First Look Bontrager XR5 Team Issue TLR 29 x 2.60 MTB Tires

It’s been one hell of a good spring for hitting the dirt and a new set of wheels that Adam Blake built up provides the right width rim to delve into the ‘don’t call me plus-sized’ 29 x 2.6 category. I peeled off the set of Teravail 2.8″ Coronados (full review is in the works) and mounted these Bontrager XR5 Team Issue TLR 29 x 2.60 MTB Tires tubeless using the wet transfer process with a sealant transfusion. (I reused the sealant from the previous tire setup).

I like black tires!

Back in the day, mountain bikers were always on the lookout for the biggest, baddest pair of knobbies that you could find. In the 29r world (pre-plusbike) that was a 2.35′ tire. Now we have 2.4 to 2.8-inch tires that fills the niche between MTB and Plus Bike tires.

I took one look at the big square lugged knobs of the XR5’s and thought to myself, this is a tire for someplace like the Front Range of Colorado so I asked Julio Dot com if he’d like to take a crack at these bad boys. He said that they wouldn’t fit in his Santa Cruz 29r dual suspension MTB and he thought that they may not be fat enough to provide the cush he likes on his sweet custom Retrotec rigid 29+ bike. That should give you an idea of how “nichey” these tweener sized tires can get.

Luckily…I (somewhat regularly) play bikes on a Surly Krampus that these tires will work with, so I stepped up to the plate and started to think about where I could find some loose gnarly trail.

L – XR5 (29×2.60) R – Teravail Coronado (29×2.80)

I remembered to weigh and measure these bad boys for y’all. The two test tires weighed in at 980g and 963g. With the tire laid out flat the bead to bead measured 159 mm and the tread to tread was 74mm. Mounted to a pair of RaceFace AR 35 rims the casing measured 63.48 mm and the outer edges of the tread measured 64.48 mm. These tires are two and a half millimeters narrower than the 2.8″ Coronados.

L – XR5 (29×2.60) R – Teravail Coronado (29×2.80)

The tread pattern on the XR5’s consists of four rows of well spaced squared lugs with siping and the center rows are ramped on the leading edge. The shoulder knobs are 5 mm tall and the center lugs are 3.8mm and 4.3 mm tall. This is a tire designed to excel in loose or loamy conditions.

Tubeless setup was easy and they held air overnight after I mounted and then rode them in on my local trails in preparation for a field trip to the Northern Unit of the Kettle Moraine State Forest, Greenbush Trail System. If my memory serves me correct, Greenbush has a bunch of loose, rocky, off-camber trail and also happens to be one of Wisconsin’s amphibian hot-spots! testing will get going over the dirt season and we’ll render a full review somewhere down the trail Amigos!

For more information on these tires and more visit –

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One Response to First Look Bontrager XR5 Team Issue TLR 29 x 2.60 MTB Tires

  1. Bike Nerd May 13, 2020 at 9:09 am #

    The XR5’s look a lot like the Maxxis Minion DHF’s. I’ve been running a pair of 29×2.6 Minion DHR’s with the EXO+ casing on my bike and it’s a lot of tire. I’ll be curious to see how you get on with the XR5’s.

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