I Want It All – In Search of The Perfect Tire

I Want It All – In Search of The Perfect Tire

 I want it all from my tires, super sticky, long life and a good ride. Unfortunately, that’s not a reality, with tires there generally has to be some compromise. If you get a sticky tire you won’t get long life and vice versa. Those facts have not stopped me from looking for the holy grail of motorcycle tires. Which lead me to my current choice of tire on the trusty Dyna, the Metzeler ME888.
Having owned a few sets of ME880’s (the predecessor to the ME888) I was down to give the triple 8’s a try. I threw them on a little earlier in the year but had only ridden them locally around town and in my favorite Black Hills canyons. I was starting to form an opinion on them but had yet to take them on a real trip. Then an opportunity to go on the DevilStone run came up and I jumped at the chance to go. The trip out west proved to be a great testing ground for the tires as I put them through a ton of different paces. First off, I was camping off my bike for 4 days so I was loaded about as heavy as I get. Second, we put on every kind of mile possible. Plenty of backroad two-lane cruising, some real aggressive twisty carving, a fair amount of dirt road ripping and some 90mph interstate blasting to round out a nice 1100 mile extended weekend.
After my local canyon ripping and the trip, I feel like I have a pretty good handle on the ME888’s. Are they the holy grail of tires? No, but they are a damn good all around tire. Everyone’s main concern with tires is usually mileage, mine isn’t (its grip) but for the sake of the masses, we can talk about it first. This tire is 100% designed for milage, now we can talk about transversal grooves and compound bridges or I can just tell you that after 4000 plus miles on the tires they look as good as new, and I’m not particularly easy on tires. Sometimes a side effect of a high mileage tire can be a rough ride, that’s not the case here, they ride smooth and silky no matter the terrain. I have tested them on every terrain possible, pavement, gravel, dirt, twisty blacktop, and heavy rain, they are very capable in all situations.
Like I mentioned before my #1 concern with tires is grip and I had some concerns with the ME888’s seeing how they are a mileage tire. My concerns were somewhat valid but only in the most aggressive situations. As you can see from the ground off footpegs you can pretty confidently push these tires to some significant lean angle. I was able to break them loose on the exit of some corners but you had to really be pushing your corner speed and be early and aggressive with the throttle. It’s also worth noting that my bike has a bit of a hot rod engine and that could have contributed to the black marks exiting the corner.
Overall the ME888 has been a great all-around performer as tires go. If I had one request it would be that Metzeler makes a stickier version of this tire, I for one would be willing to sacrifice some mileage for some more traction in those peg grinding situations. If your bike is in need of some new shoes give some thought to the ME888, I think you will be satisfied.

Road Tested Review: Metzeler 888 Tires

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  1. Paul Diephuis November 25, 2018 at 2:12 pm

    I Have a2002?HD RoadKing Looking For Big White Wall Metzlerpauldie

  2. Anthony C November 12, 2018 at 5:36 pm

    There’s no doubt a Metzeler tire is very good tire. My response is from riders that have rode on them. I stayed with The Dunlop tires because I didn’t need two tires or I may have went that way. In my personal opinion the Dunlop are pretty darn good for holding the road under my ride the FLHX. I got 20,000 miles out of the rear tire. There is one drawback to the Dunlop tire, as the rear tire starts to wear. When you get into slight and tight turns at 40 mph and up. The Dunlop likes to sing, it sounds like a bad bearing. I say bad bearing because I worked on the big trucks, pickups, cars from the 1940’s to the 1980’s. I know what a bad bearing sounds like and the Dunlop does make that noise. I replaced the front tire because there was a small cut that made me feel uneasy. I bought the front the front tire from J&P Cycles in October of 2015. Theres about 13,000 miles on it now and still looking good, and holds the road very well rain or shine.

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