Similar Products Used: kenda kinetics, maxxis high roller, michelin hot s
Bike Setup: weyless 67 free ride bike with spv 4way coil, hope hubs with singletrack rims, pike race fork, king headset, michelin am ex 2.25 tires, thomson front and rear, avid 8" mech brakes, odi grips, sram x9 drivetrain and holzfeller cranks, crank brother mallet m pedals.
a Cross Country Rider
from Sydney, Australia
Date Reviewed: November 19, 2005
Strengths: Good grip on loose gravel and rocks. It feels predictable when traction is lost, on and off sealed roads.
Weaknesses: A lot of rolling resistance on tarmac and clean hardpack trails. Sinks into soft deep sand (but it is a narrow tyre)
I only have it on my back wheel, but it hooks up well on loose gravel hills and over rocks. Sydney hasn't had a lot of rain recently and the tracks around here are quite sandy, so I can't comment about performance in the wet or in mud. The tracks that I have been riding are mostly narrow and technical (walking trails), so I can't comment about high speed performance either. However on these tracks where grip and power control are required the tyre performs quite well. They lose traction in a predictable way, so I haven't been tossed over the front (yet) when it does breaks free. It doesn't roll very well on clean hard packed trails or on the road due to the tread pattern, but it wears a lot better than the Specialised tyres that came with the bike. The tread pattern is directional and does seem to make a noticeable difference if you get it wrong. Overall, I'm very happy with the traction I get going up steep loose trails.
a Cross Country Rider
from San Antonio, TEXAS
Date Reviewed: October 8, 2004
Strengths: This tire rolls very well. Good overall traction for a variety of XC riding. The front version of this tires steers well and feels surprisingly precise. Predictable handling inspires confidence. Excellent performance for the price. I hope Michelin continues to produce these tires.
Weaknesses: A little heavy(700 grams in the steel bead version) Not great in heavy mud or on slick limestone(but what is?)
This has become my preferred XC tire. It's hard to beat for value and overall performance.
Similar Products Used: WTB Velociraptors Continental Traction Pro Specialized Enduro sport
Bike Setup: Schwinn Rocket 88
Date Reviewed: February 13, 2004
Strengths: Quite light, very good grip, good puncture resistance, low rolling resistance. Breaks very well, climbs very well, feels very secure under all conditions on down hills, even when its wet. Sheds mud also quite well.
Weaknesses: None so far. Doesn't show any wear, no side wall problems.
You need one tire that can do it all? Buy this one. Great all rounder.
Similar Products Used: Continental Escape, not punture proof at all, but otherwise also a good all rounder, lighter, more agile.
Bike Setup: Stumpjumper '03
a Weekend Warrior
from Sale Victoria Australia
Date Reviewed: September 16, 2003
Strengths: Grip, high puncture protection, great wear rate
These tyres are great they wear very well, climb anything my feeble legs and lungs can and hook up well on most trails. I find that they break away evenly, two wheel slides rather than front first. I have used them on sand ok, hard pack good, mud slippy but not too bad, rocks great. Overall they work well and dont cost that much.
Similar Products Used: Trail blasters, smoke/dart, old maxis and kenda before they were cool.
Bike Setup: hard tail fox up front
a Cross Country Rider
from Castle Rock, CO
Date Reviewed: August 19, 2003
Strengths: Excellent traction! Outstanding grip! Improved my climbing in technical sections 50%!
Weaknesses: None, really
This is the best tire I've ever used. I like to climb and I ride trails that are technical. Rocks, roots, switchbacks, water bars. The XL is amazing! My previous favorite was the Panaracer Smoke. But the Michelin XL is significantly better. It grips in all situations for me. Even granite rocks (rather slick to begin with) covered with silt. Grips water bars reasonably well whereas other tires did not grip them at all. I now climb stuff that I previously thought was impossible due to steepness and lack of traction. With the Michelin XL, every pedal stroke results in forward motion. I've had some trouble with unintentional wheelies when I expected slippage and the tire gripped.
Have not had any trouble with the sidewalls. I shredded the sidewalls of some other tires, particularly the Specialized. The rocks on my favorite trails are not forgiving. The Michelin has held up GREAT! I'm thinking about ordering a hundred or so just in case they are ever discontinued.
