The Mountain King is touted as Continental’s mud option cyclocross tyre. It’s a UCI legal 32mm width, is handmade in Germany, uses the fabled BlackChili compound and logically, is based on the successful Mountain King MTB tyre. As such it’s an exciting tyre for us here in the muddy UK.
The weight is spot on at 320g and though the marketing material states a minimum pressure of 45psi, there’s no minimum on the actual tyres, which is good for us.; we’ll be seeing what we can get away with. With three plies offering 180 TPI it may not be the supplest of carcasses but we are sure the special BlackChili rubber will make up for that.
The tread pattern is interesting with a distinct centre, featuring two rows of knobs, and then a definite gap before the shoulder knobs on either side. Apparently the shoulder knobs are separated from those in the centre by that gap to free them up to cut deep into the mud during cornering and whilst negotiating off-camber terrain; it certainly looks the business.
Continental claim that the deeply profiled tread means that it will dig ‘deep into the sturdier ground beneath any soft mud’ on the surface, something that certainly sounds very appealing in theory…
Due to the BlackChili rubber compound, the large knobs will also roll well on hardpack and, as well as enhanced grip, the BlackChili compound is also said to promote self-cleaning of the tyre in muddy conditions. Sounds great.
After our preview of the Conti CycloX tyre we received some positive comments about that tyre from riders already using it. We have used and liked the 26″ version of this Mountain King tyre on our mtb’s , so we are quite excited to see what it can do in cyclo-cross.
Tim has already whisked the all of the Continental cyclocross tyres off for testing so expect to see a full review soon.
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