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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Years ago I bought a bunch of Michelin Pro Race (the original ones). They were black, they had no tread, they didn't have any flashy logos (they had an understated logo), they were light, they rolled well, and they lasted at least 3000 miles.

Now I'm in the market for tires again - what the hell happened? The new version of the Pro Races (3s) suck and last 1500 miles, evidently the Contis have chunks explode off of them in the second ride, and Vittoria is making tires with channels to get rid of water even though bicycles can't hydroplane. I understand that everyone's experiences with tires varies, but it seems like today's tires are a total gimmick.

The Conti 4000 S seems nice but it's got ridiculous labeling which basically says "look how much I am willing to spend on tires" and useless patches of tread. Vittoria seems to have forgotten what makes a good tire so they just make 22 different kinds of them now, and they simultaneously refuse to admit that any of them have drawbacks while also offering special tires for every possible riding condition. Oh, you might ride over some bumps? Here. Oh, there's a chance it will rain on your ride? Take this. Everyone rides over crappy roads sometimes, and everyone gets rained on sometimes, and your tire has to not suck in all of these conditions, and even if you have enough wheels to keep a specialized set of tires for each combination of circumstances you will be riding in, the fact is that the same ride contains both wet and dry roads, bumpy and non bumpy roads, so offering tires not designed to handle everything is silly.

Anyway, does a tire exist today with the following criteria?

- No tread at all (this does not ever matter for road tires)
- Black (nicer looking anyway, but doesn't being a different color mean they forgot to add the compound that makes you actually grip the road?)
- Not a logo billboard
- Somewhere on the level of lightness/ride quality of the old Michelin ProRaces.
- Not a Hutchinson (sorry, there's only so many problems you can have before you give up on a brand)

Thanks.
 

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Quality rant there Greg. Thanks for sharing.

There's a new Vittoria Open Corsa that's a slick (the original have a little tread). They might fit your criteria. They do wear relatively quick though. I don't think the GP4000s is that flashy with the billboard myself but whatever.
yes tread is pretty much useless, but it's harmless too so maybe if you lighten up on that criteria it's give you few more options.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Hank Stamper said:
Quality rant there Greg. Thanks for sharing.
Yeah, I realized about half way through that the post could be viewed as a rant glued to another "what's the best tire" post, but I'd gone so far I didn't care. Thanks for indulging me!
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Hank Stamper said:
Yes tread is pretty much useless, but it's harmless too so maybe if you lighten up on that criteria it's give you few more options.
You're right, I may have to. It's not so much that I feel the tread makes it a worse tire, it's that I'd have a lot more respect for a company that understood what was important instead of just spamming the marketplace with different designs. Tread is a good litmus test for whether the company is BSing you with its design.
 

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I think companies put tread on the tire not because they don't know what they're doing, but so the ignorant customer feels safer.

I also looked for some slicks but couldn't find many. I ended up going with Conti GatorSkins because they have cool looking tread.:D
 

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monkey with flamethrower
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Try the Panaracer Evo3. Black with no tread and Panaracer has always made pretty good tires. Can be found online pretty cheap too.
 

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Greg Smalter said:
Years ago I bought a bunch of Michelin Pro Race (the original ones). They were black, they had no tread, they didn't have any flashy logos (they had an understated logo), they were light, they rolled well, and they lasted at least 3000 miles.

Now I'm in the market for tires again - what the hell happened? The new version of the Pro Races (3s) suck and last 1500 miles, evidently the Contis have chunks explode off of them in the second ride, and Vittoria is making tires with channels to get rid of water even though bicycles can't hydroplane. I understand that everyone's experiences with tires varies, but it seems like today's tires are a total gimmick.

The Conti 4000 S seems nice but it's got ridiculous labeling which basically says "look how much I am willing to spend on tires" and useless patches of tread. Vittoria seems to have forgotten what makes a good tire so they just make 22 different kinds of them now, and they simultaneously refuse to admit that any of them have drawbacks while also offering special tires for every possible riding condition. Oh, you might ride over some bumps? Here. Oh, there's a chance it will rain on your ride? Take this. Everyone rides over crappy roads sometimes, and everyone gets rained on sometimes, and your tire has to not suck in all of these conditions, and even if you have enough wheels to keep a specialized set of tires for each combination of circumstances you will be riding in, the fact is that the same ride contains both wet and dry roads, bumpy and non bumpy roads, so offering tires not designed to handle everything is silly.

Anyway, does a tire exist today with the following criteria?

- No tread at all (this does not ever matter for road tires)
- Black (nicer looking anyway, but doesn't being a different color mean they forgot to add the compound that makes you actually grip the road?)
- Not a logo billboard
- Somewhere on the level of lightness/ride quality of the old Michelin ProRaces.
- Not a Hutchinson (sorry, there's only so many problems you can have before you give up on a brand)

Thanks.
looks like you just took the 3 top models and said they suck. Nothing will match what you're looking for...
Maybe you should make your own tire?
Personally i ride the GP4000S and i like how it looks.
 

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why would you care what a tire looks like? No one - including you - can even see the logos etc when you're rolling. Get 4000 black (w/black chili) or 4000s for best combination of performance/durability and don't worry about it...
 

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Vittoria Rubino Pro Slicks?

Personally, I like Vittoria Diamante Pros, but they may have a bit too much tread for your liking.
 

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Just about any Bontrager tire. Race X-Lite AC rides nicely and has tougher sidewalls, Race X-lite Pro is a rebadged Vittoria Course with no tread (might not last 3k miles).

Long lasting tires with premium casings are pretty much over. The market demands light weight and the tread rubber is the only thing left to remove.
 

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Well the PR3s certainly DON'T suck. But if you don't like them because they don't last as long that's your opinion but they do not suck.

Best tire I've ever used. Makes my Specialized Allez Sport ride like an all CF bike and for that I'll live with the lower life.
 

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Veloflex. Mine have been pretty durable (not sure what mileage I have at this point, maybe 1500 and they have plenty life left) and they are understated.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
davidka said:
Long lasting tires with premium casings are pretty much over. The market demands light weight and the tread rubber is the only thing left to remove.
That seems to sum it up.

Anyway, I will check out the suggestions of everyone. Sorry I threw a tantrum and/or possibly made fun of how certain tires look :aureola: I was really trying to make fun of the manufacturers. In my defense, a tire can be both good and gimmicky (conti 4000 S being the best example, probably). Thanks!
 

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Raguvian said:
I think companies put tread on the tire not because they don't know what they're doing, but so the ignorant customer feels safer.
I use the Canti 4000 that have the tread markings. I like it because it's a good wear indicator. I assume that's why it's there.
 

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Kenda

non gimmicky, all black, little tread, and runs well on dry pavement.. I have yet to nuts test the wet road with the one (front) that I am using.... Long story,, I lost my front wheel, well, actually I lost my front wheel. Laid it next to my car while loading my bike in the back seat and drove off without it. Did not notice till I got home. Went back and wudda you know, wheel was gone. I went down to the used bike shop and bought an old 600 hub laced to an OP knock off.. The only question I had to answer was, "do you want a 23 or a 25?". I replied, "23", and walked out with a new to me wheel with Kenda something mounted.. Hated the thought, but I have about 600 miles on it and both myself and my wallet has no complaints....

+1 on the GP 4000 S
 

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Kenda Kalientes last forever, weigh 195g, have good grip, are $35, and have basically no tread. Oh, and they're black. Those might be worth a look, I've had great experience with them
 
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