I race on the GP4000SII5000 tires and enjoy the performance to weight ratio of those tires. They hold really well in corners and then during club rides they are super fun to descend on and fare really well against flats when compared to the performance provided. When the race season ended this last season I slapped a pair of these 4 Season 28's on the bike and have really enjoyed them. They can handle gravel and sand, they are almost bomb proof riding on roads with highway bits and pieces of metal, and they can be run at lower pressures to make those long training days a bit easier on the body. Rockysemi-paved trails that will occasionally cut the sidewalls of my GP4000SII's are easily handled with these tires.
The one thing I do have to watch for, however, is the grip when descending. I've come loose in a couple of corners and drifted the back wheel at high speed riding them like the GP4000SII's, which is not the best feeling in the world. Totally my fault for pushing the tires beyond what they were designed to really handle, but I throw that out there as a word of caution to just take it a bit easier when on these tires and pointing the bike through some tight corners at high speed. There is necessarily a small drop off in handling when you are getting the durability built in to these wonderful, purpose built tires. I will definitely buy another pair when my current pair finally give up the ghost.
I put two new pairs of 28mm GP 4 Season tires on our bike's to stop the flats. My wife has ridden 2981 miles on her tires and she has had just one flat. It used to be you would average (on a NEW tire) about a flat for every 1000 miles you would ride (the flats would increase with the miles on the tire). My original GP4 rear tire lasted 4814 miles with 2 flats - one was a seam leak in the tube (that's not the tire's fault) and the other one was caused by a very tiny thorn which was losing about 15 lbs of air a day. I did get all the use I could out of that tire because you could see a few little places of the white cords under the tire's flat center tread before I changed it out.
I do not rotate my tires because years ago a racer told me if you blow out the front tire you are going to go down - if it is the rear tire you can still have control and ride 'er down to a stop so always put your best tire on the front axle. So I always move the used front tire to the rear wheel and put the new tire on the front. That original front tire that went to the rear position now has two tiny places in the worn flat center that are starting to show the white cord below. That tire is about due to be replaced so I will mount the front tire on the rear wheel and put a new tire on the front wheel.
The GP4 is a directional tire -- look for the rounded D's (with the cross hatches) on the outer edge of the tread butting up to the Vectran sidewall belts. The 14 short straight side of the cross hatched slanted D's should be facing toward the FRONT of the bicycle when the tire is correctly mounted.
That original tire that is now on the back has 8358 miles on it and it has had just those two flats I mentioned earlier. Today the front tire that will eventually go to the back has 3550 miles on it with no flats and the molded center line on that tire is still just visible. Most of our riding is on chip & seal, asphalt pavement but we also will get on chat, gravel and dirt lanes, too. I ride year round so I have ridden in the snow and ice down to 5 - 10 F. At those low temperatures about an hour or so is all I want. The GP 4 Season tires are superior in wet & the wetcold environments - just gear down and always keep a bike very vertical when it is very slick out.
After EACH ride we wipe the tires tread completely down with a cloth - this pulls all the junk out of the tread. You don't get very many sharp slivers that stick in the GP4 tread, unlike many other tires with softer compounds. I weigh about 190 lbs, my wife about 135. I believe this is the best pressure for ride, handling, wear & flat resistance on the 28MM tire. On both bicycles I pump the pressure up to 6 bars (87 lbs) in the rear tire and 5 lbs less in the front tire on both bikes. I loose 5 lbs of this pressure when I remove the air chuck from the tire stem. How much pressure does your chuck loose when you remove it? Have you ever checked that? So I am running 82 psi in the rear & 77 psi in the front tire. I could & should probably run a LITTLE less pressure in my wife's tires since she is 45 lbs lighter but I just haven't done the math yet. You know - you will get a better ride but with more rolling resistance. Just like life is, it has been said you have to give up something to get something Well isn't that the truth!!!
We have ridden about every ride here in the KC Mo area with the KC Bicycle Club. Rides that were all in the city, uptown downtown with glass, grates, railroad tracks, sand & everything else those city streets have for us. And the club rides out in all the surrounding countryside with gravel, thorns, cow piles, sand & chasing dogs - you know, those rural areas. This tire just simply takes everything on while you
I've yet to get a failure with this tire and I am on my second set. I change my tires roughly every 3,200 miles to be safe but could get substantially more had I wanted to. The 4000s kept getting sidewall failures so I gave up on them. The 4-Season is much more durable and gives an equivalent ride to the 4000s. I was told if durability is your main priority then go with the Gator Skins but if you want solid tires that delivers performance then the 4-Season is the best option. For added protection, I also suggest adding Stans sealant to your tubes and make sure they have removable cores. Careful not to remove the valve cores when taking off the pump nozzle like I did and got 2 ounces of sealant in my face. (Pumps with pressure release buttons will avoid this. )No flats since doing this in over a year and I now ride with peace of mind.
There are likely slightly faster tires and perhaps tires for commuters that get more mileage.
As a serious recreational rider I want a tire that has a great ride feel, excellent puncture resistance and gets good mileage. In summary, this is that tire! The Vectran actually works to eliminate glass punctures, especially if you check your tires after rides and remove any large pieces embedded in the surface.
A major factor to me is ride feel which is great.
These tires are on all three bikes I ride routinely - my daily bike, my rain bike and my fast bike.
This tire is excellent for winter training and dodgy roads especially for those training rides in the dark when you don't know what you might run over. It's no racing tire, but it's not sluggish, either. Excellent flat resistance. And it comes in a variety of sizes.
