e*Thirteen All-Terrain Race 2.4 Review
Cons: Doesn't stand out in any particular metric, only one width option
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e*Thirteen All-Terrain Race 2.4
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|Pros||Versatile, tough enough without being too heavy, rolling speed||Great cornering grip, good braking traction, aggressive tread pattern, super damp ride quality, available in 2.6 and 2.3-inch widths||Reasonably priced, versatile yet aggressive tread design, good all-around performance as a rear tire||Versatile, affordable, great all-around use, intermediate tread height, fast rolling||Reasonable price, low rolling resistance, versatile tread works well in a range of conditions, comes in 2.4 and 2.6-inch widths|
|Cons||Doesn't stand out in any particular metric, only one width option||Moderate weight, not the fastest rolling||Moderate braking traction, firmer rubber compound||Not the best braking traction||Not the best braking traction, moderately heavy, not great in mud or sloppy conditions|
|Bottom Line||A versatile and well-rounded tire that can be run on the front or rear||Specialized's classic aggressive trail riding tire with a new rubber compound, enhanced grip, and same great value||A versatile, well-rounded, and reasonably priced trail riding tire best suited for use on the rear of the bike||A versatile and well-rounded do-it-all rear tire for any kind of riding||A durable and fast-rolling trail and all-mountain tire well suited to duties on the rear of the bike|
|Rating Categories||All-Terrain Race 2.4||Butcher GRID Trail T9||Eliminator GRID Tra...||Maxxis Aggressor 2....||Michelin Force AM2 2.4|
|Pedaling Traction (20%)|
|Braking Traction (20%)|
|Rolling Resistance (15%)|
|Specs||All-Terrain Race 2.4||Butcher GRID Trail T9||Eliminator GRID Tra...||Maxxis Aggressor 2....||Michelin Force AM2 2.4|
|Size tested||29" x 2.4"||29" x 2.6"||29" x 2.3"||27.5" x 2.3"||29" x 2.4"|
|Weight as tested||1052g||1123g||945g||885g||1051g|
|Front, Rear, or Both||Front, Both||Front, Both||Rear||Rear||Rear, Both|
|Casing Tested||Race, single-ply w/ Aramid reinforcement||GRID Trail||GRID Trail||EXO||Gravity Shield|
|Compound Tested||Race||Gripton T9||Gripton T7||Dual||Gum-X|
|Tread Count (TPI)||not specified||60||60||60||3 x 60|
Our Analysis and Test Results
The TRS All-Terrain is truly an all-around tire that works in a wide range of applications. No, this isn't a DH tire, a mud tire, or a semi-slick that has a specialized application. The TRS All-Terrain does it all pretty darn well. This tire offers smooth and predictable cornering, nice amounts of pedal traction, and rolls fairly well for the levels of traction it delivers. The e*Thirteen never scored at the top of any performance metric but it was never that far off.
Cornering abilities were above average with the TRS All-Terrain. The shoulder knobs deliver a decent bite with a predictable feel. The lugs aren't especially tall or burly looking, but they do provide plenty of bite for most situations.
The shoulder knobs are uniform in both shape and placement. Each knob is the same size, shape, and they are not staggered. Some tires move every other shoulder knob inboard, not the case with the eThirteen. The lugs are somewhat more tightly distributed compared to other tires. Each knob has a diagonal sipe, or cut, in the lug that allows it to flex and conform to the trail surface as you lean onto the edge of the tread.
Transitioning from the rolling knobs to the shoulder knobs is predictable and smooth. The old version of this tire had a very square side to side profile, and it had a little bit of dead space between the rolling tread and cornering knobs. This created a bit of a skittish, jittery feel during the transition; the newer version feels much more consistent. As you move onto the corner knobs, there is no jumpy feel, just buttery smoothness. Once on edge, there is a pretty good idea of how hard you can push it.
The single-ply casing with the reinforced sidewall offered plenty of stability and support at all speeds. Despite its relatively low weight, the casing felt quite robust, and you can be confident leaning hard into a corner. This isn't a wimpy casing that feels like you can pull it off the bead under hard cornering loads.
The TRS All-Terrain handled well in most conditions. On flatter, gravely, looser corners, there was just enough bite to hold on. Also, it fared surprisingly well in damp and loamy situations. In other words, this tire cornered well in a huge range of conditions. If you find yourself shredding 3-inch deep moondust corners frequently, we would recommend another tire. If you are constantly riding in the wet, we would recommend another tire. Everywhere in between, this is a great option that delivers stellar, predictable cornering abilities, whether mounted on the front, rear, or on both wheels.
