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PR4 v Metzeler

Discussion in 'R1200RS Tyres/Tires' started by GordonH, Apr 20, 2017.

  1. GordonH

    GordonH Well-Known Member

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    GG - opportunity missed, courtesy bike back at the dealers, mine back at home.
     
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  2. Grumpy Goat

    Grumpy Goat Well-Known Member Contributor

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    Ahhh darn. :) Thanks anyway.
     
  3. boxter

    boxter Active Member

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    I have had the chance to do long runs with road pilot 4 tyres on my first rs and Z8's on my new one.

    I found the road pilot 4's as on previous bikes, performed good in the wet and dry.

    The Z8's frightened me many times, in the dry they react wierd on white lines and tarmac seams, also a sliding effect on the rear at times.

    But in the wet they get very scary, painted white lines have no adhesive qualities and have caused the front and rear to break away, which is unnerving, same with bituminous liquid sealed joints.

    Can't wait to wear them out so I can go to RP4's again.

    Ged
     
  4. Duckbubbles

    Duckbubbles Active Member

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    Exactly- Both on the original Z8's and later 01's. Especially on tar snakes whether dry and especially damp/wet. That is something I don't notice with the PR4's. Both sets of Metzeler's felt good initially but after a couple thousand miles I didn't like the feel of the front. Giving up on grip and following with gusto any irregularity in the pavement. I feel that the Metzeler rears had slightly better grip than the PR4 so maybe an ideal combination would be a PR4 front and Metzeler 01 rear except I don't like to mix brands.

    Frank
     
  5. Richard230

    Richard230 Well-Known Member Contributor

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    I didn't notice any of those problems with my Z8 tires. I thought they were great the entire time I used them for 8.5K miles on the front and 10K miles on the rear. No slides, no cupping and very even wear. I would have no problem installing another set, but right now I am using Bridgestone BT-23 tires, which seem to be fine, but I don't think they will last nearly as long as the Z8's. When these wear out I plan to try the RS3 tires. Personally, I don't care for all of the cut tread on the PR4's, especially as (living in California) I rarely ride on wet streets. I have a friend that is using them on his 2007 R1200RT and he doesn't care for them either. He says they make the bike feel too "squishy".
     
  6. boxter

    boxter Active Member

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    How does your friend define ' squishy' .

    The pr4's have been a problem for those in the hot climate like Spain and Italy, the compound tends to overheat and goes too soft but for the UK's weather they are spot on, and perform excellent in rain.

    Ged
     
  7. daesimps

    daesimps Member

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    I'm glad it's not just me. I've used PRs since the PR2 and love them. When I test rode the RS, in the wet, I did have a bit of a strange feeling from the back end on a corner. It was on Z8s

    I picked my RS up a week later and wasn't overly happy that I got Z8s on it. Since picking it up I've had a few similar moments in both wet and dry. These tyres are nowhere near as good as the PR4s in the wet, and they love to tram line over the slightest imperfection or tar snake. They really don't inspire confidence. After only 2.5k they also seem a lot more squared off than any other tyre I've had.

    To make matters worse, my wife got her RS a couple of weeks ago and it came with PR4s.

    They're not bad enough to get rid of before they're worn, but I can't wait until they need replacing. I'm planning on doing it just before I leave for Spain at the end of August.
     
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  8. Richard230

    Richard230 Well-Known Member Contributor

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    I didn't ask for a clarification. But my guess is that he must feel that the steering of his RT is not as firm or as accurate feeling as his previous Metzelers.
     
  9. boxter

    boxter Active Member

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    As yourself I came in to Michelin on the PR2, found it to be excellent on mileage but wanting a little in the wet.
    I then moved on to the pr3, these were brilliant both in dry and wet but reduced mileage on the 3 was disappointing and mich were very quick to see the issue and brought the PR4 out quick and they cracked it, tyre that's works great wet and dry and still does high mileage, as I mentioned, perfect for not so hot countries but tends to overheat in hot climates, best to go for harder compound there.

