Kenda Kadence 700x23c tyre  £21.99

8/10

Good performance and quality at a budget price - ideal for training, light touring and general riding

Weight 203g   Contact  www.todayscyclist.co.uk

by David Else   August 22, 2011  

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Kenda is known as a budget brand, and the Kadence tyre is not expensive, but it does a jolly good job for the price.

On picking up one of these tyres, the first thing I noticed was the low weight. The Kenda website claims 197g per tyre (the all-black version) and 205g (with colour hoops) - plus/minus 10g. On the road.cc scales the colour hoop versions we've got for test weighed in at 203g each.

I fitted the tyres to pair of Mavic Open Pros on my best bike, and then to some basic Alex rims on my training bike, and on all wheels they slipped on easily - the Kadence is a folding tyre, so there's no stiff bead to deal with. They were easy to remove too, but with no sloppiness when actually on the wheel.

For the first test-ride, I pumped up the tyres to 90psi and they felt a bit sluggish, but another 10 in the front and 20 in the back made all the difference, and they were surprisingly lively on a blast along some hilly Cotswold lanes near road.cc Towers. The maximum recommended pressure is 120psi so there was room for a tad more pressure if I'd needed it.

The tyres felt fine on smooth tarmac too, and just to be sure I tried them in two different bikes - one aluminium with carbon forks and stays, the other full carbon. On both bikes the tyres gave a ride that was slightly harsh compared to some more supple tyre in my collection, such as Vittoria Open Corsas, but no different to some of the less supple tyres I sometimes run such as Bontrager All-weather Race Lites. And either way, this was not enough to cause a problem, and not surprising given they're 60 TPI. To expect anything more from a tyre like this would be unreasonable.

[TPI - or tpi - stands for threads per inch, and refers to the tyre's casing. Generally, the bigger the number, the more supple the tyre. And more comfortable. And more expensive. But not necessarily more durable. For example, most top-end clinchers and tubular are over 300 TPI, but they're not what you want for cruising city streets.]

Anyway, back to these Kadences. The rubber on the tyres seemed the same all over, but according to the Kenda website, the compound on the shoulder is slightly softer than the centre. This gives more durability and less resistance when the bike is upright, and then a bit more traction when you lean into a corner. I tested this by flinging my bike through the chicanes during a training session at our local motor-racing circuit, and the grip was fine - even in slightly damp conditions. Not the best, but fine.

As well as being a softer compound, the area of the tyre that comes into contact when cornering also has a very slight tread on it. Whether this is any better or worse than completely smooth rubber is hard to say. To be honest, I didn't notice any difference either way.

There's no Kevlar bead in these tyres, but puncture protection seems okay. In a few hundred miles of test-riding I haven't had a flat yet, and the rubber seems remarkably clear of cuts from the usual road debris.

The Kenda Kadance tyre is available in 700x23 only. You do have a choice of colour though: it comes in all-black or with hoops between the main contact point and sidewalls in yellow, red, silver or blue. As mentioned earlier, the tyres with colour are slightly heavier than the black-all-over variety, so all you weight-weenies out there will have to keep it plain.

While probably too narrow and light for commuting or serious loaded-up touring, the Kenda Kadence is well worth considering for your training bike or for general riding duties.

The recommended retail price of £21.99 is fair, though not an absolute bargain, but you can find them for under £18 on-line and in some local bike shops and that's good value for a tyre of this weight and quality.

Verdict

Good performance and quality at a budget price - ideal for training, light touring and general riding.

road.cc test report

Make and model: Kenda Kadence 700x23c tyre

Size tested: Yellow/Black - 23 x 700

Tell us what the product is for, and who it's aimed at. What do the manufacturers say about it? How does that compare to your own feelings about it?

The Kenda website says the Kadence is an "entry level training/road enthusiast tire" offering "professional level performance in a price for the weekend warrior". Certainly this is an excellent entey level tyre, and the price is very good, but I'm not sure about claiming 'professional level performance'. However the quality is very good for a tyre of this price.

Tell us some more about the technical aspects of the product?

The Kenda website says the Kadence is made with a rubber compound called 'R2C' which is "paired to a 60tpi casing for the best blend of performance and affordability". The site goes on to say that R2C is 'Kenda's finest road-specific competition compound that blends the best attributes of traction, speed and durability. A grippy (60 shore A durometer) compound is featured on the tire's shoulder for cornering assurance during extreme lean angles and is paired with a fast-rolling (68 shore A durometer) center compound rubber for straight-line speed. Both high-performance durometers are blended on the same casing for the ultimate in performance.' Most of this seems fair enough, but I have to disagree with some lines, and say these tyres do NOT offer the 'ultimate in performance', but they do offer very decent performance at a very fair price, and are well worth considering for training or general riding.

Rate the product for quality of construction:
 
8/10

After a few hundred miles, the tyres are still in shape. I've had no punctures, and the tyres seems to resist cuts from glass, flints and other road debris pretty well.

Rate the product for performance:
 
8/10

Pumped up to around 100-110 psi, these tyres spin along nicely. They give a slightly harsh ride, but nothing to cause a problem, and no different to similarly less supple tyres from other brands. A lot would depend on what you need the tyres for, the roads you ride.

Rate the product for durability:
 
9/10

As mentioned above, I've had no punctures so far, and the tyres seems to resist cuts from glass, flints and other road debris pretty well.

Rate the product for weight, if applicable:
 
8/10

At around 200g, this is a good weight for a tyre at this price, without compromising durability.

Rate the product for comfort, if applicable:
 
7/10

As mentioned above, these tyres give a slightly harsh ride, but nothing to cause a problem, and no different to similarly less supple tyres from other brands.

Rate the product for value:
 
8/10

if you can find these tyres going for less than £20 each, they're worth having

Did you enjoy using the product? Yes

Would you consider buying the product? Yes

Would you recommend the product to a friend? Yes

Overall rating: 8/10

About the tester

Age: 50  Height: 5ft 10 / 178cm  Weight: 11 stone / 70kg

I usually ride: an old Marin Alp   My best bike is: an old Giant Cadex

I've been riding for: Over 20 years  I ride: A few times a week  I would class myself as: Experienced

I regularly do the following types of riding: touring, club rides, sportives, mtb,

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