Michelin Tracker offroad tires (updated)

This is a review of the new Michelin Tracker enduro tyre. It is based on my personal experience and opinion. I am currently riding one set on my KTM 690 Enduro R for the first time.

What Michelin are saying:

  • Engineered to address the needs of the growing number of riders who are looking for a reliable product that allows them to enjoy their off-road forays to the full.
  • Designed to cover a particularly broad spectrum of terrains
  • New tread pattern design, perfectly suited to riding on sand, mud and dirt.
  • Approved for road use, 170 km/h max.
  • Affordable price tag.
  • Tread pattern and crown reinforced to shrug off the knocks associated with off-road riding.
  • Outstanding traction and braking performance in even the toughest conditions.

I was using this tire during a week of trail riding in Umbria, Italy.
There were quite some stretches of tarmac between the trails so that I could also test the behaviour on street.

In the beginning surprisingly silent, the front began to scream after approx. 500km. But you can ride them into the corners and hairpins with as much lean angle as with a road biased tire as long as you are cautious on the gas and the brake!

During our trail riding we went through different terrains, from forest trails with muddy sections up to steep and rocky hill climbs. I was very satisfied with the performance on all the different terrains. This tire is a true Jack of all trades, certainly not on “race-level-performance” but a versatile tire for trail riders that have to bridge gaps on tarmac between trail sections.

1000km riding profile Michelin Tracker on KTM 690

During the whole week I was varying the tire pressure between 1.3 bar (front+rear) in the softer sections and 1.5 bar on roads and rocky terrain.
I would have loved to go with lower pressures but unfortunately I had no rim lock mounted. If I had rim locks on I would have run the tire down to 1 bar as it has a stiff enough carcass.

Period of usage: November 2020 – June 2021
Mileage used: 1200 kms, 20% paved 80% unpaved roads
Dimensions used:
90×90/21 Front, 140×80/18 Rear
Riding conditions: 100% solo on roads, forest trails, gravel roads, rocks
Price: approx. CHF 130, front and rear

Tire wear after 1200km:

After 1200 km the rear tire has lost approx. 1/3 of the tread on the center knobs. The front shows a sawtooth tread pattern that resulted from braking on fast paved mountain roads. The fun on tarmac comes at a certain price with this tire. I will turn both, front and rear tire and they will be good for at least another 1000km

My findings:

  • Yes, they are dirt cheap ✓✓✓
  • Balanced performance on all terrains ✓✓✓
    This tyre is designed to fit  the needs of a broader range of off-road riders. Traction is actually surprisingly good across a wide range of terrain even though they come with rounded off (rather than sharp-edged) knobs. Particularly the front has genuinely good grip.
  • Onroad performance: Surprisingly well ✓✓✓
    The tyres can be safely driven on tarmac and produce very low noise in the beginning. After 300 kms especially the front tire starts screaming. On high powered enduro bikes like the 690 you have to be careful on the gas as a bit to much will lead immediately to a nicely controllable power slide.
  • Durability: sure ✓✓✓
    Knob height: 13/14mm. They wear noticeable slower than competition enduro tyres and don’t throw knobs. See my wear pattern after 1200 kms of paved/unpaved roads. Tyre can be used bi-directional.
  • Stability: ✓✓✓
    Due to the Trackers’ stiffer carcass construction, you can get away with less pressure in the Tracker before it starts rolling on the rim and squirming around. But this comes at the price of being a little tougher to lever onto your rims.

Conclusion:

I have chosen this tire mainly for trail riding, with some tarmac in between the off-road sections. Therefore it was important for me to have a road legal tire. Given the low wear together with a cheap price it makes this tire very attractive. Also the performance experienced so far is excellent. You will not get the performance of a competition tyre, but this will not compromise my trail riding as for instance it would with a 60/40 dual sport tyre.

I will definitely buy this tire again for my KTM 690.

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