    Ged
     
  10. Grumpy Goat

    Grumpy Goat Well-Known Member Contributor

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    Eh?! I live in the summer hell called Houston where the temperature is in the 90s for 4 months of the year at least, and often creeps towards 100 deg.F. Works just fine and does not overheat. Last summer it did perfectly during my 500 mile days doing average of 75 mph at 90 - 95 deg.F air temperature - road surface was likely higher.

    Judging by the aggregate feedback here on this forum, the Z8 is not the Metzeler to get. The Roadtec 01s seem to be the significantly better tire.
     
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  11. daesimps

    daesimps Member

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    I did 1500 miles in two weeks around Europe on an RT in temperatures of over 35 degrees, up to 39 on some days. I had no issues with the PR4s that where fitted to it.

    In the group, all on PR4s, were a Street Triple, VFR1200, CBR600 and a Speed Triple. None of us had issues.

    Roads included German Autobahn to Swiss Alps and everything in between.

    I've also done, again with the above bikes, an annual trip to Spain for the last few years with temps of around 30 degrees. Again, no issues.

    I'm not saying there isn't an issue, just that if there is then I'm not sure it's one I'll ever encounter.
     
  12. Jeroen1969

    Jeroen1969 Well-Known Member

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    OKay, my two cents:
    I have Dunlop Road Smart III tires on my R1200RS (2015) and R1200RT (2010). My tire experience includes: Michelin PR2, PR3 and PR4. I got my R1200RT fitted with BT023 tires. The worst tire I ever had. Practically no grip in the wet (I live in the Netherlands where, between september and may, it rains every other day). I was pretty pleased with the PR4, untill they had accumulated around 10.000 miles. I did 13.000 miles with the PR2 and PR3. Broke my back last year at 4 spots, after revalidation, I was allowed to pick up motorcycling again, but preferably, with a lighter bike. So I took the R1200ST of the wife out for quite a lot. That bike is fitted with PR4 tires. All tires are set to pressures of 2.5 up front and 2.8 at the rear. After a few months, I got strong enough to take the RT out of the garage. Man, what a monster to move if one is used to the light weight of the ST (225 kg). Putting it back in the garage actually hurt. So I put it on sale. Thank God, both a Dutch Motorcycle forum member as well as my wife, ordered me to remove my bike from sale. The Motorcycle forum guy advised me to fit the RT with Dunlop Roadsmart 3 tires. I did just do that and my RT transformed into a light footed, easier to handle motorcycle. Meanwhile, the wife was a bit fed up with her bike being constantly gone. And I had been in love with the RS ever since the first video footage appeared on the WWW. To celebrate live and getting my Medical Certificate back, I rented a R1200RS for a weekend, that was fitted with Metzeler Z8. This was to confirm my affection for that bike was not only based an assumptions about how this bike would be, but more based on real experience. I picked the RS up on Saturday the 30th of July 2016 at 16:00, to bring it back on Tuesday at 09:00..... I only left the saddle in between to eat, sleep, pee and do, you know, The Bigger Delivery.... Other than those annoying interventions of my valuable motorcycle time, I spend time on the saddle. To buy the demo bike a few weeks later. The Z8's on the rental were allright. I was lucky to have had 3 splendid days, not too hot, not too cold, absolutely dry. But I wanted my RS to be equipped with Dunlop Road Smart 3 tires. Now, these are an absolute dream on the RS. Thinking about a turn is just about enough to make the bike turn.... That's my experience for the first 6.000 miles. Spend a weekend in the twisties last week. Gorgeous performance in the dry. A bit wobbly in the wet. Though I believe I might have pushed the bike a bit too far on those occasions...

    This Friday a Dutch motorcycle magazine came out with it's yearly tire test. Last year the winner was the Metzeler Roadtec 01, runner up was the Dunlop Road Smart 3. The difference in scores was only marginal. The RS3 tire was advised for those who ride all year round, given the splendid grip of this tire on cold surfaces. I went on the road with my RT last year on so called "Red Code" traffic alert days (because of snow and ice). And I can confirm the grip of these tires on snow covered roads is unbelievable. In fact, I smacked on my face only after I stepped of my bike... It turned out the grip of my motorcycle boots are nowhere near that of my Road Smart 3 tires.

