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  1. #1
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    Bontrager XR4 Team Issue - first ride





    First ride today on the XR4 team issue.

    Used up front on a '12 Transition Bandit 29 1, on a 25.5 ID Stans Flow rim.

    Paired with a Maxxis Forekaster 2.35 on a Stans Arch Ex 21 ID rim (loner from a friend).

    Trails were dry, dusty & rocky fare.

    Tire taken off from front duties was the Nobby Nic 2.35 Tsc - for comparisons sake.

    Firstly the XR4 T.I. feels light. Listed weight is 780g & it likely wouldn't be much over that... if at all.

    Next is how fast rolling it is. I'm tempted to utilize it solely as a summer front tire.

    Although, it could possibly perform well on rear duties (paired w/ my NN maybe).

    On my 25.5 ID rim - it measured approx. 59mm wide.

    It's less aggressive than the Nobby Nic for sure.

    When leant over, it's hard to read the point of no return.

    Although it never let go on me, I was mindful of not pushing the envelope to much (in part due to loner rear wheel).

    As above, it will likely perform as a summer front tire & possibly as an on point race tire.

    For the price, the tire does seem a little under gunned.

    It's certainly narrower than it's 2.4 mantle. Not quite as grippy (or wide) as the NN 2.35.

    With a true 2.4 option up front & w/ the lack of grams on board. It could be a solid rear option.

    Like stated above, I'll likely keep it for front duties in the summer & possibly pair it with my NN in damper months. Although I've just acquired a Forekaster that could fill the same void & possibly more adequately... for half the price also.

    It if doesn't fit into my harem I may on sell to a friend who has XR3's front and rear & wants something more aggressive in the front (or maybe swap for his front XR3 - to run as a wider rear tire).

    Would I recommend the XR4... for the price! probably not...

    I may keep it yet... time will tell.

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  2. #2
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    One thing about them, the logos are very solidly, cleanly and crisply printed. That's gotta be worth something.

    I like these tires a lot. They're pretty perfect for my trial riding; great traction over sometimes slimy rocks and roots, and low rolling resistance.
    Do the math.

  3. #3
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    These are like $75, dealer only, right?

    Thanks for the write up.

  4. #4
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    $70 for XR4 TI, $75 for XR3 TI.
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  5. #5
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    $70-$75 sounds about right...

    I paid $89 NZD for mine.

    Reason my initial impressions are a bit meh...

    ...I was looking for a wider, more aggressive front tire for Wintery fare.

    I wouldn't put this up front over the NN.

    Thinking if I got a Hans Dampf, the XR4 would work well with it as a rear tire.

    Like I said above. I may try and swap it for an XR3 2.4

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  6. #6
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    It will stretch out after a whlie. The biggest measurement that I got on the previous XR4 TI 26" was close to 64mm width on 31.8mm internal width rims. I use the old xr4 with this size rims in the winter. I have not ride in the snow yet this winter but it gets pretty good traction on loose leaves.

    I also have a set of the new design XR4 TI 27.5x2.4" coming soon for an SC Bronson custom build. This will be mount to a set of Ibis 742 rims with 35mm internal width. Will measure at mount time and after a month or so.
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  7. #7
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    The XR Team tires are well rounded with high volume. They perform to their best with wide rims like 30mm+ for me. And lower pressure to go with the rim width. They're a tuning option that could give you fast rolling and good traction along with very good life if you match up all the points. XR2 Team 2.35 on the wide rim at 16 and possibly less could give you better than a NN which has a flatter profile and wears faster.

  8. #8
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    People keep telling me my 25.5's are too narrow ;-)

    Other tires I've used though, seem to fit ok.

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  9. #9
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    I really like my 2.4 XR4 front and 2.3 XR3 rear combo for east coast riding. I first had them on my 29er, liked them so much bought them for my Mojo 3.

    I came from a Specialized Purg front w/ a GC rear.

