Teravail’s Kessel is one of the firm’s more aggressive off-road tyres, aimed at trail and enduro riding.
The company is part of the Salsa bike family, better known and respected in the gravel and adventure world, and many of its MTB offerings up to this point have focused on long-distance riding rather than the more aggressive end of the sport.
Teravail Kessel Durable specifications and details
Available in either 2.4 or 2.6in, the Kessel resembles a slightly twisted and splayed-out Maxxis Minion DHF, although the blocks are slightly sharper and spikier.
Reasonably open, the tread pairs blocky centre lugs pointing slightly inwards and alternate L-shaped and rectangular side lugs.
Teravail’s dual-compound ‘Grip’ rubber blend is offered in two different casings: Durable with a 60tpi weave, woven internal reinforcement and a fine nylon weave under the tread cap to prevent punctures and an even thicker Ultra-Durable model.
The lighter Durable version here weighs 1,158g, and inflated a hair under the advertised 2.4in width on a 30mm internal rim.
Teravail Kessel Durable performance
Teravail’s grip levels totally defy the rubber squeeze test that’s usually a good indicator.
Knobs here feel pretty firm and were harder to dent than slower rebounding blocks elsewhere, but on the trail there’s actually a ton of friction and sticking power in both wet and dry conditions.
The Kessel digs in well on softer surfaces, but also isn’t too pingy or eager to deflect off sharp edges or angled roots.
This 2.4in tyre blows up a bit skinny, which means it’s not the most comfortable erasing bumps, and the narrow crown is a bit less planted on the ground too.
This makes it a bit eager to turn, and the Kessel can feel a bit more drifty and easier to push away or tuck in than something like the Assegai when touching down after rock steps or tipping off roots.
I had no complaints about rolling speed though; this thing gambols along like a spring lamb and literally eats up rough or smooth ground at a pace that’s hard to fathom considering how pointy the tread is.
There’s no sense of excessive drag on tarmac and smoother fireroads either, so you get between the fun bits fast.
Whether it’s the lower overall volume or the casing, comfort feels slightly reduced – damping improves at 20-ish psi levels, but it’s then easier to punch through and bottom-out on the rim on rocky alpine enduro tracks compared to other brand’s rival tyres at equivalent pressures.
Teravail Kessel Durable bottom line
The Kessel rolls super-fast for the amount of grip on offer and is also super-durable with a tread that lasts much longer than many more established brands.
The 2.4in inflates thin and more rounded, making it eager to pivot from side than side than squarer-profile tyres, which will be a negative for some riders (but not all).
How we tested
We tested eight mountain bike tyres designed for all-mountain/enduro riding back-to-back on the most varied terrain we could find to see where they performed best, and worst.
You can also find all of our top-rated reviews in BikeRadar’s guide to the best mountain bike tyres.
Tyres on test
- Maxxis Assegai 3C MaxxGrip EXO+ WT review
- Maxxis Dissector 3C MaxxTerra EXO WT review
- Michelin Force AM2 Competition Line review
- Michelin Wild AM2 Competition Line review
- Schwalbe Nobby Nic EVO Super Trail Addix Soft review
- Teravail Honcho Durable review
- Teravail Kessel Durable review
- WTB Vigilante Tough/High Grip review