The Sea Otter was our first chance to see e*thirteen’s new all-round TRS tyre that was announced earlier this month (on April 1st, so not everyone believed it). Although it’s rare for wheel manufacturers to launch tyres, it’s not completely unheard of, with Mavic’s wheel/tyre system already a couple of years old.
e*thirteen felt that making an all-round trail tyre made sense, and ‘working with a major tyre manufacturer’ it worked to develop a tread pattern and compound that it thought would give the best performance. Currently the range is a single, front or back tyre (in the spirit of the original High Roller) and it’ll come in two different versions and for 27.5in and 29in.
The TRS Race and TRS Plus are the same apart from their respective dual and triple compound rubbers.
There’s a TRS Race and a TRS Plus tyre, though confusingly the Plus isn’t plus-sized, it’s the same as the Race at a ‘true’ 2.35in, designed for modern inner rim widths of 24-31mm. (For a look at some of the more affordable versions of those, see the new issue 105 that’s out this week by the way).
The difference between the two sets of tyres is in the tyre compound, with the Plus tyres being about 25g a tyre lighter, but with slightly harder rubber than the Race tyres that seem to be true race-day jobs.
TRS PLUS 29 900g TRS RACE 29 930g
TRS PLUS 27.5 875g TRS RACE 27.5 905g
RACE Durometer 40 SIDE / 42 Centre / 72 BASE
PLUS Durometer 50 / 61 Centre
The tyres feature multiple ‘sipes’ (moulded-in cuts in the tread blocks) which help add grip and can help direct knob deformation performance and direction. The ‘accordion’ sipes on the side blocks let the knob deform progressively under hard cornering, other sipes add braking performance or cornering grip. The front of the centre knobs are ramped to allow for smoother straight line rolling.
Here’s the official blurb for you:
And finally, e*thirteen is launching its handy sachets of ‘Tire Plasma’ – an in-house developed tyre sealant that is said not to dry out or form little aliens inside your tyres. The re-sealable pouch can be carried in a toolbox or in a pack (though we’d be wary of carrying a re-sealed one in a pack…) and it will do from two down to one tyre depending on the tyre volume and diameter.