    As mentioned, I'm running wider rims on both bikes.
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  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by targnik View Post
    People keep telling me my 25.5's are too narrow ;-)
    Other tires I've used though, seem to fit ok.
    Nobody's telling you that.
    They're not too narrow to ride. There too narrow to get everything out of that particular tire you can.
    You seem not to want the info.
    That tire has a rounded profile that lets you get benefits from wider rims, lower pressure and more sidewall support.
    I've had a front give great traction at 11psi. Just couldn't run it that low because the rim would have been damaged. But the front tire gripped really great.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by eb1888 View Post
    The XR Team tires are well rounded with high volume. They perform to their best with wide rims like 30mm+ for me. And lower pressure to go with the rim width...
    Yes. I use them with 30mm IW rims at less than 20 psi.

    BTW, this whole "volume" thing is a red herring. Two tires with the same carcass width can't differ consequentially in volume. And it's area, not volume that relates directly to performance. Of course width, area and volume are all arithmetically related since the cross section of a a tire carcass is circular.
    Do the math.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by eb1888 View Post
    The XR Team tires are well rounded with high volume. They perform to their best with wide rims like 30mm+ for me. And lower pressure to go with the rim width. They're a tuning option that could give you fast rolling and good traction along with very good life if you match up all the points. XR2 Team 2.35 on the wide rim at 16 and possibly less could give you better than a NN which has a flatter profile and wears faster.
    My experience with Schwalbe tyres is that out back they'll melt like butter (it's Summer down this end of the world)...

    But, up front their durability is fine.

    My $0.02 is that the NN 2.35 Tsc is a better tire than the XR4 2.4 for how I ride.

    Of course the XR4 may grow on me.

    I'll run it up front for my next few rides & pair it with my Ardent Race 2.2.

    Hopefully it stretches a couple more mm's.

    We shall see.

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  13. #13
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    Side by side with my 2.35 Forekaster



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  14. #14
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    And we keep telling you that the tire shines with a 30-35mm inner rim and with that rim you can use an XR2 2.35 Team at 16 psi or less front for faster rolling and more traction. It's not just about the tire anymore. Rim width and lower pressure are also important. Because those wide rims give the tire sidewall support so they no longer foldover. Because of that you can lower the front tire pressure and get a bigger footprint for traction. Even the 2.2 XR1 Team is a great traction tire on a 30mm rim. The rounded profile does it. Trek designs bikes. They test designs. They know what they need in a tire design to make their bikes work. Their mtbike suspension engineer said recently he didn't see any reason for a rim with less than 30mm inner width to get the high volume benefits out of a 2.3 tire. "“What we’re going to see,” says Alsop, “is wider rims across the board because you still get some of those high-volume benefits from just going to a wider rim with a 2.3 tire."

  15. #15
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    FFS!! The tire's not that bloody wide. Now get off my lawn!!!

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    Last edited by targnik; 01-02-2017 at 04:36 PM. Reason: Grammar
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  16. #16
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    Last edited by dirtrider76; 01-22-2017 at 08:45 AM.
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  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by targnik View Post
    It's not that wide.
    You don't know anything about the tire. I've got 3 seasons using XR Teams on wide rims. It's about how wide you make the contact patch.
    Keep walking around with your eyes closed.

  18. #18
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    Last edited by dirtrider76; 01-22-2017 at 08:38 AM.
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  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by eb1888 View Post
    The XR Team tires are well rounded with high volume. They perform to their best with wide rims like 30mm+ for me. And lower pressure to go with the rim width. They're a tuning option that could give you fast rolling and good traction along with very good life if you match up all the points. XR2 Team 2.35 on the wide rim at 16 and possibly less could give you better than a NN which has a flatter profile and wears faster.
    How do the heights of an xr2 rear compare to an xr4 (both on 30mm rims)? I'd be really interested in seeing the xr2 from a couple different angles on that wide a rim if you have them handy...


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  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by dirtrider76 View Post
    In case you haven't noticed, he doesn't care. TBH neither do I and I've run wide rims and went back to 25mm.
    Muchas gracias.

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  21. #21
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    2nd ride tonight on the XR4, dropped psi to 24... Tyre felt more user friendly for sure. Trails were dusty, dry - hardback w/ the odd root bed thrown in for good measure.

    More testing tomorrow ^^

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  22. #22
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    Test a lower front pressure than rear. Take a compact pump and use a rim hit as the low pressure limit. If you feel one add pressure.

  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by eb1888 View Post
    Test a lower front pressure than rear. Take a compact pump and use a rim hit as the low pressure limit. If you feel one add pressure.
    Always have & will run different pressures front to rear...

