Hutchinson may have been the first company to market with an official tubeless cyclocross tyre (as opposed to a standard clincher that can work as tubeless), and now the French company are back with two tubeless 'cross options for this season. The Toro mud tyre comes in the UCI-legal 32mm, but we requested the slightly girthier 34mm Piranha 2 CX for test.
"When the UCI changed the maximum tyre width for cyclocross tyres they threw a spanner into the cyclocross tyre market," said Hutchinson marketing man Richard Goodwin. "We had to go back and re-tool for this change. The good news is that we kept our wider sizes too."
The Piranha 2 keeps the fast-rolling profile of the original, but has a more compliant casing
In an attempt to push their own brand of sealant, Hutchinson have branded the tyres 'Tubeless Protect'Air CX', but any standard sealant will work.
Two main things have changed in the Piranha since Hutchinson last sold it: the silver colour was replaced by black, and the band of compound that extended about 5 to 6mm below the side knobs to add puncture resistance was removed in favor of a little more compliance in the tyre.
We weighed the 34mm Piranha 2 at 350g — 10g less than the advertised weight. We added 30ml of sealant, which, at about 60g, weighs approximately 90g less than a standard cyclocross tube.
When we tested the original Piranha tyres years ago, we found them to be fast-rolling but a little stiff, and when paired with Shimano tubeless wheels, we would occasionally burp them while training or racing (at about 32psi for a 185lb rider). We will report back soon with a review on this latest iteration, which Hutchinson claim to be much improved.
In addition to the colour change, Hutchinson removed the puncture bead on the top of the sidewalls, which should improve compliance