Last year, WTB introduced Road Plus tires. The concept borrows liberally from the mountain bike world, where large volume tires are now all the rage. The idea is simple, a large volume road oriented tire designed for a 650B rim has roughly the same overall dimension as a 700×23-30c tire. Of course it requires a touch more chainstay clearance than a traditional road tire, but in return you get a smoother more stable ride. Or so the thinking goes.
The first tire they launched using this concept was the 650x47c Horizon. With a smooth center patch that transitioned to subtle cross hatching, it was targeted towards mix surfaced bike touring.
This year at the Sea Otter Classic, they’re launching the new Byway tire which takes things a step further. Designed for riders who spend most of their time playing on dirt (and all the paved road in between), it bears some similarities to the Horizon.
The center patch and hatching remain to help keep things smooth on pavement, but the side knobs quickly transition to intermediate knobbies for traction in loose dirt and gravel. To further aid that mission, they’ve used a dual durometer that’s harder in the center and grippier at the edges.
At launch, the tires will be available in a 650x47c that’s tubeless ready. The preproduction samples weigh 535g (roughly 20g heavier than the Horizon), but that number may go up or down slightly for production. Price is $68.
For more info, visit www.wtb.com.
This article is part of RoadBikeReview’s coverage of the 2017 Sea Otter Classic in Monterey, California. For more from Sea Otter CLICK HERE.