PIRELLI P ZERO RACE TLR. Tubeless and fast, what more can you want?

PIRELLI P ZERO RACE TLR. Tubeless and fast, what more can you want?

Dave Peart gives an initial review of the installation process of the Pirelli P Zero Race TLR and their performance to date.

Pirelli has launched two variants of its P ZERO™ RACE TLR tyres:

  • The RACE TLR – which is described as “almost a four-season tyre”, offers a balance between weight, grip and puncture protection. They are available in widths: 24, 26, 28 and 30mm.
  • The RACE TLR SL – which is described as a “race day” tyre for “super smooth” roads, it is optimised for grip and low weight. They are available in widths: 24, 26 and 28mm.

This review is for the RACE TLR tyres, which were fitted to my winter bike in early October for road and occasional gravel use. They have been ridden for around 400km at the time of writing.

The Pirelli P Zero™ Race TLR

Installation Process

The claimed weight for the 28mm tyre is 295g – on my scales they were pretty close at 300g.

The tyres were fitted to a pair of Prime RR-28 carbon wheels with hooked rims and an internal width of 16.5mm (external 25mm).

The fitting of the tyres onto the rims was straightforward with a fit that was neither too loose nor too tight – tyre lever only required for the final stage with minimal effort.

The inflation process was more difficult than many other tyres that I’ve fitted and required several blasts with a tubeless inflator. But after the successful inflation, the tyres remained in place against the wheel rim to enable sealant to be added and valve cores fitted.

Pirelli P Zero™ Race TLR onthe scales

In spite of the installation effort, I’ve been really impressed how well the tyres retain air pressure over time compared to many other brands – over the course of a week, they will only lose 1-2 psi.

As a side-note, it says on the side of the tyres that they are not to be fitted to hookless rims. However on Pirelli’s website they state that the 28 and 30mm tyres can be fitted to hookless rims, but with a maximum inflation pressure of 5 bar (73psi).

With the 28c tyres inflated to 70psi, the measured width of the tyres was 27mm – note that this is on a 16.5mm (internal) rim – this is in line with Pirelli’s technical data (the tyres are specified to inflate to 28mm on 19c rims and 29mm on 21c rims).

On the Bike

So far, I’ve covered around 400km on the tyres in a real mix of conditions, dry tarmac, filthy wet tarmac, light gravel tracks and canal towpaths. I’ve not encountered any issues with the tyres to date (no punctures, no damage to either the rolling surface or sidewalls, nor any notable pressure-loss).

Grip is great in the dry and predictable in the wet. Comfort is also really good on UK roads – I’m running at 70psi (Pirelli’s recommended pressure for my weight is 75psi for dry weather and 70psi in the wet), which takes the sting out of uneven road surfaces but still enables the tyres to roll efficiently.

As a direct comparison, I’ve been running 28mm Continental GP5000TLs on my summer bike and am able to ride at a similar speed on my winter bike with these Pirelli tyres.

Also as an anecdote, I used my winter bike with these Pirelli tyres for a 170km ride around the lanes of Cheshire in late October on a mix of surfaces with variable weather. I was issue-free, however two of my cycling companions each suffered punctures on non-Pirelli, non-tubeless tyres!

Pirelli Technical Information

The following information has been provided by Pirelli with respect to the RACE TLR tyres.

Pirelli P Zero™ Race TLR tech overview
Pirelli P Zero™ Race TLR characteristics

We also previewed Pirelli’s P Zero tyres back in2018, take a look at the review here.

Pirelli Race TLR

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