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Michelin PR4's not really impressing

Discussion in 'R1200RS Tyres/Tires' started by Peter Burridge, Sep 12, 2016.

  1. Peter Burridge

    Peter Burridge Well-Known Member Contributor

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    To begin with I was impressed with my PR4s in terms of grip wet and dry (a bit subjective as I don't ride to grip limits) and general feel over longitudinal undulations.

    Now with 5k miles on them the front is nearly shot, the rear less so and the cupping, particularly on the front is quite noticeable.

    Basically they are getting a bit ropey and they don't feel as stable as they did.

    I see Dunlop Roadsmart 3's getting good reviews.

    Peter
     
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  2. Hedgehog

    Hedgehog Active Member

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    1. Did they come fitted to the bike? I've found that the fitted tyres shouldn't be compared with ones you buy afterwards...how true this is is debatable but there's a lot of evidence from riders to support it. I've had 10 new bikes & all have gone through original tyres faster than I'd have expected.
    2. I have had uneven wear on front PR4s & have been told that it's one reason why they still sell PR3s...but my K had 10,000 miles on the front & I had no real issues with it in terms of grip or handling (5000 off a rear).
    Got Metzler's on my new RS and I got only 2500 miles off the sportecs on the K & 3500 off the roadtecs on the F800s. I'm hoping for 3000 off these till I change to PRs for the bad weather.
     
    Last edited: Sep 12, 2016
  3. Peter Burridge

    Peter Burridge Well-Known Member Contributor

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    I've heard this debate many times. I don't think mine are any different to off the shelf PR4's. The theory that a tyre manufacturer will make a different compound or structure tyre as an OEM fitment forgets that producing different tyres costs money and I don't run with it myself. 46 years of running bikes new and old and I've seen no evidence despite all the supposed internet theories :)
     
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  4. Andy Griffiths

    Andy Griffiths Well-Known Member

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    Peter, I am very pleased with the Z8 despite 'wanting' Michelins when I ordered the bike. I've decided that I was being a right Diva and told myself off not to be so fussy in future. So a big vote for the Metzelers from me.
    5000 miles on my originals and rear slightly squared off but no detrimental change in handling. We all love new tyres but I reckon these will do 6500-7000.
     
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  5. Dave

    Dave Well-Known Member

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    I've got 7000 on my PR4's and expect 10-12000 before changing the pair if my use on PR/2/and 3 used on other R1200's is the same.
    All were changed over 10000 miles, usually before hitting the wear limit and am happy with tyre performance but could not tell the difference on each update except the mileage has got nearer to 12k so better wear on replacements.
    Didn't this get covered before about new tyres and the issue was heat cycles being better on a new bike as most owners do the running in, probably short journeys, lower speeds but new replacements get the "take care for 100 miles" advice and then get used.
     
  6. Peter Burridge

    Peter Burridge Well-Known Member Contributor

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    I almost never do a short journey on my bike. By short I mean less than 40 miles.
     
  7. steviegasgas

    steviegasgas Member

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    I found the PR3s and PR4s were terribly vague at the last half of there life, tracked lines on the road, followed tram lines and at speed tended to shimmy. They were safe though in my experience but just completely different to the start of ownership with them. I Now have the Metzeler Z8s, seem very good at speed and in the wet they are just as confidence inspiring.
     
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  8. lars Ormvold

    lars Ormvold Active Member

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    Used up a Z8 after 5.000km on the rear . . . Last set was PR4 GT which lasted 11.500km (front and rear). Needless to say, it is now a new set of PR4 GT's on my bike.
     
  9. Hedgehog

    Hedgehog Active Member

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    It's obviously not all about longevity... the Z8 is, IMO, a better tyre in the dry than the PR4 & if I mostly did dry miles (& not a lot of them) then I might consider it, but the competition in this area is hotly contended. Out on the edge of the tyre the PR4 feels squidgy & edges towards the outside of bends a bit too much for me where the Z8 is like it's on rails.
    But I live in the UK & the PR4 is not bad in the dry but I find it exceptional in the wet & slimey conditions of our winter... & the tyre wear is better (in my experience, of course).
    ... & I've not tried the GT yet as it was "not recommended" for the K13.
     
