goodyear newton tires cover
Review

Goodyear Newton Tires

Photos Deniz Merdano
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Goodyear is an American tire company that was founded in 1898, and started out making bicycle tires. I'm not sure when they got out of bicycle tires, but they restarted making bicycle tires again in 2018. I hadn't seen or heard much about Goodyear's tires until I was asked to review them recently. I'm always keen to try something different, so I jumped at the opportunity.

cayon sender goodyear newton tires

The test bike for the Newton MTF and MTR Downhill Casing Tires.

There is a Newton MTF for the front tire, and the Newton MTR for the rear, both tires offered in three different casings: Trail, Enduro and Downhill. The MTF comes in 2.5" width only, whereas the MTR comes in 2.4" and 2.6". Both are available in either 27.5" or 29" wheel size. The Enduro and Downhill versions of the Goodyear Newton come in the stickier Grip3S compound and cost 120 CAD (80 USD), whereas the lighter Trail casing comes in the firmer Trail2 compound and costs 110 CAD (70 USD) each.

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The Goodyear Newton MTF tire in the Downhill Casing.

Downhill Casing Tires

The first set of Newtons I tried were the downhill casing version on my DH bike. Before mounting them up I tossed them on the scales:

MTF Downhill 29x2.5: 1,410 grams claimed (1,416 grams measured)

MTR Downhill 29x2.4: 1,260 grams claimed (1,342 grams measured)

Getting the Newton tires onto my We Are One Union rims was easy. Inflating the MTF was easy too, however the MTR took a couple goes with my Flash Charger pump. Both seated at about 35 psi. The MTF was as straight as an arrow, but unfortunately the MTR was bent out of the package with a large wobble, even with both beads well seated on a straight rim.

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The MTF tread has a relatively dense and low height center knob, with more sparsely spaced side knobs.

Goodyear claims the MTF uses a front-specific triple density 40/42/60a compound. I measured an average 50 Shore A on the center knobs and side knobs. The pin style durometer readings can be misleading with multi-compound layered rubber as it's measuring the deflection of the pin into the rubber with a fixed spring rate, so I can't evaluate if the rubber is firmer than advertised, or if there is a relatively thin layer of softer compound over the 60a base compound. That said these tires do feel noticeably firmer than a Maxxis MaxxGrip in the hand and on the trail. For comparison, an unridden MaxxGrip tire measured around 42 Shore A using the same gauge.

Goodyear claims the MTR uses a rear-specific triple density 40/50/60a compound. I measured an average of 56 Shore A on the center knobs and 50 Shore A on the side knobs.

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Goodyear claims the MTR uses a rear-specific triple density 40/50/60a compound. I measured an average of 56 Shore A on the center knobs and 50 Shore A on the side knobs.

I inflated the tires to 23 psi front and 27 psi rear, and hit the Whistler Bike Park. It was dry, the trails were running fast and firm, with loose holes in the berms. The downhill casings feel stiffer than a Maxxis DH casing, but maybe not as stiff as a Schwalbe. Within a few corners I noticed the side knobs on the front MTF tire were not giving me the bite I'm used to. The front end would easily wash up the berms, finding the holes, and hooking up better in the looser conditions. I think the relatively sparse spacing of the side knobs means there isn't much side knob bite with the MTF. The MTF does have a larger volume, so I tried varying the tire pressure, and the lean angle of the bike, but never got to a point of feeling confident in the MTF side knob.

While I struggled on the side knobs of the MTF, the one quality I really liked about it is how stable the tire is under heavy braking, particularly in drier and firmer conditions. This is likely due to the relatively low knob height, and firmer foundational compound in the knob minimized knob squirm. In greasy sections however, the firmer rubber compound of the MTF became evident, again providing less traction than I get with softer tires.

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The tread of the Goodyear Newton MTR.

The 2.4" wide Newtown MTR generally fared better than the MTF. I found the MTR rolled fast and has decent support from the side knobs. The transition over to the side knob was progressive, so I felt comfy forcing the back end to break loose to rotate the bike. I generally run firmer rubber in the rear tire so the MTR felt less nervous to me in wet and greasy conditions than the MTF. I found the MTR to be a good all round rear tire. The tire casing proved durable with no flats or issues during the test period.

goodyear newton tires Deniz Merdano Tim Coleman

I got in some big slabby moves with the Goodyear MTR.

Enduro Casing Tires

Next up I tried the Enduro casing tires on my Norco Range.

MTF Enduro 29x2.5: 1,280 grams claimed (1,386 grams measured)

MTR Enduro 29x2.4: 1,130 grams claimed (1,246 grams measured)

The MTR took two attempts with my booster pump to inflate, and seated at 35 psi again. This time the MTR was nice and straight. The MTF however just wouldn't inflate. Maybe the beads on this tire were a touch looser. Another wrap of rim tape would probably have fixed this, but I was running short on time before the photo shoot with Deniz so tossed on a Maxxis tire (which inflated first go on the same rim).

goodyear newton tires Deniz Merdano Tim Coleman

The Enduro Casing MTR on my trail bike. The MTR proved to be a good all rounder on the back wheel.

