We love all tires and we cannot lie, you other brothers (or sisters) can’t deny. From light duty truck tires to Agricultural tires with head sized tread voids, new or old, big and bigger, knobby and knobbier, clean or dirty, worn or with the fuzzy hairs still intact we don’t care. We even like really old tires with nostalgic treads…assuming they are still safe to use on-road or off. We love the smell of new tires so much that we think we will look into making a tire scented cologne for men…except maybe our women wouldn’t understand or like it. The annual SEMA show is a great place to spend time looking at new and different tire treads. And while we wish you could be here, we know not all of you can, and even those of you who are here might not get a chance to see everything that we did. To this end we’ve assembled images and some info on all of the new off-road oriented tires we bumped into at the show. Not all of the tire designs are truly new, and some are blatant copies of tires we know and like, but most if not all are new to us…or at the least available in a new size. We also tossed in a few new cool tire based ideas that we saw along the way. We hope to be able to test some of these new treads and we are gonna skip the gnarly ag tires to stick to light truck mud terrain tires for now but for now we’ll give you our impressions based on looks and years of experience and some of the details on what these tires are.
We love tires, but hate blatant knockoffs where one company has obviously stolen the idea or design of a tire from someone else in an attempt to undercut the original designers. Of course all tires are round and have tread and arguments of who copied who are based on opinions. Also following up any legal issues of copyright infringement is way above our pay grade so we’ll leave that to someone else. For now know that this is one of the most blatant and unapologetic knockoffs we’ve ever seen at SEMA. The Linglong bias-ply Pathbreaker II is not inspired by the Pathbreaker I, but rather a bold copy of the Mickey Thompson Baja Claw TTC. If this doesn’t break the law, it should. Don’t count on quality of the Dingdong…er, Linglong tire to be anywhere near that of the tried-and-true Mickey Thompson. Hell, it’s probably water-soluble for all we know.
The sidewall and footprint of the Pathbreaker II is so similar to a Baja Claw TTC that we wondered if they bought a Baja Claw TTC and used it to make a mold. The Linglong tire is also a 54 just like Mickey Thompson’s huge original tire. If our fingerprints are on this tire, it aint cause were involved in anything other than trying to prevent this type of obvious product copying.
Much more on the up-and-up and actually from Mickey Thompson is the new Deegan 38 All-Terrain. Following last year’s release of the Deegan 38 Mud-Terrain the new-for-2017 All-Terrain has a more street friendly tread design with proprietary compounds that help with traction and wear. Info: Mickey Thompson, 330/928-9092, mickeythompsontires.com.
The siping, stone ejector bars, and chamfered shoulder groves will help the Deegan 38 All-Terrain grab the road and dirt without carrying too much mud or picking up rocks. This would make for a great weekend warrior tire with good wear properties and good wintertime traction.
We’re really digging the aggressive and somewhat retro looks of the General Grabber X3 tires. Not exactly brand spanking new, but close we will have a full tire test on these meats in the March 2017 issue of 4WOR. The tread face is made of swoopy blocks and bold outer lugs somewhat distantly reminiscent of the old school Ground Hog mud tires or long discontinued GoodYear Mud Terrains. We love retro rigs and want more retro tires. Info: General Tire, generaltire.com.
While not a new tire design for 2016, the Maxxis Treapador bias-ply was just recently made available in a new 42-inch size. Info: Maxxis, 800-462-9947, maxxis.com.
The bias-ply 42-inch Treapadors are available in both super-sticky soft race compound and normal compounds. These big meats from Maxxis are apparently flying off the shelf so grab them when you can.
Tucked back in the corner of the SEMA show we came across these tires with yellow, red, green, or blue rubber sidewalls. That’s not paint, it’s died natural rubber. The Wild Tiger T01 from Doublestar Tire is certainly not the first or only non-black tire, but it’s the first one we’ve seen with black tread and colored sidewalls. Love it or hate it this is a pretty cool idea bending what a mud tire is…we think we like it! Info: Doublestar Tire, doublestartyre.cn.
The tread face of the Wild Tiger T01 has nice voids, siping and stone ejector bars that wrap down between the shoulder lugs towards the blue, green, red, or yellow sidewalls
Another not new tire with a new for 2016 tire size is the Cooper Discoverer STT Pro now available as a 40x15.50R17LT. We’d love to get our hands on a set of these big meats. Info: Cooper Tire, 800/854-6288, us.coopertire.com.
The 40-inch Coopers have large blocky treads with siping and stone ejectors and large voids between lugs. This is an aggressive tread that should do great in the dirt.
If you’re a 4x4 nut and don’t know about overseas 4x4 trials competitions google it now. The Comforser Thruster has a name that seems a better fit for a D-rated non-English speaking porn movie, but the very aggressive tread reminds us of the tires used by 4x4 trials buggies. With very large voids and knobby lugs approaching that of an overgrown motocross tire these tires are few and far between in the US, but definitely something we’d like to play with more. These aggressive tires may not be great on-road, but they will grab and claw on slick wet mud hills and grass. Info: Comforser Tire, comforsertyres.com.
The 40x14.50R20 Mickey Thompson Baja MTZ p3 is our last “not new tire with a new larger size” for 2016. Info: Mickey Thompson, 330/928-9092, mickeythompsontires.com.
We’ve used the MTZ p3s on a few test vehicles and love their performance with arrowhead shaped center tread blocks, siping and a unique silica-reinforced tread compound for longer wear, enhanced wet weather traction, and superior cut and chip resistance.
The Insa Turbo Sahara Nanotech is a new-age retread. That means it’s good for the environment, and that’s good for four-wheeling. These retreads are vulcanized around a used carcass, but the tread and sidewalls are new. Info: Insa Turbo, insaturbo.com.
So while were here bashing and discouraging tires that are copies of others some re-treads like the Insa Turbo Sahara Nanotech uses used molds and this one must be from the Yokahama Geolander which is a great tread pattern from the past.
The Durun Terrain Grabber’s tread face looks like a 1970s BFGoodrich All-Terrain. We like the old ATs, but would rather see BFGoodrich reproduce their own vintage tires. We found literally dozens of other interesting mud terrains, mostly from overseas.