    This year the same magazine was not as enthusiastic about the RS3 as they were last year. They claimed they might have tested a "poor production example". It ended up 5th place. Winner this year was the Continental Road Attack 3. Runner up the Metzeler Roadtec 01. Friends of ours have those Roadtec 01 on their R1200ST's. They claim the handling at lower speeds is much easier than on the PR4's that they had fitted on their bikes before. But they also complain about a little bit of restlessness on the highway at higher speeds.

    As for how the 2017 bike rides, I was so lucky to get to ride a 2017 bike and compare it with my 2015 bike. I'm most likely not fitted with sensitive enough nerves. Because I can hardly tell the difference. Sure, the gearbox thingy has had an upgrade. So going from Neutral to 1 is less of a happening going on underneath the saddle. But once on the ride, using the Shift Assist, I could only say the sound is somewhat different. Less of a grunt, more like a gasturbine engine. Given the fact that I, normally speaking, listen to music during my commuting, I must confess that the difference in sound is something I did notice, but could not care less about.
    The major improvement in the 2017 model, as far as I was concerned, is the Cornering ABS. That I got retrofitted last November. My 2015 has only one glitch, and that is going from 3 to 2 using Shift Assist. It sometimes ends up in N instead of 2. A known phenomenon on this forum. My bike is due for its next service on the 21st of July, the dealer has been informed about this. I don't know, I still have warranty on the bike, so I believe I can sort of press them to solve this since I don't believe the manufacturer meant this glitch to happen... So far, I have not found a commonality in the occurrences (so that it could be blamed to my handling for example). Ultimately, it might be because of a hardware problem. I learned that, should gear boxes have to be replaced, they have instructions from BMW to put in the 2017 gearbox (and replace the starter engine). I bet the first thing they are going to do is give the software an update, but I believe there is not much to be updated since the bike was hooked up to a BMW service computer only last November...

    In summary: I believe that the top end tires these days are all pretty good. In fact, I tend to believe there are no real bad tires out there on the market that have a wel known brand printed on them...

    Extreme weather conditions such as heat or wetness might make one type of tire more suitable to your needs than another. I can only say that my Dunlop Roadsmart 3 has done a very good job so far. And it has served my for 6.000 miles during which I have taken her on the tracks and pushed her to the limits (Advanced Motorcycling Course), I have taken her on the German Highways twice and pulled the throttle fully open to keep it there for a while. And I have played around in the German hills where I scraped the footpegs over the tarmac. So these tires did not really have an easy live. Yet, I tend to believe I can still squeeze another 2.000 miles out of them. Giving me another 2.000 miles to decide about what tire to fit next. It will either be the test winner, the Continental Road Attack 3, or, despite the test result in the magazine, the Road Smart 3. I would chose the latter based on my own experience should I go for those...
     
    Last edited: Jul 12, 2017
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  13. Grumpy Goat

    Grumpy Goat Well-Known Member Contributor

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    Nice post, Jeroen. I think it would be nice (for us) if you sampled the Contis next and then gave your feedback. Then you'd be in a good position to compare all these tires personally. :)
     
  14. Richard230

    Richard230 Well-Known Member Contributor

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    This tire business has really got me confused. I had a set of PR2 tires on my 2007 R1200R and they vaporized within only 3,500 miles when ridden in hot weather at freeway speeds. I typically use Bridgestone BT-023 tires on my radial-tire equipped motorcycles and have found them to work well and typically last about 8,000 miles. I currently have a set on my RS and have just returned from riding 2,000 miles, much of it in 90-100 degree F heat. They worked very well and I had no traction or handling issues, not even on a long section of twisty roadway covered with tar snakes. But I still haven't found any tire better than the Z8 tires that came stock on my RS.

