesses: Climbing on dry loose pack it can slide a bit, but that could be me. The tire seems to corner well and grip good. I run it in the back and a High Roller on the front. Front stays solid, back slides. I'd say this is a predictable tire. Can't wait to ride more on it.
XC, front and back. AM, Put it in the rear an a Highroller in the front. Maxxis makes good tires.
a Weekend Warrior
Date Reviewed: April 29, 2013
Strengths: rolls fast, good climbing traction as a rear tire - EXO version sidewall is tough
Weaknesses: Sketchy and slippery as a front tire - not confidence inspiring
Ive used a 2.25 EXO Ardent on the front with a Crossmark in the rear for about 5 rides. I had Nevegals on before and just wanted to try something different with less rolling resistance. Ardent up front was sketchy and could not rail turns as usual. Had to slow too much to make some turns, but it was fast in the straights. Riding on rocky and hardpack singletrack with some sand/kitty litter on top.
Moved the same Ardent tire to the back and put a Nevegal up front for a couple of rides. I liked the Ardent as a rear, and it negated the speed penalty when running a Nev front and rear (way to slow for me). It gripped and climbed up short, rocky technical grunts no prob. (The Crossmark that was on rear would slip too easy on roots/rocks).
Strengths: Tread wear seems good, climbing traction, rolling resistance seems low for a good climbing tire.
Weaknesses: Cornering and side-hill traction
I have about 150 miles on dirt with these tires covering most trail conditions. This tire is great until you lean the bike over or are riding on a side-hill angle. The traction just goes away. I dont know why Maxxis decided to recess the intermidiate knobs between the center and sidewall knobs but it clearly has a negative affect on cornering. I'll ride these till they wear out but will not be replacing them with the same model.
a Cross Country Rider
Date Reviewed: December 5, 2012
Strengths: front tire bite, steers great, traction, rolling, cushy, can run low air pressure
Weaknesses: none yet
ridden 4 times. used on the front. 2.4 x 29. great directional stability. great grip. rolls great. no weaknesses yet. art's cyclery had a good deal.. got a nevegal at the same time for the back. not impressed with the nevegals grip on hardpack/leafy climbs.......slips a very good bit. If i had to do over i think that a 2.2 ardent on the back would have been a better choice. maybe kenda can get me a free back tire in repayment for this great review of their tire:)
Strengths: They aired up tubeless on Stans Flow EX easy and continue to hold air well. Low rolling resistance.
Weaknesses: Cornering grip is horrible on these tires.
I had issues with getting an old, worn in set of OE Ignitors to hold air tubeless so I wanted to try a new set of 29x2.25 Ardent up front with a 29x2.1 Ignitor on the rear. The previous set of Ignitors I had were super confidence inspiring and had tons of cornering grip. This Ardent slips as soon as you start leaning on the side knobs, and has led me to one very hard crash and more than a few close calls. Never will I buy another Ardent.
these are horrible. no climbing grip and absolutely no cornering grip. these came on my bike stock and went off after 3 rides. Not dependable at all, sometimes they slip and sometimes they grip. I even siped the side knobs and they still have no dependable grip.
This is what I would call a wal-mart mountain bike tire. Yeah sure it will roll good on a gravel path, but when you want to roll on some nice single track and rock some corners these get you none. I would rather rock some holy rollers than these. DO NOT BUY THESE!
I've long been a huge Nevegal fan, but when I my new Rocky Mountain Slayer 70 came with the Ardent's, I decided I'd give them a few weeks to see if I liked them. Very glad I did too, as this tire has completely changed my view on what I mtn bike tire should be. Right away you can tell it's a much faster tire than the Nevegal, and so far it's exceeded the Nev in cornering too. Tight turns I usually drift around I was now railing like never before. It's the dusty season here in Seattle, but these tires grip the dry and loose trails like nothing I've ridden before. Haven't had a chance to put them to the test on wet roots yet, but given how impressive they've been so far I'd be very surprised if they didn't excel there as well.
Well done Maxxis, you've made a convert out of me!
Weaknesses: Very difficult to mount tubeless, poor grip dry loose climbs, weak sidewalls, sub-par cornering on loose gravel, expensive for what you get
Hard to mount tubeless....no chance if it flats on the trail so carry a tube. First ride-tire slipped all over on loose rocky climbs, second ride-poor cornering unsuspecting washouts, third ride-1 inch tear into side wall 1/2 mile into long ride. fourth ride-to the dump.
Weaknesses: A little heavy
I purchased a 2.35 for my '08 Fuel Ex 7 and my first impression was that I'd made a mistake. It seemed very soft and unstable just looking at it. Once I rode it for the first time however, it was clear that I was completely mistaken. It corners beautifully and gives confidence I never experienced on my older Bontrager Jones (no surprise there). It is now my number one recommendation to anyone looking, and I plan on changing out my rear tire (currently a High Roller) to an Ardent around the end of the season. As for the weaknesses, I'm more than okay with a little extra weight for the quality of the tire.
a All Mountain Rider
Date Reviewed: May 23, 2012
Strengths: Rolls well for an agressive tire, tenacious braking grip, good cornering grip.
Weaknesses: Lacks some grip in the usual Maxxis mid lean gap.
(Review for the 2.40 size on front)
Overall I am really happy with this as front tire. The grip is great in pretty much all conditions (Mud / rocks / dusty hardpack) and it rolls well for such an aggressive tire. The volume is huge. Straight line braking grip surprised me the first few hard brakes I made, putting me in a stoppie and almost going over the bars! As with most Maxxis tires, there is the vague gap at mid lean while transitioning from center knobs to the outer knobs. It is not as bad as others because there are some small, widely spaced transitioning knobs in there providing a little grip (docked one star for this).
It has proved to be very durable and looks like it wears well. It should last the next two seasons.
Strengths: High volume, fast rolling, tough, awesome grip in most conditions
Weaknesses: A little heavy
I've used the 29 x 2.25 and the 29 x 2.4 version of the Ardent. It took my a while to find the sweet spot pressure-wise but once I did these tire are great. The volume lets you run them really low without minimal risk of flatting or dinging a rim. The roll fast enough to race, but offer enough traction for all conditions, and are tough enough to not ride everyday without worrying about tearing a sidewall.
I've been wondering whether or not this would be a good setup for some all mountain riding. I rode a Bronson with Highroller II s front and rear and they didn't slip once while descending some rocky/rooty downhill
I'm running 2.25 Ardents front and rear and have been pretty happy with them, but its ... Read More »
I bought a set of UST rims recently ( 2012 Easton Havens).
I was hoping to run an Ardent 2.4 up front on a Banshee Paradox. I just noticed however that the 2.4 does not come in a UST version, but the 2.2 does.
If I want to run the 2.4 on the rims I own can I just add sealant? I'd really l ... Read More »
I still have the stock bontrager tire in the rear of my Trek Cobia and am looking to replace it. As of now I'm debating between another Ardent in the back or Maxxis' Ignitor, but I'm open for all other suggestions. I ride moslty trails with hardpack and a lot of roots. I'm not running tubeless and d ... Read More »
Ready for a new front tire (I a ride rigid Karate Monkey in the LA area) and I'm debating between the Continental Mountain King II 2.4 and Maxxis Ardent 2.4. I currently have a X-King 2.4 front and back and as a front tire I'm finding that i need a bit more grip up front especially on the rougher/l ... Read More »