Winter Tyres - Vittoria vs Continental

by gthornton101   December 17, 2012  

Hi,

I've been using Conti GP4000s for most of this year for my daily commute of 11miles each way. Recently I've been hit with a spate of punctures and I'm thinking I need to get some more hard wearing tyres on as the rain and slush pushes all the grit/stones/twigs/glass/debris out into my riding path.

After doing some research the Vittoria Open Pave Evo CG seems to be a good choice (http://www.wiggle.co.uk/vittoria-open-pave-evo-cg-clincher-tyre/) and the reviews in general seem pretty good even with their hefty price tag. Does anyone have any experience with using them?

Or should I opt for something more typical and just upgrade my Continentals to Gatorskins?

Any thoughts/opinions gratefully received!

Thanks.

20 user comments

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I've changed from GP4000s to Grand Prix 4 Seasons for the winter. So far no problems at all. Smile

posted by MinardiM189 [30 posts]
17th December 2012 - 19:29

28 Likes

Also changed to 25.8mm Conti GP 4 Seasons for the winter, but from 23mm Ultremo's.
Have to say they are superb and may well keep them on for the year. (Times have got quicker too - maybe as I'm a bigger rider and the larger tyre suits anyway).

Does everyone have to have a soundbite here?........
Life is a journey bla bla bla.........oh whatever, puke.

ljblas's picture

posted by ljblas [10 posts]
17th December 2012 - 19:49

28 Likes

MinardiM189 wrote:
I've changed from GP4000s to Grand Prix 4 Seasons for the winter. So far no problems at all. Smile

+1

This is the way to go. GP4000s in summer, GP4Seasons in winter. Gatorskins are not an upgrade for either. Open Pave is a great tyre too but Conti 4Seasons are excellent winter tyres. Check your GP4000s for wear, they may be knackered. My experience with Conti tyres is that once they start to go that it is time to chuck them out. You can pick a pair up very cheaply at bike-discount.de

Ah! Condor

posted by Bedfordshire Clanger [318 posts]
17th December 2012 - 21:21

30 Likes

just gone from gatorskins to rubino pros ... £18 each !!!!
so far tough and a nice ride.
The gators were getting "sketchy" in the wet - not nice
given the weather we seem to have been stuck with Big Grin

still on the 3rd switch-back of Bwlch !

posted by therevokid [725 posts]
17th December 2012 - 22:04

28 Likes

@Bedfordshire Clanger thanks for the link.

Sounds like GP4Seasons are the way to go!

posted by gthornton101 [62 posts]
18th December 2012 - 11:06

27 Likes

@therevokid I hadn't even considered the Rubino Pro - fraction of the cost of the Pave Evos!

Thanks for the tip!

posted by gthornton101 [62 posts]
18th December 2012 - 11:14

29 Likes

got that one from a buddy of mine and was equally
surprised at the cost (or lack !) Big Grin

still on the 3rd switch-back of Bwlch !

posted by therevokid [725 posts]
18th December 2012 - 12:00

28 Likes
Simon E's picture

posted by Simon E [1998 posts]
18th December 2012 - 13:17

22 Likes

I have found it is a question of what you want from the tyres the most as you can not have it all! My mate who is able to do most of his riding out of town does not need loads of puncture protection uses GP4000s like you. However the 4 season is a great quality tyre, and i find it a bit less likely to puncture than the 4000s, but is a bit slower and tends to be more expensive on line. Both these tyres grip better in the wet than the gatorskin and ride faster. However if you want longevity and really dont fancy punctures then the gatorskin hardshell is great. I like a tyre that just keeps on going in the winter, my front hard case has done many 000 miles now and just won't give up, the rear has done a few 000 too. My 4 seasons wore out pretty quickly on the back tbh, but the softer rubber is why they grip.

Other 'winter' tyres I have recently used are the pro4 endurance which seem to hold up well to punctures, it seems the rubber is grippier than the gatorskins but seem to cut up easily so maybe longterm longevity may suffer? You can get them for £20 each though. They feel slower than the durano S that I had on the bike previously which are actually a lovely feeling tyre, definitely will use these again. However I found they punctured easily so not so great for the depths of winter.

posted by ilovemytinbred [164 posts]
19th December 2012 - 7:39

27 Likes

There is quite a difference between foul condition race tyres (Vittoria Paves) and true winter tyres such as the Continental Gatorskin. I've ridden Pave's over last winter and this and they are super fast and supple, but do cut up easily and puncture sometimes. GP 4 season and Vredestein quattro tri comp fall into similar categories, low rolling residence and weight, with SOME puncture resistance built in.

For more protection be prepared to suffer higher weight and rolling resistance. The aforementioned Gatorskins are good, Specialized All Condition Armadillos are probably as tough as it gets. I've ridden these all winter with ZERO FLATS.