    Plus, I'm a tube-ist ^^ rim strikes? I'll pass...

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  24. #24
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    16 is where I have no problems front with a tube....and 30mm rim. You should be OK at 19.

  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by eb1888 View Post
    16 is where I have no problems front with a tube....and 30mm rim. You should be OK at 19.
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  26. #26
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    o_0 I weigh 235 (240+ all kitted up)...

    Lowest I've ever gone is 21psi & that's on true 2.4 tires i.e. Conti TK & MKII BC Protection.

    Those tires are 4 ply... No way I'd try that on a 120 tpi marshmallowey XR4
    Quote Originally Posted by eb1888 View Post
    16 is where I have no problems front with a tube....and 30mm rim. You should be OK at 19.

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  27. #27
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    Weight is a factor...one that should be pointing you towards Plus tires on wide rims.
    I guess for a reticent rider that solution will take time.....one step at a time.

    Bontrager XR4 Team Issue - first ride-p1070163.jpg

    Here's a Panaracer Fat B Nimble 29 x 3(2.7 actual) on a 30mm inner rim. I run this with a cheap 700 tube(for the presta valve) at 12.5psi. I'd rather have it on a 45mm rim.
    Once you have a wide enough rim the tire doesn't fold over, it scrunches down if it has a flexible sidewall.
    Look at this 3.25 x 29 Crux on a 49mm inner rim.

  28. #28
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    Last edited by dirtrider76; 01-22-2017 at 08:39 AM.
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  29. #29
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    Quote Originally Posted by dirtrider76 View Post
    Geez man, give it up
    Do you know who you're dealing with?

    Every post asking about which bike- he posts they should get a plus capable bike. Doesn't matter what they're into- plus is for everyone. I'm surprised it took a few posts before the 'you should be on plus tires' came out.
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    Last edited by dirtrider76; 01-22-2017 at 08:40 AM.
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  31. #31
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    Slowly getting to know the XR4...

    Another ride yesterday, dry, sandy & loose trails.

    Will be interesting to see how it performs when things get damp.

    Liking it so far for dry trails.

    24psi seems to be my sweet spot for gnarly stuff.

    Had it @27-28psi for an XC ride day before yesterday & it worked sweet.

    Then back on some single track it felt like a brick, dropped down again & all was good.

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  32. #32
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    Quote Originally Posted by targnik View Post
    Slowly getting to know the XR4...

    Another ride yesterday, dry, sandy & loose trails.

    Will be interesting to see how it performs when things get damp.

    Liking it so far for dry trails.

    24psi seems to be my sweet spot for gnarly stuff.

    Had it @27-28psi for an XC ride day before yesterday & it worked sweet.

    Then back on some single track it felt like a brick, dropped down again & all was good.

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    It does very well in the wet. My local trail has several creek crossings and several low spots that don't drain well.

    I've been very happy with the XR4/XR3 combo dealing with going from a dry trail to muddy conditions and back.
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  33. #33
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    Quote Originally Posted by TwoTone View Post
    It does very well in the wet. My local trail has several creek crossings and several low spots that don't drain well.

    I've been very happy with the XR4/XR3 combo dealing with going from a dry trail to muddy conditions and back.
    Nobs look a little closely spaced to clear (mud) quickly...

    We shall see

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  34. #34
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    Quote Originally Posted by eb1888 View Post
    Weight is a factor...one that should be pointing you towards Plus tires on wide rims.
    I guess for a reticent rider that solution will take time.....one step at a time.

    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	P1070163.jpg 
Views:	620 
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ID:	1113937

    Here's a Panaracer Fat B Nimble 29 x 3(2.7 actual) on a 30mm inner rim. I run this with a cheap 700 tube(for the presta valve) at 12.5psi. I'd rather have it on a 45mm rim.
    Once you have a wide enough rim the tire doesn't fold over, it scrunches down if it has a flexible sidewall.
    Look at this 3.25 x 29 Crux on a 49mm inner rim.
    Yes, great success ... 3.0 plus recommendation on a XR4 thread, go home - you're drunk.

    Everybody knows SRAM hawk 13 speed is the real answer!

