black-chili

Continental revamps its King Series mountain bike tires

ALISO VIEJO, Calif. (BRAIN) —  Continental said it has redesigned its King Series line of mountain bike tires from the inside out.

Continental expands Chinese-made tire options

KORBACH, Germany (BRAIN) — Continental has added a new line of Chinese-made tires to its offerings. The company will now have three bike tire product lines: the Premium line, which is all made in Germany; the new Performance Line, made in China; and the Sport line, also made in China.  The new line is intended to compete on price with other China-made tires in the aftermarket and to supply Asia-based OE customers.  Continental opened its new wholly-owned factory in Hefei, China, last year, and showed the Sport line at Interbike last fall .  The new Performance line currently includes three mountain bike models, the Mountain King, X-King and Race King.  Continental said the new line uses “PureGrip” rubber technology, which is derived from its Black Chili rubber compound. Tires with Black Chili will remain made exclusively in Germany.

Continental Trail King ProTection mountain bike tyre review

Continental’s Trail King was one of the first new generation tough, high-traction, downhill-proof but trail-efficient mountain bike tyres, and it’s still one of the best.

The broad open-paddle, siped-top tread with a wall of wavy side knobs gives excellent mechanical traction everywhere from bogs to bar-end scraping berms.

The unique Black Chili rubber compound underlines the well shaped tread with impressive adhesion across all the usual accident-causing surfaces that are lurking in your local woods.

It’s seriously fat for a listed 2.2in tyre and the scrim-reinforced Protection carcass is tough and stable without being too heavy. The tyre is fast rolling and year-round durable too, which helps make the price an investment, not an indulgence.

This article was originally published in Mountain Biking UK magazine, available on Apple Newsstand and Zinio.


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Continental Mud King ProTection 1.8 mountain bike tyre review

Look straight down on it and you won’t think the Continental Mud King tyre is that skinny. But take a view side-on and cop the height (or lack of it) and you realise this really is a 1.8in tyre.

As it’s an out-and-out mud tyre, it’s unsurprising to find the Mud King is fairly slow-rolling, but what is a shock is that it’s not actually that bad. You can still go for a regular ride, joining the fun bits with stretches of tarmac and fireroad, without destroying your will to live.

Its cornering performance is exceptional. Roots, cambers and slippery grass – just bring them on. It’s not hideous on brief bits of hardpack either, with none of the squirm or washout you might expect from such a spiky tyre. Its skinny-volume harshness is the main drawback on extended rooty or rocky bits.

The sidewalls are tough enough to withstand a battering, but it’s best not to run 1.8in tyres at low pressures as they’re not really about that sort of thing. The Mud Kings work best when run on the hard side, letting the spike knobbles and magic Black Chili compound do their traction-grabbing stuff.

Despite the levels of adhesion and the size of the knobbles, the Mud Kings clear brilliantly, and weight is impressively low – our 26in versions came out at 530g, which is actually less than claimed by 40g. Amazing!

This article was originally published in What Mountain Bike magazine, available on Apple Newsstand and Zinio.


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Continental shows fruits of new China factory

LAS VEGAS, NV (BRAIN) — Continental had two new road tires to show here at last week’s Interbike show that were a direct result of the German company’s wholly owned factory in China. The new $40 Grand Sport Race folding tire has technologies and features that Conti has not previously been able to offer at that price

Continental goes all in with 650b – Sea Otter 2013

European bicycle, wheel and tire companies may have been slow to the 29er game but they’re certainly not sitting on their hands this time around. Continental is adopting the resurrected 27.5in format in a big way, producing its four most popular mountain bike treads in the ‘tweener size for 2014.

Continental’s 27.5in range will include the fast rolling Race King, the more versatile X-King, and two all-purpose trail treads: the Mountain King and the Trail King. Of those two, the Mountain King features a more rounded profile and bigger gap between the center tread and shoulder blocks for more of an ‘on-off’ cornering feel while the Trail King’s more squared-off shape and evenly distributed blocks should provide a more predictable and forgiving personality according to Continental North America brand manager Brett Hahn.