  10. Richard230

    Richard230 Well-Known Member Contributor

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    My original Z8 tires now have 7,000 miles on them. The front looks to be good for another 1 or 2 thousand miles and the rear might get to 10K. I had a set of PR2 tires on my 2007 R12R and they were shot after only 3,500 miles, the last one thousand miles was while carrying luggage and riding at 80 mph during 100 degree F temperatures. So I guess they didn't like heat. (I had the tires pumped up to 36/42 psi at the time.)
     
  11. Beckers

    Beckers New Member

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    I ran pr4's on several bikes. Zzr14, Duke Multistrada among others. Really loved them to begin with but noticed recently that they weren't lasting as well as they used to. Rears used to do over 6k but were now struggling to do much more than 5k. (Fairly er, progressive road riding). I think Michelin tweaked the compound somewhere along the development cycle to keep up with the competition but this affected the wear rate.

    I swapped to Roadsmart 3's on the Multistrada before I changed it and was really impressed. Much sportier ride as in turn in was quicker and they made the bike feel more fun. Seemed to be wearing well too. Can't wait to try a set on the RS but haven't worn out the oems yet.
     
  12. Rocky R

    Rocky R Active Member

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    Z8s for me. Too much syping on the PR4s.
     
  13. Leon.P.

    Leon.P. Well-Known Member

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    I wanted Michelins but the bike came with Metzelers . I am very happy with the Z8.On our rough roads I will get 12000 kms on the rear and about 15000 kms on the front. I might replace the rear with the new Z1. I wonder which ones are dearer. Z8/Z1 or the PR4 ?:)
     
  14. Peter Burridge

    Peter Burridge Well-Known Member Contributor

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    You know, the PR series of tyres have always been renowned for their wet grip. I think that Michelin have simply gone too far with the 4. Soft compound rubber and a large number of stipes = a tyre that isn't as robust as it perhaps should be. A bit like using a racing wet in the dry although that's an exaggeration of course.

    If you ride a lot in the rain and push hard in the rain then it's probably the tyre to have and accept it's degradation. I enjoy pushing hard in the dry and I ease back in the wet.

    A lesson learnt. I'm thinking of trying the Dunlop RoadSmart 3's, partly to be different and partly because a good and very fast friend swears by them.

    Peter
     
  15. andrew savage

    andrew savage New Member

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    Just ordered my new RS, which I believe has Metzler z8 as oem tyre. this is the same as my F800Gt which i am trading in. Great tyres. However when they wear out I will be replacing with Continental Road Attack Evo 2. These are great tyres (sport touring) with deeper tread for longevity.
    I use them on my 899 Panigale & they are excellent. Have used them on previous bikes, really impressed. A big added benefit, is that they are the only tyre that comes pre scrubbed in, so you can ride like you want to from the off (no I am not a continental employee lol)
     
  16. Grumpy Goat

    Grumpy Goat Well-Known Member Contributor

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    I will preface myy response to this thread by saying that (a) we all have different riding abilities, real or imagined, regardless of how long we have been riding, and (b) we all use our bikes differently with regard to riding style, usage etc.

    Before I had my accident which put my bike out of commission at about 12,300 miles on the dial, I had put just over 10,000 miles on the original rear tire and about 11,000 miles on the original front tire. The rear tire had chicken strips no wider than 10 mm so I did not just ride this bike upright. The chicken strips on the front were less discernible but I suspect they were just under 10 mm.

    I changed the rear tire before my 4000+ mile "big trip" in July because, well it had 10,000 miles on it and was about 1 mm above the wer bars at centre. At that time the tire felt perfect in the dry and if I were not going on the trip I would have waited maybe another 1000 miles or so. The light rain that I rode it in up to that time did not pose any problems and the performance was solid - bike was on rails and I was happy with them. I still have that tire in my garage in case I decide to go back and get that last 1000 miles out of it. :)

    Of course by the time I rode the excellent Blue Ridge Parkway in North Carolina, the new(er) rear PR4GT had over 2000 miles on it (mostly highway) and the front PR4 had only about 600 miles at the start of that bit of road. Performance was excellent in both dry and heavy rain that I experienced at elevations up to just shy of 5000 ft. The bike's / tire's performance was not a concern at any point and, to me, that is the best testament to a tire's perfomance.

