Welcome from MR MOTO, your one-stop destination for all motorcycle tyre needs. We understand that the tyres are not just a part of your motorbike, they are the invaluable interface between your machine and the road.

Selecting the right tyres is crucial as it directly influences the performance, safety, and ride quality of your motorbike.

Irrespective of whether you ride on road, off-road, or embark on thrilling adventures, the tyre choice can significantly alter your riding experience.

At MR MOTO, we are committed to helping you make an informed decision, ensuring your ride is smooth, safe, and responsive to every command.

Overview of types of tyres for motorcycles – road, dirt, adventure and ATV

Road Tyres

Road tyres are designed exclusively for paved roads. They are optimised for grip, longevity, and fuel efficiency, making them the ideal choice for everyday commuting, touring, or sports riding. Most road tyres have a smooth tread pattern intended to maximise surface contact with the road, providing excellent grip and control.

The rubber compounds used in these tyres are generally harder, offering greater resistance to wear and tear, which is common on tarmac roads. However, while road tyres provide superior performance on dry, sealed surfaces, they may not offer the same level of traction on wet roads or off-road conditions. Thus, it's essential to consider your typical riding environment when choosing the right tyre for your motorcycle.

Dirt Tyres

Dirt tyres, or off-road tyres, are specifically designed for unpaved terrains. They feature aggressive, deep treads for superior traction on loose or uneven surfaces such as gravel, mud, or sand. Their robust construction ensures they withstand the rigours of off-road riding.

The rubber compounds used in dirt tyres are typically softer, which allows for better flexibility and thus, higher grip over uneven surfaces. However, their softer compound and aggressive tread patterns mean they wear out more quickly when used on tarmac roads. Dirt tyres are ideal for those who frequently venture off the beaten path and want a tyre that can handle the demands of various off-road conditions.

Adventure Tyres

Adventure tyres are the perfect blend of road and off-road tyres, designed for both on-road stability and off-road traction. They offer a balanced performance, making them ideal for dual-sport or adventure motorbikes that frequently traverse a mix of paved and unpaved terrains.

Adventure tyres typically feature a less aggressive tread pattern than dirt tyres, which helps maintain stability and traction on sealed surfaces. However, the tread blocks are usually larger and more spaced out than those found on road tyres, allowing them to handle off-road conditions more effectively.

The rubber compounds used in adventure tyres are also versatile, aiming to offer reasonable durability on the road whilst still providing adequate grip off it. These tyres are an excellent choice for riders who enjoy the best of both worlds – cruising on tarmac roads and exploring off-road terrains. However, it's worth remembering that while adventure tyres offer good all-around performance, they may not match the specific performance of a road or dirt tyre in their respective environments.

ATV Tyres

All-Terrain Vehicle (ATV) tyres are designed for a wide range of terrains. These tyres are typically broader and have a more aggressive tread pattern than standard motorcycle tyres, giving them exceptional stability and grip on various surfaces, including mud, sand, and rocks.

The robust construction of ATV tyres, often reinforced with added layers, ensures they can withstand harsh impacts and resist punctures when navigating rocky terrains. These tyres are typically low-pressure, enabling them to distribute weight evenly and provide a more comfortable ride over rough surfaces.

While predominantly used off-road, many ATV tyres are also designed to be road-legal, offering limited on-road performance. Ideal for utility, sport, and recreational ATV users, these tyres can handle virtually anything that comes their way. However, one must bear in mind that the wide-ranging capabilities of ATV tyres come at the cost of specific performance optimisations, meaning they might not perform as well as specialised road or dirt tyres in their respective environments.

Tips for selecting the right tyre type

When selecting the right tyre type, it isn't just about choosing the one that looks the most robust or has a cool tread pattern. Instead, it's about finding the tyre that best suits your riding style and the terrain you'll be traversing. Here are three top tips to guide you in your decision-making process.

1.     Consider your bike's usage

Firstly, it's important to consider what you predominantly use your bike for. If you're frequently cruising on highways, you'll want to go for a tyre that offers stability at high speeds and has a high wear resistance.

If you're an off-road enthusiast who loves exploring trails and treading on rocky terrain, then you'll need a tyre designed to offer excellent grip and control on such surfaces, like ATV or dirt tyres.

In contrast, if you mostly ride around the city, you'll likely benefit from a tyre with good handling and excellent wet grip, as urban areas often have tight corners and can be subject to unpredictable weather.

Each tyre is designed with a specific purpose in mind, and aligning that purpose with your usage will ensure peak performance and longevity.

2.     What type of motorcycle do you ride?

Secondly, the type of motorcycle you own can also dictate the type of tyre you need. Sport bikes, for instance, need high-performance tyres that can cope with the high speeds and lean angles these bikes are capable of. On the other hand, touring bikes that are designed for long-distance travel will require tyres that offer a smooth ride, excellent grip and high mileage.

3.     Consider the climate you will be riding in

Lastly, remember to take into consideration your location and the climate you'll be riding in. If you live in a region that experiences heavy rainfall, investing in tyres with excellent wet grip will be crucial. Alternatively, if you live in a warmer climate, you'll need tyres that can perform well in high temperatures and resist heat-induced wear and tear.

By taking these factors into account, you'll be able to choose the right tyre that not only increases your safety on the road but also enhances your riding experience.

