What are the Best Mountain Bike Tires 2017? (TOP 5 TIRES REVIEWS)

One of the most important pieces of bike equipment are of course the tires. Whether you prefer best 26 mountain bike tires, best 29er tires, or MTB tires, the question of just what kind of tire to choose is always very important, but not necessarily an easy one.

Luckily, it gets much easier to get the idea of what your perfect tire might be, if you know a couple of basics in the often complicated world of tires. Our list of best mountain bike tires reviews awaits below, dig in!

**You'll find detailed comparison below, but you can also check the prices or read Amazon Customer Reviews by click the links above.

The Basics Of Profiles And Different Shapes Of Tires

Tire profile corresponds to the shape of the tire, as viewed from one edge of the wheel to another, and there are three different types of tire profiles.


The first type is the Square type, which is virtually flat from edge to edge. In practice, it means more stability on all terrains, and better control in the corners. It can also be very good for beginners as they may feel more confident while making baby steps in riding.

The downside might be that, while it does offer more stability in the corners, it does so up to a point, which means that when riding more aggressively, and if the angle is sharp enough, you may break away abruptly.

The second type is the Rounded type, which is, as its name suggests, rounded from edge to edge. It offers a smoother ride and tends to be more race-oriented.


Also, it usually performs better at lower tire pressures, which can be adjusted according to the type of track and personal riding preferences. It should be kept in mind, that these tires will start sliding sooner in corners and soft surfaces, in comparison to the square type.

The third type is the Medium type, which is a blend of the two aforementioned alternations. Usually, it offers the best characteristics of the both types, which makes it perfect for many different applications, from rough terrain expeditions to casual rides to work through an occasional glass-littered neighborhood.

It is used rather widely, and accordingly, various manufacturers have plenty of models available for this type of tire.

Another important aspect of the shape of a tire is its traction characteristics and how it behaves while turning. Generally, smaller tires will leave a smaller print in soft soil, but they will penetrate more as well, which will increase the drag and eventually the wear.

Wider tires on the other hand, generate more footprint width, on the cost of their footprint length, which makes them more efficient in corners.

Understanding Tread Patterns And How To Fit Your Tire

Apart from the edge to edge shape and traction control, another important property when choosing a tire is definitely the length and the shape of the knobs, as well as the spacing between them.

Longer, more spread knobs means better grip, but they can “gain weight” in environments with a lot of sticky mud. Fewer smaller knobs equal less grip, but a smoother, more comfortable ride. Based on these properties, here too we have a couple of groups.


Low rolling resistance tires, either contain no knobs at all, for riding exclusively on the road, or have them moderately strategically placed, which would make them more off-road friendly.

The second group is all about maximum grip, which makes them perfect for rough terrain and aggressive climbing or downhill riding. They are often marketed as wet or loose condition tires.

The third group attempts to combine the best of the two worlds, in making them in such a way, so as to have both low rolling resistance and a good grip.

Another thing to keep in mind would be the kind of rubber your tire is made of. Soft compounds tend to be sticky and with a good grip, but chances are they will wear out quickly. On the other hand, firm tire compounds are much more durable, but they aren’t as grippy and offer less control in general.

It is also very important to remember which way you are fitting your tires, because it can make a world of difference while riding.

For example, fitting a grippy tire in the back and a firmer one in the front will mean better control when going uphill, since the front wheel resistance would be reduced to the minimum.

When it comes to the way you mount your tire to the wheel, you might want to pay special attention, as your tire can be uni-directional (performs best if mounted in one direction), or bi-directional (you can mount it either way; some offer different properties according to which side you choose to mount it.)

Now that we are set with some basic tire-knowledge, check out:

The Best Mountain Bike Tires Reviews

This tire is designed to act excellently in multiple conditions, with its best performance being in medium and loose conditions. This means they hook up well in climbing and keep control in tight turns.

Surfaces such as a hard pack single track, light gravel trails, medium mud surfaces and tarmac are optimal for this type of tire.

This tire also behaves really well with wet and slippery surfaces, such as stone, but also with rugged terrain with lots of pointy and sharply edged rocks.

This tire, however, in spite of its low roll resistance, may not be the best choice for casual riding through the streets as its soft compounds tend to erode quickly when in contact with the pavement.

And that sums up our best mountain bike tires reviews!​

Kicking off our list of best mountain bike tires reviews is the Schwinn MTB, a medium type MTB tire constructed with a built-in resistant flat layer which guarantees maximum durability for this type of tire. This also means enhanced protection on the road and off-road too.

It features ultra durable steel bead construction which sets the traction best suited for trail riding.

Besides good technicalities, it is also very easily mounted. The process doesn’t require any tools and can comfortably be completed with just using your hands.

The downside might be that it can have difficulties on some of the rougher off-road tracks, because its tread block, which is backward-swept, tends to be efficient at higher speeds while losing some of the stopping power in a grittier environment.

In our humble opinion, this is one of the best MTB tires around.​ For best performance both on and off-road, we recommend pairing this tire up in front with a more aggressive tire in the back to make your bike more balanced.

This black skin tire features aggressive tread designs, which is commonly a well-known feature for best trail riding.

This particular type we highly recommend as a replacement for any 26-inch mountain bike tire, as it features more than enough thread for good traction in the dirt and gravel, and on the other hand, its smoothly constructed center means a comfortable ride on pavement.

This particular type we highly recommend as a replacement for any 26-inch mountain bike tire, as it features more than enough thread for good traction in the dirt and gravel, and on the other hand, its smoothly constructed center means a comfortable ride on pavement.​

On the downside, you may experience problems with sliding on rock and rocky surfaces in general, especially if they are wet and slippery.​

Another contestant on the rundown of the best mountain bike tires reviews comes from WTB. This tire was developed to tackle pretty much all dirt conditions. It has large, directional treads which offer great control in corners and while climbing or going downhill.

The treads were designed to go deep into the surface for improved stability.

When equipped in front, they guarantee precise steering and soil clearance. What is more, its lightweight casing makes fast rolling possible which is great for keeping up the accumulated momentum.

This tire also boasts very high durability, which is guaranteed by the aramid reinforced tread which maximizes the puncture resistance.​

The downsides may include: firstly, the not so great performance on wet logs and rocks, where traction is rather low, and secondly, it has a rather high rolling resistance so it wouldn’t be optional for the casual rides or day-to-day commuting.​

This tire is best suited for urban and hybrid environment cycling. They have a fast rolling tread and behave great in corners and turns where they have excellent grip. 

They ride well on dirt and surfaces with glass and sharp rocks without any problems, and they offer a good grip and stability in the rain and wet conditions in general.

Another important quality of this tire is its durability, which means that it will serve you a long time, even if it’s used daily with various terrains, including gravel, dirt, as well as wet and slippery surfaces.

The only downside might be the somewhat tricky installation, which may require you to manage the air pressure in the inner tube, or use some bicycle tire levers for easier fitting.​


In conclusion, if your priority is fast rolling speed, combined with good control on all tracks and good stability, Maxxis Ignitor Mountain Bike Tire might be your weapon of choice, as it delivers in all the aforementioned categories.

Of course, if you are more of a casual cyclist who likes to include some of the more outdoorsy elements now and then, you might want to look into some of the other suggestions that would fit your needs, and thanks to the versatile tire market, chances are you are going to find exactly what you need.

These were the best mountain bike tires reviews, you've been great, ride safely!

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Hi, welcome to our blog. My name is Denise Nelson. I'm a profound lover of the cross country mountain bike, I worked as a trainer for 6 years and a Co-founder of a private biking lessons school. I also own a small fitness store in NY. Enjoy!

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