Continental is going Four 650b for 2014 (l to r): Race King, X-King, Mountain King, Trail King

The Race King will be offered only in a 2.2in width but the rest of the range will be available in 2.2 and 2.4in sizes. Continental also plans to release the new 27.5in tires in its tubeless-ready ProTection casing and ultralight RaceSport versions – both with Black Chili rubber compounds – plus lower-priced Sport variants with wire or folding beads.

All of the new 27.5in tires should be available in August and suggested retail price for premium versions is $64.95. Claimed weights are still TBD.

Meet the Kaiser Projekt

Continental also showed off its latest downhill tire, the Kaiser 2.4 Projekt, which was developed in cooperation with GT racer Gee Atherton. As compared to the existing soft-conditions Baron 2.5, the Kaiser Projekt 2.4 is meant as more of a all-conditions tire with a more linearly arranged shoulder tread and aggressively ramped center blocks for a faster roll.

Underneath, a two-ply casing with additional sidewall reinforcement helps ensure the tire will survive to the end of the run, too.

The new continental kaiser projekt 2.4 is a The Kaiser Projekt 2.4 was developed with Gee Atherton

As with all of its higher-end tires, Continental molds the Kaiser Projekt 2.4 with its Black Chili rubber compound, which has been tweaked for the specific application. Hahn wouldn’t characterize the compound as simply being harder or softer, however – and in fairness, our previous experiences with Continental’s Black Chili rubber does reinforce the idea that it behaves a bit differently than normal.

“We don’t play the durometer game,” he told BikeRadar. “We control the performance at the molecular level, not with hard or soft.”

The Kaiser Projekt is available now with a suggested retail price of $90. Claimed weight is 1,150g.

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Continental CycloX-King tire review

Tire maker Continental recently revamped their cyclocross tires, taking design cues from some of the company’s most successful mountain bike treads.

The US$55 / ?44.95 CycloX-King shares the same knob layout as the X-King mountain bike tire. Like its off-road predecessor, the CycloX-King has two offset rows of tightly spaced center knobs, and intermediate and side knobs that are taller, with more space between them.

The tread pattern performs well over a wide range of conditions, which is the reason this tread was chosen to be the first of Continental’s new tubular cyclocross tires. Continental’s Black Chili compound does a good job of balancing grip, rolling resistance and durability, and the 160TPI casing provides a relatively supple ride. The actual weight for our 700×32mm test tire was 330g.

The CycloX-King rolls well on hardpack and asphalt, though not as fast as a file tread. When courses are loose, grassy or damp, the numerous knobs provide plenty of bite, and we were impressed with how well the CycloX-King would hold a line on grassy, off-camber sections.?

The consistent tread pattern and round profile make for a tire that’s easy to lean into corners, with no sense of vagueness transitioning from one set of knobs to the next when carving through turns.

The CycloX-King does a good job of filling the role of an intermediate condition tire, although there are faster treads for grass crits, and better options for muddy courses.?

More space between the knobs would improve the CrossX-King’s ability to shed crud, albeit at the expense of increasing rolling resistance. In any case, Continental has another tire for truly heinous courses: the Mountain King CX.



New Continental tires – Eurobike 2012

Some of the first products BikeRadar saw at the Eurobike 2012 Demo Day were the new road, mountain and cyclocross tires from Continental. Here’s what we found.

Lighter and tougher road models

Continental’s successful Attack and Force clincher tires will be joined in 2013 by a set of tubulars with similar front- and rear-specific designs, called Attack Comp and Force Comp.

Just as with the tube-type version, the new tubulars feature a 22mm width up front and a more generous 24mm out back. Continental says this provides better handling, more efficient power transfer, decreased rolling resistance and better wear.

Both tires are built with the company’s outstanding Black Chili rubber compounds and are reinforced with Vectran breaker belts. Claimed weight is 500g for the matched tubular set.

On the clincher side there’s a new Grand Prix GT, which offers a smoother ride with its sole 700×25mm size option. It also boasts enhanced puncture protection with three layers of bead-to-bead belting.

The new continental grand prix gt puts a heavy emphasis on durability and ride quality with a 25mm-wide casing and triple-layer, bead-to-bead puncture protection: the new continental grand prix gt puts a heavy emphasis on durability and ride quality with a 25mm-wide casing and triple-layer, bead-to-bead puncture protection

The Continental Grand Prix GT road tire, new for 2013

The original Attack and Force clinchers remain largely the same for 2013 but lose about 20g for the pair through revised tread shaping.

