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Know Your Motorcycle Tires: Part II

Chaparral Motorsports
March 28, 2015
2013 Kawasaki Ninja 300

A lot can go into picking the right tire for your sportsbike. As you continue to search, it's always important to consider how well it grips the road, its overall longevity and the price.

To take some of the pain out of searching for your next sportsbike tires, here's the second part of the Know Your Motorcycle Tires series:

Metzeler Sportec M5 Interact Tires

[caption id="attachment_44541" align="alignright" width="200"][mageProductLink sku="335-0301-0232" title=""]Metzeler Sportec M5 Interact Radial Tires[/mageProductLink] [mageProductLink sku="335-0301-0232" title="Metzeler Sportec M5 Interact Radial Front Tire"]Metzeler Sportec M5 Interact Radial Tires[/mageProductLink][/caption]

The [mageProductLink sku="335-0302-0456" title="Metzeler Sportec M5 Interact Radial Rear Tire"]Metzeler Sportec M5 Interact[/mageProductLink] is a premier tire for those searching for the best road tire on the market. The M5 Interact is extremely light and planted, which means its handling and comfort are outstanding.

The German-based tire company has truly stepped up the game for high quality sport-touring motorcycle tires. The extra grip makes this tire a perfect fit for sportsbike riders. While most premium tires use a dual compound, which is a harder rubber in the middle, so riders will get more mileage. The softer compound rubber on the sides allow extra gripping, but the M5 Interact does not use this technology.

Instead, the M5 has a structural steel band carcass to control the total flexibility throughout the tire's total surface. This tire is more stable at higher speeds and will wear down less quickly with its five different rubber sections.

Shinko 010 Apex Tires

[caption id="attachment_44457" align="alignright" width="200"][mageProductLink sku="369-874060" title=""]Shinko 010 Apex Radial Tires[/mageProductLink] [mageProductLink sku="369-874060" title="Shinko 010 Apex Radial Front Tire"]Shinko 010 Apex Radial Tires[/mageProductLink][/caption]

Riders who want to put the most wear and tear on their tires while on the track could look to the [mageProductLink sku="369-874070" title="Shinko 010 Apex Radial Rear Tire"]Shinko 010 Apex[/mageProductLink]. The 010 Apex is built for intense sportsbike riding with high traction levels, control and speed performance. This tire is ideal for riders needing stability and strength in their sportsbike tires.

Additionally, these tires can heat up on the track quickly and handle wet conditions as well. For those looking to take turns at high speeds, this tire will be stable and also has a W-speed rating of 168 mph. Since this tire is on the lower end of pricing, this could be a great tire to invest in for the track without breaking the bank.

Michelin Pilot Power 3 Tires

[caption id="attachment_44456" align="alignright" width="200"][mageProductLink sku="190-879820" title=""]Michelin Pilot Power 3 Tires[/mageProductLink] [mageProductLink sku="190-879820" title="Michelin Pilot Power 3 Front Tire"]Michelin Pilot Power 3 Tires[/mageProductLink][/caption]

While Michelin has various tires built for the track and the street, the [mageProductLink sku="190-879825" title="Michelin Pilot Power 3 Rear Tire"]Pilot Power 3[/mageProductLink] tends to be more geared for the road. Even though these tires can still be used on the track, the Pilot Power 3 will showcase its strengths better on the street.

The front Pilot Power 3 tires have a dual compound structure, which is ideal for getting a longer lifetime out of your tires. However, the real wheel has 2CT+ technology (dual compound-plus), which means the compound structure in the center actually undercuts the softer sides that are typically for increase gripping. This helps riders at full lean get back up straight and accelerate out of turns.

Because the majority of the power comes from the rear wheel, the Pilot Power 3 will increase its grip coming out of turns for superb handling, and even better acceleration. This tire is also perfect for wet conditions where you need the most traction possible.

Since this is built for the road, this tire is ideal for those in areas with sharp turns and where gripping is essential.

Avon 3D Ultra Extreme Tires

[caption id="attachment_44455" align="alignright" width="200"][mageProductLink sku="330-5850" title=""]Avon 3D Ultra Extreme Ultra High Performance AV81 Front Tires[/mageProductLink] [mageProductLink sku="330-5850" title="Avon 3D Ultra Extreme Ultra Performance AV81 Front Tire"]Avon 3D Ultra Xtreme Ultra High Performance Tires[/mageProductLink][/caption]

Avon says its most premium tire available is the [mageProductLink sku="330-5855" title="Avon 3D Ultra Extreme Ultra Performance AV82 Rear Tire"]Ultra Xtreme 3[/mageProductLink], which is a part of the 3D Ultra family. The Xtreme 3 uses a single compound build to give the tire a much stickier feel all around. Avon built one of its lightest tires ever with the Ultra Xtreme 3, and when compared to the ultra-light Pirelli, it's more than half of a pound lighter.

The grip and stability of the Avon Ultra Xtreme 3 are nearly incomparable to other tires, but riders who want to invest in the stickiest tire available will have to spend upwards of $300 for set of tires.

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