The best solution I think is the ROAD TUBELESS system. Either with 2 way fit wheels or Stans rim tape to make an alu clincher tubleless compatible. I am on Hutchinson Intensive tubeless on Campagnolo Zonda wheels. So far I have the low rolling resistance of the 'race type tyres' and the ZERO FLATS of the more heavy duty tyres.

They were hassle to set up, even with a compressor but once they are rolling I can't see a better option. Mountain bikers among you will need no introduction of course, so what are you waiting for?

Sean L's picture

posted by Sean L [10 posts]
19th December 2012 - 13:41

28 Likes

hi I have just done 10,000kms on a set of 25c marathon plus tyres without a single puncture. I live in a flinty area with some nightmare pot holes.
They do not hit speed or comfort and they are also pretty cheap. I used some Continental gatorskins twice and got 1 puncture

cw

posted by cwardy66 [1 posts]
19th December 2012 - 16:34

25 Likes

Marathons are a bit further down the continuum in the direction of slow and bombproof. Good choice when its really nasty though. Its funny with the gatorskins I have done a similar number of miles without a flat, my routes tend to be mainly filled with glass. I think sometimes it is just bad luck. I had punctures on my summer vittorias and nearly gave up on them, but have since done a lot of happy miles on them.

posted by ilovemytinbred [164 posts]
19th December 2012 - 18:24

28 Likes

I don't understand how tubeless tyres would be better. If you puncture a tubeless tyre then surely you have to fix the tyre there and then... Thinking

posted by mp31 [9 posts]
20th December 2012 - 0:42

29 Likes

I found Gatorskins cut up a lot, although they remained puncture resistant. Using Schwalbe Durano Plus on my Winter bike which seem good though expensive.

New Forester

posted by Forester [88 posts]
20th December 2012 - 6:43

28 Likes

I really abused a tubeless system and they were amazing. I did a LOT of miles on them on really crappy roads but they refused to puncture. It was their race specific tyre, the narrow atom too. In the end I wore through therubber and it still did not puncture. When I removed the tyre it had obviously self sealed a lot of times.

If you do puncture it does present some problems. Firstly you have to closely examine the tyre to remove all the stuff that may have got through the tyre, from all the self sealed punctures. Then the tyres are often very difficult to put on with a tube present. Using a Var tyre lever can help.

On Ultegra rims I never needed a compressor for Hutchinson tyres.

posted by ilovemytinbred [164 posts]
20th December 2012 - 7:21

27 Likes

mp31 wrote:
I don't understand how tubeless tyres would be better. If you puncture a tubeless tyre then surely you have to fix the tyre there and then... Thinking

Tubeless tyres do not pinch flat, no tube to pinch. For an impact puncture the sealant inside seals up the hole and you can just keep riding. Unlike inner tubes where the sealents seem NOT to work.

If you DO manage to flat a tubeless tyre (hard to do unless you have a huge sidewall gash), just put in a tube as normal for a repair.

Sean L's picture

posted by Sean L [10 posts]
20th December 2012 - 12:17

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ilovemytinbred wrote:

If you do puncture it does present some problems. Firstly you have to closely examine the tyre to remove all the stuff that may have got through the tyre, from all the self sealed punctures. Then the tyres are often very difficult to put on with a tube present. Using a Var tyre lever can help.

Yes, it is imprtant to select a rim/tyre combo that goes on easily so you can effect a tube fitting on the road if needed. These Pedros tyre leavers are the best we have used http://www.bikeradar.com/gear/category/tools/cycling-tools/tyre-levers/p...

Sean L's picture

posted by Sean L [10 posts]
20th December 2012 - 14:54

26 Likes

Maybe it's me but I can't seem to get on with any Conti tyres. I've had, and been disappointed with, four different varieties, ranging from the Gatorskin to GPs.

My big complaint is the sheer number of flats I've suffered, and boy, do I hate the time wasted on punctures. Swapping to other brands, any other brand apparently, resulted in an immediate improvement.

I don't treat them any differently, I'm reasonably good at keeping them pumped and free from flints, but they still find a way to develop a hole. I've replaced the Gatorskins with Vittoria Randonneurs and the GPs with Ultremos. The Ultra Race I've thrown in the bin and the Contact Sports are now on my wife's bike as she rides about two hundred miles a year. ( And we still had a flat on our last little jaunt! )

Am I jinxed?

Mike

mike the bike's picture

posted by mike the bike [145 posts]
21st December 2012 - 17:22

23 Likes

Almost certainly. I haven't been visited by the fairy in over a year and over 8000 miles, I only use GP4000Ss and GP4Seasons. I don't rate Gatorskins but lots of people swear by them. As ever on the bike, the only thing that counts is what works for you. I've often considered having a go on some Schwalbe rubber but I've no reason to change.

Love that icon btw.

Ah! Condor

posted by Bedfordshire Clanger [318 posts]
21st December 2012 - 21:40

26 Likes

thanks everyone for opinion and links! All input taken on board, going to try and balance recommendations with what will (hopefully) be in boxing day sales!

posted by gthornton101 [62 posts]
24th December 2012 - 21:52

23 Likes