    What is mystifying is how opinions differ when it comes to motorcycle tires. I guess that is what keeps all of the different brands in business. Evaluating tires seems to be a black art that is not very repeatable or scientific. So my primary yardstick is how many miles they deliver before needing to be replaced - considering how relatively expensive motorcycle tires are to purchase and install. At least tire life is something that I can measure. ;)
     
  15. Grumpy Goat

    Grumpy Goat Well-Known Member Contributor

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    And here we agree 1000%. I too use the same primary yardstick, after adequate grip for all riding conditions that I see. that must come first. All the other stuff is wasted on me and I couldn't give a rat's .... :D

    Got 10k out of my rear PR4 and 12k out of the front (which had some cupping that didn't bother me). So the tire that grips as well, warms up as well and outlasts the PR4s gets my shekels. :D The Roadsmarts look promising ...
     
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  16. boxter

    boxter Active Member

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    My biking mate and myself have just done 2500 miles through Europe at mostly 35 degree plus and he had no problems with his pr4's, the reason I mentioned the heat issue was a few members on my last forum z1000sx, had reported issues with the heating tyres in Spain , but there again, every bike deals with tyres differently, I know pr4's will go on mine when the Z8's are finished.

    Ged
     
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  17. Vlady

    Vlady Member

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    My Yamaha Thundercat is on PR4's and I like them very much, I had Continental before that and PR4 are softer but so much better as all round tyre. about 3 weeks ago I took a test drive of F800GT on PR4's and I found handling was great, easy, predictable, stable, safe (fair enough it was dry and not too hot, Scotland after all), probably of not for unbelievable vibes from the engine I would consider that bike to buy, next day I took RS for a test drive on Metzeler 08's and loved the bike but I did not like the tyres, it always felt that the bike wants to wide on every corner and especially roundabouts, it felt like the front tire was under inflated, I checked the tire pressures and it was fine so must be the tire and bike only had 800 miles on the clock, the road conditions were exactly the same as the day before when I tested GT, after I test drove RS and jumped back on Yamaha I felt o much more secured on every turn, so much more planted and confident.
    I still love and want an RS and hope it will be with PR4's!
    Vlady
     
  18. duccrazydave

    duccrazydave Member

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    I've always preferred Metzeler tires on my Ducati. When I picked up my RS it had 6k miles and the original Z8's were squared off in the back and slightly cupped in the front. But the bike totally didn't care. Very stable, no weird tracking, and lasted til about 8k. Hoping to get a little more mileage, I spooned on the 01's and immediately noticed more movement in the bars when tracking straight, mainly over bumps. I'm assuming this is due to the busier center grooves. Hoping it gets better as they wear in a bit.
     
  19. Jeroen1969

    Jeroen1969 Well-Known Member

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    On top of durability, steering force is scientifically measurable. That's exactly what those chaps of the Dutch Motorcycle magazine did on their test day (bikes fitted with force measuring equipment on the steering bar).

    Now how a rider likes the required steering force to be differs from person to person. Some like to give a bit of counter force during a turn, some don't. One tyre requires more counter force during a turn than the other, so one tyre will meet one riders needs, another rider will like another one.

    The charm of the Dunlop RS3 is it barely needs any force to get it through a turn. I do not only feel this, it has been confirmed by scientifical facts. But another rider might judge the tyre to be too unstable to his likings just because of that same low required steering force....

    That's also why I believe there is a market out there for more than 1 brand or type of tyre.

    You liked the BT023, I hated them. Perhaps I had a "bad production day" set, but fact is, I liked the RT better when the BT023 tyres were swapped for Michelin PR4 and even more so when the RT was fitted with the RS3 tyres.
     
    Last edited: Jul 21, 2017
  20. Jeroen1969

    Jeroen1969 Well-Known Member

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    Got the same numbers as you did out of my PR4 on the RT. Slightly higher numbers out of PR3 on the R1150RS.

    I'm afraid the Dunlop Roadsmarts wont beat those figures... for now my rough estimate is 7.500 miles life expectancy... We'll see what happens....

    I'll keep ya all posted!
     
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