  35. #35
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    Quote Originally Posted by kermit_xc View Post
    Yes, great success ... 3.0 plus recommendation on a XR4 thread, go home - you're drunk.

    Everybody knows SRAM hawk 13 speed is the real answer!
    He's the new DC of MTBR.

    Spent some time in what bike should I get threads. I honestly don't understand why manufacturers make anything other than plus bikes. According to EB it's the end all be all and everyone should love riding the shitty things.
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  36. #36
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    So far I really like the newly designed XR4. I liked the old design, but the new design just works even better for me.
    South Central PA riding here.
    I used to run my old XR4's at 27-28 psi, these new ones, I just didn't blow up a few times, and I found they do like about 24-25. (I am 215 lb) Much less than that, they seem to be a little wallery to me.

    It is a VERY soft rubber, so time will tell how well they last.

    I NEVER dissuade someone from trying an XR tire. You have a 30 day test period on it. Buy it, ride it for 30 days. Don't like it, you take it back. Who the heck else offers that on a TIRE???
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    Waiting for the new 29x2.55 XR4, since the first batch was faulty 2.4s. I bought 2 and the side wall on one is a sieve.

  38. #38
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    Last edited by dirtrider76; 01-22-2017 at 08:41 AM.
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  39. #39
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    30 days sounds good if they're not too spendy... 2.5" is actually @2.5"?
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  40. #40
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    Quote Originally Posted by J: View Post
    30 days sounds good if they're not too spendy... 2.5" is actually @2.5"?
    Re, width, I'm guessing not...

    Apart from Conti & Schwalbe (2.35/2.4) most tyres seem to come up under (case in point, the XR4 looks more like a 2.35 or true 2.3 tyre).

    Finally got my XR4 back on my local (slightly muddy) trails.

    It performed better than I expected. It packed up in the the muddy sections just like any tire. But self cleaned nicely.

    Last nights ride was loamy, rooty w/ occasional mud for good measure. Front grip & speed were never an issue.

    Diggin the XR4 enough that I may try and get my hands on a 2.5 version once it lands on my shores.

    I'd move this XR4 out back & run wider/more aggressive Bonty up front for Wintery trails/gravity focused riding.

    O/C I have several more local trails to test the XR4 on...

    So far, so good ^^

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    Last edited by dirtrider76; 01-22-2017 at 08:42 AM.
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  42. #42
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    Quote Originally Posted by dirtrider76 View Post
    My XR4 is exactly 2.4 wide and my SE4 is a bit over 2.4. Both are 27.5x2.4 on 25mm internal rims.

    Rode mine in snow Sunday and they worked excellent in eastern PA terrain with 1-2" of fresh snow.

    I had VERY good results running the Magic mary up front with the SE4 in back.
    Strange (re, width) my XR4 is on 25.5mm ID rim & measures in at 58mm which is 2.28 o_0

    My rear 2.2 Ardent Race, on a 21mm ID rim = 56mm -=or=- 2.2 & change.

    They're a nice looking combo.

    Nobby Nic 2.35 (actual 59mm) & Forekaster 2.35 (58??), will likely go back on bike come Fall.

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    Last edited by dirtrider76; 01-22-2017 at 08:43 AM.
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    Last edited by dirtrider76; 01-22-2017 at 08:43 AM.
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  45. #45
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    Quote Originally Posted by dirtrider76 View Post
    They don't even look the same size in the picture.
    Tis the angle, genius...

    Was 58mm when I first put it on

    Now, it has stretched to 59mm

    NOW GET OFF MY LAWN!! (out of my thread will suffice)

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    Last edited by dirtrider76; 01-22-2017 at 08:44 AM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by targnik View Post
    Strange (re, width) my XR4 is on 25.5mm ID rim & measures in at 58mm which is 2.28 o_0

    My rear 2.2 Ardent Race, on a 21mm ID rim = 56mm -=or=- 2.2 & change.

    They're a nice looking combo.

    Nobby Nic 2.35 (actual 59mm) & Forekaster 2.35 (58??), will likely go back on bike come Fall.

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    My 27.5 XR4 on a 29mm inner rim measure out just a hair under 2.4.
    My 29er XR4 2.3 on a 30mm inner rim measures 2.3
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  48. #48
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    Once I no longer need/want my Ardent Race out back, I'll pop the Forekaster back on & show all you haters that the XR4 is only a whisker wider.

