If you’ve owned a heavy tourer like Yamaha’s FJR1300, you’ll no doubt be aware that these bikes can work their way through front tyres faster than they wear out the rears.
To help combat the specific forces that these kinds of motorcycles place on their tyres, we produce a modified ‘GT’ version of our test winning ContiRoadAttack 3 sport touring tyre.
With an adapted casing construction, it helps to deliver more consistent performance and uniform wear on big touring bikes.
Recently was asked the FJ Owner’s Club in the UK to put a pair to the test, and here’s what they had to say in their magazine:
“Like all modern Conti’s they have what they call ‘Traction Skin’. What this means is they have a matt finish on the new tyre that allows a very quick time to scrub-in to the point that it is not really needed. I soon found out how impressive this was as within 16 miles of turning a wheel the bike was already on full lean as my scraping boots soon illustrated.
The feeling I got from the offset was of a very neutral feel and a very confident feeling. It felt like someone had firmed up the suspension. A lot of new tyres with good wet weather grip have a soft feel to them, sometimes to the point of feeling a bit mushy in the bends, but this is not the case with the Attack 3’s.
As with the old RoadAttack 2 Evo, they don’t follow lines or imperfections in the road as there is nothing worse than your front tyre tracking off-line due to it picking up a poor road surface. The off-shoot of this is as follows; there’s a bend where I do a lot of riding that always seems to have a light dusting of road or loose gravel that gets drifted into the road by heavy downpours. It’s the type of bend that you tip in, your heart sinks as you realise that the tyre is not going to feel good going over this, so you tense up (the completely wrong thing to do) as you enter the bend. The Attack 3’s simply ride through the bend as if there’s nothing there. This type of feel gives you great confidence in the tyres and I was soon taking liberties.
I got the chance to test the tyres on a 3,500 mile tour in Northern Spain and then riding back through France for the Calais-Dover ferry. The Pyrenees in July threw up temperatures ranging from 2°c to 32°c, with heavy thunderstorms to pure blue skies and everything in between, so I can safely say they were put through their paces.
I was two up with top box, panniers and tent and air beds strapped on top, but neither the weather or weight could upset these tyres. I managed to get the bike over to it’s pegs and sometimes (as the guys behind can confirm) even the side stand took a scraping.
The tyres were rock solid, even at these lean angles, and they offer sport tyre grip, but what was shocking was the following points:
- The front tyre looks like new, even after 3,500 miles. This has been a major issue with the latest generation of tyres, the fronts unable to match the hard wearing rears.
- The rear never lost it’s profile on our trip, which did include some motorway work, plus it’s only less than half worn after the tour.
- The comfort the tyres gave as we travelled on, shall we say ‘not well blessed’ back roads, was fantastic.
- They never moved or twitched whilst riding across any over banding, wet or dry.
These, in my humble opinion, have set a new standard that the other manufacturers have to match or beat, which will take some doing. They are ‘real’ sports touring tyres that offer high grip and stability without compromising the wear rate that pure touring tyres offer.
This is having your cake and eating it.
You can find out more about the ContiRoadAttack 3 here.