You might never have seen or even heard of the Canis but this Swiss-designed tyre pushes rich feedback and smooth riding fun way further than its XC tag and retro looks would suggest.
The skinwall carcass doesn’t just look great on the right bike, it also gives the tyre a beautifully supple and tactile feel on the trail. Tubeless sealing is simple and very secure, and while it’s too light to drop pressures below 20psi without buckling and squirming it’s much more stable and less nervy heading into rocks and roots than most lightweight cross country/trail tyres.
Our initial doubts about the block- and X-tread pattern were soon replaced with rapidly growing respect for the wide range of surfaces and damp to dry weather conditions the dual compound Canis can chew traction out of. If you’re okay with predictable drift rather than railing round like a train track then you can heel it right over at silly speeds without coming totally unstuck.
That speed is really easy to gain and hold onto everywhere, from flow-and-go descents to all-day epics, thanks to very responsive acceleration and excellent speed sustain from the supple carcass. While the photo sample and weights are of a 29er tyre we’ve had exactly the same impressive results with the 27.5x2.25in Canis, a more typical all-black tyre that's also slightly cheaper.
This article was originally published in What Mountain Bike magazine.