    Alternately, you could all post some pics ^^ or, it didn't happen.

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  49. #49
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    Quote Originally Posted by dirtrider76 View Post
    Oh nooo! Someone didn't agree with you so you tell them to get out your thread. Are you 12?


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  51. #51
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    Quote Originally Posted by dirtrider76 View Post
    You told me to get out of your thread, make up your mind and stopping acting like a 12 year old.


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  52. #52
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    FYI - tyre is going dam skippy!!

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    ^^^ could you translate that into American?
    Do the math.

  54. #54
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lone Rager View Post
    ^^^ could you translate that into American?


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    My Hans Dampf 2.35 has arrived!

    Going to try the XR4 out back w/ the HD up front.

    Looks like it could be a kick-arse combo!

    PS - will post a pic or two showing that a 2.35 tyre (brand new mind you), can be bigger than a 2.4 tyre

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  56. #56
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    XR4 2.4 along side HD 2.35...



    FYI - the HD measures in @ 61mm tread to tread (and still growing).

    No trail time on this combo yet (too much Summer rain), so how they'll play together is unknown.

    Out back, the XR4 feels OK rolling resistance wise - up & down the street.

    I've used the HD 2.35 before on my 650b.

    As long as I keep it away from rocks, it'll be stellar ^^



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    The 2.4 team issue XR4 29er may no longer be available----it has been showing out of stock but today it is just gone----my local LBS pulled up the west coast dealer site and it now longer even shows---just the 2.3. However interestingly the team issue xr3 still shows ib 2.4

    odd for sure

  58. #58
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    Still available in my neck of the woods ^^

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    Ran my XR4 (R) & Hans Dampf (F) on yesterday's ride...

    Could definitely feel the added grams i.e. likely 1690g+ for this combo (no scales, but the Hans Dampf feels a bit heavier than published 850g - more likely in the 900+ category) vs
    1530g for the XR4+Forekaster combo I had on last ride.

    But, there was grip for days ^^ on the wet, slippery, hard pack, rooty trails.

    If I ever get to a lift assisted trail network, I'll definitely be running this combo.

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    ahh

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    Quote Originally Posted by pctloper View Post
    ahh
    Ohh, ahh... ? ? ?

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    Nice to hear some hands on reviews on the new XR's. When I rode my 29er trail HT I had the XR4 /XR3 combo, but on rooty decents I managed to pull the front tire off the rim 2-3 times. I believe I was running 24ish up front and 28rear (215lbs).
    Heard and read about more users with same issue. Have you experienced that on the new ones?

    My eyes are set on the new SE4 2.4 650b. Running DHR2 front and rear in loomy/wet weather and DHR2/SS on dryer trails ATM - 27/30psi. But the sidewall near the sideknobs have lots of small cracks. Not from rock strikes but just look likes OLD rubber, therefor Bonty is back on my radar.

  63. #63
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    Quote Originally Posted by Thorjensen View Post
    Nice to hear some hands on reviews on the new XR's. When I rode my 29er trail HT I had the XR4 /XR3 combo, but on rooty decents I managed to pull the front tire off the rim 2-3 times. I believe I was running 24ish up front and 28rear (215lbs).
    Heard and read about more users with same issue. Have you experienced that on the new ones?

    My eyes are set on the new SE4 2.4 650b. Running DHR2 front and rear in loomy/wet weather and DHR2/SS on dryer trails ATM - 27/30psi. But the sidewall near the sideknobs have lots of small cracks. Not from rock strikes but just look likes OLD rubber, therefor Bonty is back on my radar.
    I have an XR4 on the front of my Evil Following currently. I run it around 20 psi on 32 ID rims. I can feel the casing fold a little when cornering hard at high speeds but it stays on just fine. Planning on replacing it with a 29x2.4 SE4 in a few weeks time for race season

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    My front tire came off in techy root decents every time.

    I also felt the same fold/squish in bottoms of transitions.

    Is it the new SE4 that you are planning on caus I believe that Bontrager has changed the compound and made the tire 30-40grams lighter than the old SE4 in 650b.