New MTB treads for racing

Continental also debuted a radical Speed King tire that’s solely aimed for racing on hardpacked (or paved) conditions. The new semi-slick is said to produce 18 percent less rolling resistance than the already-fast Race King, while the modest shoulder knobs and (very) subtle center tread still supposedly provide reasonable grip at appropriately low air pressures.

Despite the barely-there tread, Continental product manager Christian Wurmb?ck claims the Speed King will still last most riders about 1,500km. Claimed weight is just 430g in the lone 26×2.2in size.

Downhillers, on the other hand, will get the new Der Kaiser Rammstein Projekt (US$84.95) with pared-down center knobs for reduced rolling resistance but the same trapezoidal-shaped shoulder knobs as the standard Der Kaiser for tenacious and progressive cornering grip.

Continental aims the new der kaiser rammstein at downhill racers looking for a little extra speed. compared to the standard der kaiser, the rammstein features pared-down center knobs that roll faster but wear quicker: continental aims the new der kaiser rammstein at downhill racers looking for a little extra speed. compared to the standard der kaiser, the rammstein features pared-down center knobs that roll faster but wear quicker

The new Der Kaiser Rammstein Projekt

Additionally, two-ply construction and a new Apex sidewall reinforcement ward off flats while also lending extra casing support under high load. Claimed weight is 1,150g.

Elsewhere in the MTB sector?it’s mostly a story of expanded size ranges. For example, the Mountain King and X-King will now both come in a giant 29×2.4in to address the growing 29er trail bike market.

Meanwhile, the Race King will be offered in new 29×2.2in Sport, 29×2.0in RaceSport and 26×2.0in RaceSport variants.

And yes, Continental will offer 27.5in mountain bike tires, but for now only in the X-King tread and 2.2in and 2.4in widths. Both are?built on the ProTection Revolution tubeless ready casing and with Black Chili rubber.

Conti debuts production of cyclocross tubulars

We’ve been playing with prototype Continental cyclocross tubulars for more than three seasons now but the German company is finally ready to launch production versions. They will be using their own casings (previous ones were made by Challenge) and new tread designs adapted from the Continental mountain bike range.

At least for now, the new CycloXKing (US$124.95, UK pricing TBC) will be the sole tubular offering with a 700×32mm, 180tpi casing and a fast rolling, versatile tread derived from the mountain bike X-King.

Continental will finally offer a production cyclocross tubular called cycloxking, using a fast rolling but versatile tread design derived from the x-king mountain bike tire: continental will finally offer a production cyclocross tubular called cycloxking, using a fast rolling but versatile tread design derived from the x-king mountain bike tire

The CycloXKing tubular tyre

Most importantly, Continental will build the tread using its Black Chili compound. We expect it to provide similarly impressive levels of grip, speed, and durability as on other so-equipped tires. In fact, Continental specifically claims 30 percent more grip, 26 percent less rolling resistance, and five percent better wear than standard activated silica treads. Claimed weight is 390g and tires should be in stores by the end of September.

A corresponding clincher version – simply called CycloXKing – will be available in both 32mm and 35mm-wide sizes with claimed weights ranging from 320-450g. Suggested retail price is US$54.95 (UK pricing TBC).

Muddy courses will instead call for the new Mountain King CX, built with a tube-type clincher casing but a more aggressive and open tread designed to cut through the slop into the firmer ground underneath.

As with the CycloXKing, the Mountain King CX will be available only in a 32mm width. Claimed weight is 320g.

Eurobike 2012: New Continental tires

Some of the first products BikeRadar saw at the Eurobike 2012 Demo Day were the new road, mountain and cyclocross tires from Continental. Here’s what we found.

Lighter and tougher road models

Continental’s successful Attack and Force clincher tires will be joined in 2013 by a set of tubulars with similar front- and rear-specific designs, called Attack Comp and Force Comp.

Just as with the tube-type version, the new tubulars feature a 22mm width up front and a more generous 24mm out back. Continental says this provides better handling, more efficient power transfer, decreased rolling resistance and better wear.

