The Fat Albert is Schwalbe’s all-round, all-weather trail tyre but the gobsmacking price isn’t relected in its performance.
Schwalbe’s race-developed Evolution carcass and compound technology keep it relatively light for its size. It features a dual compound tread rubber mix over a harder base compound, and the crosshatched ‘snakeskin’ sidewalls make it a lot less vulnerable to cuts and splits too.
The mix of split bar and angled centre lugs are spaced wide for clearing but are low enough not to cripple speed. Twin sipe-topped angled side knobs handle lean grip.
Despite all this technology and a long time persevering with it, the Fat Albert never proved particularly confident or impressive on the trail.
It tends to skate and slip over rocks and roots rather than moulding to them, and the side knobs squirm and distort when cornering. The outer knob surfaces tear up fast too, making the £50 pricetag seem pretty outrageous.