  65. #65
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    Quote Originally Posted by Thorjensen View Post
    Nice to hear some hands on reviews on the new XR's. When I rode my 29er trail HT I had the XR4 /XR3 combo, but on rooty decents I managed to pull the front tire off the rim 2-3 times. I believe I was running 24ish up front and 28rear (215lbs).
    Heard and read about more users with same issue. Have you experienced that on the new ones?

    My eyes are set on the new SE4 2.4 650b. Running DHR2 front and rear in loomy/wet weather and DHR2/SS on dryer trails ATM - 27/30psi. But the sidewall near the sideknobs have lots of small cracks. Not from rock strikes but just look likes OLD rubber, therefor Bonty is back on my radar.
    My only issue w/ the XR4 Team Issue 29x2.4 is that it's undersized

    Otherwise it's a solid tyre. I've run it on point, in rocky terrain & it has performed well.

    In loose loam, it's been hit & miss... i.e. lugz aren't shaped for digging in :imo:

    I've run it out back once, on damp hardpack w/ a little mud thrown in. Grip was really good, if not a little too draggy.

    If it were 3-4mm wider it'd be my go to front tire.

    After several rides on rocky terrain, it looks like it'll hold up durability wise.

    NB, I run it tubed on a 25.5 ID rim @24psi... Rim is Stans No Tubes (rims came w/ bike & I prefer tubes, so I can easily change out tires).

    The casing is quite flexy & I can see how it might pop off a ghetto tubeless set up.

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  66. #66
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    Quote Originally Posted by Thorjensen View Post
    My front tire came off in techy root decents every time.

    I also felt the same fold/squish in bottoms of transitions.

    Is it the new SE4 that you are planning on caus I believe that Bontrager has changed the compound and made the tire 30-40grams lighter than the old SE4 in 650b.
    Yes, ordered from my LBS will be here in the end of February

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    The XR4 Team is a modern rounded profile design made for wide rims. For every 1mm you increase the rim width the tire width increases by 0.4mm. If you used the recommended 35mm inner width rim and 5-8 less psi the added volume would allow, you'd have your go to tire.

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    Quote Originally Posted by eb1888 View Post
    The XR4 Team is a modern rounded profile design made for wide rims. For every 1mm you increase the rim width the tire width increases by 0.4mm. If you used the recommended 35mm inner width rim and 5-8 less psi the added volume would allow, you'd have your go to tire.
    I think you should be a little more clear with your numbers- Tread width is marginally changed- only the casing width is changed, which has drawbacks of it's own.

    Based on both sets of wheels with XR4 on them I think a 29-20mm inner rims better for them. I'd like to see a picture on a wider rim.

    I have a 650B version on 29mm rims and the 29er on 30mm rims- tires has a very nice round profile. My guess is 35 is going to start squaring it off a little.
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    I have a XR1 2.2 Team on a 30 and it is excellent on decomposed granite in the desert and loose over hardpack up north in the US even down at pressures you can't use because of rim hits unless you finesse everything. For thicker loamy soil I'd try a 3 on a 35 and play with the pressure to increase the contact patch. The tire width on a wider rim is about the contact patch at lower pressure. And for my riding how the tire loses traction in curves or when doing a quick line change. Loamy terrain doesn't usually have the sharp rocks that chop up sidewalls.
    If you have different terrain you tune another way.
    Last edited by eb1888; 02-07-2017 at 10:04 AM.

  70. #70
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    Saw an article with Katy Winton, who's on the Trek Enduro Team. She was showing off her new Remedy & Slash, and was rocking some new Bonti Prototype Tires. Looks like Trek will be rolling out some new tires soon. I'm hoping for a wider SE5!
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    There will be a new SE5 and I believe it will come early 2018 (info from a Trek rider) 😉.
    I have no info on width.

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    Now that I'm exclusively on a AM HT, my XR4 will be fitted out back only - for general tail riding.

    It might get a look up front on race day.

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    Last edited by brankulo; 1 Week Ago at 07:15 PM.

  74. #74
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    Quote Originally Posted by targnik View Post
    Now that I'm exclusively on a AM HT, my XR4 will be fitted out back only - for general tail riding.

    It might get a look up front on race day.

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    How did it go on the rear? I yoinked my XR4's of my new bike to carry on running some other tires. Now looking at putting the XR4's on the rear for this coming summer

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