Schwalbe’s 2019 collection sees a few new models, a few new sizes, more e-bike ready options, and their take on an airless, tubeless, flat-proof urban commuter tire. The biggest range of new things is on the mountain bike side, so we’ll start there…
The Hans Dampf trail/enduro tires add a wider 29×2.6 option on the Evolution line (on left, it gets Snakeskin, TubelessEasy, Addix Speedgrip), and the Performance Line adds a smaller 24×2.35 for little shredders. That one gets their standard tubeless-ready casing with all purpose Addix compound. The entire Hans Dampf lineup got a slight compound refresh earlier this year, too.
Announced in May, the completely redesigned Racing Ray and Racing Ralph become a dedicated front and rear pairing for XC racing. Check out our first ride review and all tech specs here. They’re available in 26/27.5/29 x 2.25, plus a 29×2.1.
All new for e-Bikes are the new Eddy Current front and rear specific eMTB tires. They use a blocky tread design similar to motocross tires. That plus an Gravity casing and extra soft, grippy rubber helps handle the extra heft added by a battery and motor. They also match up with one of the trends we saw for e-mountain bikes: Mismatched tire sizes. The Eddy Current front is a 29er, available in 2.4 and 2.6 widths, while the Eddy Current rear is a 27.5×2.8.
It’s not just these tires that are e-Bike ready. Virtually every model shown in this story has an e-rated equivalent with higher speed ratings, or is simply e-certified for the lower 25km/h rating even in its standard casing and construction.
But when you want a dedicated e-bike tire for fast, racing road bikes, the new E-One gets the highest 50km/h speed rating. It comes in 700×28 and 700×32 and uses their V-Guard for upper mid-level puncture protection.
For roadies on a bit more of a budget, the new One takes the same overall design as their higher end Pro One, but sticks with a standard Performance line construction. Which, honestly, isn’t all that standard…it’s still Tubeless Easy and has a V-Guard puncture protection, and gets a dual compound construction. It’s available in all black, along with blue, white and red striped sidewall options.
For touring bikes and commuters, the new Energizer Plus comes in 28×2.0 and 28×1.5 (aka 700c standard road wheel size, aka 622mm). They get their 3mm thick Green Guard puncture protection and Schwalbe’s newer Addix E-Compound rubber to maximize both durability and grip at high speed. Yes, they’re optimized for e-bikes with a 50km/h speed rating, but should also work great for human-powered bikes wanting a bombproof tire.
Or, opt for the new Urban Airless System tire, which pretty much can’t go flat thanks to their new expanded foam liner. The material is an “extremely elastic thermoplastic” that lasts for up to 10,000km of riding and feels like a tire inflated to 3.5bar (~51psi). The important thing is, they say, it feels like you’re riding on a real inner tube because it’s able to deform to smooth out the ride, but is physically incapable of flatting. Here’s the trick: It has to be installed by certified and trained dealers, because…
…it’s actually a multi-part system that needs a special machine to install it. The three-part system consists of the tire, the thermoplastic foam ring, and a blue Airless ring. The blue ring deforms and fills in the channel at the bottom of the rim to help the rest of the system fit properly. Initially it’ll only come in one size, with a 700×40 (~1.5″) for rims with an internal width of 19-21mm. The system will retail for €84.50 per wheel, and will only be available in Germany and The Netherlands at first.