Different Types of Bike Tyres – Everything to Know

Tyres are the most important component of a bike, covering the outer part of the wheels, attached to the rims, providing traction, resisting wear, absorbing surface irregularities, and allowing the motorcycle to turn via countersteering. The two tyres contact patches are the bike’s connection to the road, and so are fundamental to the bike’s suspension behaviour, and critically affect safety, braking, fuel economy, noise, and rider comfort. Today, we have a variety of bikes on the streets, from Royal Enfields Himalayan to KTM Dukes and Yamaha YZF-R15s. All these different bikes need different types of tyres. In this post, we are going to explore the motorcycle tyre options available for Indian bike riders.

Street Sport Bike Tyres

Street Sport tyres are for aggressive street motorcyclists that spend most of their time carving corners on public roadways. These tyres do not have a long life, but in turn have better traction in high speed cornering. These tyres have good traction even when cold, but when warmed too much, can actually lose traction as their internal temperature rises.

Sports Bike Tyres

The job of a sportbike tyre is a tough one. Considering the highest performance and variety of today’s modern sporting machines, an ideal tyre needs to be able to warm up quickly, offer good grip on both wet and dry surfaces, transfer feedback to the bike rider, and provide good handling capabilities. The powerful motors in sports motorcycles also warrant better braking efficiency and these tyres improve braking by increasing the traction on the road. While offering great grip on dry surfaces, these tyres are susceptible to slips on a wet surfaces due to the high torque and relative lack of tread.

Sports Touring Tyres

These type of tyres are generally not used for high cornering loads, but for long straights, good for riding across the country. Sports Touring Type Bike tyres are constructed with a harder compound in the centre for a stable ride and softer rubber on the side for excellent grip while cornering.

Different Type of Tyres

Track or Racing Tyres

These type of Tyres are used on race tracks and are also known as trail tyre. As the temperature of tyres is relatively very high on tracks due to higher speed, braking and accelerations, track/ racing tyres are designed to operate at such high temperatures. Racing tyres are made from soft rubber and various models have varying levels of rubber softness.

Off Road Tyres

Off-Road Tyres are also known as Knobblies and their thick deep treads provide max grip on loose surfaces like dirt, mud, sand, or gravel. Off-Road tyres tend to be less stable on paved surfaces. These are further classified into mud-terrain tyres and snow tyres.

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Touring/ Cruiser Tyres

Touring or Cruiser tyres are designed for heavy bikes and cruisers, to hold up to the weight of the bike. Touring Tyres offer long mileage and good traction on wet surfaces. Also, these tyres are seen in custom motorcycles, Harley-Davidson models like Electra Glide, Street Glide, American V-twin and more.