Interbike 2016: Innova show Tubed Tubeless Tyre

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What if you could combine some of the benefits of tubeless tyres with some of the drawbacks of tubes?  If you’re Taiwanese brand Innova, you build a tyre to find out.

Well that's odd
Well that’s odd

The Innova Integrated Tubeless Tech tyre certainly looks interesting, with its tubeless tyre outside mated to a traditional tube on the inside.  The idea being that the design combines the supple ride of tubeless with cleaner installation, easier inflation, and reduced sealant contamination when compared to true tubeless setups.

Neither here nor there.
Neither here nor there.

The design likely precludes patching anywhere but the inside wall (less of an issue now that tyre plugs have been proven in use) and makes checking sealant health more difficult.  That is, if sealant is even used- it wouldn’t necessarily be needed.  And inserting a tube in the event of a catastrophic failure could take some creativity.  When compared to tubes, the ITT system should ride better (thanks to a more supple casing and no tyre:tube friction) and be less likely to suffer from pinch flats.

It’s an interesting idea, but may be a few years too late- tubeless tyres’ early teething problems have largely been overcome or accepted at this point.  If anywhere, ITT tyres seem best suited to entry-level and mid-range OEM spec where easy setup and good shop-floor air retention are key.

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