Goodyear claims the Enduro casing tires use the same compounds as those on the downhill casing tires. According to my durometer the Enduro MTF and MTR both measured a bit firmer than the DH casing tires with an average of 55 Shore A all over.

The Enduro Casing MTR rode similarly to the Downhill Casing variant, proving to be a good all-round rear tire. It provides a nice balance of rolling resistance and braking traction. The side knobs felt progressive at the traction limit, which meant I felt comfy sliding the back end through corners when needed.

Casing-wise, the Enduro feels a little stiffer, again more like a Schwalbe than a Maxxis. The Enduro casing rear tire went through a ton of abuse on my bike, and had no flats or issues during the review period.

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The MTR Enduro Casing after a few weeks of work on the back of my Norco Range.

Trail Casing Tires

MTF Trail 29x2.5: 1,130 claimed (1,147 grams measured)

MTR Trail 29x2.4: 1,020 claimed (1,063 grams measured)

Both The MTF and MTR Trail Casing tire compounds measured in at an average of 64 Shore A using my durometer.

goodyear newton tires Deniz Merdano Tim Coleman

Through dry and abusive conditions the Enduro Casing MTR had no issues.

While the Goodyear tires come in at lower prices than some other premier tires, I found them lacking due to inconsistent quality, inflation difficulties, disappointing side knobs on the MTF, and firmer rubber compounds. While I liked the braking stability of the MTF, I struggled to find confidence in the side knobs. I liked the MTR more, and thought it made a good all round rear tire for summer use. Both the downhill and enduro casings proved to be tough and reliable with no flats on either bike. For me the MTF is a hard pass. The MTR is a decent rear tire, but I'm not sure it's worth the marginal savings over other top end mountain bike tires. I feel a bit disappointed that I can't recommend these because I'd love to have another good tire manufacturer in the market. I hope Goodyear can make some improvements to their tires and their quality control to become a strong player in the future.

Goodyear Mountain bike Tires

Timmigrant
Tim Coleman

Age: 41

Height: 183 cm / 6'

Weight: 87 kg / 192 lbs

Ape Index: 1.055 / +10 cm

Inseam: 81 cm / 32"

Preferred Riding: Gravity Mountain Bike

Bar Width: 800 mm

Preferred Reach: 500 - 520 mm (but this is stack and head angle dependent)

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Comments

Timer
+17 SolidAxle Merwinn shenzhe Andy Eunson Tremeer023 Mammal Bryce Borlick ohio Tjaard Breeuwer dhr999 bishopsmike Suns_PSD Beau Miller Nologo Rightdudehere DancingWithMyself Hardlylikely

Keep in mind that these are not designed or made by or for the Goodyear tire company. Goodyear is just lending their name to products from a company called "Rubber Kinetics".

https://www.rubbernews.com/article/20180410/NEWS/180419995/licensee-rolls-out-goodyear-brand-premium-bicycle-tire-range

Reply

bishopsmike
+8 Andrew Major Cru_Jones Andy Eunson Bryce Borlick NewGuy Suns_PSD Landonarkens DancingWithMyself

So fairly heavy, fairly pricey, performance that ranges from quite bad to meh, some seating issues, a wobble out of the box, and heavy wear after a few weeks?

Reply

T-mack
0

Correct.

Reply

andy-eunson
+1 NewGuy

Might be the reason we see so few Goodyear tires in the shops. Or trail.

Reply

BryceB
+1 Andy Eunson

And why they’re sold at walmart

Reply

Timmigrant
+3 Mammal Andrew Major bishopsmike

Harsh summary, but yes. And to be fair on the heavy wear front, every rear tire shows heavy wear on my bikes after a few weeks of use.

Reply

xy9ine
+4 SolidAxle Bryce Borlick cheapondirt Tim Coleman

surprising aesthetic similarity of the mtf to the michelin wild enduro (even down to the ribbing on the side lugs). the michelins appear to be a bit taller / burlier though; which (evidently) is necessary when you're going with that sparce of spacing. 

nice thorough review, tim.

Reply

ohio
+4 Tim Coleman bishopsmike Suns_PSD momjijimike

Solid piece. Always so helpful to get honest and specific reviews here, thanks.

Reply

Suns_PSD
0

Thank you for the straightforward review.

Reply

Jotegir
0

I wonder what the point of this tire is? I can't imagine any seasoned rider is going to give these guys a whirl for 120 canadian when that's within striking distance of whatever that riders preferred tires are among established premium options from maxxis, schwable, continental, etc. 

I think my cutoff point for "try a new tire" is 100 bucks. I was pleasantly surprised trying the Vittoria options at the retail of 99. I'd be willing to give those delium tires a whirl when I run low on other stuff at their price. But at 120 bucks, I'm reaching for the extra 20 in my wallet and getting what I know I'm going to be happy with. 

It sounds like they ride really similar to the cheap, wire bead magic Mary which is actually a great tire in the loose and dusty interior, for about half the price. So what's the deal, Goodyear?

Reply

bishopsmike
0

I was happy to grab a pair of Bontrager SE5's for $39 at my LBS. Reviews are pretty good (if not perfect), and at $39 for a top of the line 29x2.5 enduro tire, it definitely fit in my "try a new tire" budget.

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