The Schwalbe Pro One Tubeless Easy (TLE) folding tyre is up there with the best race tyres on the market. Grippy, fast rolling and simple to fit, with or without a tube, they're a great choice for your race bike. If durability is your main goal, though, you might want to look elsewhere in the range.
Although Schwalbe has just announced that a brand new version of the Pro One TLE is on its way for 2020, that is no reason to shun the latest version that is still out there on the shelves, especially considering you can pick them up for nearly half the rrp.
As part of its top end Evo Line, the Pro Ones use Schwalbe's Triple compound which is soft and much grippier than the Onestar compound found on the standard non-tubeless One.
Chucking the bike into tight corners or roundabouts at speed shows the level of grip on offer in both the wet and dry, plus the tyres give a really direct feel of the road thanks to the suppleness of the rubber.
Grip when braking is impressive, too, especially when you grab a handful of the front lever.
Compared to the standard Ones that I swapped them out for, the Pro Ones feel much quicker at the same relative tyre pressures, rolling very nicely indeed. You can use the Pro Ones with a tube if you like, but their design is aimed mostly for tubeless running.
Schwalbe's Microskin is a high tensile micro fabric which is vulcanised together with the rubber and carcass to envelop the entire tyre, sealing it for tubeless use (it reduces the porousness of the sidewall to keep the sealant in) and increasing puncture protection.
This all adds a bit of weight, mind. The Pro Ones (25mm) weigh 290g on our scales (higher than the claimed 255g), with a 28mm One coming in at 252g, and that's including the V-Guard strip under the rubber, which arguably adds better puncture protection.
The Pro Ones are among the easiest tubeless tyres I've had to fit on the majority of rims, using the Beto Surge Tubeless Floor Pump. Only one set of wheels didn't see the tyre beads pop straight onto the hook of the rim and I had to use a tube first to get the tyre to sit right.
When fitted and full of sealant they do a decent job of retaining their pressure, especially after the first ride has spun the sealant constantly around the inside of the tyre to find all the little nooks and crannies. Running them at 100psi they'd lose about 20psi a week.
I've already mentioned that you can get these discounted at the moment – £37.99 from some outlets – but even when you go by the full rrp of £66.99 they are competitive with the opposition.
The highly rated Continental Grand Prix 5000 TL are 302g and slightly more expensive at £69.95, while the tubeless version of the Maxxis High Roads (review coming very soon) will set you back £59.99. They aren't as fast rolling as the Schwalbes, but they offer excellent grip in both the wet and dry.
Overall, the current Schwalbe Pro Ones are still top of the heap – simple to fit, grippy and fast rolling – but they are increasingly surrounded by some very good competition.
One of the fastest, grippiest and easest to fit tubeless-ready race tyres on the market
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road.cc test report
Make and model: Schwalbe Pro One tyre
Size tested: 25mm
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?
Schwalbe distributor Chicken Cycle Kit says, "The fastest road tyre in the world. The next generation of tubeless tyres. A truly thrilling ride. It's fast. It's reliable. It's light. The patented MicroSkin construction makes this all possible. The rolling resistance is minimal! All round cut resistance and puncture protection are extraordinary, especially in combination with Doc Blue Professional sealant. This is the absolute top model from Schwalbe! You can also use the Schwalbe Pro One with a normal tube, but its true strengths are experienced only in tubeless form."
I think they are one of the fastest, grippiest race tyres on the market.
Tell us some more about the technical aspects of the product?
Chicken lists these features:
PROTECTION: MicroSkin, Tubeless Easy. The patented construction consists of a high-tensile micro fabric which is vulcanized together with the rubber compound and the carcass. MicroSkin envelops the entire carcass and facilitates a fault-free Tubeless Easy operation
COMPOUND / TPI: OneStar triple compound developed just for the ONE range / 127 TPI
WEIGHT: 235g (23c) / 255g (25c) / 275g (28c)
Tell us how the product performed overall when used for its designed purpose
As a race tyre it performs exactly as it should, grippy and fast.
Tell us what you particularly liked about the product
Excellent grip levels.
Tell us what you particularly disliked about the product
Heavier than the non-tubeless standard One version.
How does the price compare to that of similar products in the market, including ones recently tested on road.cc?
Continental Grand Prix 5000 TL is £69.95, while the Maxxis High Road is £59.99.
Did you enjoy using the product? Yes
Would you consider buying the product? Yes
Would you recommend the product to a friend? Yes
Use this box to explain your overall score
They cover everything expected by a quality race tyre, and even though the puncture protection isn't the greatest it's easily acceptable for the type of tyre.
About the tester
I usually ride: This month's test bike My best bike is: B'Twin Ultra CF draped in the latest bling test components
I've been riding for: Over 20 years I ride: Every day I would class myself as: Expert
I regularly do the following types of riding: time trialling, commuting, club rides, sportives, fixed/singlespeed
With 20 years of road cycling and over 150,000 miles in his legs it's safe to say Stu is happiest when on the bike whatever the weather. Since writing his first review for road.cc back in 2009 he has also had a career in engineering including 3D-CAD design and product development, so has a real passion for all of the latest technology coming through in the industry but is also a sucker for a classic steel frame, skinny tyres, rim brakes and a damn good paintjob.
His fascination with gravel bikes is getting out of control too!