That one guy with the negative review above must have gotten a lemon. Though I believe his review said he only demo'ed them.
I don't ride much street, I don't bomb the downhills, and I don't ride gently rolling hills and meadows. I ride aggressive, nasty, dare-you-to-try-this trails. And the Michelin XL is far and away the best tire I've ever ridden!
Strengths: Excellent in corners Very durable Extremely aggressive
Weaknesses: Lots of rolling resistence Not good on wet pavement Not sticky at all
This is an excellent training tire. I've got a few hundred trail miles on and about a hundred road miles on these, and they look like their still a week old. They have a fair amount of rolling resistence on hard-pack, they eat up corners on trails (not on roads), especially loose corners, and they give you plenty of braking power. These are cheap tires; dont' expect too much from them. But any skills you need to practice in training (except large, wet rocks or wet pavement) you can do, just at the cost of going a little slower with some added weight. Good all-rounders with exellent durability: that's all you need in a training tire. I'd give up some durability for some extra sticky, but besides that, they're about perfect. Oh yea, even with a bunch of recent encounters with thorn patches, I've still never gotten a flat with them.
Weaknesses: I had this tire for about 30 minutes...that's how long it took for me to COMPLETELY destroy it. Tore the sidewalls SOOO bad, I actually separated the bead from the rest of it, in a good 3" strip. What a JOKE of a tire.
Don't ever buy this tire...unless your'e a democrat.
Similar Products Used: similar meaning this sh!tty???...well, none then.
Bike Setup: Who cares...the tire shredded!!!
a Cross Country Rider
from Middle-of-nowhere, ME
Date Reviewed: June 30, 2002
Strengths: Fast. Tread layout. Overall stability. Michelin Man on sidewall.
Weaknesses: Not many big ones. Sidewalls seem a little flexy, maybe too thin to last a lot more than a season or two. Depends on your riding.
The XL's are a very good tire. I had them front and rear on my Moab3 until last week. The tire in the rear gripped well and never left my spinning on the uphills. Braking traction also seemed good. Weight was not a huge problem, but then again I'm not a leg-shaven, XC weight freak anyway. The rear seemed to stick good in the corners, and I rarely felt it sliding out. I really had to puch this tire to do something bad. On the front, the michelin worked just as well. It rolled well, and proved to be a good all-around tire. Braking traction was good, and it inspired confidence on even the most knarly wet roots and rocks. The one problem with the front was that it slid out a little more in the corners than I would like. It only did this when I was racing and was pushing the bike to its limits on very fast gravel/loose downhills. I replaced the front with an IRC Mythos, and the problem seems to be solved. There were only two things that I had a problem with with this tire. They were: 1. Thin sidewall - May prove to be a spot of wear in the long run. 2. Seemed to wear kind of fast. But then again, they did a lot of pavement riding to get to the trails.
Overall, I feel that the benefits outwieghed the very slight problems. 5 Flamin' chilis all around.
Similar Products Used: IRC mythos. Several other Michelin tires for XC. WTB Velociraptors.
Bike Setup: 2001 Schwinn Moab 3(pre-buyout by Pacific). XTR brakes/levers, M536 clipless, several other upgrades.
Date Reviewed: May 4, 2002
Strengths: Excellent grip in turns due to aggressive side knobs make them excellent in loose conditions. They also work very well over rocks and hard pack. Tread pattern across the center of the tire is not as aggresive, making them very fast on straights. Because the lugs are well spaced across the top of the tire, they shed mud fairly well,
Weaknesses: Side walls seem a bit thin. They look like they will not last the whole season due to this fact.
They have a more aggressive lug pattern than the Hutchinson UST tire making them better in overall conditions. Excellent all-conditions tire.
Excactly the same as the michelin xl s, BUT without kevlar. Its only disadvantage is that, thing which makes them pretty heavy. By far more stable on every ground, even on wet! Perfect for those who seek for a very good all round tyre, do not dare for weight and do not want to give much money just for a pair of tyres. I'm sure my next tires are going to be the same with kevlar(xls).
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Spam-- 8 month old twin girls mean less time to ride... gotta get rid of this one:
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Selling my XL, because I bought a Large that fit better. Frame and shock only.
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