I love my GP 4000 Sii tires and have been using them for several years. I got these 4-Season ones for my fall thru spring riding, as that seems to be their intended use. I also went up to 28s for these and although they don't measure much more than my 25s when installed, I have run them with slightly lower pressures and the ride has felt very nice. While these are supposed to be tougher, I have to say that I've never had a puncture on any of my Grand Prix tires. I have however damaged them right down to the breaker before and I'm hoping this winter compound will be just a little more robust. After the snow has stopped and the PA roads have been cleaned up, I will switch back to the 4000 Sii. But for those days where I can get away from the indoor trainer during the off-season, these seem to be great choice of tire. The ride is very nice and the grip is excellent.
What can I say... these are good tires. Most of my friends use Conti's and swear by them. For me this is only second time I purchased these and I don't think I will again. I live and ride in and around NYC and within 2 weeks of popping these on I had a flat. Ok so everyone gets flats. True. However.... I have used Schwalbe's for most of my riding life (past 4 yrs or so) and I can tell you ... I RARELY, if ever, get flats. In fact I can't even remember the last one. I've ridden over 3000 miles this summer without even a whisper of a leak. The only reason I purchased the Conti was because I was about to ride my 4th or maybe 5th Century and noticed my tire had some cuts. So I thought better safe than sorry. Anyway....I've been riding Durano tires for the past 2 years with thousands of miles on them. The rolling resistance is very good, though maybe not quite as good as the Conti's but very close. So Conti users .. more power to you... I'll stick with my Schwalbe's anytime.
As a 71 year old retiree I have the privilege of riding a titanium Habanero crosstour bike with disk brakes for 150 to 250 miles each week. Plus the Continental tired Habanero takes me on 2 or 3 tours of 300 to 400 miles each summer. I pack light (- 40 lbs) and the 4 Season 28 mm tires carry that total 225 lbs over country roads and hard packed gravel with ease. I buy a new set for the summer tours then ride them out in the wet falls and winters of the Willamette Valley. They flat seldom. Unavoidable road debris cuts the tread but the tough core protects the tube. The slight increase in tire weight provides a security tread for all conditions increasing my confidence in cornering at high speeds. Yes, 71 year olds can attain high speeds and corner without causing heart attacks or strokes. I trust this tire more than any (and I have bought and replaced many tires). I could but wont' name a few duds that cost about the same.
I really enjoy riding on Continental tires. Typically in nice conditions I'll be on Conti GP4000IIs tires but, when I know conditions will be poor and the road may not be very nice, I like to slip on these Conti GP4-Seasons.
I've used these tires for when I'm going to do a long ride in the rain or when I'm going to be going over more difficult roads. I feel quite confident taking these tires through a slightly rough gravel trail section without having to worry about a puncture.
I also used these for a criterium which took place in the rain. A few guys fell in a set of technical corners but I was able to get through with confidence with these tires.
All in all, I would recommend having a set of these 4-seasons on hand in case you are going to be riding in off weather. Or if you expect to be riding on mixed roads, they are quite robust in terms of puncture resistance.
I've been riding the 28mm version of these tires in the beating down rain, crud, gravel, branches, rocks and muck on the side of the road in Pacific NW springtime. No flats, traction is very reassuring and the tires feel great. I ride them at low pressures (65-70 PSI) on wide-ish rims. Did I mention the ride feel is great? Comfortable, not harsh. I've ridden other 28mm tires at the same pressure and those others are not as comfortable. Can't speak to long-term durability but so far they are holding up great with a few hundred miles on them.
Note these are muck and grunge training or commuting tires, not racing tires. That's what I rated them as. If you want lightweight racing tires with low rolling resistance, these ain't those. But as winterspring training tires, these are the best tires I've run in years. Very satisfied.
I picked up a pair of these while on sale at a great price. I use them for general road riding/training and for a few gravel-grinder organized rides (Hell of Hunterdon, Fool's Classic). After using several brands/models of tires, these have held up the best for the gravel roads. MUCH better than GatorSkins which I have had terrible luck with tearing the sidewalls on several. This is a much better tire IMO and a better price. Supple enough to use as a daily road tire as well.
I'm 140lb and the 25mm work well for me - I don't like the ride/feel of wider tires. Zero punctures, flats, or tears after many miles of rough gravel.
I have used these and gatorskins on my road and commuting bikes. These don't seem to have the same ride quality or puncture resistance of a gatorskin. In only 300 miles on these I had 3 flats and finally a catastrophic sidewall rip on the same roads I routinely ride with my gators. I wanted to try something new and got these. lesson learned. back to gators.
Have always had good luck with Continental tires, and I especially like the GP 4-Seasons for my winter bike due to its nice ride quality, excellent grip on wet pavement, and decent flat resistance. The tread compound does seem fairly soft, which is undoubtedly why they grip so well, so they may not last as long as tires with a harder compound - but for me that's a worthwhile trade-off. I'm happy to get 1,500 - 2,000 miles on a set of tires and the GP 4-Seasons will do that easily.
Only had a few dry rides on these, but road use is great and smooth. Needed replacements for the stock tires on my 10 year old used bike purchase. Easy to mount using a couple tire levers (not my first rodeo however). Bought for the extra protection after getting almost a flat per ride on my other bike.
Been using these tires for Winter riding and have had only good experience. Up in the Northwest changing a tire on a wet ride is no fun. These tires have great protection from flats and still roll and handle well. I just need a bike that can handle wider tires to add more comfort and safety.