Both tires are built with the company’s outstanding Black Chili rubber compounds and are reinforced with Vectran breaker belts. Claimed weight is 500g for the matched tubular set.

On the clincher side there’s a new Grand Prix GT, which offers a smoother ride with its sole 700×25mm size option. It also boasts enhanced puncture protection with three layers of bead-to-bead belting.

The new continental grand prix gt puts a heavy emphasis on durability and ride quality with a 25mm-wide casing and triple-layer, bead-to-bead puncture protection: the new continental grand prix gt puts a heavy emphasis on durability and ride quality with a 25mm-wide casing and triple-layer, bead-to-bead puncture protection

The Continental Grand Prix GT road tire, new for 2013

The original Attack and Force clinchers remain largely the same for 2013 but lose about 20g for the pair through revised tread shaping.

New MTB treads for racing

Continental also debuted a radical Speed King tire that’s solely aimed for racing on hardpacked (or paved) conditions. The new semi-slick is said to produce 18 percent less rolling resistance than the already-fast Race King, while the modest shoulder knobs and (very) subtle center tread still supposedly provide reasonable grip at appropriately low air pressures.

Despite the barely-there tread, Continental product manager Christian Wurmb?ck claims the Speed King will still last most riders about 1,500km. Claimed weight is just 430g in the lone 26×2.2in size.

Downhillers, on the other hand, will get the new Der Kaiser Rammstein Projekt (US$84.95) with pared-down center knobs for reduced rolling resistance but the same trapezoidal-shaped shoulder knobs as the standard Der Kaiser for tenacious and progressive cornering grip.

Continental aims the new der kaiser rammstein at downhill racers looking for a little extra speed. compared to the standard der kaiser, the rammstein features pared-down center knobs that roll faster but wear quicker: continental aims the new der kaiser rammstein at downhill racers looking for a little extra speed. compared to the standard der kaiser, the rammstein features pared-down center knobs that roll faster but wear quicker

The new Der Kaiser Rammstein Projekt

Additionally, two-ply construction and a new Apex sidewall reinforcement ward off flats while also lending extra casing support under high load. Claimed weight is 1,150g.

Elsewhere in the MTB sector?it’s mostly a story of expanded size ranges. For example, the Mountain King and X-King will now both come in a giant 29×2.4in to address the growing 29er trail bike market.

Meanwhile, the Race King will be offered in new 29×2.2in Sport, 29×2.0in RaceSport and 26×2.0in RaceSport variants.

And yes, Continental will offer 27.5in mountain bike tires, but for now only in the X-King tread and 2.2in and 2.4in widths. Both are?built on the ProTection Revolution tubeless ready casing and with Black Chili rubber.

Conti debuts production of cyclocross tubulars

We’ve been playing with prototype Continental cyclocross tubulars for more than three seasons now but the German company is finally ready to launch production versions. They will be using their own casings (previous ones were made by Challenge) and new tread designs adapted from the Continental mountain bike range.

At least for now, the new CycloXKing (US$124.95, UK pricing TBC) will be the sole tubular offering with a 700×32mm, 180tpi casing and a fast rolling, versatile tread derived from the mountain bike X-King.

Continental will finally offer a production cyclocross tubular called cycloxking, using a fast rolling but versatile tread design derived from the x-king mountain bike tire: continental will finally offer a production cyclocross tubular called cycloxking, using a fast rolling but versatile tread design derived from the x-king mountain bike tire

The CycloXKing tubular tyre

Most importantly, Continental will build the tread using its Black Chili compound. We expect it to provide similarly impressive levels of grip, speed, and durability as on other so-equipped tires. In fact, Continental specifically claims 30 percent more grip, 26 percent less rolling resistance, and five percent better wear than standard activated silica treads. Claimed weight is 390g and tires should be in stores by the end of September.

A corresponding clincher version – simply called CycloXKing – will be available in both 32mm and 35mm-wide sizes with claimed weights ranging from 320-450g. Suggested retail price is US$54.95 (UK pricing TBC).

Muddy courses will instead call for the new Mountain King CX, built with a tube-type clincher casing but a more aggressive and open tread designed to cut through the slop into the firmer ground underneath.

As with the CycloXKing, the Mountain King CX will be available only in a 32mm width. Claimed weight is 320g.