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Tire Otter: New 26″ rubber, XC treads and DH race compounds

There was a new tire for every bike somewhere at Laguna Seca

Tires aren’t as flashy as new sunglasses, anodized hubs or fancy custom bikes. But, as the only thing connecting you to the ground, they’re obviously a hugely important part of mountain biking and an easy way to upgrade your trail experience.

New treads at Sea Otter 2023 ranged from very fast XC tires to meaty race-specific downhill tires and pretty much anything for any conditions between those extremes. If you’re looking to freshen up your bike, there’s likely something below for you.

Maxxis MaxxSpeed

Maxxis had its full line of new MaxxSpeed tires in the booth, including the new mud-specific Severe.


Pirelli is stepping up its race program to support its expanded line of race-specific tires, XC and DH. The new Race line of Scorpion tires (yes, they’re all called Scorpion) uses a dual compound rubber for more traction.


Continental released a major overhaul of its tires last year at Sea Otter. This year, they released a 26″ version of the Kryptotal for the new crop of more capable youth bikes. Or to refresh your retro ride, like this Fat City Cycles.


Goodyear is one of just a few brands with its own factory to make its own tires (and tires for other brands). It’s newer to mountain biking but had a full line of tires, from XC to the more gravity-focused Newton (front and rear) treads. We’re in the midst of testing the latter, so stay tuned.


Kenda had a new fast tire, the Rush, showing at Sea Otter.

Sea Otter 2023:

Canadian manufacturing and Swedish speed
Gas Gas shows off (most of) a new eMTB race prototype
Sea Otter Pt.2: Fast bikes and an athletic take on the Canadian Tuxedo
Five new drivetrains from Sea Otter 2023
Sea Otter Pt. 3: Classic bikes and custom builds
Sea Otter 2023: Road and gravel tech from Laguna Seca