    I changed the front tire 1/2 way through the trip, at the BMW Rally as a matter of fact, because it was down to about 1 mm over the wear bars at centre and I had the Tail of the Dragon in my future and had no idea of how much rain I'd get while doing this challenging road. The tire also performed perfectly up to the time of change and that included back to back 500 mile days getting to the Rally. Yes, the front tire exhibited some "cupping", i.e. all the tread blocks were not in an even plane but had some slightly raised edges. This showed up around 6000 miles after my first tour with this bike in April this year, where I covered 1500 miles in 4 days most of which were on freeway at cruising speeds around 75 - 80 mph. Road surfaces were quite abrading at times.

    Point is, despite this cupping, I could tell no difference in performance. The tire continued to grip perfectly for me in both wet or dry, and the bike continued to ride through the curves as if on rails. The tire was not squared off after the April ride either, as opposed to the rears which were visibly squared off (but which subsequently got rounded off over time, after some initial squidginess while cornering).

    So, what can I conclude from this? The PR4s are an excellent tire for me and my usage. I suspect have not come close to the limits as it never slipped / slid on me at all, and both front and rears had excellent mileage no matter what the riding mission for which this bike was designed. I thought about changing to the Metzeler Roadtec 01 as it seems that it would be a good fit for me, but too many accounts of road noise turned me off when it came to making the decision. The PR4s were never noisy no matter the age and the road surface, but I will allow that I do use ear-plugs.

    Maybe there are "better" tires out there but I see no need to fix something that ain't broke.

    Sorry for the long post but I find that, like an oil thread, these tire threads pop up from time to time but there is no objective answer for which is "better", and cetainly not which is "best". (Peter - I know you were not alluding to that in your initial post; just stating your experience with the PR4s).

    My 2 cents ... :)
     
  17. Dave

    Dave Well-Known Member

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    Had a check on Michelin homepage and these are the correct tyres (non GT I think) but they did specify GT for the heavier R1200RT. I know we have smaller cases and top box, lighter bikes etc but I see many references to "getting the GT tyres" but aren't they heavier construction.
    Is there a different USA tyre recommendation or is there another reason for getting GT's?
    Are they heavier sidewalls, more internal ribbing or different rubber compounds, can't find much more information to see why I would fit them.
    From their webpage search at
    http://www.michelin.co.uk/GB/en/homepage.html

    About your original tyre size
    Front 120/70 ZR 17 M/C (58W) F TL2.5 BAR
    Rear 180/55 ZR 17 M/C (73W) R TL2.9 BAR
    BMW R 1200 RS 2016Front 120/70 ZR 17 M/C (58W) F TL - Rear 180/55 ZR 17 M/C (73W) R TL
    MICHELIN
    PILOT ROAD 4
    Roadster, Scooter, Sport, Sports Tourer, Trail
    Outstanding on wet roads, especially when braking, MICHELIN Pilot Road 4 tyres are versatile and long-lasting.

    BMW R 1200 RT 2016Front 120/70 ZR 17 M/C (58W) F TL - Rear 180/55 ZR 17 M/C (73W) R TL
    Outstanding on wet roads, especially when braking, MICHELIN Pilot Road 4 GT tyres provide optimal stability for Grand Tourer bikes.
     
    Last edited: Sep 13, 2016
  18. Jim Evans

    Jim Evans Well-Known Member

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    Just got back from a weekend ride. I thought my Z8's were feeling a bit heavy and checked the rear in the morning. Everything looked good. 700 km later and the belts are showing at one spot on the rear although the tread isn't down to any of the wear bars. Exactly 10000 km. The problem is I have to ride it 300 km to get a new one fitted. What do you think?
     
  19. Hedgehog

    Hedgehog Active Member

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    I ordered GT's for the K13 but was strongly advised against them because of the power & top speed of the K... with the RS being not so far dissimilar in most ways from the RT I'd suspect it's not so much of an issue.
     
  20. Grumpy Goat

    Grumpy Goat Well-Known Member Contributor

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    Dave - Check out this reasoning in this other thread. To my butt there was little difference in the feel between PR4 and PR4GT all things / settings being the same.
     

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