On classic trail centre loops like the Wall at Afan or the Twrch at Cwm Carn these tyres are amazing. They’re fast rolling for an aggressive trail tyre yet grippy in the twists and turns with the voluptuous 2.4in casing that feels like it adds an extra inch of suspension.
The TCS tubeless bead can be a tight ﬁt on some rims but helps keep them airtight, and makes them easy to seal up and pop on with just a track pump. As with all tubeless-ready systems you still need to run some sealant. The Mutano AM’s sidewall has a very rigid insert, positioned just above the bead, which stiffens the carcass to help control tyre roll and should ward off rim dings too.
The stiff, low height knobs in the centre section of tread, combined with the large volume, allows you to run them at lower pressure, which means that they offer good traction on dry rocks, roots, hardpack and loose conditions, giving you a near perfect balance between grip and rolling resistance. The outer knobs are not only bigger in both width and height but are also a noticeably softer compound.
On off-camber sections and through fast rough turns they grip tenaciously, allowing you to really rail round the trails. As fantastic as the tyres are, in dry to medium conditions, the low height knobs can’t cope in really wet and muddy conditions. The only other negative is at full sized 2.4in, they’re taller and wider than most, so you may struggle to squeeze them into your frame. We loved ours so much we trimmed them down to ﬁt!
This article was originally published in What Mountain Bike magazine.