The TRS All-Terrain offers nice amounts of pedal traction. If you look at the tread pattern, the center knobs alternate with two large, square-ish, lugs followed by some horizontally-oriented rectangular lugs in between. The front side of these knobs are ramped but are also fairly spaced out. Ramped lugs aid slightly in rolling speed, though they can reduce traction slightly compared to completely squared off lugs. That said, the ramp angle is relatively sharp, and the knobs are spaced out significantly.
When you are motoring up a climb, there is a lot of confidence that the next pedal stroke will deliver the necessary traction. When mounted in the rear, this tire can match the traction levels of any rear tire under pedaling loads. Standing or seated, hardpack, loam, or relatively loose, riders should have confidence in this tire hooking up. The siped lugs really feel like they are conforming to the trail surface and helping to provide a little extra grip.
The only areas we really experienced traction issues were climbing up steep, wet, rooty sections of trail. It should be noted that virtually every tire will have issues under standing pedaling loads over slippery roots. We are only mentioning it to make sure it is known that while we loved the pedaling traction on the TRS All-Terrain, it's not unflappable.
When it comes time to slam on the binders, this tire offers great braking bite. Braking bite, like pedaling traction, is very important in a rear tire, but also on the front of the bike. This dialed piece of rubber is suited for duties on both wheels and delivers excellent braking abilities front and rear.
Many of the factors that create stellar pedaling traction also contribute to the braking traction. First, the lugs are spaced out significantly. This allows plenty of space for each of the knobs to bite into the trail surface. More tightly compact knobs don't allow as much rubber to dig into the trail. Every other group of center knobs have a horizontal sipe in them. This allows the lug to flex and grip the trail surface as the rider applies the brakes. The back edge of the center lugs are also squared off providing a vertical braking surface.
On the trail, we were satisfied with the braking abilities of the TRS All-Terrain. The braking abilities stood out as impressive in most conditions. Loam and hardpack were particularly impressive, while super loose and wet were still quite solid. Some other rear tires deliver a better braking bite, but this handles better than the majority.
The TRS All-Terrain isn't an especially fast-rolling tire. Those riders concerned about rolling speed might not want to run this tire front and rear. E*Thirteen makes a semi-slick version of this tire that prioritizes rolling speed that is a great option for a rear tire for hardpack conditions.
With all of that said, the TRS All-Terrain delivers solid rolling speed for how much traction it has. Typically, when you get a tire with great rolling speed, you sacrifice traction. When you have a tire with excellent traction, it usually isn't a fast roller. We were impressed with the way this eThirteen tire blends the two. Riders who often find themselves in mixed conditions and need a more aggressive rear tire will appreciate how the TRS All-Terrain blends rolling speed and traction.
Throughout our testing period, we observed little, if any, wear on our tire. We ran this tire in the front and the rear over multiple long rides. The tire is still in great shape.
Often, we will start to see some deterioration of the inboard side of the shoulder knobs from hard cornering. Our shoulder lugs are still in excellent shape, and there is little, if any, signs of wear on them. The braking edge of the center tread shows a touch of wear from several heavy-handed braking situations.
We are confident this tire should have an above-average lifespan. This is not to be overlooked when you are spending your hard-earned cash on new rubber.
The TRS All-Terrain set up extremely easily. We got this tire seated in one shot with our ToPeak Joe Blow Booster pump. The bead snapped on in one charge, with just a touch of supplementary pumping to finish off the stubborn areas.
Our 2.4-inch tire measured 2.407-inches on our 30mm rim.
It is very important to note that we tested these tires with eThirteen LG1 rims. This is important as it is likely the manufacturer used an in-house rim when engineering this tire. It would stand to reason that installation would be easiest on an E*Thirteen rim. We also mounted them to another set of rims later in testing and found them to install just as easily.
The TRS All-Terrain is a solid value. The price tag puts it at the lower end of the premium price range. We feel this tire justifies the expense with its well-rounded performance and reasonable weight. Pair that with what we feel will be a long lifespan, and we have a winning recipe.
The eThirteen TRS All-Terrain tire is a great all-arounder. The name TRS All-Terrain suggests that it is comfortable in a wide range of scenarios. This tire is indeed a well-rounded piece of rubber that offers great cornering abilities, decent rolling speed, and good pedaling and braking traction. When you pair the great performance with a reasonable price tag, you have a recipe for success.
The TRS All Terrain is available in the 27.5 and 29-inch (tested) wheel sizes. It is only available in the 2.4-inch width.
The tire is available in the trail (tested), enduro, and downhill constructions. the enduro casing and the downhill casing are more robust compared to the trail versionThe trail construction we tested is available in two compounds. The Plus compound is harder and faster rolling and is only available in a standard single ply. The Race compound (tested) is a little softer and tackier with an Aramid protective layer in the sidewall.
— Pat Donahue