Benefits of using the right type of tyre

Using the right type of tyre for your motorcycle not only enhances your overall riding experience but also offers a range of specific advantages. Let's delve into three key benefits you can expect when you choose the right tyres: improved performance, increased safety, and cost-effectiveness.

1.     Increased safety & better control

The right type of tyre can significantly enhance safety and control while riding. Proper tyres with a suitable tread pattern and rubber compound can offer improved traction on different road surfaces. This is particularly important when navigating through tight corners or slippery conditions, where control and grip are paramount. In situations where quick braking is required, good tyres can shorten your stopping distance, reducing the risk of collisions. Furthermore, the right tyres can provide better stability during high-speed rides or under heavy loading conditions, giving you enhanced control over your motorcycle. Hence, choosing the right tyres can be a critical factor in ensuring a safe and enjoyable ride.

2.     Better performance & handling

The correct tyres can dramatically transform the performance and handling of your motorcycle. The tyres serve as the sole contact point between your vehicle and the road, meaning their composition, tread pattern, and pressure can dramatically affect how the bike responds to your inputs. High-quality tyres often feature design elements that optimise the motorcycle's handling characteristics. For instance, tyres with a rounded profile can facilitate smoother turning, while those with a stiffer sidewall can improve straight-line stability. Moreover, tyres specifically designed for high-performance motorcycles often contain softer rubber compounds that enhance grip and promote sharper handling. These improvements can make your ride more enjoyable and allow you to take full advantage of your motorcycle's capabilities.

3.     Longer life span compared to generic tyres

High-quality tyres also offer a longer lifespan compared to their generic counterparts. This longevity stems from the superior materials and craftsmanship that go into their production. These tyres typically feature advanced rubber compounds that resist wear and tear, guaranteeing an extended service life even under challenging conditions. Such tyres can withstand extreme weather, rigorous riding styles, and even rough terrains, all without significant degradation in their performance. This long-lasting performance not only saves you money in the long run by reducing the frequency of tyre replacements but also ensures that you get consistent, reliable performance throughout the life of the tyre. In addition to this, manufacturers of high-quality tyres often provide warranties for their products, giving you added peace of mind about your investment. Therefore, while these tyres might have a higher upfront cost, their durability and sustained performance make them a more cost-effective choice in the long term.

Interpreting Tyre Markings in New Zealand

In New Zealand, as in most countries, motorcycle tyres carry specific markings that provide crucial information about their specifications. Understanding these markings is vital for ensuring the tyres' appropriateness for your motorcycle and riding style.

  1. Tyre Size: The tyre size is usually represented by three numbers followed by a letter and then two more numbers. For example, '120/70 ZR 17'. The first number ('120' in this example) represents the tyre's width in millimetres. The second number ('70') is the aspect ratio — the height of the tyre's cross-section as a percentage of its width. The letter ('Z' here) refers to the tyre's speed rating, with 'Z' denoting a tyre rated for over 240 km/h. The 'R' indicates a radial-ply construction, and the final number ('17') is the diameter of the wheel rim in inches.
  2. Load Index: Following the tyre size, you might see another number, such as '58'. This is the load index, indicating the maximum load the tyre can carry at the speed indicated by its speed rating. A '58' load index corresponds to a maximum load of 236 kg.
  3. DOT Code: The Department of Transportation (DOT) code is a sequence of numbers and letters stamped on the tyre sidewall. It provides information about the manufacturing date and place. For example, 'DOT U2LL LMLR 2717' indicates that the tyre was made in the 27th week of 2017.
  4. E-Mark: In New Zealand, all tyres sold must have an E-Mark, signifying that they adhere to the European tyre safety standards. For example, 'E4' shows that the tyre is certified to European standards and was tested in the Netherlands.

By learning to interpret these markings, you can ensure you purchase the correct and safe tyres for your motorcycle.

Legally Accepted Level of Motorcycle Tyre Wear in New Zealand

In New Zealand, the law requires that motorcycle tyres must have a minimum tread depth of 1.5mm across three-quarters of the tyre's breadth. The tread should be visible in the remaining quarter.

How to Check Motorcycle Tyre Wear

Checking the tyre wear on your motorcycle is a straightforward process. The simplest way is to look for the tread wear indicator bars — raised bumps usually positioned at the base of the tyre's main grooves. When your tyre's tread is worn down to the same level as these bars, it's time for a tyre replacement.

Additionally, you can use a tread depth gauge for a more precise measurement. Insert the gauge into the tyre's main groove and read the measurement. If it's less than 1.5mm, it's time to change your tyres. Regular checks will not only ensure that you meet legal requirements but also significantly enhance your safety on the road.

Where to buy motorcycle tyres online or in-store

MR MOTO is recognised as one of New Zealand's leading stockists of all types of motorcycle tyres. Our comprehensive range encompasses tyres suitable for a wide spectrum of motorcycles, ensuring there is something to meet every rider's individual needs.

Quality and safety are at the forefront of MR MOTO's operations, thus every tyre they stock adheres strictly to New Zealand and European safety standards. For added convenience, these premium tyres can be purchased both online and in-store.

Our user-friendly website offers a seamless shopping experience, allowing you to explore and purchase suitable tyres from the comfort of your home. Alternatively, you can visit our showroom in Pukekohe to browse our extensive range in person, where our friendly and knowledgeable staff will be more than willing to offer expert advice and guidance to ensure you make the right choice.

No matter your preference, MR MOTO makes buying motorcycle tyres a smooth and hassle-free process.